Beyond Dizengoff Square: 5 Beautiful Squares in Tel Aviv

By Sarah Mann | Published on 2/12/2024

Why do people - both locals and tourists - enjoy spending time at city squares? Well, there are many reasons, and not just because they’re often very beautiful. Public squares have all kinds of benefits - historically they were used as marketplaces, bringing people together democratically. 

Today, they still host gatherings, such as the huge 2023 protests but they’re also places where people socialize, sit in cafes for an Israeli breakfast, enjoy musical performances and sometimes even live theatre.

Squares can also be very beautiful, with ponds and fountains adding to the appeal. They offer fantastic ecological benefits with trees and plants that give out oxygen and also provide shade and shelter. Often they’re named after famous writers, politicians or great historical figures, which adds to the cultural element.

Just like London, New York, and Paris, Israel's liveliest city has its own architectural squares (‘kikarim’), which are bound to delight travelers. Here’s our guide to five Tel Aviv Squares that you really must see, when you’re visiting this young and dynamic city:

1. Habima Square

The Habima Square is new, modern, and attractive - a wide open space, that is popular as a meeting place and a hang-out for friends.

tel aviv squaresHabima Square garden

Deliberately minimalist in design, it has a sunken garden, water basins, and flower beds which come to life in the spring. There’s a lot of local flora in this square too - cacti, almond and sycamore trees, and gorgeous-smelling lavender bushes

What’s going on in the area?

The Habima square and surrounding area are filled with Tel-Avivi cultural treasures - there’s the Habima theatre itself (recently redesigned, with glass windows which give you a fantastic view inside at night) and the Mann auditorium, where the Israeli Philharmonic regularly performs and a short walk away is the Israeli Opera House.

tel aviv squaresHabima Theater at night (Image source: Oren Rozen CC BY-SA 3.0)

This square also sits at the top of beautiful Rothschild Boulevard, one of Tel Aviv’s most famous and lovely streets - perfect for strolling, admiring Bauhaus architecture or simply sitting in a sidewalk cafe and people-watching. The area has some of Tel Aviv's top 10 restaurants and cool pubs too, so it’s the perfect place to go for drinks and dinner.

2. Dizengoff Square

Perhaps the most iconic square in Tel Aviv, Dizengoff Square (‘Kikar Dizengoff’) was always popular with locals and tourists but since its major revamp, it’s even more of a ‘go to’ spot.

tel aviv squaresDizengoff Square (Image source: Ovedc CC BY-SA 4.0)

In the heart of the city’s beloved Dizengoff Street, on the square, sits the famous ‘Fire and Water’ fountain designed by Yaakov Agam, and all around are trees (great for summer shade) and chairs (for free) where you can sit and admire the view.

What’s going on in the area?

Everything you can possibly imagine! Dizengoff Street is home to endless cafes and bars, and if you’re looking for a Tel Aviv fashion shopping experience, with its clothing boutiques, jewelry studios, Bauhaus center, and iconic shopping mall, this is the street for you. 

The square area is great for shopping

Directly on the square, you’ll see the Cinema Hotel, a wonderfully-restored Bauhaus building which today is a boutique hotel but once was a popular cinema (walk inside and see a projector from the 1950s on show!) It’s also not too far from the famous Carmel Market, which is a must-visit for foodies.

And if you don’t have dinner plans, try one of many eateries near to the square - from La Shuk restaurant for upscale Mediterranean fare to amazing falafel at street food hangout ‘Ha Kosem’ you can’t go wrong.

3. Rabin Square

Rabin Square is also famous within Tel Aviv - not just as a square where protests and celebrations regularly take place but also as the place where Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin was assassinated in November 1995.

tel aviv squaresThe main sculpture in the canter of Rabin Square (Image source: Lishay Shechter)

Formerly known as The Square of the Kings of Israel, its name was changed afterward to commemorate this tragic event.

On the other hand, if you want to see a true Israeli celebration, head for Rabin Square every time a local soccer or basketball group wins the city championship, or when an Israeli athlete wins an Olympic medal - this is the place Tel-Avivians go to celebrate.  

What’s going on in the area?

