The Paseo de la Reina Juana connects to Fernando el Católico street where there are excellent baths, popularly known since the 19th century as the Arab baths whose sumptuous apodyterium or changing room is presided over by a large Star of David. They are dated 1194, and after being closed in the 15th century, they were occupied in 1617 by a community of Capuchin nuns. In 1929, they started being managed publicly. These excellent baths are also endowed with a frigidarium (cold room), tepidarium (warm room), caldarium (hot room) and an oven.
Leaving behind the head of the cathedral, Alemanys street and Pere de Rocabertí¬ street lead to the former Caserna dels Alemanys, the site of an old military barrack today converted into a romantic garden amongst ruins and stretches of the wall. It is located on the highest point of the city and constitutes the vertex of the triangle where the former Roman Gerunda takes shape. It is in this complex where the Gironella Tower is situated, famous for serving as a refuge for Jews who were able to escape the slaughter and sacking of the of 1391.
In 2014, the mikveh was identified in the patio of the Museum of Jewish History. The original structure has been preserved even though in later rebuildings it was transformed into a cistern. It was a closed space which could be accessed by a door, leading to a hall, a tiled changing room and the pool. Access was gained by stepping over the threshold, which led to a landing made of stone slabs, and from there people could probably go into the pool through a flight of stairs integrated in the pool, now lost. The water was supplied from a natural source by filtration, and also from the tank situated in the courtyard, which collected rainwater and filled the bath. The function of the mikveh is the spiritual purification through total immersion of the body in the water.
Beging in Plaça de Sant Feliu, with the guided tour through the Jewish neighborhood of Girona, one of the best-preserved in Europe. This district is located in the heart of the city and is full of ancient remains from its Roman and Medieval past. Known locally as “the Call”, this area was home to 1,000 inhabitants during the Middle Ages, making it one of the most important Jewish communities in Spain's history. As you explore the narrow streets of the Jewish Quarter — hometown of Nahmanides, the Medieval Kabbalistic philosopher, physician and Sephardic rabbi — you'll visit the spots where the city's 3 synagogues were located. During the guided tour you will find out all about the customs and traditions of the Jewish people who lived here, as well as the tools that they used, and the design of their houses. You'll also visit the Museum of Jewish History to learn about their way of life. Your guide will then lead you around the labyrinthine streets while explaining the history of the expulsion of the Jews in 1492, an act that ended 600 years of coexistence. After 3 hours exploring the Call, your tour will come to an end, and you'll have newfound knowledge of the profound influence that the Jewish community left in Girona.
Come here for a meal right after visiting Girona Art Museum (Museu d'Art de Girona). You will be provided Mediterranean and Spanish cuisines at this restaurant. The convenient location of LaFerla makes it easy to reach by any transport. Based on the reviewers' opinions, waiters serve good laing, tapas and fish here. It's worth coming to this place for tasty panna cotta. You will be offered delicious wine.
Whether you’re out sun-seeking or sightseeing, Spain has more to offer than just good food and good weather. Home to the original ‘Sephardim’ (‘Spanish Jews’ in Hebrew), Spain is rich with stories and evidence of its Jewish population’s history and culture, right up to the community’s 1492 Expulsion. So wherever you find yourself roaming the country or exploring the city, there’s always something new and unexpected to discover: synagogues built like mosques and converted to churches or statues of Jewish celebrities, Spain has it all, with some breathtakingly beautiful views. Barcelona Barcelona – city of Dali, Gaudi and good food. But did you know that Barcelona’s ‘Aljama’, the Jewish community, was one of the largest of medieval Spain, comprising 10% of the city’s population? After the 1391 attack on the city and 1492 expulsion, all that’s left of Barcelona’s magnificent Jewish heritage is the layout of its streets. For some light-hearted relief, the Barcelona Jewish film festival and European Day of Jewish Culture celebrations take place in the city on the first Sunday of September. And of course, check out the Jewish Call! Girona - Catalan Jewish Museum, the Centre Bonastruc ça Porta And now to Spain’s very far East – Girona. Girona’s beauty – the hilly Capuchins to the east of the river Onyar; the modern town on the plains of the west – is breathtaking and varied. Nowadays, Girona is a popular day trip for tourists from Barcelona. Its Jewish past, dating from the late 9th century, isn’t completely obvious at first glance; for that, you have to dig a little deeper. Take a visit to the Jewish Museum of Girona, within the boundaries of the Jewish ‘Call’ (quarter) and the site of Girona’s last synagogue–details all areas of medieval Spanish-Jewish life, including the most famous Jewish Gironan of all, the celebrated Talmudist Nahmanides. Toledo Toledo, close to Madrid, is the city of walls, silk, and swords and one of the most important Jewish cities of medieval Europe. Other than the famous ‘Escuela de Traductores’ (School of Translators), the Jewish quarter (‘Juderia’)’s two remaining synagogues (out of Toldeo’s original ten) are unmissable. The Sinagoga del Transito is a two-in-one attraction - built in 1366, nowadays it contains the Sephardic Museum of Toledo, detailing medieval Jewish life in Toledo. The Santa María la Blanca Synagogue also has an interesting story – permission to build it was granted when the King was in love with a Jewish woman. It was later converted into a church. The path of true love never did run smooth… Segovia The undulated shape and seven gates of the Segovian Jewish quarter set it apart from the rest of the city. Segovia’s Jewish history is what might best be termed ‘hidden’. There’s a hotel (the Hotel Casa Mudejar) on the site of a famed