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HAIFA (Hebrew : חֵיפָה‎ Hefa ; Arabic : حيفا‎‎ Hayfa) is the third-largest city in the State of Israel
Israel
after Jerusalem
Jerusalem
and Tel Aviv, with a population of 278,903 in 2015. The city of Haifa
Haifa
forms part of the Haifa metropolitan area , the second- or third-most populous metropolitan area in Israel. It is also home to the Bahá\'í World Centre , a UNESCO
UNESCO
World Heritage Site
World Heritage Site
and a destination for Bahá'í pilgrims.

Built on the slopes of Mount Carmel , the settlement has a history spanning more than 3,000 years. The earliest known settlement in the vicinity was Tell Abu Hawam , a small port city established in the Late Bronze Age
Bronze Age
(14th century BCE). In the 3rd century CE, Haifa
Haifa
was known as a dye-making center. Over the centuries, the city has changed hands: being conquered and ruled by the Phoenicians
Phoenicians
, Persians , Hasmoneans , Romans , Byzantines , Arabs
Arabs
, Crusaders , Ottomans , British , and the Israelis
Israelis
. Since the establishment of the State of Israel
Israel
in 1948, the Haifa
Haifa
Municipality has governed the city.

As of 2016 , the city is a major seaport located on Israel's Mediterranean coastline in the Bay of Haifa
Haifa
covering 63.7 square kilometres (24.6 sq mi). It lies about 90 kilometres (56 mi) north of Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv
and is the major regional center of northern Israel. According to researcher J. Kis-Lev Haifa
Haifa
is considered a relative haven for coexistence between Jews and Arabs. Two respected academic institutions, the University of Haifa and the Technion , are located in Haifa, in addition to the largest k-12 school in Israel, the Hebrew Reali School . The city plays an important role in Israel\'s economy . It is home to Matam , one of the oldest and largest high-tech parks in the country; Haifa
Haifa
also owns the only underground rapid transit system located in Israel, known as The Carmelit
Carmelit
. Haifa Bay
Haifa Bay
is a center of heavy industry, petroleum refining and chemical processing. Haifa formerly functioned as the western terminus of an oil pipeline from Iraq via Jordan
Jordan
.

CONTENTS

* 1 Etymology

* 2 History

* 2.1 Early history * 2.2 Crusader, Ayyubid and Mamluk rule * 2.3 Ottoman era * 2.4 British Mandate * 2.5 1947–1948 Civil War in Palestine * 2.6 State of Israel
Israel

* 3 Demographics

* 3.1 Religious and ethnic communities

* 4 Geography * 5 Flora and fauna * 6 Climate * 7 Neighborhoods * 8 Urban development

* 9 Economy

* 9.1 Tourism

* 10 Arts and culture

* 10.1 Museums

* 11 Government

* 11.1 Mayors

* 12 Medical facilities * 13 Education

* 14 Transportation

* 14.1 Public Transportation * 14.2 Air and sea transport * 14.3 Roads

* 15 Sports * 16 People from Haifa
Haifa
* 17 Twin towns - sister cities * 18 See also * 19 References * 20 Further reading * 21 External links

ETYMOLOGY

Western Haifa
Haifa
from the air

The earliest named settlement within the domain of modern-day Haifa was a city known as Sycaminum ( Tel Shikmona
Tel Shikmona
, Hebrew meaning "mound of the Ficus sycomorus ," (Arabic Tell el-Semak or Tell es-Samak, meaning "mound of the fish") preserved and transformed this ancient name and is mentioned once in the Mishnah
Mishnah
(composed c. 200 CE) for the wild fruits that grow around it., with locals using it to refer to a coastal tell at the foot of the Carmel Mountains that contains its remains.

The name Efa first appears during Roman rule , some time after the end of the 1st century, when a Roman fortress and small Jewish settlement were established not far from Tel Shikmona. Haifa
Haifa
is also mentioned more than 100 times in the Talmud
Talmud
, a work central to Judaism
Judaism
. Hefa or Hepha in Eusebius of Caesarea
Eusebius of Caesarea
's 4th-century work, Onomasticon (Onom. 108, 31), is said to be another name for Sycaminus. This synonymizing of the names is explained by Moshe Sharon , who writes that the twin ancient settlements, which he calls Haifa-Sycaminon, gradually expanded into one another, becoming a twin city known by the Greek names Sycaminon or Sycaminos Polis. References to this city end with the Byzantine period.

Around the 6th century, Porphyreon or Porphyrea is mentioned in the writings of William of Tyre , and while it lies within the area covered by modern Haifa, it was a settlement situated south of Haifa-Sycaminon. Following the Arab
Arab
conquest in the 7th century, Haifa
Haifa
was used to refer to a site established on Tel Shikmona
Tel Shikmona
upon what were already the ruins of Sycaminon (Shiqmona). Haifa
Haifa
(or Haifah) is mentioned by the mid-11th-century Persian chronicler Nasir Khusraw , and the 12th- and 13th-century Arab
Arab
chroniclers, Muhammad al-Idrisi and Yaqut al-Hamawi . The Crusaders , who captured Haifa briefly in the 12th century, call it Caiphas, and believe its name related to Cephas, the Aramaic name of Simon Peter . Eusebius is also said to have referred to Hefa as Caiaphas civitas, and Benjamin of Tudela , the 12th-century Jewish traveller and chronicler, is said to have attributed the city's founding to Caiaphas , the Jewish high priest at the time of Jesus
Jesus
.

Other spellings in English have included Caipha, Kaipha, Caiffa, Kaiffa and Khaifa. Haifa
Haifa
al-'Atiqa (Arabic: "Ancient Haifa") is another name used by some locals to refer to Tell es-Samak, when it was the site of Haifa
Haifa
while a hamlet of 250 residents, before it was moved in 1764-5 to a new fortified site founded by Zahir al-Umar 1.5 miles (2.4 kilometres) to the east. The new village, the nucleus of modern Haifa, was first called al-imara al-jadida (Arabic: "the new construction") by some, but others residing there called it Haifa al-Jadida (Arabic: "New Haifa") at first, and then simply Haifa.

In the early 20th century, Haifa
Haifa
al 'Atiqa was repopulated with many Arab
Arab
Christians
Christians
in an overall neighborhood in which many Middle Eastern Jews were established inhabitants, as Haifa
Haifa
expanded outward from its new location. The ultimate origin of the name Haifa
Haifa
remains unclear. One theory holds it derives from the name of the high priest Caiaphas. Some Christians
Christians
believe it was named for Saint Peter
Saint Peter
, whose Aramaic name was Keiphah. Another theory holds it could be derived from the Hebrew verb root חפה (hafa), meaning to cover or shield, i.e. Mount Carmel covers Haifa; others point to a possible origin in the Hebrew word חוֹף (hof), meaning shore, or חוֹף יָפֶה (hof yafe), meaning beautiful shore.

HISTORY

Main articles: History of Haifa and Timeline of Haifa Jars excavated at Tell Abu Hawam

EARLY HISTORY

A small port city known today as Tell Abu Hawam was established Late Bronze Age
Bronze Age
(14th century BCE). During the 6th century BCE, Greek geographer Scylax told of a city "between the bay and the Promontory of Zeus" (i.e., the Carmel) which may be a reference to Shikmona , a locality in the Haifa
Haifa
area, during the Persian period. By Hellenistic times, the city had moved to a new site south of what is now Bat Galim because the port's harbour had become blocked with sand. About the 3rd century CE, the city was first mentioned in Talmudic literature, as a Jewish fishing village and the home of Rabbi Avdimi and other Jewish scholars. A Greek -speaking population living along the coast at this time was engaged in commerce.

