Israeli archaeologists have found remains of an 8,000-year-old building as well as hippopotamus bones and pottery shards in the Tel Aviv area, the Israel Antiquities Authority said on Monday.
The remains, found on the banks of the Yarkon river, are the earliest discovered in the Tel Aviv region.
"This discovery is both important and surprising to researchers of the period," said Ayelet Dayan, who led the excavations.
"For the first time we have encountered evidence of a permanent habitation that existed in the Tel Aviv region about 8,000 years ago."
That places it in the Neolithic period when man went from a nomadic existence to living in permanent settlements.
Flint implements ascribed to earlier periods were also discovered at the site, including the point of a hunting tool from the Middle Paleolithic period or about 100.000 years ago.
Animal remains, including hippopotamus bones, were found at the site.
Explore further: The Ancient Maya and virtual worlds: Different perspectives on material meanings