Where to eat:
In the middle of Smilansy street, at the very center of the Old City, is a place for the joyful. Kapara call themselves a bar but they are much more - they offer alcohol, tapas, full meals, and an ongoing party atmosphere. They open and close the roof based on the weather and are open day and night.
23 Smiliansky St, Beer Sheva (08-6654854), kaparabar.co.il
This Asian fusion restaurant is one that all city locals know and love. They’ve got something for everybody, so whether you’re a sushi guy or a noodles gal, a vegan or a meat eater, a sake fan or a Thai-style smoothie lover, Kampai is the spot.
1 Ha’Handasa, Beer Sheva (08-6655999), kampai.co.il
This spot in the Old City welcomes everybody, from hip students to familiar locals. They host a variety of events, like lectures, poetry readings, and soccer watch parties. Just check their schedule and come for a beer.
13 Smilansky St, Beer Sheva (08-6288937), lolab7.co.il
This is where you should go when you’re feeling fancy. This chef’s restaurant offers a wide range of Israeli breakfasts in the morning, business lunches in the afternoon, and impeccably plated dinners in the evening. Don’t forget to complete your dinner with a glass of Israeli wine or a signature cocktail.
34 Eliyahu Nawi St, Beer Sheva (08-9966444), cramim-bs.co.il
Because you can put literally anything and everything between two slices of bread, Pinat Ochel is a sandwich bar created by people who really, really love sandwiches. They’ll let you build your meal and top it with one of their very special dressing options, like peach and whiskey or beats and wild berries. Every once in a while, the creative minds behind the brand debut some new crazy choice, like a crazy-looking gyro or a meat Sufganiya.
15 Ringelblum St, Beer Sheva (054-335455), Facebook Page
Where to drink:
The team at Zalame Akbar Cocktail Bar work very hard to make you feel like it’s 1925 in downtown Manhattan. Come to this speakeasy to sit right at the bar and watch as the crew engineer colorful cocktails with fruit, rose petals, and even popcorn.
4 Ha’Nagarim St, Beer Sheva (054-6935522), zalame.co.il/eng
This is a place for shows; from stand-up comedy to Israel’s favorite musicians and DJs - and everything in between. Baraka has been around for about 20 years, an eternity by Beer-Sheva’s standards, and it’s one of the most popular spots in the city, so you’re guaranteed a good time.
70 Shloshet Bnei Ein Kharod St, Beer Sheva (073-2267637), barakalive.co.il
This is where musicians come to hold intimate shows and stand-up comics test new material. It’s where poetry slam evenings and indie bands find a home outside Tel Aviv. It’s where Reggae music and The Beatles cover bands meet for a pint. So, come on over and be ready to dance.
33 He-Khaluts St, Beer Sheva (052-5114591), www.halutz.co.il
Who knew a place that looks like an after-hours grocery store could be this wonderful? Bialik 26 (named after its address and therefore easy to find) is a place for indie local beers and a range of unexpected social events, from a political round table evening to board game nights. It is also LGBTQ-friendly, and hosts drag shows.
26 Bialik St, Beer Sheva (054-6584118), facebook.com/26bialik/
This bookstore in the Old City evolved into a café and a bar that gives alternative music the respect it deserves. It has gained a lot of popularity through the years but still manages to maintain a community feeling, so come as you are and with an open mind for a true local’s experience.
17 Anilevich St, Beer Sheva (077-644218), facebook.com/ashanhazman/
A relatively young bar for students where everybody knows your name (or they’ll learn it if you return), Giza is outside the city center, but easily accessible. They’ll welcome you with a pint and a smile. Don’t be surprised when people start dancing on the tables.
26 Bialik St, Beer Sheva (052-5385522), facebook.com/gizabeersheva/
What to do:
This great day-time activity for the entire family, is something to do with the kids and grownups of all ages. Whether you want to learn about energy or the human senses, spend time inside with the children at a Gymboree-like space or go outside to check out their geometric fountain, here you’ll find all the activities you need to wear out your young ones until you can go to one of the bars listed above.
79 Ha’Atsmaut St, Beer Sheva (08-6252600), sci-park.co.il
Israel’s children museum is actually in Beer Sheva, full of activities for kids, big and small. It’s not a traditional museum, so you won’t find any centuries-old paintings or fossils in glass cases. Do expect a rich learning center full of information to teach children about art and different languages and help them practice their cognitive skills and spatial orientation.
25 David Ha-Re’uveni St, Beer Sheva (08-6226926), lunada.co.il/en/
Tel Beer Sheva is an archeological site that dates back no less than six thousand years. This site is a patchwork of tribes, kingdoms and conquerors all the way from prehistorical times through biblical times to modern times. It’s a short drive from the city itself and is highly recommended even for those of you who invest most of your museum day at the gift shop.
Tel Beer Sheva National Park (on Waze) (08-6467286), on Israel’s National Parks website
In Hebrew, Sharav (שר"ב) stands as an acronym for “the first Friday of the month”, which is when the southern city’s artists will welcome you into their homes and galleries across the Old City to showcase their work. It’s a wonderful activity for art enthusiasts and people whose absolute favorite tourist activity is strolling through narrow, picturesque alleys.
Old City of Beer Sheva (050-2466650, 052-8795883), sharav.wixsite.com/sharav/english
Where to stay:
This boutique hotel, located in the Old City of Beer Sheva, features seven beautiful rooms and one suite with a clean, minimalist design. The hotel also offers a jacuzzi and a spa if you need an extra push to reach full vacation mode.
9 Anilevish St, Beer Sheva (08-6627580), facebook.com/anilevichhotel/
This is the full Middle Eastern experience, but with air conditioning. A mix between a Bedouin tent and a country house, its homey and affordable, but will still spoil you as you deserve on your vacation.
24 Gershon Dubenboim St, Beer Sheva (055-6679105), booking.com/hotel/il/the-well-guest-houses
This one has a sleek, modern design, and it looks more like the boutique hotels you’ll find in the rest of Israel. It’s also outside the Old City for those who need easily-accessed transportation. They rooms are apartment-style, with kitchen as well as options for several bedrooms and an attached patio.
43 Yosef Ben Matityahu St, Beer Sheva (058-6612846), habaitbe.co.il/en/habait-be-matityahu/
This place is an ode to the Arabian aesthetic. The Ottoman House offers small and big apartments as well as a bridal suite, all with a living room, a kitchen and a terrace or a patio overlooking the city.
9 Ha-Avot St, Beer Sheva (058-6612846), ottoman-house.com/en/home/