The Carmelit – Haifa’s underground funicular transport system.
Hebrew: הרכבת התחתית – כרמלית חיפה
Who’d have thought you can travel and explore Haifa from Downtown to the Carmel Center in just 8 minutes. The Carmelit is the underground funicular railway in Haifa. The Carmelit is one of the smallest subways in the world, having only six stations and a single tunnel 1800 meters long. Two, two-car coaches run on a single track with a short double-track section halfway to allow the train coaches to pass each other. The altitude difference between the first and last stations is 274 meters.
Carmelit route & stations
Forget about traffic jams, parking problems and pollution. The Carmelit travels along a straight line, up and down Mt. Carmel. There are 6 stations along the way each with access to tourist attractions.
- Gan Ha’em (“Mother’s Garden”): The main station in the Carmel Center neighborhood is adjacent to the Haifa zoo, the Louis Promenade, the Haifa Auditorium, and many high-end shops, restaurants, sidewalk cafes and most of Haifa’s largest hotels.
- Bnei Zion (“The Sons of Zion”) – named after the nearby Bnei Zion Hospital. The station was previously called “Golomb”. The station is conveniently located near the Bnei Zion (Rothschild) hospital and the offices of The Bahá’í World Center.
- Massada, Upper Hadar: on Massada street with quaint art galleries, antique shops, cafes and restaurants. Close to the “Madatech” or the Haifa Science and Technology Museum located in the old Technion building opposite Nordau street.
- Hanevi’im (“The Prophets”) in the Hadar Hacarmel neighborhood: Near Hanevi’im, Herzl and Hechalutz streets – a main shopping district. Close to the Haifa Museum.
- Solel Boneh: near Hanevi’im tower, Ha’atzmaut Park, The Haifa City Hall and the municipal offices
- Kikar Pariz (Paris Square), Downtown: near the new Haifa University Campus (Campus HaNamal), the government buildings (on Pal Yam street in the ‘missile building’) and the courthouse on Ha’atzmaut Street. Kikar Pariz is also in walking distance to one of Haifa’s train stations – Haifa Central or HaShmona. The tax offices (meches) and the entrance to the port are close by. The revamped and now trendy, Turkish Market buzzes on Thursday nights. In summer local pubs and restaurants are packed with students and young people. Craft markets, artists’ workshops and young Israeli designers are also selling their wares.
Carmelit train travel time
The Carmelit runs every 10-12 minutes and is the quickest way of getting from the Central Carmel to the Downtown area. It takes approximately 8 minutes to travel the entire line.
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Unfortunately the Carmelit is not wheelchair or disabled friendly. There are no ramps or elevators, only lots of stairs and one escalator going up at selected stations.
Tickets & fares
Children under the age of 5 travel for free as do IDF soldiers (in uniform) and the blind.
As at January 2017 the Carmelit was incorporated into the Haifa Metropolin public transport network. The Metropolin public transport network includes bus transport, Metronit transport and now the Carmelit.
Fares are as follows:-
|Single ticket adult||5.90||Carmelit only|
|Group ticket – 10 people or more||3.00||Carmelit only|
|Single continuation ticket adult||5.90||Haifa area only|
|Single continuation ticket adult||9.10||Haifa and beyond|
|Single continuation ticket adult||12.50||Metropolin network|
|Daily ticket (only valid on date of purchase)||13.50||Haifa ring – 1|
|Weekly ticket (valid for 7 days from date of purchase)||64.00||Haifa ring – 1|
|Monthly ticket (valid for 1 calendar month)||213.00||Haifa ring – 1|
|Student semester ticket||527.00||Haifa ring – 1|
|Student annual ticket||1278.00||Haifa ring – 1|
Paying for your Carmelit ticket
The Carmelit uses the Rav Kav – multipurpose transport ticketing system for multi-ride tickets. You can load your Rav Kav at one of the Rav Kav vending machines across the city and of course in the Carmelit stations.
Single ride, paper tickets are available at the Carmelit ticket vending machines.
|Sunday – Thursday||06:00-24:00|
|Friday and holiday eves||06:00-15:00|
|Saturday & holiday end||Shabbat end – 24:00|
Members of the public have asked for the Carmelit to be open on weekends as well. Will this ever happen? We’ll update you if it does.
Life saving tip!
It is very important to remember that the Carmelit was built to double as a public bomb shelter in the event of missile or rocket fire – a very safe place to seek shelter should it become necessary.
In August 2015, Anglo-List joined the campaign to fight for the rights of passengers of the Haifa underground – The Carmelit. We petitioned the Haifa Municipality and the Ministry of Transport. We wanted the Rav Kav multi-transport ticketing system to include the Carmelit…