Historic Jaffa-Tel Aviv

Post and photograph by Annie MacDougall


Built in 1892 to serve as the terminus of the Jerusalem-Jaffa Railway,Tel Aviv-Jaffa’s old train station has been renovated into a stylish complex that houses shops, restaurants, arts shows & classes, two weekly markets and lots of other events. After five years of restoration and development work, HaTachana officially opened in 2010 to the public. The Tel Aviv Municipality beautifully preserved the original design of the buildings while creating open, pedestrian-only spaces for visitors to enjoy the atmosphere.

photo: Annie MacDougall

An old railcar sits on train tracks in front of the station’s original building, greeting visitors as they walk into HaTachana.  It’s a fun tribute to what used to be and shows how Tel Aviv embraces its past while moving forward and evolving as a modern city. The
complex also incorporates a refurbished factory, the old freight terminal and 17 other historic buildings.

Every week, HaTachana hosts “UNIQUE”, a designer/artist/craft fair on Thursday evenings from 7:00pm- midnight.  Fridays from 8:00am-2:00pm is “Orbanic”, an organic fruit & vegetable shuk that also showcases eco-friendly household & beauty products. 

Check HaTachan’s website (www.hatachana.co.il) for current information on additional markets and special events.  Most recently was the Beer Festival where 20 Israeli private breweries offered their unique beers to the public for tastings.
It’s easy to spend an entire afternoon or evening wandering through the complex’s 16 different buildings and public spaces.  Here is a listing of the currently open restaurants and shops. 

Cafe Tachana:  This charming cafe serves a varied menu including breakfast, sandwiches, pastas and quiches and is located in the original station building that was built in 1892.

 Shushka Shvili:  Serves tapas plates, breakfast all day, and 100 types of beer from around the world. Housed in an old templar’s home, diners can sit inside at the bar or outside at a pleasant rooftop table with a view of Jaffa.

 Italika B’Tachana:  Southern Italian fare specializing in fish and seafood with indoor & outdoor seating in the main courtyard.

Vaniglia: Grab a cone of freshly made ice cream and take a seat in the main courtyard for some fun people watching.

Cafe Greg: The reliable coffee-shop chain is a good place to grab a drink or quick snack and browse the neighboring Tzomet Sfarim (House of Books).

Specialty stores: Made in TLV, AHAVA, Gaya- Art of Thinking, Sofi

Fashion boutiques: American Vintage, Shoofra, Yosef, Charlie Paloma, Hella Ganor, Studio Noah, Bellinky Oolalaa, Naama Bezalel, Razili, Butterfly, Ido Recanati, Shika, Tamarindi, Ronen Chen, Elise, Harraca, Efrat Cassouto.

HaTachana is located at the south end of Neve Tzedek next to the IDF History Museum and across from the Mediteranean.  There is a parking lot for the crazy people that choose to drive a car around Tel Aviv, but it’s most easily accessible by the Dan bus lines 25, 10, 8 and 100.

For more information on Tel Aviv and Jaffa, visit the city tourism website.

This entry was posted in Bookstore Tourism, Middle East, Tourism and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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