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Baltics Experience

Suitable for Family, Group, Senior

OVERVIEW

Explore Jewish heritage through the Baltics.

Start your adventure in Vilnius, with a guided walking tour of Jewish Vilnius to see the Vilnius Ghetto and the Choral Synagogue. The Vilna Gaon Monument pays homage to a revered intellectual leader.

Learn about contemporary Jewish life in Vilneus at the “Shalom Aleichem” Jewish School.

In Riga, see the Jewish Community Center, the Rumbalus Holocaust Memorial, and culminating in a heartfelt farewell dinner with community leaders.

The Baltic States are unique and vibrant locations to learn about Jewish history, whether through learning about famous Jewish thinkers of the past, visiting synagogues and yeshivas, or learning about the contemporary Baltic Jewish community.

Highlights*

  • See the Vilnius Ghetto.
  • Visit to the Ponar Forest, a site of mass executions located in the outskirts of Vilnius.
  • Take a walking tour of the Riga Jewish Ghetto
  • Visit Depart the Shalom Aleichem Jewish School and have interactive activities with students, then visit the Jewish Kindergarten
  • Visit the town of Trakai, a former capital of Lithuania and home to one of the last Karaim communities in the world.

*Some experiences are subject to minimum group size

Day by Day Suggested Program

Day 1
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Individual arrivals followed by dinner and a briefing about the Baltic States. Overnight in Vilnius.

Day 2
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Take a Jewish Vilnius walking tour with a local tour guide.

Example guide:

The Vilnius Ghetto
It has been estimated that of the 265,000 Jews living in Lithuania in June 1941, 254,000 or 95%
were murdered during the German occupation. No other Jewish community in Nazi-occupied
Europe was so comprehensively destroyed.

The Choral Synagogue
This synagogue was called Taharat Hakodesh until the Choral Synagogue became more popular. The synagogue was Orthodox in nature, but its rituals were
accompanied by choral singing (along the lines of synagogues of Germany, where the reform
movement of Judaism began to take shape).

The Vilna Gaon Monument
Elijah Ben Solomon, better known as the Vilna Gaon (April 23, 1720 – October 9, 1797), was the
foremost intellectual leader of non-Hasidic Jewry in eighteenth-century Europe. Among Jews, he
is often referred to as the The Gra—from the Hebrew acronym Gaon Rabbi Eliyahu. There is a
statue of the Vilna Gaon and a street named after him in the central city of Vilnius, the place of
both his birth and his death.

Depart for the Shalom Aleichem Jewish School –interactive activities with students. followed by lunch and a visit to the Jewish kindergarten.

Return to the hotel for a discussion on the Yiddish Language and Lithuanian Jewish Culture

Day 3
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A day of tours in Vilnius: 

Visit to the Ponar Forest
The Ponar Forest – Site of mass executions, located in the outskirts of Vilnius.
From early summer 1941 to July 1944, 70,000-100,000 people were murdered
at Ponar; most of whom were Jews.

Departure to the town of Trakai
A former capital of Lithuania and home to one of the last Karaim communities in the world.

Lunch at a traditional Karaim restaurant– Get to know their story and connection to Judaism
Visit to the Karaim temple “Bet Kenessa” and tour around the town.

Dinner hosted by the Lithuanian Jewish Community.

 

Day 4
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Travel by bus to Riga to visit the 9th Fort, then stop en route ato see Sugihara Museum in Kaunas and Jewish Shtetls.
Stop en-route to see the Hill of Crosses in Siauliai.

From there, arrive in Riga and check in to the hotel.

Day 5
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Visit to the Jewish Community Center of Riga for an overview of the various programs and facilities.

Interact with members and professionals and take a walking tour of the Riga Jewish Ghetto.

Visit the Choral Synagogue, Rumbalus – Holocaust Memorial (Ceremony) and end the day with a
Farewell Dinner with Community Leaders to meet and interact with these young leaders and hear about the impact
that they are making in their communities.

Accommodation

*Star rating standards vary from country to country.

This experience is fully customizable. We will create your personal dream experience!

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