Shuk haCarmel and Beyond: the Best Markets in Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv is the beating heart of Israel and has enough to keep any visitor on their toes for a few days- beaches, museums, nightlife, and shopping. And if you’re looking for places to shop, hitting the markets in Tel Aviv is always a good idea.
The Carmel Market in Tel Aviv is where almost everyone spends an hour or two and, whilst it’s fantastic, it’s not the only show in town. Tel Aviv markets come in all shapes and sizes too- from arts and crafts to vintage treasures and from gourmet food produce to local spices, there’s little you can’t find.
Whether you want to explore them independently or as part of a tour in Tel Aviv, we know you’ll find at least one on the list below that you’ll fall in love with!
Carmel Market (Shuk HaCarmel)The Carmel Market, Carmel Street (corner Allenby) |Sundays to Fridays 8 am to 6 pm
Tel Aviv’s largest and most famous market really has to be on your bucket list. In the heart of the city, it’s vibrant, chaotic and on Friday lunchtimes, before the Jewish sabbath- Shabbat- comes in, so crowded that you’ll have to push your way through! But it’s worth it, because the atmosphere here is unique- and also because there’s almost nothing you can’t buy here, from fresh produce, local cheeses, and exotic spices to swimsuits, floppy hats, and sunglasses for your chillout days at the beach.
Great food at Carmel Market
The Carmel is packed with street food stalls (South American empanadas, Thai banana fritters, Chinese wonton dumplings) but there are also plenty of local cafes and restaurants too - Shlomo and Doron are famous for its hummus, Café Yom Tov is perfect for coffee and a pastry and Miznon Getzel will leave you smiling (if you’re feeling adventurous, order their blintzes with smoked duck and Gouda cheese).
Sarona Market, Tel AvivSarona Market, 3 Kalman Magen Street, Tel Aviv | Open seven days a week, with varying hours
Located close to the business district, in a neighborhood that was originally settled by German Templars and in the last ten years has been beautifully restored, Sarona Market is Israel’s largest indoor food market. For anyone who has even a passing interest in gourmet produce cuisine, it shouldn’t be missed - the variety of cheeses, spreads, and meats alone will blow you away.
Try the local Dim Sum!
Inside are endless booths where you can pick up street food but there’s also ample opportunity to purchase local wines, oils, dips, and spices. From upscale pita pockets and rotisserie chicken to unusual Dutch cheeses and crispy gyoza, your tastebuds will soon be tingling. Outside, all around Sarona, there are manicured gardens complete with a lily pond- so just sit on the grass (or at one of the many picnic beaches) and get tucked in…
Jaffa Flea Market (Shuk haPishpeshim)Jaffa Flea Market, Olei Zion Street, Jaffa| Sunday - Thursday 9 am - 6 pm, Friday 9 am - 2 pm
You’d be a fool not to wander over to Jaffa if you’re visiting Tel Aviv, and aside from the picturesque harbor, charming backstreets, stone houses, and vibrant artists’ quarter, this ancient city boasts the famous Jaffa Flea Market (the ‘Shuk HaPishpeshim’ as the locals call it). Antiques, carpets, vintage items, jewelry, retro clothes…you name it, you can find it here.
A visitor enjoying the Jaffa Flea Market
As well as the main area (where vendors spread their wares out on the floor) this part of Jaffa is chock-a-block full of cafes, bars, and restaurants- from the legendary Puaa café and Yafeh Kanafeh (if you decide to indulge in one of these sweet pastry, but don’t tell your dentist) to Beer Bazaar (boasting more than 100 Israeli craft beers) and the hopping Shafa Bar - the market and surrounding area are hard not to fall in love with.
Tel Aviv Port Market (Shuk ha Namal)Tel Aviv Port Market, Hangar 12, Namal Port, Tel Aviv | Monday - Sunday, 8 am - 8 pm
Close to both the city’s Hilton and Metzitzim beaches, and a stone’s throw from the green lung of Tel Aviv - Park Hayarkon - you’ll find the Tel Aviv Port market, which is upmarket and, like Sarona, a magnet for foodies. Located in a beautiful building, overlooking the Namal (port) and close to the Mediterranean, it’s full of pretty stores with a wide array of local and international products that will soon have you parting with your hard-earned cash.
Tel Aviv Port Market (image: the Official Port Market Website)
What makes it even more exciting is that the people behind its creation are all culinary big-wigs in Israel, so you know that every product on sale- from hand-churned butter and fabulous Galilee and Golan Heights olive oil to fresh seafood and homemade pasta- cuts the mustard! On Friday mornings, there’s also a local farmer’s market outside- and whilst the produce is a little pricey, it is quality and seasonal. Farm to table at its very best!
Levinsky Market Tel AvivShuk Levinsky, Levinsky Street (corner of Ha’Aliya) | Sunday - Friday: 9 am to 5 pm
Off the beaten track, in a working-class neighborhood in south Tel Aviv, you’ll find the Greek and Persian-inspired Levinsky Market, which, of late, is gaining a reputation with hipsters and young Tel Aviv. Unlike Carmel, there are not too many tourists here, but should you venture here, you could end up picking up all kinds of teas, spices, nuts, and dried fruits from the local vendors.
Spices at the Levinsky Market
The Levinsky market is also home to all kinds of humble ‘hole in the wall’ restaurants, serving endless unusual fare- try Georgian Khachapuri (a cheese-stuffed bread) at ‘Aachot’, halva from the Yom Tov Delicatessen, Yemenite stew at Saluf & Sons and the cheese and spinach bourekas at the Puny bakery. And for those who love to cook, pop into the Pereg spices store- their za’atar herb blend is legendary.
Nachalat Binyamin Arts & Crafts Market
Nahalat Binyamin, Midrahov Nahalat Binyamin (corner Allenby) | Tuesday and Fridays: 9am - 5pm
Established in 1988, this is a fantastic arts and crafts market that runs twice a week (Tuesdays and Fridays) on the pedestrianized street of Nahalat Binyamin, which itself is lined with Parisian-style cafes and local musicians. The market is exceptional in that it sells only items that are hand-made by locals (which means you can actually chat to the vendor about how they came to create it).
The Nakhlat Binyamin Arts & Crafts Market
Nahalat Binyamin is the perfect place to treat yourself to something special, or to buy a souvenir of Israel for friends back home- there’s beautiful jewelry, unusual prints, wooden clocks, children’s puzzles, fancy soaps, and even mini kaleidoscopes on sale, and all kinds of traditional Judaica, ranging from hand-blown glass mezuzahs to Hanukkah candelabra. And because nothing is mass-produced, you are really helping support small business owners.
Dizengoff Center Food MarketDizengoff Centre Building B, 50 Dizengoff Street (corner of King George Street) | Fridays: 9 am - 2 pm
Finally, located within the famous Dizengoff Centre mall, you’ll find a small but quite decent food market, operating once a week, where there are plenty of grab-and-go options from over 50 vendors. From Moroccan Harira spicy soup and Yemenite malawach (a delicious flaky flatbread), cholent stew (traditionally served on Shabbat), and malabi (a fantastic rosewater milk pudding), it’s Levantine cuisine at its best.
Traditional cuisine is offered at great prices at the local food market
As well as the food market, there are often a few designers selling clothes and jewelry there but if you’re in the mood for shopping, the Dizengoff Centre itself is in the heart of the White City. The entire street is full of trendy boutiques, and quirky coffee shops (all independently run) and the neighborhood has a wealth of Bauhaus buildings, which aren’t just for those curious about modern architecture!