Haifa
Haifa
was located near the town of Shikmona , a center for making the traditional Tekhelet dye used in the garments of the high priests in the Temple. The archaeological site of Shikmona is southwest of Bat Galim. Mount Carmel and the Kishon River are also mentioned in the Bible. A grotto on the top of Mount Carmel is known as the "Cave of Elijah", traditionally linked to the Prophet Elijah
Elijah
and his apprentice, Elisha. In Arabic, the highest peak of the Carmel range is called the Muhraka, or "place of burning," harking back to the burnt offerings and sacrifices there in Canaanite and early Israelite times

Early Haifa
Haifa
is believed to have occupied the area which extends from the present-day Rambam Hospital to the Jewish Cemetery on Yafo Street. The inhabitants engaged in fishing and agriculture. Under Byzantine rule, Haifa
Haifa
continued to grow but did not assume major importance. Following the Arab
Arab
conquest of Palestine in the 630s-40s, Haifa
Haifa
was largely overlooked in favor of the port city of \'Akka . Under the Rashidun Caliphate
Rashidun Caliphate
, Haifa
Haifa
began to develop. In the 9th century under the Umayyad and Abbasid Caliphates , Haifa
Haifa
established trading relations with Egyptian ports and the city featured several shipyards. The inhabitants, Arabs
Arabs
and Jews , engaged in trade and maritime commerce. Glass production and dye-making from marine snails were the city's most lucrative industries.

CRUSADER, AYYUBID AND MAMLUK RULE

Mount Carmel before 1899

Prosperity ended in 1100 or 1101, when Haifa
Haifa
was besieged and blockaded by the Crusaders and then conquered after a fierce battle with its Jewish inhabitants and Fatimid garrison. Under the Crusaders, Haifa
Haifa
was reduced to a small fortified coastal stronghold. It was a part of the Principality of Galilee within the Kingdom of Jerusalem
Jerusalem
. Following their victory at the Battle of Hattin , Saladin 's Ayyubid army captured Haifa
Haifa
in mid-July 1187 and the city's Crusader fortress was destroyed. The Crusaders under Richard the Lionheart retook Haifa
Haifa
in 1191.

In the 12th century religious hermits started inhabiting the caves on Mount Carmel, and in the 13th century they formed a new Catholic monastic order, the Carmelites . Under Muslim rule, the church which they had built on Mount Carmel was turned into a mosque, later becoming a hospital. In the 19th century, it was restored as a Carmelite monastery, the Stella Maris Monastery . The altar of the church as we see it today, stands over a cave associated with Prophet Elijah
Elijah
.

In 1265, the army of Baibars
Baibars
the Mamluk captured Haifa
Haifa
, destroying its fortifications, which had been rebuilt by King Louis IX of France , as well as the majority of the city's homes to prevent the European Crusaders from returning. For much of their rule, the city was desolate in the Mamluk period between the 13th and 16th centuries. Information from this period is scarce. During Mamluk rule in the 14th century, al-Idrisi wrote that Haifa
Haifa
served as the port for Tiberias and featured a "fine harbor for the anchorage of galleys and other vessels.

OTTOMAN ERA

Haifa
Haifa
in 1911, as seen from Mount Carmel

In 1596, Haifa
Haifa
appeared in Ottoman tax registers as being in the Nahiya of Sahil Atlit
Atlit
of the Liwa of Lajjun. It had a population of 32 Muslim households and paid taxes on wheat, barley, summercrops, olives, and goats or beehives.

Haifa
Haifa
was a hamlet of 250 inhabitants in 1764-5. It was located at Tell el-Semak, the site of ancient Sycaminum. In 1765 Zahir al-Umar , the Arab
Arab
ruler of Acre and the Galilee
Galilee
, moved the population to a new fortified site 1.5 miles (2.4 kilometres) to the east and laid waste to the old site. According to historian Moshe Sharon , the new Haifa
Haifa
was established by Zahir in 1769. This event marked the beginning of the town's life at its modern location. After al-Umar's death in 1775, the town remained under Ottoman rule until 1918, with the exception of two brief periods.

In 1799, Napoleon Bonaparte conquered Haifa
Haifa
during his unsuccessful campaign to conquer Palestine and Syria
Syria
, but soon had to withdraw; in the campaign's final proclamation , Napoleon took credit for having razed the fortifications of "Kaïffa" (as the name was spelled at the time) along with those of Gaza , Jaffa and Acre . German Colony in the 19th century

Between 1831 and 1840, the Egyptian viceroy Muhammad Ali governed Haifa, after his son Ibrahim Pasha had wrested its control from the Ottomans. When the Egyptian occupation ended and Acre declined, the importance of Haifa
Haifa
rose.

The arrival of the German Templers in 1868, who settled in what is now known as the German Colony of Haifa
Haifa
, was a turning point in Haifa's development. The Templers built and operated a steam-based power station , opened factories and inaugurated carriage services to Acre, Nazareth
Nazareth
and Tiberias
Tiberias
, playing a key role in modernizing the city.

The first major Jewish Immigration took place at the middle 19th century from Morocco, with small immigration from Turkey few years later. A wave of European Jews arrived at the end of the 19th century from Romania
Romania
. The Central Jewish Colonisation Society in Romania purchased over 1,000 acres (4.0 km2) near Haifa. As the Jewish settlers had been city dwellers, they hired the former fellahin tenants to instruct them in agriculture. Shrine of the Báb and the Bahá\'í gardens on Mount Carmel

In 1909, Haifa
Haifa
became important to the Bahá\'í Faith when the remains of the Báb , founder of the Bábí Faith and forerunner of Bahá\'u\'lláh in the Bahá'í Faith, were moved from Acre to Haifa and interred in the shrine built on Mount Carmel . Bahá'ís consider the shrine to be their second holiest place on Earth after the Shrine of Bahá\'u\'lláh in Acre . Its precise location on Mount Carmel was shown by Bahá'u'lláh
Bahá'u'lláh
himself to his eldest son, `Abdu\'l-Bahá , in 1891. `Abdu'l-Bahá planned the structure, which was designed and completed several years later by his grandson, Shoghi Effendi . In a separate room, the remains of `Abdu\'l-Bahá were buried in November 1921.

A branch of the Hejaz railway , known as the Jezreel Valley railway , was built between 1903 and 1905. This event accelerated the growth of Haifa, which became a township (nahiya) centre in Akka in the sanjak of Beyrut Eyalet before the end of Ottoman rule. The Technion Institute of Technology was established around this time, that is, in 1912.

BRITISH MANDATE

Haifa
Haifa
in 1930

Haifa
Haifa
was captured from the Ottomans in September 1918 by Indian horsemen of the British Army after overrunning Ottoman positions armed with spears and swords. On 22 September, British troops were heading to Nazareth
Nazareth
when a reconnaissance report was received indicating that the Turks were leaving Haifa. The British made preparations to enter the city and came under fire in the Balad al-Sheikh district (today Nesher ). After the British regrouped, an elite unit of Indian horsemen were sent to attack the Turkish positions on the flanks and overrun their artillery guns on Mount Carmel. Buchenwald concentration camp survivors arrive in Haifa
Haifa
to be arrested by the British, 15 July 1945

Under the British Mandate, Haifa
Haifa
became an industrial port city. The Bahá\'í Faith in 1918 and today has its administrative and spiritual centre in the environs of Haifa. Over the next few decades the number of Jews increased steadily, due to immigration , especially from Europe. The Arab
Arab
immigration on the other hand swelled by influx of Arabs, coming mainly from surrounding villages as well as Syrian Hauran . The Arab
Arab
immigration mainly came as a result of prices and salary drop. Between the censuses of 1922 and 1931, the Muslim, Jewish, and Christian populations rose by 217%, 256%, and 156%, respectively. According to a census conducted in 1922 by the British Mandate authorities , Haifa
Haifa
had a population of 24,634, consisting of 9,377 Muslims, 6,230 Jews and 8,863 Christians. Haifa
Haifa
Oil Refinery

Haifa's development owed much to British plans to make it a central port and hub for Middle-East crude oil. The British Government of Palestine developed the port and built refineries, thereby facilitating the rapid development of the city as a center for the country's heavy industries. Haifa
Haifa
was also among the first towns to be fully electrified. The Palestine Electric Company inaugurated the Haifa
Haifa
Electrical Power Station already in 1925, opening the door to considerable industrialization. The State-run Palestine Railways also built its main workshops in Haifa.

