Jewish Heritage Tour to Poland
Day 1. Arrival to Warsaw
Our tour to Poland we will commence from sightseeing walk along the Royal Route in the old part of Warsaw -“Stare Miasto” (Old Town), restored after the almost total destruction during WWII. Stroll along the central street where one can see the statue of General Charles de Gaulle and Nicolaus Copernicus. Old churches and Nobility Palaces give a special flavour to this street. Warsaw University and Presidential Palace are vivid examples of the polish pride. We will see the Statue of King Sigismund the Third and the Royal Palace. Next is Cathedral Basilica of St. John the Baptist and the oldest part of the Old town – the Market Square, with a statue of “Sirenka” – the symbol of Warsaw. After a short walk, we will find ourselves on the panoramic platform with the beautiful view of the Vistula River and the New City.
Day 2 . Warsaw
At the other side of the old city, we will pass through Warsaw Barbican to the New town, will see the house of Maria Sklodowska-Curie, a Polish physicist, the only woman to win two Nobel Prize. Stop at the impressive memorial of Warsaw Uprising 1944. The bus will pick us up and will drive to see the Palace of Culture and Science (Palac Kultury i Nauki) located in the new center of Warsaw. Will stop to see Warsaw Nozhik Synagogue and the Ghetto Wall remnant. Our driven sightseeing will continue to Lazienki Park with Belvedere Palace and romantic Chopin Statue. New Jewish Cemetery – an open book of Polish Jewish history, ghetto area and M. Anilewicz street, Umschlagplatz – former train station from which the terrible deportations were executed, Ghetto Heroes road – walk along two streets marked by stones with the names of Jewish Resistance leaders, Bunker of the Jewish insurgents on former Mila 18 str. Nathan Rapoport’s memorial of Ghetto heroes and the newly opened Museum of the History of Polish Jews. We will see the Statue of King Sigismund the Third and the Royal Palace. Next is Cathedral Basilica of St. John the Baptist and the oldest part of the Old town – the Market Square, with a statue of “Sirenka” – the symbol of Warsaw. After a short walk, we will find ourselves on the panoramic platform with the beautiful view of the Vistula River and the New City.
Day 3: Warsaw – Mikolajki
Depart from Warsaw to one of the most beautiful National parks of Mazovia, famous for numerous connected lakes. Immagine, that here you can sail from lake to lake for a whole week. After a two hours morning drive, we will get on the boat to make part of the route. The bus will pick us up on the other side of the lakes’ chain. An evening will be spent in a cozy resort of Mikolajki. Later on, we’re heading to Kaunas (Kovna), the interim capital of pre-war Lithuania, includes visit to the Art Gallery of M. K. Ciurlionis, the outstanding Lithuanian artist and composer, Charming Old city with the St. Peter and Paul Cathedral, town Hall square, L. Zamenhoff and A. Mapu streets; Slobodka – a Jewish suburb of Kaunas and the ghetto during WWII, the Old Jewish cemetery. See the building of the famous Slobodka Yeshiva founded by Rabbi Nathan Zvi Finkel. The Musar movement and the influence of R’ Israel Salanter on Slobodka Yeshiva. The personality of Rav Itzhak Elchanan Spector. The Synagogue and the Children’s Memorial in its courtyard. Chiune Sugihara, a Japanese consul in Kaunas in 1940, who issued several thousands lifesaving visas for the Jewish refugees from Poland.
Day 4: Mikolajki – Ketrzyn – Malbork – Gdansk
Morning drive to the northwest to the former Prussian territories to visit the place of one of the most important medieval battles in Eastern Europe – the Grunwald field. After that visit Malbork castle the biggest in Eastern Europe, which served as the headquarters of the Teutonic order. After an impressive tour of the castle, we will reach Gdansk, the main port of Poland and the cradle of National Movement “Solidarnosc“. In Gdansk you will feel the strong German influence both in architecture and the local people, as it was part of Prussia for centuries.
Day 5: Tripolis: Gdansk – Sopot – Gdynia
In the morning we will walk through the Old City, which is a business card of Gdansk. Pictures of Neptun’s fountain symbolize the city almost in every pamphlet. Numerous gates are still standing and remind about the glorious past of the city. Gothic and Baroque churches don’t let to forget you are in the country of Pope John Paul II. The Westerplate monument will bring us to the beginning of the WWII. The memorial in honor of children deported during the Holocaust. The port and the legendary shipyards remind the 1980’ and the strong will of Poles to get rid of the communist chains. A huge monument in honor of 45 people who paid their lives to make a great push towards independence. Out of the beaten path would be the visit to the street where Daniel Fahrenheit was born. We will finish the touring day by driving through Sopot and Gdynia – the parts of the Tripolis, a lovely area on the Baltic Sea.
Day 6: Gdansk - Torun - Lodz
From Gdansk, we move southward back to the center of the country. We will stop in Torun where Nicolaus Copernicus, the great Polish astronomer, was born. Will visit museum house of the family. And of course, we will find the authentic Torun’s Gingerbread. Poles call Torun the capital of these small candies. Will walk in the Old city to the former market square and will enter St. Mary’s Cathedral. Next stop will be in Lodz. The zenith of this city was during the period of industrial revolution. It became the seat of the most powerful textile magnates. One of the city’s modern sculptures reveals the meeting of three of them creating a first professional union. One of the biggest textile factories belonged to Israel Poznanski. Today his factory is a huge complex of shops, and his former palace is a museum. When you walk through the main street of the city you will face the bronze statue of piano and Arthur Rubinstein playing. This brilliant pianist was a native of Lodz. On the opposite side of the road, in a park you will see an impressive statue of Moses holding the Ten Commandments; this monument commemorates the sight of the Central Lodz Synagogue, destroyed during the WWII. Here we will spend some time talking about Lodz Ghetto and its leader Haim Rumkowski.
