Monday 1 May 2017


Thessaloniki Jewish Tour

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Join an 4 hour tour in most important Jewish sites in Thessaloniki!

We start our tour from the beautiful Jewish Museum of Thessaloniki. We then walk towards the Freedom Plaza to visit the Holocaust Memorial and one of the city’s two historic synagogues,Monastiriotes' Synagogue or "Yad Lezikaron" Synagogue (Depends from the community, upon request).

Thessaloniki’s most popular landmark, the White Tower will be next. We’ll enjoy a small break there and then discover the beautiful eclectic villas of the late 19th century!

Our final stop for this wonderful tour will be in the Byzantine Walls area (Kastra).

Highlights

  • Holocaust Memeorial
  • Villa Modiano
  • Villa Allatini
  • Jewish Museum in Thessaloniki

Recent Photos of this tour

Browse the gallery of recent private Jewish tour in Thessaloniki. Photos submitted by administrative department and by actual travelers



Tours with an English Speaking Guide
Guided private tour | Standard car 1-3 persons €240
Guided private tour | Mini Van 1-7 persons €300
Guided private tour | Mini Bus 1-18 persons €400

Tours without Speaking Guide
Transfer | Standard car 1-4 persons €110
Transfer | Mini Van 1-8 persons €165
Transfer | Mini Bus 1-18 persons €275

Inclusions:

  • Transportation
  • All taxes

Exclusions:

  • Gratuities (optional)
  • Food and drinks

Additional Info:

  • We offer pick-up from Thessaloniki hotels or Thessaloniki's airport.
  • The fees include professional english speaking guide. For other languages extra fees may apply.
  • The tour is fully customizable to your requirements and desires.
  • For Synagogue organization, we need to sent them a request before the visit day.

The Jewish presence in Thessaloniki is an issue of historic importance that hasn’t been extensively clarified yet.

Several researchers actually claim that Jewish presence in the area can be found even during the city’s foundation in (315 BC), while others believe that the initial settlement began in 140 BC coming from Alexandria.

In the centuries that followed “Romaniotes” who were Jews that had their names Hellenized and spoke Greek, was an active community with centuries old continuous existence. Many reports and witnesses can be found about them in Thessaloniki throughout Byzantine and Roman periods.

The arrival of Sepharadim

The most important settlement was the one emerged after the exile of Sepharadim Jews from Spain under the rule of the Catholic kings Ferdinand and Isabella and the threat of the Inquisition.

Thessaloniki which was almost deserted after the Turkish conquest was partially becoming a living city again!

After decades, the Jewish minority was (demographically) dominant while it managed to turn Thessaloniki into a vibrant commercial and financial center in the Ottoman Empire.

During the 19th century, the Alliance Israelite Universelle Schools were offering European quality education, while the Jewish newspaper “El Lunar” is published in 1864 for the first time in Thessaloniki! The Italian – Jewish Allatini family is also a pioneer in local industrial development.

Having a strong financial, commercial and social presence in the city, the Jewish community managed to create a unique welfare system that included and sustain many important institutions!

After Thessaloniki’s liberation in 1912 King George I and the Prime Minister Eleftherios Venizelos promised the leaders of the Jewish Community that the Greek administration would respect their rights and that they would be fully equal in the eyes of the law.

Unfortunately, in 1917 a major disaster hit Thessaloniki and its people! A terrible fire destroyed a huge part of the city’s historic center! The community suffered a great loss as more than 50.000 were left homeless and the majority of the synagogues and institutions were destroyed!

The Second World War and the Holocaust

During the Second World War many Jews joined the armed forces and fought against the Axis. When the Nazi forces entered Thessaloniki, it was the beginning of the end, since nobody could imagine the events that would follow…..

At first the Nazi conquerors implied anti-Jewish measures that wouldn’t allow their presence in many public places and buildings. Then, they destroyed the Jewish libraries and took over all the institutions…

In February 1943 all Jews were forced to wear the characteristic yellow star while the Nazi’s forced them to gather into specific areas known as ghettos. Any kind of public and social activity, along with any kind of profession as well was now forbidden for them.

The final chapter of the tragedy took place in March 15 1943 when the first trains left for Auschwitz and Birkenau, the notorious death camps.

Those who returned started a new life after Thessaloniki was once again free in October 1944. Although they had lost everything, they started from the beginning thus showing one more time their hard work and strong character…

Today, the historic Jewish community despite all the terrible events that suffered is once again a living, vibrant community!

Αsk us for a guided tour!

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