On our tenth day exploring Israel virtually, we will be live at Jaffa Port and Neve Tzedek neighborhood in Israel walking through the history of modern immigration to Israel and enjoying the beautiful neighborhoods that were some of the first communities in Israel.
Jaffa (also known as Yafo) is the ancient port city out of which Tel Aviv has now grown. Jaffa has, in recent years, like much of South Tel Aviv, been regenerated with the old narrow streets and courtyards becoming another highly desirable part of Tel Aviv’s urban tapestry.
Jaffa flea market is a well-known attraction of the area, with vendors selling a diverse range of interesting and unique products. Meanwhile, the narrow passageways and ancient buildings in the Old City of Jaffa are worlds away from modern Tel Aviv.
The history of Jaffa is a long one. As of the world’s oldest ports, Jaffa is thought to have been the port from which Jonah left in the story of the Whale! Jaffa is also famous for its association with the other biblical stories of Solomon and Saint Peter as well as the mythological story of Andromeda and Perseus. The port continued to be important through history and served as the main entry point to the land of Israel through until the late 19th century when Jews from around the world began to return to Israel. It was through Jaffa that they entered the country and in Jaffa that many initially settled. The huge population increase led to overcrowding, and tense relations developed between the Jewish and Arab residents of the city. The result was that Jews began building outside of Jaffa, firstly neighborhoods such as Neve Tzedek, and later the city of Tel Aviv.