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Bat-Yam history

Bat Yam is located in west-central Israel, on the Plain of Sharon, and is part of the Gush Dan metropolitan area in the Tel Aviv District. It is situated on the Mediterranean Sea coast. The city was first established in 1926 when 11 families settled in the area south of Jaffa and established a homestead called “Bait V’Gan” (House and Garden).

The homestead was abandoned during the 1929 Arab riots, when it was attacked by an Arab mob from the near-by Jaffa and the British Authorities evacuated the families.

In 1930, the area was re-settled and in 1936, it was granted local municipal status. In 1937 it was renamed Bat Yam (“daughter of the sea”).  By 1945, there were 2,000 Jews living in Bat Yam. According to the Jewish National Fund, in 1947 the city had a population of 4,000. Bat Yam’s population grew rapidly in the years following Israel’s creation due to mass immigration and in 1958 it was granted city status. 

Today, Bat Yam is Israel’s 12th largest city and it has a population of approximately 130,000. The city covers an area of 8.167 km2 (3.153 sq. mi). Although it is well known as a seaside tourism city, Bat Yam’s economy is rooted in industry, commerce and agriculture.

Over the years the city has developed and more and more immigrants from western countries are choosing to live there because it offers a quieter and more affordable life than Tel Aviv, with options to reach the big city quickly. It has also become a popular tourist destination due to its location on the seashore and its close proximity to Tel Aviv in the north and to other neighbors, Holon and Rishon LeTsiyon.

The city’s transportation links have also developed over the years. Two train stations were opened in Bat Yam in 2011, providing fast connections to Beer Sheva in the Negev Desert in the south, the Galilee in the north, and Israel’s big towns and cities in between including Tel Aviv, Herzliya, and Haifa. The city is also a short distance from Israel’s Ben Gurion International Airport. The Tel Aviv light rail tram system, which is currently being constructed in Tel Aviv, is expected to connect Bat Yam to Tel Aviv by 2022. In the meanwhile it is easy enough to catch an express bus from Bat Yam to Tel Aviv.

Today, Bat Yam offers a coastal city atmosphere in a large central hub. The city also offers some interesting gastronomic experiences, culture, sport, a range of affordable luxury hotels, and activities for the whole family.  

From its humble beginnings as the small Bait V’Gan homestead founded by 11 families to today’s large city, Bat Yam has grown into a modern city that is unceasingly developing, as one can see by the tall skyscrapers that are continuously popping up over the city. With the Tel Aviv light rail heading its way, we’re sure that the city of Bat Yam still has a way to go. 

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