converso rabbi’s house. Large arches stand, without their gates. Where there were once three synagogues, two dedicated Talmud schools, a Jewish hospital, cemetery, butcher, and baths, there are now a collection of generic buildings with some lovely scenery and views – the community was forced to liquidate their assets at the time of the expulsion. Happily, within the quarter is the Jewish Quarter Educational Center, which is also the former home of an illustrious descendant of converted Jews. Oviedo- Asturias. Known as the ‘Capital of Paradise’, unfortunately, nothing original of Oviedo’s Jewish heritage remains in the old Jewish quarter. The city is, however, skilled at commemorating what used to be there. There are many things to ‘not’ see in Oviedo: wander over to the Campoamor Theatre and look for ghosts –below your feet is what used to be the Jewish cemetery, memorialized by a plaque on the side of the theatre. In Juan XXIII Square, a lonely plaque on a pharmacy tells readers that they are in the historic Jewish quarter. Most excitingly, perhaps, just east of the theatre is the commemorative statue of Woody Allen. Yes, you’ve read that correctly. And no, we don’t see the connection either. Cordoba The city of Cordoba plays a pivotal role in the history of Jewish scholarship in Spain. Its achievements made it one of the most known centers of Talmud in the Jewish world. During the 10th century, Cordoba’s Jewish community was as wealthy as it was learned. Of course, like many other Medieval Jewish communities, the Jews of Cordoba lived in their own quarter known as the Juderia. What remains of the Jewish people of Cordoba is a far cry from the once great community that existed during its heyday. However, the city has made a distinct effort to conserve what has managed to remain. In 1985, the Great Synagogue on Calle de los Judios was recognized as a national heritage site. Be sure to visit Maimónides Square in the heart of the Jewish Quarter, as well as the Sefarad House, a cultural centre dedicated to the interpretation and promotion of Sephardi heritage Seville The history of Jews in Seville goes all the way back to the days of King David and the First Temple. In fact, some of the more prominent Spanish Jewish families of Seville claim to be descendants of the great king. The Jewish community of Seville was one of four major communities during Spain’s period of Muslim rule. They served in every facet of society from the common street vendor and merchant all the way to the members of the high court. Seville was an exception to the rule in almost every way for Jewish life. After the Christians reclaimed Spain, they built a second larger Jewish quarter that ran all the way from the Carmona Gate to the city wall. At one time it housed Spain’s largest Jewish community. This quarter is now known today as the Barrio de Santa Cruz and contains the Al-Andalus House of Memory at its center, as well as the Jewish Interpretation Center. Palma Located in the Southwest of Mallorca, the port city of Palma has an extensive and well-known Jewish history. The Palma Jewish Quarter tells the story of both a thriving and persecuted community. Specifically pertaining to the history of Conversos and a major massacre that occurred there in 1391. There are traces of all this and more within the narrow alleyways and high walls of the former Jewish quarter. Secret synagogues and hidden Hebrew letters are etched into the stone. Today, a population known as Chuetas, the descendants of medieval Palma Jewry, is working to conserve and revive the history of the Jews of Mallorca almost 600 years later. They have a new synagogue and Jewish community center and several preserved historic sites, such as the Tower of Love, that tell the story of Palma's Jewish past. Avila Out of the numerous Jewish communities in Spain, the Jewish Quarter of Avila plays a special role in the history of Spanish Jewish rights. The Jews of Avila were not subjected to a great deal of discriminatory behaviors unlike their brothers in other cities. They served the city as being distributors of fine clothing and other textiles. However, despite this good fortune, the Jewish quarter itself had not stood the test of time. There are few traces of this community but what has been remembered through documents and records has been identified and preserved. The Belforad Synagogue has been converted into a church, while the Lomos Synagogue is believed to be located at current Moses Rubí chapel, but it's hard to know for sure. However, the latest victory has been the unearthing of the local medieval Jewish cemetery just outside the 11th century walls of the city! Madrid Like most Jewish communities in Spain, their time to thrive came under Muslim leadership in the 10th century. Few traces remain of Jewish history but thanks to the records of Madrid’s historians, the outline of two historic Jewish quarters has since been located. The first quarter was evacuated after the Black Plague and the community was relocated to a new Juderia. The La Almudena Cathedral currently stands in its place. Of the several historic Jewish quarters in Spain Madrid has seen the most regrowth of modern Jewish life. Since 2008 the city of Madrid has celebrated the Hanukkah Festival of Lights, a festive day full of homage paying to Madrid’s past and the present Jewish community. The entire ceremony is a prime example of the new-found good faith and commitment to the future of Spain’s Jewish community.
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Housed in a restored 18th-century building, Hotel Museu Llegendes de Girona is located in Girona's old town, 150 m from the Cathedral and Arab Baths. Rooms feature flat-screen TV, rain showers and free Wi-Fi. This design hotel offers elegant, individually decorated rooms. They all include air conditioning, a safe and minibar. The stylish modern bathrooms come with toiletries and slippers. Some have bathrobes. Breakfast is served in the Museu Llegendes de Girona’s dining room. The hotel has its own bar, and the popular cafés and restaurants of Plaça Independencia are just 400 m away. Hotel Museu Llegendes de Girona offers views of Girona Cathedral and is just 200 m from the famous Jewish Quarter. The hotel’s tour desk can provide more information about the city.