Why you should go to Tel Aviv !

Tel Aviv is a truly modern city with a vibrant secular culture, a slew of top-notch museums, a bustling financial sector and such a high percentage of high-tech companies that its coastal area is nicknamed the Silicon Wadi. Especially popular among young travelers, it's the second-most visited city in Israel after Jerusalem and maintains a booming tourist industry. All of this comes as no surprise when you consider the miles of pristine beaches, the hot restaurant scene and a buzzing 24-hour nightlife, though visitors should of course be aware of occasional security concerns.

Israel as a whole is extremely LGBTQ-friendly - gays, lesbians, and transgender people serve openly in the military, and a recent poll shows that 70% of Israelis support equality for the gay community - so it's not surprising that Tel Aviv has become the gay capital of the Middle East and is consistently rated one of the best cities in the world for LGBT citizens. Pride Week is a high point in the yearly event calendar, attracting more than 30,000 tourists from all over the globe, but there are gay-centric events the year-round, including a world-class film festival.

A beach town at heart, Tel Aviv also has miles of pristine seafront, divided into sections, each with its own identity - from gay-party-central Hilton Beach to wild and remote Alma Beach. The weather is temperate and sunny year-round, which means the tourism industry here is thriving, and an efficient infrastructure is in place to support the millions of visitors the city receives each year. An added bonus? The people of Tel Aviv are notoriously beautiful, so if you needed one more reason to visit, you've got it.

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Great especially during the Gay Pride

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Getting around

Tel Aviv is not particularly large, only about 20 square miles, and it's the kind of city made for walking or biking. With an extensive network of bike paths and streets made for a leisurely stroll it's best to leave driving to the taxis, and tackle the city on foot or two wheels. For long-distance travel to nearby historical sites, hire a driver or make use of the network of bus lines that crisscross the country.
Driving in Israel can get aggressive, and it's both cheaper and more enjoyable to rely on professional drivers when you need automobile transportation. Your hotel will have its own list of drivers that they trust with guests, so ask at the front desk if you feel like taking a drive.
Urban biking is extremely popular in Tel Aviv, which has over 75 miles of designated bike lanes and a top-notch public bike rental system. Bright green Tel-O-Fun pay stations are scattered throughout the city, where you can use a credit card to buy a pass for the day (17NIS) or the week (70NIS). Bikes can be returned to any station in the city.

Train service within Tel Aviv is not extensive, and you'll probably only use it to get to and from Ben-Gurion Airport. The station entrance is directly outside and to the left of the international terminal building, and trains run every 30 minutes between 6 am to midnight, stopping at one of four downtown Tel Aviv stations. Tickets are 16NIS.

Tel Aviv operates a useful hop-on, hop-off bus route (Route 100) that runs on a two-hour circuit from the northern port with 28 stops along the way, including the beachfront hotels, the Dizengoff Center and the Jaffa clock tower. Buses in Israel are generally clean and air-conditioned but will be crowded on Saturday nights and Sunday mornings. No buses run on Jewish holidays and Shabbat, which lasts from sunset on Friday afternoon to sunset Saturday evening. Tickets for travel within the city are around 7NIS.

Taxis are a useful tool for navigating the city, but they can be expensive so are best saved for late-night or emergency travel. You can easily hail one on the street - recognizable by a white paint-job and a yellow sign on the roof - but you can also ask your hotel to order you one by phone. If you are obviously a tourist, the driver may try to skip the meter and charge you a higher rate. As long as you remind them to start the meter when you enter the car, this haggling can be avoided. If you have arranged for a driver to destinations outside the city, however, you will need to establish a flat rate beforehand.