Jewish Heritage in Eastern Europe
Jewish Heritage Tour in the former Austro-Hungarian Empire
- Visit to Stadttempel - the only synagogue in Vienna not destroyed during Kristallnacht
- Visit to Auschwitz- Birkenau - Nazi extermination camp, the symbol of the Holocaust
- Visit to Bruno Schulz‘ house in Drohobych
- Visit to Mukacheve - one of the major Hasidic and Orthodox centers in Hungary before WWII
- Visit to the largest synagogue in Europe, the Dohany Synagogue in Budapest
1st day Vienna
morning Arrival in Vienna and check-in at the hotel. A half-day city tour including a visit to the Schoenbrunn Palace boasting 1440 chambers and splendid park, it was a summer residence of emperors and was supposed to be the Austrian equivalent of the Versailles.
afternoon & evening Time at leisure, dinner, and overnight.
2nd day Vienna
morning Judenplatz (Jewish Square), where the Jewish community is based, has been the center of Jewish life for 500 years. Today there are the offices of Sephardic organizations and a small beit midrash. Inside one of beit midrashes, there is a subterranean mikvah dating back to the 15th century. Also within the Judenplatz, there is a Memorial to Austrian Holocaust Victims with the names of the places where 65,000 Austrian Jews were murdered by the Nazis. Visit Stadttempel - the only synagogue in Vienna not destroyed during Kristallnacht and New Jewish Museum at Palace Eskeles.
afternoon Visit the sights in and around the Karlsplatz.
evening Concert with music by Johannes Strauss and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, dinner and overnight in Vienna.
3rd day Vienna - Krakow
morning Departure from Vienna and a journey to Krakow, the former capital of Poland, one of the oldest Jewish communities in eastern Europe.
afternoon Check-in at the hotel and the first guided walk around Europe’s largest medieval market square with a splendid, Gothic St. Mary’s Church and the Cloth Hall.
evening Dinner and overnight at the hotel.
4th day Krakow
morning Sightseeing following the traces of the Jewish heritage - includes Kazimierz - the best-preserved Jewish quarter in Europe, with numerous synagogues such as the 15th-century Old Synagogue, Remuh Synagogue with a 16th-century cemetery, and the delightful 19th century Temple Synagogue.
afternoon Visit the Galicia Jewish Museum, the premises of the former ghetto and concentration camp in Plaszów, and Oscar Schindler’s factory.
evening Dinner with Klezmer music at one of Kazimierz’s restaurants.
5th day Auschwitz-Birkenau
morning & afternoon Trip to Auschwitz- Birkenau - Nazi extermination camp, and the symbol of the Holocaust, where over a million people were murdered in gas chambers. Sightseeing in Auschwitz I - Stammlager with a crematorium and the wall of death, and Auschwitz II-Birkenau with barrack huts and ruins of gas chambers.
evening Return to Krakow and time at leisure.
6th day Krakow - Lancut - Lezajsk - Przemysl - Krasiczyn
morning & afternoon Journey to Krasiczyn visiting several former Shtetls on the way, such as Lancut with a superbly redecorated 17th-century synagogue and a glamorous palace of the aristocratic Potocki family, and Leżajsk where the famous tzadik Ellimelech is buried, as well as a charming border town of Przemysl.
evening We reach Krasiczyn, where we stay overnight in a grandiose 16th-century Sapieha family castle, a pearl of the Renaissance architecture in Poland.
7th day Krasiczyn - Lviv
morning & afternoon Arrival in Lviv. This multicultural metropolis on the edge of East and West, inhabited by numerous nationalities can be found on the world list of cultural heritage. Tour begins with the Castle Hill offering a panoramic view of the city full of spires and domes. During a guided tour we admire the Medieval town center with Polish, Ukrainian, Jewish, and Armenian districts. Walk down the city’s main boulevard.
evening An opera show and dinner at one of the Old Town’s restaurants.
8th day Lviv
morning & afternoon Lviv was a major focus of Jewish culture. Over 80.000 Jews lived in this city with over 30 Synagogues. There were Orthodox Jews, Hasids, liberals, Zionists, speakers of Polish, German and Yiddish. Tour following the traces of the Lviv Jews - the oldest Golden Rose Synagogue, the Old Town to the Jewish quarter. Stop at the Jewish Centre and the synagogue, the premises of the former ghetto, and the area of the Janowski Concentration Camp where 120.000 Jews from the Lviv ghetto died.
evening Dinner and overnight at the hotel.
