Eight kilometers away from Tel Aviv, the city that never sleeps, is Rishon LeZion. Rishon LeZion is the fourth largest city in the country. While it does not have many popularized tourist destinations, like the Dead Sea or the Dome of the Rock, it is historically significant in its own way. It was the second settlement of Jewish immigrants in 1882. It was the place where the flag of Israel and the national anthem, “HaTikva”, was created.
When visiting the area, here are some places you can visit:
If you have opted to stay in Rishon LeZion, you do not have to miss out on Israel’s beaches just because you are not in Tel Aviv. The city has their beach, the Palamachim. When you have a lull in your stay, you can spend a day at the beach. It is an opportunity to unwind from work, or casually spend time with your family. Sunbathe, swim, build sandcastles, or play sports like beach volleyball—the activities are endless. A good thing about spending time on the beach is that you can take photos of your family and friends without worrying about being left behind by a tour group or blocking the walkways.
If you are only after the view and not the beach itself, avoid expensive hotels. Search for short term rentals Israel offers on bnbkosher.com. It has an extensive list of places you can stay with Tel Aviv rentals or Jerusalem rentals too.
Yaakov Agam Museum
The museum was made to celebrate the works of Israeli sculptor, and the father of kinetic movement in modern art, Yaakov Agam, who is a Rishon LeZion native. If you want to know more about the pieces, there are guided tours that go into Agam’s thought process, and techniques when creating his moving pieces. His art is colorful and expressive. Definitely, a museum children can enjoy as well. Throughout the museum, you can see his larger than life sculptures and wall pieces. When traveling with children, make it a point to double check the dates of the workshop for kids to make the most out of your visit.
You can also find Agam’s work in Tel Aviv, from the façade of the Dan Tel Aviv Hotel to the Tel Aviv Fountain.
Rishon LeZion Museum
To know more about the early settlement of the Zionist immigrants, visit the Rishon LeZion Museum. It is a small museum that showcases the pioneer lifestyle and challenges the early immigrants faced. The exhibits include maintained setups of the school, synagogue, post office, and pharmacy of the settlers. There is also a stable and a well along with stories of how these were used during that time. A notable feature is a basement that Naftali Herz Imber used to write the national anthem.
Even if you are not staying in the city, you can take a cab, bus, or train from Tel Aviv which should not take more than an hour. Take the time to see some of the hidden gems found in Rishon LeZion.