The Israeli Version of the Riviera
When you think of the French Riviera, the image is a seaside, a vacation resort, with a beautiful Mediterranean coastline. You picture a popular place to get away from the hustle and bustle for ultimate relaxation and entertainment. As it turns out, Netanya is the Israeli version of the Riviera, and highly recommended by world-wide travellers as a true resort town.
Netanya is a modern city, first developed in the 1920s, named honour of Nathan Straus co-owner of Macy’s department store. Located on the Mediterranean coast, the city is about 20 miles north of Tel Aviv and 35 miles south of Haifa. In Hebrew, the city of Netanya means “gift of God” and that is an apt description. Some of Israel’s most beautiful, golden beaches are found on the Netanya coastline.
The city sits atop cliffs that stand 35 meters/155 feet over the beaches. The cliffs offer lovely breezes, scenic views of the ocean, and are ideal for paragliding. You’ll often see gliders flying high above the beach along the cliffs. Along the beaches you’ll find jet skis, boat rides, paddle boards, vendors renting lounge chairs and parasols, and seaside cafes.
For those concerned with accessibility from the cliffs down to the beach, an elevator was added to Sironit Beach. The elevator is located below the Rishonim Promenade. Two breakwaters, a symbol of Netanya, are set up opposite the beach creating tranquil bays which enable safe swimming almost all year round
In addition to relaxing by the sea, while in the city, perhaps you would like to take in a soccer game (known as football in Israel) played by one of Netanya’s three teams. Or perhaps basketball is more your style. Saunter along the well-manicured promenades from the northern part of the city to the southern neighbourhoods, all part of the national hiking path “Shvil Israel”. Take in a museum or art gallery, unwind in a spa, and behold a nature reserve during your visit. Dine in restaurants that offer a wide variety of cuisines.
There are many other events that take place throughout the year, from Israeli folk dancing and ballroom dancing to roller skating and swimming competitions.
Put your feet up and relax in the slower pace and charm of the coastal town of Netanya.