9th day Lviv - Drohobych - Mukacheve (Munkac)
morning & afternoon Cross the Carpathians Arc this day to get to Mukacheve via Drohobych - a city often associated with writer Bruno Schulz, and in Drohobych if possible we meet Alfred Schrayer, one of the few Jews from the local ghetto who survived it. Visit the Jewish monuments and mementos that have remained in Drohobych, Bruno Schulz‘ house, and walk to the Bronicki Forest where 15.000 Drohobych Jews who were murdered there by the Nazis are buried in mass graves. Advancing higher up a mountain road among picturesque landscapes, we'll reach Mukacheve situated on the other side of the Carpathians Arc.
evening Hotel check-in, dinner and overnight in Mukacheve.
10th day Mukacheve - Mad - Tokaj - Budapest
morning Mukacheve used to be one of the major Hasidic and Orthodox centers in Hungary before WWII, where the Jewish community constituted more than 40% of the population. During the stopover in Mukacheve see the synagogue, the Jewish cemetery, and a residence which once belonged to Rakoczy dukes. Next, proceed towards the Ukrainian-Hungarian border. Stop en route in a small place called Mad, with a perfectly preserved 18th-century Baroque synagogue, Yeshiva building, and a rabbi's house, all of them stunningly situated, with a view of the surrounding vineyards.
afternoon Continue to Tokaj, the capital of the wine region, where an affluent Jewish community used to live before the war and the local synagogue is among the largest ones in the area. Jews excelled at wine production and trade since the 18th century, they also supplied courts of tzadiks in Poland with kosher wines. After tasting the kosher wines in one of Tokaj’s wine cellars evening highway journey to Budapest seems far shorter.
evening Arrival in Budapest, hotel check-in, dinner and overnight.
11th day Budapest
morning See Budapest by bus - the Royal Castle, the Castle hill, the Fisherman’s Bastion, Matthias Church (“The coronation church”), Gellért Hill with a magnificent panorama of the city and a view of the famed bridges hanging over the Danube. Budapest splendidly situated on the banks of the river Danube has been a seat of sizable Jewish communities for centuries and Jews always played a distinctive role in the capital’s political and cultural life. Nowadays, approximately 100.000 Jews live there, which makes it the third-largest community in Europe. Multiple synagogues can be found in Budapest, including Europe’s largest one named Dohany Synagogue.
afternoon Visit the impressive edifice of the neo-Gothic Parliament or go to Margaret Island to enjoy a stay in the Turkish baths - one of Budapest’s landmarks.
evening Cruise down the Danube with Hungarian cuisine and wine.
12th day Budapest
morning & afternoon We start the tour of the old Jewish quarter, located in the heart of Pest, with the Dohany Street Synagogue. Continue to the Jewish Museum with its collection, visit an Orthodox Kazinczy Street Synagogue and the impressive Holocaust Memorial. Another monument is devoted to Carl Lutz, an Austrian consul who saved thousands of Jews from extermination. Another rescuer of Jews, Raul Wallenberg, in front of whose monument we stop in the afternoon. Move on to a rebuilt Medieval synagogue. Finish the tour at the massive central Jewish cemetery in Kozma Street, where hundreds of thousands of the Budapest Jews are buried, including many world-famous rabbis.
evening Dinner and overnight at the hotel.
13th day Budapest - Sopron - Vienna
morning Departure for Vienna. Stop in Sopron en route to see the 14th-century synagogue, one of Europe’s oldest ones.
afternoon Free time in Vienna for individual sightseeing, shopping or simply relaxing.
evening Airport transport and flight home.
- 2 night's accommodation in Vienna in a hotel chosen by you on bed and breakfast basis
- 3 night's accommodation in Krakow in a hotel chosen by you on bed and breakfast basis
- 1 night's accommodation in Krasiczyn in a hotel chosen by you on bed and breakfast basis
- 2 night's accommodation in Lviv in a hotel chosen by you on bed and breakfast basis
- 1 night's accommodation in Mukacheve in a hotel chosen by you on bed and breakfast basis
- 3 night's accommodation in Budapest in a hotel chosen by you on bed and breakfast basis
- All transfers as per above mentioned itinerary
- Private English speaking guide as per the itinerary
- Entrance fees for all sightseeing
- Meals as per the itinerary
Services not included:
- The journey to Austria and from Austria
- Tour guide
- Public transport
- Personal expenditure, tips, etc.
- All other services not mentioned in the itinerary
Price on request.