Tel Aviv's supermarket chains may soon close on Shabbat, but this Thursday the entire city will be open all night long – till dawn.
Hundreds of thousands of people of all ages are expected to fill the streets of the metropolis and enjoy the White Night events, organized by the Tel Aviv Municipality for the ninth year in a row.
The White Night, held every year on the last Thursday of June, marks the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization's declaration of Tel Aviv's White City (the beautiful Bauhaus buildings in the city center) as a World Heritage Site. Since the first time it was held in 2004, the White Night has become a real municipal holiday.
More than 1,500 events are expected to be held from Thursday evening through Friday morning across the city – from the Tzuk Beach in the north to Jaffa in the south. The events will be open to the public, free of charge or at a discounted price, and will be held in the city's streets and cultural centers.
Participants will be able to enjoy music, dance and theater performances, a sing-along, opera pieces, video presentations, meetings with artists, sports activities, dancing, fashion shows, parties, and more.
The city's galleries, museums and many businesses will remain open all night long. Restaurants will offer a special night menu, and the Bauhaus buildings in the city center will be lit up.
As in previous years, heavy traffic jams are expected across the city on Thursday evening. Rothschild, Allenby, Herbert Samuel, Bialik and Ibn Gabirol streets, as well as the Tzuk Beach area, will be closed to traffic intermittently by the police. Parallel routes and the entrances to the city from the Ayalon Freeway will be closed starting at 10 pm, in accordance with traffic.
Israel Railways will operate throughout the night. Visitors arriving by train should get off at the Tel Aviv Central railway station (Savidor), where public transportation will be available to take them to White Night events.