By 1945 the population had shifted to 33 percent Muslim, 20 percent Christian and 47 percent Jewish. In 1947, about 70,910 Arabs
Arabs
(41,000 Muslims, 29,910 Christians) and 74,230 Jews were living there. The Christian community were mostly Greek-Melkite Catholics . Haifa Maronite Boy Scouts, 1939. Center: Dr John Macqueen Chief Medical Officer for Haifa
Haifa

1947–1948 CIVIL WAR IN PALESTINE

The 1947 UN Partition Plan in late November 1947 designated Haifa
Haifa
as part of the proposed Jewish state . Arab
Arab
protests over that decision evolved into violence between Jews and Arabs
Arabs
that left several dozen people dead during December. The Arab
Arab
city was in anarchy. The local Arab
Arab
national committee tried to stabilize the situation by organizing garrison, calming the frightened residents and to stop the flight. In a public statement, the national committee called upon the Arab residents to obey orders, be alert, keep calm, and added: "Keep away the cowards who wish to flee. Expell them from your lines. Despise them, because they harm more than the enemy". Despite the efforts, Arab
Arab
residents abandoned the streets which bordered Jewish neighborhoods and during the days of the general strike instigated by the Arab
Arab
Higher Committee, some 250 Arab
Arab
families abandoned the Khalisa neighborhood.

On 30 December 1947, members of the Irgun
Irgun
, a Jewish underground militia, threw bombs into a crowd of Arabs
Arabs
outside the gates of the Consolidated Refineries in Haifa, killing six and injuring 42. In response Arab
Arab
employees of the company killed 39 Jewish employees in what became known as the Haifa Oil Refinery massacre . The Jewish Haganah militia retaliated with a raid on the Arab
Arab
village of Balad al-Shaykh , where many of the Arab
Arab
refinery workers lived, in what became known as the Balad al-Shaykh massacre . Control of Haifa
Haifa
was critical in the ensuing civil war , since it was the major industrial and oil refinery port in British Palestine .

British forces in Haifa
Haifa
redeployed on 21 April 1948, withdrawing from most of the city while still maintaining control over the port facilities. Two days later the downtown, controlled by a combination of local and foreign (ALA) Arab
Arab
irregulars was assaulted by Jewish forces in Operation Bi\'ur Hametz , by the Carmeli Brigade of the Haganah , commanded by Moshe Carmel . The operation led to a massive displacement of Haifa's Arab
Arab
population. According to The Economist at the time, only 5,000–6,000 of the city's 62,000 Arabs
Arabs
remained there by 2 October 1948.

Contemporaneous sources emphasized the Jewish leadership's attempt to stop the Arab
Arab
exodus from the city and the Arab
Arab
leadership as a motivating factor in the refugees' flight. According to the British district superintendent of police, "Every effort is being made by the Jews to persuade the Arab
Arab
populace to stay and carry on with their normal lives, to get their shops and business open and to be assured that their lives and interests will be safe." Time Magazine wrote on 3 May 1948: The mass evacuation, prompted partly by fear, partly by orders of Arab
Arab
leaders, left the Arab
Arab
quarter of Haifa
Haifa
a ghost city ... By withdrawing Arab
Arab
workers their leaders hoped to paralyze Haifa.

Benny Morris said Haifa's Arabs
Arabs
left due to a combination of Zionist threats and encouragement to do so by Arab
Arab
leaders. Ilan Pappé writes that the shelling culminated in an attack on a Palestinian crowd in the old marketplace using three-inch (76 mm) mortars on 22 April 1948. Shabtai Levy
Shabtai Levy
, the Mayor of the city, and some other Jewish leaders urged Arabs
Arabs
not to leave. According to Ilan Pappé, Jewish loudspeakers could be heard in the city ordering Arab
Arab
residents to leave "before it's too late." Morris quotes British sources as stating that during the battles between 22 and 23 April 100 Arabs
Arabs
were killed and 100 wounded, but he adds that the total may have been higher.

STATE OF ISRAEL

Further information: Declaration of Independence (Israel)

After the Declaration of the Establishment of the State of Israel
Israel
on 14 May 1948 Haifa
Haifa
became the gateway for Jewish immigration into Israel. During the 1948 Arab–Israeli War , the neighborhoods of Haifa
Haifa
were sometimes contested. After the war, Jewish immigrants were settled in new neighborhoods, among them Kiryat Hayim , Ramot Remez, Ramat Shaul, Kiryat Sprinzak, and Kiryat Eliezer . Bnei Zion Hospital (formerly Rothschild Hospital) and the Central Synagogue in Hadar Hacarmel date from this period. In 1953, a master plan was created for transportation and the future architectural layout. In 1959, a group of Sephardi and Mizrahi Jews
Mizrahi Jews
, mostly Moroccan Jews , rioted in Wadi Salib , claiming the state was discriminating against them. Their demand for “bread and work” was directed at the state institutions and what they viewed as an Ashkenazi elite in the Labor Party and the Histadrut .

Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv
gained in status, while Haifa
Haifa
suffered a decline in the role as regional capital. The opening of Ashdod
Ashdod
as a port exacerbated this. Tourism shrank when the Israeli Ministry of Tourism placed emphasis on developing Tiberias
Tiberias
as a tourist centre. Nevertheless, Haifa's population had reached 200,000 by the early 1970s, and mass immigration from the former Soviet Union
Soviet Union
boosted the population by a further 35,000. Many of Wadi Salib's historic Ottoman buildings have now been demolished, and in the 1990s a major section of the Old City was razed to make way for a new municipal center.

From 1999 to 2003, several Palestinian suicide attacks took place in Haifa
Haifa
(in Maxim and Matza restaurants, bus 37 , and others), killing 68 civilians. In 2006, Haifa
Haifa
was hit by 93 Hezbollah rockets during the Second Lebanon
Lebanon
War , killing 11 civilians and leading to half of the city's population fleeing at the end of the first week of the war. Among the places hit by rockets were a train depot and the oil refinery complex.

DEMOGRAPHICS

CITY OF HAIFA POPULATION BY YEAR

YEAR POP. ±% P.A.

1800 1,000 —

1840 2,000 +1.75%

1880 6,000 +2.78%

1914 20,000 +3.60%

1922 24,600 +2.62%

1947 145,140 +7.36%

1961 183,021 +1.67%

1972 219,559 +1.67%

1983 225,775 +0.25%

1995 255,914 +1.05%

2005 267,800 +0.46%

2009 265,000 −0.26%

2014 277,082 +0.90%

Downtown Haifa
Haifa
and port

Haifa
Haifa
is Israel's third-largest city, consisting of 103,000 households, or a population of 266,300. Immigrants from the former Soviet Union
Soviet Union
constitute 25% of Haifa's population. According to the Israeli Central Bureau of Statistics , Israeli Arabs
Arabs
constitute 10% of Haifa's population, the majority living in Wadi Nisnas
Wadi Nisnas
, Abbas and Halissa neighborhoods. Haifa
Haifa
is commonly portrayed as a model of co-existence between Arabs
Arabs
and Jews, although tensions and hostility do still exist.

