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Private Jewish Catalonia: Hardships & Triumphs

Learn and Unfold Historical Events!

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Trace the steps of the Jewish community with this Jewish Tour in Barcelona!

500 years of the Jewish community in Barcelona & Catalonia

Few Catalans today can deny the key role the Jewish community played in the building and flourishing of the Catalan empire from the 12th to 15th centuries. The legacy of the Jewish community in Barcelona and Girona, although not readily apparent, exists all around us and should be highlighted for any local or traveler with even a slight interest in understanding the history of Barcelona, Girona and greater Catalunya. In Catalonia, as in many areas of Europe during the medieval era, the Jewish experienced an unparalleled roller coaster of hardships and triumphs. Jewish Catalunya was exceptional to the rest of Spain and western Europe in regard to the sociopolitical and religious co-existence that was developed and shared with relative peace for three centuries by Catholics and Jews. Trace the steps of the Jewish community that defied social and religious adversity, strengthened their own community as well as the Catholic community in which they were surrounded and had to carefully navigate daily. The Jewish community helped build the Catalan Empire as both artisans and scholars and essentially thrive three centuries until their final expulsion in 1492.

Jewish tours in Barcelona trace the steps of the Jewish Community across three centuries through Barcelona, Girona, and Besalú!

Our Spanish Trails’ Barcelona Jewish tours go well beyond the Roman and Medieval walls that once ‘protected’ the Jewish community that lived there for centuries. We start our Jewish tours in Barcelona and move north to explore medieval and Jewish Girona and Besalú, each city being uniquely fascinating in their history, architecture, and their significance in the history of Jewish Catalunya.

We dedicate the first part of the day to Jewish Barcelona in the Call with a solid introduction over coffee of the history of the Jewish community and a walk through the Call to point out and explain interesting, hidden traces of the Jewish community that once lived there. We visit the Synagogue (the oldest, functioning Synagogue in Europe) before we move north to Girona and Besalú. In Girona, we explore the entire old quarter Barri Vell of which a significant portion is a Jewish Call, as well as explore the Roman/medieval walls, amazing bridges, quaint plazas, and boutique shops along the way. Plenty of time is dedicated to visiting the Jewish heritage museum of Bonastruc Sa Porta before a great lunch with wine. In Besalú we cross the impressive Romanesque bridge into the Jewish old city for a private visit to the ruins of the former Synagogue and to Mikva which is one of the last remaining Mikva still intact in all of Europe.