Israel’s third largest city and one of its prettiest, Haifa has a lot to offer visitors. It has the country’s largest port, a particularly active beach and is the home of the World Center of the Bahai Faith. Surrounded by abundant nature sites, the city contains an interesting mix of modern neighborhoods and older districts; churches and mosques; mountain and sea.
Haifa is a multi-faceted city with several unique characteristics making it an attractive place to visit. Its proximity to the sea and its active port contribute to its prominence. The bustling port area draws merchants, shoppers and tourists. The beautiful beaches are popular for sports and recreation, and are filled with people during summer weekends. In addition, because of their excellent surfing conditions, the beaches serve many of Israel’s top sailing enthusiasts and host sailing competitions and other sporting events.
Here are some of our recommendations:
The Bahai Gardens on Mount Carmel
The Bahá’í Gardens in Haifa comprise a staircase of nineteen terraces extending all the way up the northern slope of Mount Carmel. At its heart stands the golden-domed Shrine of the Báb, which is the resting place of the Prophet-Herald of the Bahá’í Faith. These terraced gardens have been designed as waves of light, or circles, with all lines and curves directing attention toward the Shrine on the central terrace. The geometry of the complex is built around the axis connecting it to the Shrine of Bahá’u’lláh, the Prophet-Founder of the Bahá’í Faith in Bahjí. Bahjí is just north of Acre/’Akko and it is, for Bahá’ís, the holiest spot on earth.
In July 2008, the Bahá’í Gardens in Haifa and ‘Akko were inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, in recognition of their “outstanding universal value” as holy places and places of pilgrimage for the followers of the Bahá’í Faith.
The Bahá’í religion is one of the major independent religions in the world and as such has its own scriptures and laws. Bahá’í beliefs address such essential themes as the oneness of God and religion, the oneness of humanity and freedom from prejudice, the inherent nobility of the human being, the development of spiritual qualities, the fundamental equality of the sexes, and the importance of education. These principles and beliefs guide the actions of the Bahá’ís individually and collectively.
more information: http://www.ganbahai.org.il/en/haifa/
The Aerial Cable Car
As with all cable cars, the Haifa Cable Cars are quite distinct and finding it should not be a problem. From many areas in Haifa, the trio of orange balls – the cable cars – going up and down the mountain, can be clearly seen. At the bottom of the cable cars, across the highway, is a slew of interesting sites including the Clandestine Immigration & Navy Museum (with the ships and submarine exceptionally visible from the cable car), the National Maritime Museum and Elijah’s Cave, of Biblical fame. At the top of the ride, in the wooded Carmel area, a monastery by the name of Stella Maris, Latin for “Star of the Sea” can be found. Stretching back to the Crusader era, the monks originally inhabited the caves on the side of the mountain (and some of the period buildings can still be seen at Elijah’s Cave) and were forced to flee until the time of Napoleon who ruled Haifa in the end of the 18th Century.
Hof HaCarmel is the coastal area on Haifa’s western side known for its beaches. In the summer, the Dado and Zamir Beaches are full of sunbathers, swimmers and more all taking it easy in the Mediterranean sun. Fishing from the rock outcroppings, watersports such as surfing, windsurfing and kitesurfing, and extreme watersports like para-sailing can all be done off the coast. In the winter months, the beaches are dotted with mostly joggers and sightseers and as well as elderly men playing dominoes and backgammon. With copious amounts of cafés and restaurants along the beach strip, the boardwalk is the ideal place to watch the sun set at dinnertime.
The Haifa Museums include the six municipal museums located around the city: the Haifa Museum of Art, the Art Center, the Tikotin Museum of Japanese Art, the National Maritime Museum, the Haifa City Museum, the Mane Katz Museum, the Hermann Struck Museum, and the Prehistoric Museum.
For more inforamtion: http://www.hms.org.il/eng
Haifa’s Downtown which is located 2 minutes walk from Haifa Port was built in the mid 18th century. As years passed, the coastal strip has developed into a harbor and the city has become the area’s thriving commerce center. During the British Mandate, the downtown area had a significant economic momentum. The modern sea port, launched in 1933, has become the entrance gate for numerous Jewish immigrants and an anchor for international corporations. With Israel’s establishment, commercial and residential areas have migrated towards the higher neighborhoods of the city, while the downtown has began to fade away.
50 years later, a new era has started to blossom with the launch of the unique urban rehabilitation project, which is taking its shape nowadays. Planned by Haifa Municipality, the downtown area will be transformed into a lively student-centered compound, combining cultural life, entertainment and commerce. You are invited to meet the colorful people and to soak in the special atmosphere that downtown Haifa offers to its guests.
The downtown area has loads of great bars to visit such as the Ogen Pub (Sha'ar Palmer St 3), the Iza Bar (Moshe Aharon 1), Nahum Dobrin 7 (Nahum Dobrin 7st) and many more. The downtown area is a great place to hold a walking pub crawl with some friends – have fun!
Great bar with a fantastic wine collection and an amazing view.
Yaffe Nof 107, Haifa
Hands down this place has the best baked good in Haifa. The almond croissant is heavenly.
HaNassi Boulevard 131, Carmel Center, Haifa
Authentic Druze food
139 Shderot ha-Nasi, Haifa
Hummus Abu Shakker
Can't visit Israel with out having a plate of hummus and Abu Shakker is the place to go.
Sderot HaMeginim 29, Haifa.
Best pizza in Haifa all fresh vegetraian toppings. https://www.facebook.com/PizzaLinga
40 Derekh Yafo | Downtown, Haifa 3326111, Israel
Bracha's Sandwichs (Ha Sandwichim shel Bracha)
A tiny place that makes amazing meat and cheese grilled sandwichs.
12 Shabtai Levi, Haifa 3330406, Israel
Good Italian food: http://www.vivino.co.il/english/
1 Elizabeth Square, Haifa
For information and reservation please call 04-8229454
Fish and seafood.
12 Kehilat Saloniki, Haifa 3216814, Israel
Indian food: https://www.facebook.com/Jyoti.rest/
HeHaluts St 70, Haifa
Mediterranean food: https://www.facebook.com/%D9%83%D9%88%D9%84%D8%A7-%D7%9B%D7%95%D7%9C%D7%90-355179031351126/
33 Ha-Namal, Haifa 3303132, Israel
Middle Eastern food.
38 Shderot Ben Gurion, Haifa 3502332, Israel
Talpiot Restaurant is in the Talpiot outdoor market of Haifa. Fresh produce from the market and a great atmosphere.
28 Sirkin, Haifa 3311517, Israel
Haifa has lots of great Shawarma places, from Emil (33 Derekh Allenby) to Hazan (Jaffa street 140) and so many others. Our recommendation – take a taxi down to Jaffa street (aka the Shawarma road) and try a few.