Between 1994 and 2009, the city had a declining and aging population compared to Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv
and Jerusalem
Jerusalem
, as young people moved to the center of the country for education and jobs, while young families migrated to bedroom communities in the suburbs. However, as a result of new projects and improving infrastructure, the city managed to reverse its population decline, reducing emigration while attracting more internal migration into the city. In 2009, positive net immigration into the city was shown for the first time in 15 years.

RELIGIOUS AND ETHNIC COMMUNITIES

The population is heterogeneous. Israeli Jews comprise some 82% of the population, almost 14% are Christians
Christians
(the majority of whom are Arab
Arab
Christians
Christians
) and, some 4% are Muslims (of which many are Ahmadis ). Haifa
Haifa
also includes Druze
Druze
and Bahá\'í communities. In 2006, 27% of the Arab
Arab
population was aged 14 and under, compared to 17% of the Jewish and other population groups. The trend continues in the age 15-29 group, in which 27% of the Arab
Arab
population is found, and the age 30-44 group (23%). The population of Jews and others in these age groups are 22% and 18% respectively. Nineteen percent of the city's Jewish and other population is between 45 and 59, compared to 14% of the Arab
Arab
population. This continues with 14% of Jews and others aged 60–74 and 10% over age 75, in comparison to 7% and just 2% respectively in the Arab
Arab
population.

In 2006, 2.9% of the Jews in the city were Haredi , compared to 7.5% on a national scale. However, the Haredi community in Haifa
Haifa
is growing fast due to a high fertility rate. 66.6% were secular, compared to a national average of 43.7%. A significant portion of the immigrants from the former Soviet Union
Soviet Union
either lack official religious-ethnic classification or are Non-Jews as they are from mixed-marriage families of some Jewish origin. There is also a Scandinavian Seamen Protestant church, established by Norwegian Righteous Among the Nations pastor Per Faye-Hansen.

Haifa
Haifa
is the center of liberal Arabic speaking culture, as it was under British colonial rule. The Arabic speaking neighborhoods, which are mixed Muslim and Christian, are in the lowlands near the sea while Jewish neighborhoods are at higher elevation. An active Arab
Arab
cultural life has developed in the 21st century.

GEOGRAPHY

Haifa
Haifa
is situated on the Israeli Mediterranean Coastal Plain , the historic land bridge between Europe, Africa, and Asia, and the mouth of the Kishon River. Located on the northern slopes of Mount Carmel and around Haifa Bay
Haifa Bay
, the city is split over three tiers. The lowest is the center of commerce and industry including the Port of Haifa . The middle level is on the slopes of Mount Carmel and consists of older residential neighborhoods, while the upper level consists of modern neighborhoods looking over the lower tiers. From here views can be had across the Western Galilee
Galilee
region of Israel
Israel
towards Rosh HaNikra and the Lebanese border . Haifa
Haifa
is about 90 kilometers (55.9 mi) north of the city of Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv
, and has a large number of beaches on the Mediterranean . Panorama of Haifa
Haifa
from Mount Carmel

FLORA AND FAUNA

The Carmel Mountain has three main wadis : Lotem, Amik and Si’ach. For the most part these valleys are undeveloped natural corridors that run up through the city from the coast to the top of the mountain. Marked hiking paths traverse these areas and they provide habitat for wildlife such as wild boar, golden jackal , hyrax , Egyptian mongoose , owls and chameleons.

CLIMATE

Haifa
Haifa
has a hot-summer Mediterranean climate with hot, dry summers and cool, rainy winters ( Köppen climate classification
Köppen climate classification
Csa). Spring arrives in March when temperatures begin to increase. By late May, the temperature has warmed up considerably to herald warm summer days. The average temperature in summer is 26 °C (79 °F) and in winter, 12 °C (54 °F). Snow is rare in Haifa, but temperatures around 3 °C (37 °F) can sometimes occur, usually in the early morning. Humidity tends to be high all year round, and rain usually occurs between September and May. Annual precipitation is approximately 629 millimeters (25 in).

CLIMATE DATA FOR HAIFA AIRPORT (5 M / 16 FT) (TEMPERATURE: 1987–2010, PRECIPITATION: 1980-2010)

MONTH JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC YEAR

RECORD HIGH °C (°F) 25.4 (77.7) 27.2 (81) 31.6 (88.9) 42.0 (107.6) 42.4 (108.3) 42.0 (107.6) 35.8 (96.4) 36.2 (97.2) 40.2 (104.4) 39.0 (102.2) 33.6 (92.5) 30.2 (86.4) 42.4 (108.3)

AVERAGE HIGH °C (°F) 17.0 (62.6) 17.5 (63.5) 19.6 (67.3) 23.9 (75) 26.2 (79.2) 29.3 (84.7) 31.1 (88) 31.4 (88.5) 29.9 (85.8) 28.0 (82.4) 24.0 (75.2) 19.2 (66.6) 24.7 (76.5)

DAILY MEAN °C (°F) 12.9 (55.2) 13.1 (55.6) 15.1 (59.2) 18.7 (65.7) 21.7 (71.1) 24.9 (76.8) 27.1 (80.8) 27.5 (81.5) 25.8 (78.4) 23.2 (73.8) 19.1 (66.4) 15.0 (59) 20.3 (68.5)

AVERAGE LOW °C (°F) 8.9 (48) 8.7 (47.7) 10.5 (50.9) 13.6 (56.5) 17.2 (63) 20.6 (69.1) 23.0 (73.4) 23.6 (74.5) 21.7 (71.1) 18.5 (65.3) 14.1 (57.4) 10.9 (51.6) 15.9 (60.6)

RECORD LOW °C (°F) 0.7 (33.3) 1.0 (33.8) 3.2 (37.8) 4.3 (39.7) 4.2 (39.6) 10.0 (50) 15.4 (59.7) 16.6 (61.9) 9.0 (48.2) 10.4 (50.7) 1.8 (35.2) 1.3 (34.3) 0.7 (33.3)

AVERAGE RAINFALL MM (INCHES) 124.9 (4.917) 95.2 (3.748) 52.8 (2.079) 23.6 (0.929) 2.7 (0.106) 0.1 (0.004) 0.0 (0) 0.0 (0) 1.2 (0.047) 28.0 (1.102) 77.8 (3.063) 135.5 (5.335) 541.8 (21.33)

AVERAGE RAINY DAYS (≥ 0.1 MM) 13.9 11.7 8.6 3.6 1.4 0.1 0.1 0 0.8 3.9 8.0 11.8 63.9

Source: Israel
Israel
Meteorological Service

CLIMATE DATA FOR UNIVERSITY OF HAIFA (475 M / 1558 FT) (TEMPERATURE: 1995–2010, PRECIPITATION: 1980-2010)

MONTH JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC YEAR

RECORD HIGH °C (°F) 23.6 (74.5) 26.2 (79.2) 32.9 (91.2) 36.6 (97.9) 39.0 (102.2) 38.9 (102) 36.6 (97.9) 34.9 (94.8) 38.9 (102) 36.3 (97.3) 30.0 (86) 28.3 (82.9) 39 (102.2)

AVERAGE HIGH °C (°F) 13.3 (55.9) 14.2 (57.6) 16.8 (62.2) 20.2 (68.4) 23.3 (73.9) 25.1 (77.2) 26.5 (79.7) 26.9 (80.4) 26.2 (79.2) 24.2 (75.6) 19.9 (67.8) 15.5 (59.9) 21.01 (69.82)

DAILY MEAN °C (°F) 11.0 (51.8) 11.5 (52.7) 13.8 (56.8) 16.5 (61.7) 19.7 (67.5) 22.0 (71.6) 23.7 (74.7) 24.2 (75.6) 23.4 (74.1) 21.3 (70.3) 17.2 (63) 13.1 (55.6) 18.12 (64.62)

