One of Israel’s most beautiful cities, Haifa, is also the third largest. Haifa’s rolling hills, location along the Mediterranean Sea, and gorgeous terraces are constantly drawing people to this coastal city. In addition, Haifa has the country’s largest port and is home to the World Center of the Bahai Faith and Carmel Mountain. Enjoy the beach, cultural activities, and so much more in Haifa!
Things to do in Haifa
Start your vacation off right with a trip to the beaches in Haifa. Dado Beach provides the perfect place to get acquainted with the Mediterranean Sea. Along the beachfront, cafes, restaurants and lively bars provide ample amenities for beach-goers. Bring a picnic, toss the Frisbee around, or simply soak up the sun while on Dado Beach. Carmel Beach provides calm waters for those looking to take a dip and swim in the Mediterranean for a bit. If you’re looking to go kitesurfing or do some other water activities, check out Shikmona Beach. Hof Hashaket Beach is where you can only get some sunbathing in certain days, depending on your gender. For men, Monday, Wednesdays, and Fridays are your days, while women are allowed on Sunday, Tuesday, and Thursday. Saturdays allow for both genders to visit the beach.
Mount Carmel is a big draw for many travelers who visit Haifa. A coastal range designated as a UNESCO biosphere reserve in 2012, Mount Carmel offers some beautiful scenery for those visiting Haifa. Early modern human remains were discovered in the range in the 1930s, including Tabun I, which is widely regarded as one of the most important human fossils ever discovered. During World War I, the Battle of Megiddo took place at Mount Carmel, and was a major turning point in the war against the Ottoman Empire. Ancient wine and oil pressed have also been found at Mount Carmel. With all the historical significance, it’s not wonder visitors make Mount Carmel a destination while in Haifa.
The World Center of Bahai Faith is surrounded by lush, green lawns, terraces, and perfectly manicured gardens. The center’s shrine, featuring a golden dome, Italian marble walls, and granite pillars, was constructed in the 1950s and quickly became one of the main tourist sites in the city. The dome measures over 130 feet high and is covered in gold-coated bricks. The gardens surrounding the dome are also major attractions for visitors. They extend over 19 terraces and have earned the nickname, “The Eighth Wonder of the World”. In the daytime, the view from the gardens give way to a spectacular view of the mountainside, while special lighting at night make the gardens a romantic place to spend the evening.
Day Trips from Haifa
Nazareth, the largest city in the Northern District of Israel, is just a short, 40-minute bus or taxi ride from Haifa. Take the 33 bus from the inner-city Haifa platforms and get to this city in under an hour. While you’re there, check out Nazareth Village. You’ll be immersed in an experience that mimics that of Jesus himself. Explore the stones, vineyards, and olive trees Jesus used to teach in the Bible. Take a parable walking tour and learn about the teachings of Jesus through the stories he told. Next, head to the Basilica of the Annunciation which many believe sits on the site of Mary’s home where the Annunciation occurred. The building itself is massive and the interior is decorated with mosaic panels reflecting different countries and cultures who believe in the religion. Finally, head to Mount Tabor to see the site where the Transfiguration of Jesus occurred. For the ultimate religious experience, make the day trip to Nazareth.
Choose from over 500 vacation rentals in Haifa when you use Tripping.com. A handful of rentals are even pet-friendly if you can’t stand to be away from your animal. Stay in the city center and be within walking distance to the World Center of the Bahai Faith. Or, choose a rental on the coast to be near the beach.
Transportation in Haifa
Fly into the Haifa International Airport. Depending on your airline, you may need to take a connecting flight from one the regional airports in Eilat or Tel Aviv. From the airport, take a 15-minute taxi ride to your accommodations. While in Haifa, you can use the public bus system to get to most places in the city. Purchase tickets at the ticket booths in the central bus station in Haifa. Be advised that bus service ends on Friday afternoon and resumes Saturday evenings.