This is not a particularly tourist area, but a good place to really ‘feel’ what the city is like. In one corner of the square, look for the sculpture of Rabin, close to the spot where he was shot three times (you’ll see memorial candles flickering, lit by passers-by, commemorating his life). There’s also a pretty lily pond where you can sit and look out at the people on the street.

tel aviv squaresThe Rabin Square memorial corner (Image source: Christian Engeln)

Fifteen minutes south by foot, you’ll find the Cinematheque (if you’re a lover of independent movies) and fifteen minutes west will find you Gordon Beach, which is perfect for sunbathing, cycling, and strolling on the boardwalk.

Mass protest in Rabin Square (Image source: Itayba)

There are plenty of restaurants and cafes on the main street - and those who yearn for a Tel Aviv shopping spree can visit the nearby Gan Ha’ir center, full of chic boutiques. 

4. Kikar Kedumim

In English, Kikar Kedumim means ‘The Square of Ancient Times’ and it’s aptly named because this spot is in the heart of Jaffa, an ancient and magical port city that dates back to Biblical times and is a must-visit spot for anyone visiting Israel (especially those who like their Instagram and want to capture the perfect shot).

Kdumim Square

The central landmark on this square is St. Peter’s Church, built by the Spanish in 1888 for the Franciscan brotherhood - and prepared to be bowled over by its ‘Cathedral-style’ interior.

What’s going on in the area?

Jaffa is truly magical and almost impossible to visit and not fall in love. Within easy walking distance of Kikar Kedumim, you have the famous Jaffa Flea Market (‘Shuk ha Pishpeshim) which is the perfect place to hunt for second-hand, retro, and vintage items, and pick up souvenirs from Israel, before enjoying a coffee and bite to eat in one of the numerous local cafes and bars that surround it.

tel aviv squaresThe Kdumin Square area (Image source: Gady Munz Pikiwiki Israel CC BY 2.5)

Jaffa’s also home to a beautiful Artist’s Quarter (with tiny, winding streets) where you can wander for hours, popping into galleries and studios, and also a fine harbor, perfect for strolling. In nearby Abrasha Park, don’t forget to stop at the Wishing Bridge and then take a look at the famous stone statue ‘The Gates of Faith’. And if you really want to understand the history and culture of the area, consider taking an Old Jaffa walking tour, where a local guide can fill you in on the legends and lore of this extraordinary place.

5. Atarim Square

Designed by the architect Yaaokv Rechter, Atarim Square sits at the end of Ben Gurion Boulevard, close to Gordon Beach. Constantly dividing opinion in terms of its aesthetics, it was built in the 1970s in a brutalist style (then considered very fashionable in architectural circles) and boasted - amongst other things - restaurants, stores, and a glass rotunda.

tel aviv squaresThe Atarim Square area (Image source: Michael Yakovson)

Today, it’s far less fashionable but Kikar Atarim still offers outstanding views of the Mediterranean. Although it’s more empty, for anyone interested in design, it’s well worth a visit. In any event, the municipality is considering development plans in which case, try to see it before it’s gone! There’s also the Ben Gurion House nearby, which is a wonderful chance to see the home of Israel’s first Prime Minister (and it’s been kept just as he used it, back in the 1950s).

What’s going on in the area?

One of the things Tel Aviv is most famous for is its beaches - white sand, clear blue water, a fabulous promenade and cafes and restaurants not just along it but on the sand too. Walk south and you’ll hit Gordon and Frishman beaches - always popular, and full of people playing volleyball, and matkot (using two small paddles and a ball, it’s Israel’s most beloved sport).

tel aviv squaresThe Beach and Marina are just around the corner

Walk north along the beach and you’ll arrive at Hof Hilton, which is the city’s non-official ‘gay beach’ and also frequented by surfers on winter days when the waves are big.

Keep walking and you’ll come to the Namal - the Tel Aviv Port - which is filled with restaurants, cafes, and stores as well as an indoor gourmet food market and, on Fridays until 2pm, a delightful farmer’s market.

Relax, drink something interesting, and enjoy yourself!

If you’re visiting Israel and want to make the most of your time in the country, we also offer a wide range of day trips, which can take you to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv and head south to discover Masada Fortress or take a day on the shore of the Dead Sea. If you'd like to see some marvelous green sceneries, consider taking a tour of northern Israel, and if you're feeling adventurous, we can even take you to visit the Lost City of Petra

Feel free to contact us by email or phone for more information and if you’re curious about Israel, take a look at our our blog which takes a deep dive into all things related to our country.