AVERAGE LOW °C (°F) 8.6 (47.5) 8.9 (48) 10.7 (51.3) 12.9 (55.2) 16.1 (61) 18.8 (65.8) 20.8 (69.4) 21.5 (70.7) 20.6 (69.1) 18.4 (65.1) 14.6 (58.3) 10.7 (51.3) 15.22 (59.39)

RECORD LOW °C (°F) −0.3 (31.5) 1.3 (34.3) 1.0 (33.8) 4.2 (39.6) 10.1 (50.2) 11.5 (52.7) 16.7 (62.1) 18.1 (64.6) 15.9 (60.6) 8.8 (47.8) 5.1 (41.2) 2.5 (36.5) −0.3 (31.5)

AVERAGE RAINFALL MM (INCHES) 166 (6.54) 128 (5.04) 71 (2.8) 21 (0.83) 4.9 (0.193) 0 (0) 0 (0) 0 (0) 1.9 (0.075) 36 (1.42) 93 (3.66) 161 (6.34) 682.8 (26.898)

AVERAGE RAINY DAYS (≥ 0.1 MM) 14 12 9 4 1.0 0.0 0.1 0 0.6 4 8 12 64.7

AVERAGE RELATIVE HUMIDITY (%) 68 67 63 61 63 74 80 82 74 67 59 65 68.6

Source: Israel
Israel
Meteorological Service

NEIGHBORHOODS

Bat Galim neighborhood and Haifa Bay
Haifa Bay
Panorama Towers

Haifa
Haifa
has developed in tiers, from the lower to the upper city on the Carmel. The oldest neighborhood in modern Haifa
Haifa
is Wadi Salib , the Old City center near the port, which has been bisected by a major road and razed in part to make way for government buildings . Wadi Salib stretches across to Wadi Nisnas
Wadi Nisnas
, the center of Arab
Arab
life in Haifa today. In the 19th century, under Ottoman rule, the German Colony was built, providing the first model of urban planning in Haifa. Some of the buildings have been restored and the colony has turned into a center of Haifa
Haifa
nightlife.

The first buildings in Hadar were constructed at the start of the 20th century. Hadar was Haifa's cultural center and marketplace throughout the 1920s and into the 1980s, nestled above and around Haifa's Arab
Arab
neighborhoods. Today Hadar stretches from the port area near the bay, approximately halfway up Mount Carmel, around the German Colony, Wadi Nisnas
Wadi Nisnas
and Wadi Salib. Hadar houses two commercial centers (one in the port area, and one midway up the mountain) surrounded by some of the city's older neighborhoods.

Neve Sha\'anan , a neighborhood located on the second tier of Mount Carmel, was founded in the 1920s. West of the port are the neighborhoods of Bat Galim , Shikmona Beach, and Kiryat Eliezer . To the west and east of Hadar are the Arab
Arab
neighborhoods of Abbas and Khalisa, built in the 1960s and 70s. To the south of Mount Carmel's headland, along the road to Tel Aviv, are the neighborhoods of Ein HaYam, Shaar HaAliya, Kiryat Sprinzak and Neve David.

Above Hadar are affluent neighborhoods such as the Carmel Tzarfati (French Carmel), Merkaz HaCarmel , Romema , Ahuzat Ha'Carmel (Ahuza), Carmeliya, Vardiya , Ramat Golda , Ramat Alon and Hod Ha'Carmel (Denya). While there are general divisions between Arab
Arab
and Jewish neighborhoods, there is an increasing trend for wealthy Arabs
Arabs
to move into affluent Jewish neighborhoods. Another of the Carmel neighborhoods is Kababir
Kababir
, home to the National Headquarters of Israel's Ahmadiyya
Ahmadiyya
Muslim Community ; located near Merkaz HaCarmel and overlooking the coast.

URBAN DEVELOPMENT

Recently, residential construction has been concentrated around Kiryat Haim and Kiryat Shmuel, with 75,000 m2 (807,293 sq ft) of new residential construction between 2002–2004, the Carmel, with 70,000 m2 (753,474 sq ft), and Ramot Neve Sha'anan with approximately 70,000 m2 (753,474 sq ft) Non-residential construction was highest in the Lower Town , (90,000 sq m), Haifa Bay
Haifa Bay
(72,000 sq m) and Ramot Neve Sha'anan (54,000 sq m). In 2004, 80% of construction in the city was private.

Currently, the city has a modest number of skyscrapers and high-rise buildings, and many additional high-rise buildings are planned, have been approved, or are under construction. Though buildings rising up to 20 stories were built on Mount Carmel in the past, the Haifa municipality banned the construction of any new buildings taller than nine stories on Mount Carmel in July 2012.

The neighborhood of Wadi Salib , located in the heart of downtown Haifa, is being redeveloped. Most of its Jewish and Arab
Arab
residents are considered squatters and have been gradually evicted over the years. The Haifa
Haifa
Economic Corporation Ltd is developing two 1,000 square meter lots for office and commercial use. Some historic buildings have been renovated and redeveloped, especially into nightclubs and theaters, such as the Palace of the Pasha, a Turkish bathhouse , and a Middle Eastern music and dance club , which has been converted into theaters and offices.

In 2012, a new, massive development plan was announced for Haifa's waterfront. According to the plan, the western section of the city's port will be torn down, and all port activity will be moved to the east. The west side of the port will be transformed into a tourism and nightlife center and a point of embarkation and arrival for sea travel through the construction of public spaces, a beach promenade, and the renovation of commercial buildings. The train tracks that currently bisect the city and separate the city's beach from the rest of Haifa will also be buried. A park will be developed on the border of the Kishon River , the refineries' cooling towers will be turned into a visitors' center, and bridges will lead from the port to the rest of the city. Massive renovations are also currently underway in Haifa's lower town, in the Turkish market and Paris Square, which will become the city's business center. In addition, the ammonia depository tank in the Haifa
Haifa
bay industrial zone will be dismantled, and a new one built in an alternative location.

Another plan seeks to turn the western section of Haifa
Haifa
Port into a major tourism and nightlife center, as well as a functioning point of embarkation and arrival for sea travel. All port activity will be moved to the western side, and the area will be redeveloped. Public spaces and a beach promenade will be developed, and commercial buildings will be renovated. As part of the development plans, the Israeli Navy , which has a large presence in Haifa, will withdraw from the shoreline between Bat Galim and Hof Hashaket. A 5-kilometer (3.1-mile) long esplanade which will encircle the shoreline will be constructed. It will include a bicycle path, and possibly also a small bridge under which navy vessels will pass on their way to the sea.

In addition, a 50,000 square-meter entertainment complex that will contain a Disney
Disney
theme park, cinemas, shops, and a 25-screen Multiplex theater will be built at the Check Post exit from the Carmel Tunnels. In 2014, a new major plan for the city was proposed, under which extensive development of residential, business, and leisure areas will take place with the target of increasing the city's population by 60,000 by 2025. Under the plan, five new neighborhoods will be built, along with new high-tech parks. In addition, existing employment centers will be renovated, and new leisure areas and a large park will be built.

ECONOMY

Matam hi-tech park

The common Israeli saying, " Haifa
Haifa
works, Jerusalem
Jerusalem
prays, and Tel Aviv plays" attests to Haifa's reputation as a city of workers and industry. The industrial region of Haifa
Haifa
is in the eastern part of the city, around the Kishon River . It is home to the Haifa
Haifa
oil refinery , one of the two oil refineries in Israel
Israel
(the other refinery being located in Ashdod
Ashdod
). The Haifa
Haifa
refinery processes 9 million tons (66 million barrels) of crude oil a year. Its nowadays unused twin 80-meter high cooling towers , built in the 1930s, were the tallest buildings built in the British Mandate period. Matam (short for Merkaz Ta'asiyot Mada - Scientific Industries Center), the largest and oldest business park in Israel, is at the southern entrance to the city, hosting manufacturing and R from scaffolding and cranes around town, to renovated façades and new smart places to eat". The Haifa municipality had spent more than $350 million on roads and infrastructure, and the number of building permits had risen 83% in the previous two years.

