Akko (Acre) is situated on Israel’s northern Mediterranean coastline and is home to an ancient and enchanting Old City. Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2001, its extraordinarily well-preserved Crusader walls surround its vibrant Arab shuk, charming cobbled streets and fascinating historical sites that have witnessed Byzantine, Crusader, Islamic and Ottoman rule. It is also a foodie’s paradise, with an array of fabulous restaurants, from hummus joints to gourmet seafood. Here are our top picks.
Restaurant, Israeli, Seafood, $$$
Uri Buri is widely considered one of the finest fish restaurants in Israel. Located a stone’s throw from the sea inside an unpretentious Ottoman-era building, it serves fresh fish and creative seafood dishes along with over 100 different kinds of fine Israeli wine. Head chef, Uri Jeremias, is a legendary figure in Israel’s culinary scene and his food is an absolute must for any trip to Akko.
Restaurant, Israeli, Middle Eastern, $$$
This Akko institution has been serving up delicious hummus for generations. Located in the heart of the Old City’s vibrant Arab shuk, the smooth, creamy consistency of their hand-made hummus and will leave your stomach and soul feeling nourished. Regarded by many Israelis as the best hummus spot in the country (quite a feat), Hummus Said is worth a trip to Akko on its own. To beat the lines and to eat in a slightly quieter atmosphere, come early.
Restaurant, Israeli, Middle Eastern, Mediterranean, $$$
Dreamy views meet delicious seafood and meat at this Akko restaurant. Perched over the Mediterranean Sea, facing the ancient walls of Akko’s Old City, Doniana’s menu features fresh grilled fish and tender meats accompanied by a plethora of side dishes. This is probably the most scenic dining spot in the city and it’s perfect for a romantic date.
Restaurant, Italian, Middle Eastern, $$$
Located in Akko’s picturesque Turkish Bazaar, Mercato is an intimate and highly rated spot serving up delicious Italian dishes with a touch of the Middle East. From authentic Neapolitan pizza made in their wood oven to fresh calamari and handmade pasta full of scrumptious flavours, this enchanting restaurant is an Akko gem.
Restaurant, Middle Eastern, Mediterranean, $$$
El Marsa is located on Akko’s port and is a must for seafood lovers. They serve the freshest fish, from calamari rings and shrimp to fillet of lavrak (a local white fish) and salmon, in addition to meats and interesting desserts, such as halva mousse. Aside from the delicious food, the restaurant itself is situated in a converted 13th century home that makes this a particularly special dining atmosphere. Oh, and it overlooks the glistening Mediterranean Sea.