Tel Aviv is proud to host the 64th Eurovision Song Contest, the second most watched live TV program in the world and the cultural event with the highest ratings and largest international coverage to ever take place in Israel.
Hundreds of local festivities are scheduled as part of the Eurovision celebrations. Here are the top 10 events taking place in Tel Aviv next week which you just can’t miss. For more details check out the new Tel Aviv tourism website.
1. EUROVISION VILLAGE
Charles Clore Park
The highlight of the Eurovision events in Tel Aviv will be the largest Eurovision Village in the world, overlooking the Mediterranean coastline at Charles Clore Park. The Eurovision Village will be open to the public from May 12-18 from the afternoon until the evening and will showcase performances by Israeli artists such as Static and Ben El, Stephane Legar, and former Eurovision superstars such as Dana International and Izhar Cohen. In addition, the Semi-finals and the Final will be projected on giant screens and visitors will be able to enjoy the sea breeze while sitting at a giant bar overlooking the sea, surrounded by remarkable light compositions, created by the official lighting partner of Eurovision, OSRAM.
2. TEL AVIV EAT
Charles Clore Park
The annual Tel Aviv Eat Festival will also be happening alongside the Eurovision Village in a separate and adjacent compound. Visitors will be able to taste some of the most delicious dishes by Tel Aviv’s celebrated chefs. Participating restaurants include Manta Ray, Onza, Messa, The Blue Rooster and many others. The festival will offer over 500 dishes, 80 food stalls, 20 chef restaurants, a festive market, beers, wines, sitting areas, coffee shops and bars along the coastline. Entrance is free and dishes will be under 35 NIS.
3. PIC YOUR FLAG
Tel Aviv City Hall (Rabin Square)
During international events and to show solidarity with countries around the world and special events in Israel, Tel Aviv’s City Hall building is often lit in the colors of different flags. Eurovision fans will be able to select their national flag through an app, have it displayed on the building and take a selfie with it in the background.
4. TEL AVIV WHITE NIGHT
The Tel Aviv White Night will take place on May 16, on the eve of the 2nd Semi Final. During the White Night, as the sun goes down, Telavivians and tourists are invited to wander through the many events and exhibitions taking place around the city – from the official Eurovision Village through cultural centers, museums, bars, open spaces, beaches and much more , until the sun rises and shines over the White City. Tel Aviv White Night is one of the biggest events of the year, and the Eurovision week is the ideal time for these celebrations. The events and performances are open to the public, most of them free of charge.
5. TEL AVIV FOR 10 SHEKELS
The Municipality has decided to implement a number of temporary policies for business owners and visitors, so that they can extend their hours of work and continue to entertain guests even during the late hours of the night. Bars and restaurants will be allowed to set up large screens to open areas and broadcast the shows. In addition, they will be able to play music until midnight. Together with business owners in the city, The Municipality is promoting the “Tel Aviv for 10 Shekels” campaign–during which visitors will be able to purchase drinks and food for only ten shekels throughout dozens of businesses around the city.
6. EUROVISION AT THE TEL AVIV HARBOR
Throughout the Eurovision week, the Tel Aviv Port will be animated with music events, sporting activities and live screenings of the Eurovision shows. Tel Aviv Port will host a huge Shabbat service, an exhibition about the life and career of Dana International, a vinyl record library and a closing musical show with Anne – Marie David, Loreen and Carola – three Eurovision legends.
7. EUROVISION IN JAFFA
Old Jaffa will host an interactive orchestra installation and in Jaffa Port a huge radio will play Eurovision classics from previous years. The Amiad Center in the Jaffa Flea Market will host “DiverCity” – an exhibition inspired by Eurovision songs. Jaffa will also be at the center of White Night on May 16, with parties, performances, and concerts at HaPisga Garden, Kedumim Square, the Jaffa Port, and the Jaffa Flea Market until sunrise.
8. FREE GUIDED TOURS IN TEL AVIV
Boasting 52 square kilometers of flat terrain and warm weather year-round, Tel Aviv is tailor-made for walking tours. Through a fun, interactive experience, the city’s knowledgeable tour guides will introduce you to the area’s interesting culture, history, and secrets. Explore Old Jaffa, Neve Tsedek, LGBTQ history & The White City on the city’s special daily FREE Tours, running during May 10th-19th, 2019
9. LIGHTING UP JAFFA’S OLD CITY
As part of a collaborative project with the lighting company OSRAM, tens of thousands of people from around the world will control the lighting of historic Old Jaffa during the semi-finals and grand final of the Eurovision. Clearly visible along the Tel Aviv coastline, the lighting colors will change based on user voting per each song. Watch it live through the official Eurovision app or spot it from the Eurovision Village.
10. FRIDAY SHABBAT DINNERS WITH LOCALS
Shabbat dinners, held at sunset on Fridays, are a cultural staple of many Israeli families – secular and religious. Most local families gather together with family and friends on a weekly basis. The Shabbat Dinner project will match tourists of any religion and cultural background with local host families for a meaningful night around a Shabbat dinner table. Tourists from around the world will take part in a unique immersive experience and will enjoy a home cooked meal while learning about Jewish traditions that have been observed for centuries. This project aligns with the growing travel trend of experiential tourism, where tourists seek to be immersed in the local culture and are on the lookout for authentic experiences.