In 2014, it was announced that a technology-focused stock exchange would be established to compete with the Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv
Stock Exchange . Currently, some 40 hotels, mostly boutique hotels , are planned, have been approved, or are under construction. The Haifa
Haifa
Municipality is seeking to turn the city into Northern Israel's tourist center, from where travelers can embark on day trips into Acre , Nazareth
Nazareth
, Tiberias
Tiberias
, and the Galilee
Galilee
. A new life sciences industrial park containing five buildings with 85,000 square meters of space on a 31-duman (7.75 acre) site is being built adjacent to the Matam industrial park.

TOURISM

Main article: Terraces (Bahá\'í) Bahá\'í gardens City map plan of Haifa, Israel.

In 2005, Haifa
Haifa
has 13 hotels with a total of 1,462 rooms. The city has a 17 kilometres (11 mi) shoreline, of which 5 kilometres (3 mi) are beaches. Haifa's main tourist attraction is the Bahá\'í World Centre , with the golden-domed Shrine of the Báb and the surrounding gardens. Between 2005 and 2006, 86,037 visited the shrine. In 2008, the Bahá'í gardens
Bahá'í gardens
were designated a UNESCO
UNESCO
World Heritage Site
World Heritage Site
. The restored German Colony , founded by the Templers , Stella Maris and Elijah's Cave also draw many tourists. Located in the Haifa district are the Ein Hod artists' colony, where over 90 artists and craftsmen have studios and exhibitions, and the Mount Carmel national park , with caves where Neanderthal
Neanderthal
and early Homo Sapiens remains were found.

A 2007 report commissioned by the Haifa
Haifa
Municipality calls for the construction of more hotels, a ferry line between Haifa, Acre and Caesarea
Caesarea
, development of the western anchorage of the port as a recreation and entertainment area, and an expansion of the local airport and port to accommodate international travel and cruise ships .

ARTS AND CULTURE

Folk dancing in Dado Beach, Haifa
Haifa
2015

Despite its image as a port and industrial city, Haifa
Haifa
is the cultural hub of northern Israel. During the 1950s, mayor Abba Hushi made a special effort to encourage authors and poets to move to the city, and founded the Haifa Theatre , a repertory theater , the first municipal theater founded in the country. The principal Arabic theater servicing the northern Arab
Arab
population is the al-Midan Theater. Other theaters in the city include the Krieger Centre for the Performing Arts and the Rappaport Art and Culture Center. The Congress Center hosts exhibitions, concerts and special events.

The New Haifa
Haifa
Symphony Orchestra, established in 1950, has more than 5,000 subscribers. In 2004, 49,000 people attended its concerts. The Haifa Cinematheque , founded in 1975, hosts the annual Haifa International Film Festival during the intermediate days of the Sukkot holiday. Haifa
Haifa
has 29 movie theaters . The city publishes a local newspaper, Yediot Haifa, and has its own radio station , Radio Haifa . The Israeli Arabic-language newspapers Al-Ittihad and Al-Madina are also based in Haifa. During the 1990s, Haifa
Haifa
hosted the Haifa
Haifa
Rock "> National Museum of Science , Haifa
Haifa

Haifa
Haifa
has over a dozen museums. The most popular museum is the Israel National Museum of Science, Technology, and Space , which recorded almost 150,000 visitors in 2004. The museum is located in the historic Technion building in the Hadar neighborhood. The Haifa Museum of Art houses a collection of modern and classical art, as well as displays on the history of Haifa. The Tikotin Museum of Japanese Art is the only museum in the Middle East
Middle East
dedicated solely to Japanese art . Other museums in Haifa
Haifa
include the Museum of Prehistory, the National Maritime Museum and Haifa
Haifa
City Museum, the Hecht Museum, the Dagon Archaeological Museum of Grain Handling, the Railway Museum , the Clandestine Immigration and Navy Museum, the Israeli Oil Industry Museum, and Chagall Artists' House. As part of his campaign to bring culture to Haifa, Mayor Abba Hushi provided the artist Mane-Katz with a building on Mount Carmel to house his collection of Judaica , which is now a museum. The Haifa
Haifa
Educational Zoo at Gan HaEm park houses a small animal collection including Syrian brown bears, now extinct from Israel. Wןthin the zoo is the Pinhas House biology institute. In the close vicinity of Haifa, on the Carmel, the Northern "Hai-Bar" ("wild life") operated by Israel's Parks and Reserves Authority for the purpose of breeding and reintroduction of species now extinct from Israel, such as Persian Fallow Deer.

GOVERNMENT

As an industrial port city, Haifa
Haifa
has traditionally been a Labor party stronghold. The strong presence of dock workers and trade unions earned it the nickname 'Red Haifa.' In addition, many prominent Arabs in the Israeli Communist Party , among them Tawfik Toubi
Tawfik Toubi
, Emile Habibi , Zahi Karkabi , Bulus Farah and Emile Toma , were from Haifa. Haifa
Haifa
court building

In recent years, there has been a drift toward the center. This was best signified by, in the 2006 legislative elections , the Kadima party receiving about 28.9% of the votes in Haifa, and Labor lagging behind with 16.9%.

Before 1948, Haifa's Municipality was fairly unusual as it developed cooperation between the mixed Arab
Arab
and Jewish community in the city, with representatives of both groups involved in the city's management. Under mayor al-Haj, between 1920 and 1927, the city council had six Arab
Arab
and two Jewish representatives, with the city run as a mixed municipality with overall Arab
Arab
control. Greater cooperation was introduced under Hasan Bey Shukri , who adopted a positive and conciliatory attitude toward the city's Jews and gave them senior posts in the municipality. In 1940, the first Jewish mayor, Shabtai Levy , was elected. Levy's two deputies were Arab
Arab
(one Muslim, the other Christian), with the remainder of the council made up of four Jews and six Arabs.

Today, Haifa
Haifa
is governed by its 12th city council, headed by the mayor Yona Yahav . The results of municipal elections decide on the makeup of the council, similarly to the Knesset elections. The city council is the legislative council in the city, and has the authority to pass auxiliary laws. The 12th council, which was elected in 2003, has 31 members, with the liberal Shinui -Greens ticket holding the most seats (6), and Likud
Likud
coming second with 5. Many of the decisions passed by the city council are results of recommendation made by the various municipal committees, which are committees where non-municipal organs meet with representatives from the city council. Some committees are spontaneous, but some are mandatory, such as the security committee, tender committee and financial committee.

