Jaffa existed as a sea port over 4000 years ago, and was the place where those traveling to Israel arrived. Today the port city is credited with being the only one in the world to boast uninterrupted habitation throughout its existence. In the Bible, Jaffa is mentioned as being the place from whence Jonah departed in his flight from God. Greek legend has it that Andromeda was chained to rocks facing Jaffa’s shores, while Simon the Tanner was believed to live in Jaffa.
Richard the Lion Heart, Napoleon and Turkish sultans all captured the city, and it was only at the decline of the Ottoman Empire that Jaffa’s fortunes declined. In 1968, the Tel Aviv-Jaffa authority decide to revitalize the area with artists’ quarters and studios, galleries, restaurants and boutiques, as well as fascinating archeology within narrow alleys named after the signs of the Zodiac.