Day 7: Lodz – Czestochowa –Auschwitz – Krakow
Today we drive south to the Royal Capital City of Krakow in Lesser Poland region. We will visit Czestochowa and its world-famous pilgrimage sight – Jasna Gora, on the way to Oswiecim. Explore the famous icon of Black Madonna in Pauline monastery complex with. After all, we will visit Auschwitz concentration camp museum. Will listen to a local expert while walking through the barracks towards crematorium. Next stop is Birkenau extermination camp. Millions of visitors come to pay a last tribute to more than a million Jews and other people killed there. Late afternoon arrival to Krakow.
Day 8: Krakow
We will begin the tour of Old Krakow from the statue of Polish King after the famous Grunwald Battle. Next we continue through the Barbican and the St. Florian gate to Florianska street, the way used by Polish Kings to cross the city on special events. Shortly we will approach “Rynek Glowny” – the Central Market square with a beautiful St. Mary Basilica and Sukenicy – trading rows. Next, we will turn to one of the side narrow streets to see one of the oldest universities in Europe. Among its famous students were M. Copernicus and K. Woityla, the Pope in the future.
Day 8 Part 2: Krakow
A special of today is a visit to the complex of Residence of the Kings of Poland. It includes an impressive cathedral and the renaissance Royal Castle at Wawel Hill. In the afternoon we are going to visit Kazimierz district. It was settled mostly by Jews and lately became a scene for shooting Schindler’s list movie.. Will start from Sheroka street and square and the famous ReMA Synagogue. The old Jewish cemetery containing graves from 15th hundreds is hidden behind it and the big wall. We continue walking to see the impressive chair memorial on the Ghetto Heroes Square in Podgorze district. To crown the day will explore the history museum in Oskar Schindler Emalia factory. who saved over 1,100 Jews by putting them to work in his factory.
Day 9: Krakow – Wieliczka – Zakopane
Today we start our tour at one of the most notable highlights of Polish land – the famous Wieliczka salt mines. We will have a guided tour into the depths of the Salt mine and will explore the world of once the very expensive and essential mineral. Will see the underground chapel, the statues of famous Poles, all made of salt, the underground lake, the souvenir shop and many other things. Salt is everywhere in this place, even in the air of it. After this uplifting experience drive to Tatra mountains to Zakopane – famous Polish ski resort in winter and a beloved hiking place in summer. We are going to use the cable car to go to the top and enjoy the panoramic view of the mountains.
Day 10: Zakopane – Tarnow – Rzeszow – Lublin
Continue our voyage eastward. From Zakopane, we drive back towards Krakow and take an east-west road to Tarnow and Rzeszow. Tarnow will impress us with a well preserved old city. The town hall square center is occupied with a renaissance period build town hall. Today it is an Art Museum. Walk down a little street and you will see the remnant of the Synagogue – the red brick built central part – bimah. Will hit the road to Rzeszow. Rzeszów’s prime attraction is 396m-long route linking 25 old cellars beneath the central market square. The cellars date from the 14th to 18th centuries and reach a depth of up to 10m. We will also see the Monument to the Revolutionary Act, commemorating the battles of the WWII. You also will be offered to see the Old and the New Synagogues of the town. Late afternoon arrival to Lublin.
Day 11: Lublin
In the morning we will visit the castle of Lublin. It is the former residence of the Polish Kings where the famous Union between Lithuania and Poland was signed in 1569. Will walk to the old city through the Grodska Gate also known as the Jewish Gate. There is an interesting center in the actual gate, called “Grodzka Gate – NN Theatre”. It is a cultural center and a museum of local history. It is also a unique theatre, run by young people. We will continue walking in the Old city, enjoying the views of the narrow streets and old buildings. Will leten to their history, and will see it marked and outlined on the little plaques. We plan to show you the building of the very famous Jewish religious School – The Yeshiva of Lublin. The we will proceed to the remnants of the Jewish cemetery located outside the Old city.
Day 12: Lublin - Warsaw - departure
Drive to Warsaw. On the way we will stop in Kazimierz Dolny. It is a locally known resort on the banks of the Vistula River. A very picturesque small town having preserved a unique medieval atmosphere. In one minute walk from the main square you will see a small square called the Small Market. Just next to it there is a baroque period built Synagogue, and a museum today. Will climb the hill to view the panorama of the town and the river valley. Drive to Warsaw for departure or an extensional overnight. We plan to show you the building of the very famous Jewish religious School – The Yeshiva of Lublin. The we will proceed to the remnants of the Jewish cemetery located outside the Old city.
- Land Transportation
- Guide for the whole tour
- Entrance fees
- Land Transportation
- Guide for the whole tour
- Entrance fees
Immerse yourself in the rich tapestry of Jewish heritage as you embark on a pilgrimage through the Baltic States.