MAYORS

City hall

* Najib Effendi al-Yasin (1873–77) * Ahmad Effendi Jalabi (1878–81) * Mustafa Bey al-Salih (1881–84) * Mustafa Pasha al-Khalil (1885–1903) * Jamil Sadiq (1904–10) * Rif\'at al-Salah (1910–11) * Ibrahim al-Khalil (1911–13) * Abd al-Rahman al-Haj (1920–27) * Hasan Bey Shukri (1914–20, 1927–40) * Shabtai Levy
Shabtai Levy
(1940–51) * Abba Hushi (1951–1969) * Moshe Flimann (1969–1973) * Yosef Almogi
Yosef Almogi
(1974–1975) * Yeruham Zeisel (1975–1978) * Arie Gur\'el (1978–1993) * Amram Mitzna (1993–2003) * Giora Fisher (interim mayor, 2003) * Yona Yahav (2003–present)

MEDICAL FACILITIES

Rambam Medical Center Technion , called "Israel's MIT " Rabin Building, University of Haifa A Cable Car descending from Mount Carmel to Bat Galim

Haifa
Haifa
medical facilities have a total of 4,000 hospital beds. The largest hospital is the government-operated Rambam Hospital with 900 beds and 78,000 admissions in 2004. Bnai Zion Hospital and Carmel Hospital each have 400 beds. Other hospitals in the city include the Italian Hospital, Elisha Hospital (100 beds), Horev Medical Center (36 beds) and Ramat Marpe (18 beds). Haifa
Haifa
has 20 family health centers. In 2004, there were a total of 177,478 hospital admissions. Rambam Medical Center was in the direct line of fire during the Second Lebanon
Lebanon
War in 2006 and was forced to take special precautions to protect its patients. Whole wings of the hospital were moved to large underground shelters.

EDUCATION

Haifa
Haifa
is home to two internationally acclaimed universities and several colleges The University of Haifa , founded in 1963, is at the top of Mt. Carmel. The campus was designed by the architect of Brasília
Brasília
and United Nations Headquarters
United Nations Headquarters
in New York City
New York City
, Oscar Niemeyer . The top floor of the 30-story Eshkol Tower provides a panoramic view of northern Israel. The Hecht Museum , with important archeology and art collections, is on the campus of Haifa
Haifa
University.

The Technion - Israel
Israel
Institute of Technology , described as Israel's MIT , was founded in 1912. It has 18 faculties and 42 research institutes . The original building now houses Haifa's science museum . The Hebrew Reali School was founded in 1913. It is the largest k-12 school in Israel, with 4,000 students in 7 branches, all over the city. The first technological high school in Israel, Bosmat, was established in Haifa
Haifa
in 1933.

Other academic institutions in Haifa
Haifa
are the Gordon College of Education and Sha'anan Religious Teachers' College, the WIZO Haifa Academy of Design and Education , and Tiltan College of Design. The Michlala Leminhal College of Management and the Open University of Israel
Israel
have branches in Haifa. The city also has a nursing college and the P.E.T Practical Engineering School.

As of 2006 –07, Haifa
Haifa
had 70 elementary schools , 23 middle schools , 28 academic high schools and 8 vocational high schools. There were 5,133 pupils in municipal kindergartens, 20,081 in elementary schools, 7,911 in middle schools, 8,072 in academic high schools, 2,646 in vocational high schools, and 2,068 in comprehensive district high schools. 86% of the students attended Hebrew-speaking schools and 14% attended Arab
Arab
schools. 5% were in special education . In 2004, Haifa had 16 municipal libraries stocking 367,323 books. Two prestigious Arab
Arab
schools in Haifa
Haifa
are the Orthodox School, run by the Greek Orthodox church, and the Nazareth
Nazareth
Nuns' School, a Catholic institution.

TRANSPORTATION

PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION

Haifa
Haifa
is served by six railway stations and the Carmelit
Carmelit
, currently Israel's only subway system (another is under construction in Tel Aviv). The Nahariya
Nahariya
Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv
Coastal Railway main line of Israel Railways runs along the coast of the Gulf of Haifa
Haifa
and has six stations within the city. From south-west to north-east, these stations are: Haifa
Haifa
Hof HaCarmel , Haifa
Haifa
Bat Galim , Haifa
Haifa
Merkaz HaShmona , Lev HaMifratz , Hutzot HaMifratz and Kiryat Haim . Together with the Kiryat Motzkin Railway Station in the northern suburb Kiryat Motzkin , they form the Haifa
Haifa
- Krayot suburban line ("Parvarit"). There are direct trains from Haifa
Haifa
to Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv
, Ben Gurion International Airport , Nahariya
Nahariya
, Akko , Kiryat Motzkin , Binyamina , Lod
Lod
, Ramla , Beit Shemesh , Jerusalem
Jerusalem
and other locations, but all trains to Beersheba
Beersheba
skips all Haifa
Haifa
stations

Haifa's intercity bus connections are operated almost exclusively by the Egged bus company, which operates two terminals:

* HaMifratz Central Bus
Bus
Station , adjacent to the Lev HaMifratz Railway Station * Haifa
Haifa
Hof HaCarmel Central Bus
Bus
Station , adjacent to the Hof HaCarmel Railway Station

Lines to the North of the country use HaMifratz Central Bus
Bus
Station and their coverage includes most towns in the North of Israel. Lines heading south use Haifa
Haifa
Hof HaCarmel Central Bus
Bus
Station . The Carmelit
Carmelit
, currently Israel's only subway

Destinations directly reachable from Hof HaCarmel CBS include Tel Aviv , Jerusalem
Jerusalem
, Eilat
Eilat
, Raanana , Netanya
Netanya
, Hadera , Zikhron Ya\'akov , Atlit
Atlit
, Tirat Carmel , Ben Gurion International Airport and intermediate communities. There are also three Egged lines that have their terminus in the Ramat Vizhnitz neighborhood and run to Jerusalem , Bnei Brak and Ashdod
Ashdod
. These used to be "mehadrin " (i.e. gender segregated) lines. Completed Metronit track in downtown Haifa
Haifa

All urban lines are run by Egged. There are also share taxis that run along some bus routes but do not have an official schedule. In 2006, Haifa
Haifa
implemented a trial network of neighborhood mini-buses – named "Shkhunatit" and run by Egged . In December 2012, GetTaxi , an app and taxi service which allows users to hail a cab using their smartphone without contacting the taxi station by identifying and summoning the closest taxi. In the current initial phase, 50 taxis from the service are operating in Haifa.

Haifa
Haifa
and the Krayot suburbs also have a new Phileas concept bus rapid transit system called the Metronit . These buses, operating with hybrid engines, follow optical strips embedded in designated lanes of roads, providing tram-like public transportation services. The Metronit consists of 100 18-meter buses, each with the capacity for 150 passengers, operating along 40 km (25 mi) of designated roadways. The new system officially opened on 16 August 2013 serving three lines.

Haifa
Haifa
is one of the few cities in Israel
Israel
where buses operate on Shabbat
Shabbat
. Bus
Bus
lines operate throughout the city on a reduced schedule from late Saturday morning onwards, and also connect Haifa
Haifa
with Nesher , Tirat Karmel , Yokneam , Nazareth
Nazareth
, Nazareth
Nazareth
Illit and intermediate communities. Since the summer of 2008, night buses are operated by Egged in Haifa
Haifa
(line 200) and the Krayot suburbs (line 210). During the summer of 2008 these lines operated 7 nights a week. Since 2013, along with route 1 of the Metronit, they operate 7 nights a week, making Haifa
Haifa
as the only city in Israel
Israel
with 24/7 public transportation. Haifa
Haifa
is also the only city in Israel
Israel
to operate a Saturday bus service to the beaches during summer time. Egged lines run during Saturday mornings from many neighborhoods to the Dado and Bat Galim beaches, and back in the afternoon. The Port of Haifa

The Haifa
Haifa
underground railway system is called Carmelit
Carmelit
. It is a subterranean funicular on rails, running from downtown Paris Square to Gan HaEm (Mother's Park) on Mount Carmel . With a single track, six stations and two trains, it is listed in Guinness World Records
Guinness World Records
as the world's shortest metro line. The Carmelit
Carmelit
accommodates bicycles.

Haifa
Haifa
also has a cable car . The Haifa
Haifa
Cable Car
Cable Car
gondola lift consists of six cabins and connects Bat Galim on the coast to the Stella Maris observation deck and monastery atop Mount Carmel . It serves mainly tourists. There are currently plans to add a 4.4 kilometre commuter cable car service to Haifa's public transport system, running from HaMifratz Central Bus
Bus
Station at the foot of Mount Carmel to the Technion , and then to the University of Haifa .

