Nahariya is a beautiful seaside city located 30 kilometers north of Haifa on a stunning stretch of the Mediterranean coast. Founded in 1934 by Jews from Germany, it has now developed into a popular seaside resort and is the capital of the Western Galilee.
Nahariya is defined by its beaches, cafes, safe small town atmosphere, clean air and friendly people and diverse population. Walking, jogging or bike riding along the promenade, one sees fishermen casting into the surf, and in season, young people on their boogie boards. The sunsets are exquisite.There is a warm, friendly yet small English speaking community. Some of the English speakers who are moving to Nahariya are migrating from within Israel, while others are coming to Nahariya directly upon their Aliya. People are friendly and it is a relatively easy place to integrate.
Residents of this city benefit from a Periphery Income Tax Break on salary earned, after having resided in the city for one year.
The English speaking population in Nahariya tends to be educated executives and professionals, including doctors and health care practitioners, teachers and those in the hi-tech fields.The local hospital, colleges and universities, hi-tech firms and factories are all easily accessible places of employment.
Nahariya’s Western Galilee Hospital is the second largest hospital in northern Israel, and the largest employer in the region.
Accessibility to Employment
Another very important feature about Nahariya is the railroad. Traveling by rail in Israel is pleasant and inexpensive. The commute to Haifa is about 40 minutes, and to Tel Aviv about 1 hour and 40 minutes. For international jetsetters, the commute to the airport is about 2 hours. If you choose to live in inland northern communities, your public transportation choices are much more limited.
Education / Youth
Nahariya has a great and wide variety of secular and religious educational options. About 10,000 students are enrolled in preschool through 12th grade. In total, there are 82 kindergartens (ganim), 12 elementary schools, 4 high schools and 3 special education schools. Grades 13 and 14 also exist to give high school students an opportunity to build skills as engineers and technicians.
Nahariya is a very friendly environment for children. Children become independent at a young age and feel safe and secure walking throughout the city. One can often see children bike riding and walking around town without adults. There are many chugim (after school activities) and a wide range of municipal enrichment offerings.
Public transportation includes excellent local and intercity buses (Nahariya is a hub), trains, sherut and private taxis. A local taxi ride costs about 15 NIS. Residents can manage easily without having a car. The distance to Haifa by car is 35 minutes (35 km), to Tiberias 65 minutes (64 km) and to Tel Aviv just under 2 hours (127 km).
Aliyah services are in place and used by the city’s many Olim, most of whom come from the Former Soviet Union (while a handful originate from South America). There is no English speaker on staff. The local Klita contact is Deputy Mayor Dima Epstein (phone: 04-987-9851), who works with Olim on an individual basis and seeks to help integrate Olim into Israeli society by introducing them to local support services in the areas of education, employment, degree recognition, rental assistance and tiyulim. Nahariya has a local Ulpan, which offers levels Alef and Bet levels, as well as more advanced day and evening Ulpan, depending upon the need.
Amenities / Services
Nahariya boasts an active arts and cultural center. The center is home to theater, dance, films and children’s shows. Nahariya’s main street and boardwalk (tayelet) has a festive, carnival like atmosphere on summer weekends. During the week and in the winter the city is much more subdued. There are many restaurants and pubs, some of which are kosher. There is one shopping mall, three major supermarkets and a Steimatsky bookstore that sells English titles.
The newly built municipal cultural center, called “Meidatech 2000,” has a computerized public library, music center, community center and sculpture park. There are plenty of municipal sports facilities including a soccer stadium, sporteque, country club, and multi-purpose sports hall with 2,000 seats, used for international competitions. In addition, the city has many attractive bicycle routes. The city also has a beautiful small botanical gardens and zoo.
Nahariya benefits from being the home to the second largest hospital in the North, the Western Galilee Hospital. Having a regional hospital is significant. Most communities in the North, for all their various advantages, do not have this kind of medical resource. It is a 627-bed facility, with an active delivery room, an emergency room that receives about 400 people every day from the entire surrounding area, and excellent in-patient and out-patient care.
Community and Religious Life
The population of Nahariya consists of residents of all ages and affiliations. In particular, there are large Moroccan and Russian communities. Rabbi David Chai AbuChatzera is a well known, popular religious personality and resident of Nahariya. He attracts many followers and has inspired a growing religious Sefardi community in the area. There are dozens of Orthodox Sefardi and Ashkenazi synagogues; and there are two Reform congregations, one of which is affiliated with the Israel Movement for Progressive Judaism, Congregation Emet veShalom.
Nahariya has a strong retiree community. It offers a full range of services for the elderly including many nursing homes.
New apartments are being built, as the city continues to develop.
Rentals: 2 bedroom apartments range from 2500-3200 NIS a month; 3 bedrooms range from 3,000-4,000 NIS a month; 4 bedrooms range from 3500-5000 NIS a month. A 3-4 bedroom house rents for 4000-5500 NIS a month.
Purchases: 3-5 bedroom apartments range from 850,000-1,600,000 NIS. Semi-attached and private homes range from 1,500,000-2,500,000 NIS.
There are five main areas of Nahariya, almost all of which have mixed populations (secular and religious, young and old):
Nahariya Yeruka is a newer area with apartments located near the yeshiva and hospital.
Ein Sara offers a combination of apartments and cottages, and is located near the mall.
The town center is mostly populated by pensioners, as it’s very close to the full range of services and amenities.
Other neighborhoods to consider are the beachfront area and the Amidar neighborhood.