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Top Ten Areas in Israel for Serious Shoppers

A Shopaholic's Guide to Shopping in Israel

Lainie Schwartz
Birthright in Mamilla

In casual Israel, fashion is not always the top priority for tourists. You might be surprised to learn that in recent years, Israel has become a shopper’s paradise! In Israel, you can find beautiful local goods as well as all the biggest international brands, sometimes right next to each other. Here are our best birthright trip organizers picks for the best places to shop in Israel:

1. Sarona, Tel Aviv: This new shopping area located across from the Azrieli mall and commercial center offers tree-lined boulevards and some of Israel’s finest boutiques and salons. Sarona’s clothing, jewelry and homeware shops sit in renovated buildings on the grounds of an old German Templar colony. Here you’ll also find Sarona Market, a gourmet food market with every kind of cuisine one can imagine – Indian, Thai, French and so much more.

2. Kenyon Zahav, Rishon LeZion: This mall, located in the Tel Aviv suburb of Rishon LeZion, is considered one of the largest and most successful in Israel. In fact, this mall is so large that it is divided into ‘neighborhoods’ and ‘boulevards’ within the mall to guide shoppers according to product type. With over 300 stores, a children’s section, a movie theater and many restaurants, this mall offers fun for the entire family.

3. Mamilla: Indisputably one of the most beautiful areas of Jerusalem, Mamilla represents the perfect mix of old and new that makes Jerusalem so unique. Located at the junction of the city center, the posh hotel district and Jaffa Gate, Mamilla offers visitors a chance to shop and eat just outside the Old City walls. Mamilla offers a mix of Judaica and top-of-the-line Israeli fashion that is sure to offer something for everyone.

4. Big Center, Ashdod: This coastal city is now home to an open-air shopping area flocked to by visitors across the country. The pristine walkways and large new stores all open on Shabbat, lend the feeling of an American outlet mall, although the center is just steps away from the entrance to one of Israel’s largest cities. The Big Center is a perfect getaway for a relaxed day by the water.

5. Neve Tzedek, Tel Aviv: Neve Tzedek, the first Jewish Tel Aviv neighborhood outside of old Jaffa, has become a fashion hotspot over the last decade. Its narrow alleyways are home to many eclectic boutiques and Parisian-style sidewalk cafes - stroll Shabazi for the best this neighborhood has to offer. While you’re there, be sure to take a walk down to the newly-restored Ottoman train station area, which is full of designer boutiques, jewelry stores, and upscale restaurants.

6. Shuk HaCarmel and Shenkin Street, Tel Aviv: This special area is where food stalls, kitschy tourist goods and Tel Aviv high-fashion meet. Visit the Carmel Market for fresh Israeli produce, street food, tourist knickknacks and other fun items. On Tuesdays and Fridays this area hosts the Nachalat Binyamin artists market, where Israeli jewelry and art designers bring their works to Tel Aviv. Then, hop right across the street to Shenkin – Tel Aviv’s fashion capital - a quiet, tree-lined promenade home to beautiful Israeli and international designers.

7. Jaffa: The mixed Arab-Jewish city of Jaffa blends ancient architecture with modern design and eclectic cuisine. On Fridays the winding streets of Jaffa’s flea market (known a ‘Shuk Hapishpeshim’ in Hebrew) are packed with vendors selling antiques, records, vintage clothing and all sorts of knickknacks. Next to the flea market stands one can find upscale boutiques from up and coming Israeli designers, next to Israeli cafes and authentic Arab treats such as malab (rosewater milk pudding) or knafeh (kadaif noodles and cheese sweet pastries).

8. Grand Kenyon, Be’er Sheva: This gigantic shopping mall (the largest one in Israel!) is a playful take on the Hebrew word ‘kenyon’ for mall and the grandiose nature of the building (think ‘Grand Canyon) has quickly become the fashion center of Israel’s south. This mall created quite a buzz to quiet Be’er Sheva when it opened in 2014, and draws crowds from across the south of Israel to its hundreds of shops. The Grand Kenyon and other malls are quickly turning this desert town into a spacious commercial paradise, a far cry from jam-packed Tel Aviv.

9. Arena Mall, Herzliya: The Arena mall, attached to the Ritz Carlton Herzliya, is the pinnacle of Israeli luxury. Located in the beautiful Herzliya Pituach coastal area, shoppers enjoy views of the Mediterranean Sea, the Herzliya marina, and the gorgeous waves. Herzliya is one of Israel’s culinary hotspots, and many delicious restaurants line this marina area in and around the mall.

10. Kikar Hamedina, Tel Aviv: Kikar Hamedina is heaven for lovers of high-fashion! This large ‘square’ (although actually a circle!), located in north Tel Aviv, is one of Israel’s poshest and most expensive areas. It is home to high-end designer stores, many of which are one of a kind in Israel – such as Dior, Burberry and Louis Vuitton. While not budget-friendly, this lovely shopping center is pedestrian-friendly, and a great place for window shopping.

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