AIR AND SEA TRANSPORT

Haifa Airport
Haifa Airport
serves domestic flights to Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv
and Eilat
Eilat
as well as international charters to Cyprus
Cyprus
, Greece
Greece
and Jordan
Jordan
. The airliners that operates flights from Haifa
Haifa
are Arkia and Israir . There are currently plans to expand services from Haifa. Cruise ships operate from Haifa
Haifa
port primarily to destinations in the Eastern Mediterranean, Southern Europe and Black Sea.

ROADS

Travel between Haifa
Haifa
and the center of the country is possible by road with Highway 2 , the main highway along the coastal plain, beginning at Tel Aviv
Tel Aviv
and ending at Haifa. Furthermore, Highway 4 runs along the coast to the north of Haifa, as well as south, inland from Highway 2. In the past, traffic along Highway 2 to the north of Haifa
Haifa
had to pass through the downtown area of the city; the Carmel Tunnels , opened for traffic 1 December 2010, now route this traffic under Mount Carmel , reducing congestion in the downtown area.

SPORTS

Sammy Ofer Stadium

The main stadiums in Haifa
Haifa
are: Sammy Ofer Stadium , a UEFA
UEFA
-approved 30,820 seat stadium, completed in 2014, replacing the 14,002-seat Kiryat Eliezer Stadium that was demolished 2016, Thomas D\'Alesandro Stadium and Neve Sha'anan Athletic Stadium that seats 1,000. The city's two main football clubs are Maccabi Haifa
Haifa
and Hapoel Haifa
Haifa
who both currently play in the Israeli Premier League and share the Sammy Ofer Stadium as their home pitch. Maccabi has won twelve Israeli titles, while Hapoel has won one.

The city also has an American football club, the Haifa Underdogs , that are a part of the Israeli Football League
Israeli Football League
and play in Yoqneam Stadium. The team lost in the championship game of the league's inaugural season, but won one title as part of American Football Israel
Israel
, which merged with the Israeli Football League
Israeli Football League
in 2005. The city has several clubs in the regional leagues, including Beitar Haifa in Liga Bet (the fourth tier) and Hapoel Ahva Haifa
Haifa
, F.C. Haifa
F.C. Haifa
Ruby Shapira and Maccabi Neve Sha\'anan Eldad in Liga Gimel (the fifth tier). Haifa
Haifa
has a professional basketball club, Maccabi Haifa
Haifa
. Maccabi Haifa
Haifa
was recently promoted to Israeli Basketball
Basketball
Super League , the top division. The team plays at Romema Arena
Romema Arena
, which seats 5,000. The Haifa Hawks are an ice hockey team based out of the city of Haifa. They participate in the Israeli League , the top level of Israeli ice hockey. In 1996, the city hosted the World Windsurfing Championship . The Haifa
Haifa
Tennis Club , near the southwest entrance to the city, is one of the largest in Israel. John Shecter, Olympic horse breeder and owner of triple cup champion Shergar was born here.

PEOPLE FROM HAIFA

Main article: List of people from Haifa
List of people from Haifa

* Aaron Ciechanover - (biologist; Nobel Prize, Chemistry) * Odeya Rush
Odeya Rush
- Hollywood actress * Avram Hershko - (biochemist, 2004 Nobel Prize, Chemistry) * Ari Folman - filmmaker, creator of Waltz with Bashir * Lea Gottlieb
Lea Gottlieb
(founder and fashion designer of Gottex ) * Infected Mushroom - psytrance duo * Yehuda Poliker
Yehuda Poliker
- Hebrew song-writer and folk singer * Shiri Maimon - Hebrew singer, represented Israel
Israel
in Eurovision 2005

TWIN TOWNS - SISTER CITIES

Part of a series on

BAHá\\'í FAITH

CENTRAL FIGURES

* Bahá\'u\'lláh * The Báb * `Abdu\'l-Bahá

KEY SCRIPTURE

* Kitáb-i-Aqdas * Kitáb-i-Badí\' * Kitáb-i-Íqán
Kitáb-i-Íqán
* The Hidden Words
Hidden Words
* The Seven Valleys * Bayán

INSTITUTIONS

* Administrative Order * The Guardianship * Universal House of Justice * Spiritual Assemblies

HISTORY

* Timeline * Bábís * Shaykh Ahmad * Persecution

PEOPLE

* Shoghi Effendi * Apostles * Hands of the Cause * Martha Root * Táhirih * Badí‘

HOLY SITES

* Pilgrimage * Holy cities * Haifa * Acre

OTHER TOPICS

* Teachings * Texts * Symbols * Laws * Calendar * Divisions * Prayer

* Category
Category
* Bahá\'í Faith portal

* v * t * e

Haifa
Haifa
is twinned with the following cities:

* Marseille
Marseille
, France
France
(since 1962) * Portsmouth
Portsmouth
, United Kingdom
United Kingdom
(since 1962) * Hackney , United Kingdom
United Kingdom
(since 1968) * Manila
Manila
, Philippines
Philippines
(since 1971) * San Francisco
San Francisco
, United States
United States
(since 1973) * Suceava
Suceava
, Romania * Aalborg
Aalborg
, Denmark
Denmark
(since 1973) * Cape Town
Cape Town
, South Africa
South Africa
(since 1975) * Bremen
Bremen
, Germany
Germany
(since 1978) * Antwerp
Antwerp
, Belgium
Belgium
(since 1986) * Mainz
Mainz
, Germany
Germany
(since 1987) * Turin
Turin
, Italy
Italy
(since 1997) * Saint Petersburg , Russia
Russia
(since 2008) * Düsseldorf
Düsseldorf
, Germany
Germany
(since 1988) * Rosario , Argentina
Argentina
(since 1988)

* Odessa
Odessa
, Ukraine
Ukraine
(since 1992) * Shanghai
Shanghai
, China
China
(since 1994) * Kobe
Kobe
, Japan
Japan
(since 2004) * Boston
Boston
, United States
United States
(since 1999) * Limassol
Limassol
, Cyprus
Cyprus
(since 2000) * Fort Lauderdale , United States
United States
(since 2002) * Erfurt
Erfurt
, Germany
Germany
(since 2005) * Mannheim
Mannheim
, Germany
Germany
(since 2005) * Newcastle , United Kingdom * West Hartford, Connecticut , United States * Santo Domingo , Dominican Republic * Guayaquil , Ecuador
Ecuador
(since 2006) * Lexington, Massachusetts , United States * Shenzhen
Shenzhen
, China
China
(since 2012) * Baku
Baku
, Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan

SEE ALSO

* List of people from Haifa
List of people from Haifa
* Haifa Pride
Haifa Pride
* Wikimania 2011 * Matam, Haifa

REFERENCES

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* ^ There are about 2,200 Ahmadis in Kababir
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of the 4% (under 11,000) Muslims:

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Israel
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FURTHER READING

See also: Bibliography of the history of Haifa
Haifa

* Carmel, Alex (2002). The History of Haifa Under Turkish Rule (in Hebrew) (4th ed.). Haifa: Pardes. ISBN 965-7171-05-9 . * Shiller, Eli; Ben-Artzi, Yossi (1985). Haifa
Haifa
and its sites (in Hebrew). Jerusalem: Ariel.

EXTERNAL LINKS

Find more aboutHAIFAat's sister projects

* Media from Commons * News from Wikinews * Travel guide from Wikivoyage

* "Haifa". Encyclopædia Britannica . 12 (11th ed.). 1911. * City of Haifa * Haifa
Haifa
Travel Guide * Bahá\'í World

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