TEL AVIV, ISRAEL—Israelis who don't live in this maddening, logic-defying cauldron of audaciousness and innumerable small seductions call it "the bubble," with a mix of yearning, scorn, and jealousy toward anyone who finds a parking space before them. No prosaic bubble this, and don't kid yourself—there nothing here that is not competitive. Of course, the bubble or island as I like to think of it does come with the rest of the Middle East attached and it's a region that can go from languor to rocket strikes in an instant. It happened just recently, which is why my essay on Tel Aviv in Taxidia, the travel magazine of Greek newspaper Kathimerini, is published this weekend and not last month as was originally scheduled.
For Greeks and Athenians in particular, Tel Aviv is a natural destination—the cultural links though not always obvious run very deep, and of course fewer than 750 miles separate the two cities. Athens is sophisticated, Tel Aviv is earthier, but both percolate with a lot of very smart and cosmopolitan people. My favorite radio station, Best 92.6 Athens, provided the soundtrack for the preparation of the piece you can read (in Greek) in Kathimerini while I was in mandatory quarantine. Some months ago while Americans and Europeans were still panic-buying toilet paper the Israelis were rolling up their sleeves and getting vaccinated, so today the covid catastrophe is largely behind them So as Israel prepares (fingers crossed) to open up again, stay tuned for...
• Design Buff's Tel Aviv
Follow your Bauhaus bliss, and go even further back in time • Gourmet Grooves My little black book of must-do restaurants in the heart of Tel Aviv • Journey into Jaffa Tel Aviv 'island' has its ancient quarters too...and there's lots more to "old Jaffa" • Fresh Baked TLV...from Aroma to Maison Kayser, a rundown of Tel Aviv's best bakeries