Private: Cologne With A Jewish Focus - Full DayExplore > Germany > Cologne > Private: Cologne With A Jewish Focus - Full Day
A full day, in-depth look at Cologne with en emphasis on Jewish history, culture and influences.
Cologne is home to the oldest Jewish community in Germany and it was once a vital center of the Zionist Movement. The devastation through both medieval pogroms are remembered by the current revitalized Jewish community and through the city's many memorials.
Your tour starts where it all began, in the medieval Jewish quarter of Cologne, the Judengasse. Take a step back in time and delve into the history of this early community. Learn about its struggles and celebrations and see the site of the old synagogue. The new MIQUA Museum, located in the Archaeological Quarter of the city is currently under construction. When complete this spectacular undertaking will be situated both above and beneath the Rathausplatz (City Hall) and will display 2,000 years of Cologne Jewish history.
From here, it is only a short walk to the great Cologne Cathedral, A UNESCO World Heritage Site, where you will have the chance to explore the beautiful cathedral and discover imagery that bears witness to anti-Jewish sentiment in medieval Cologne.
You will also see the evocative contemporary artwork of the Israeli artist Dani Karavan called ‘Ma’alot’. This installation of sunlight, grass, trees, red brick, railway track, granite and cast iron extends from the Cologne Cathedral Square to the Rhine Park.
Your tour continues onwards to the site of the former Glockengasse Synagogue, which is today home to a modern opera house on Offenbach square. En route, you will embark on a historical journey to learn about the origins of the World Zionist Movement, which was started right here in Cologne by Max Bodenheimer and David Wolffsohn.
The next stop is the famous ‘Stumbling Blocks’, a moving memorial to the victims of the Holocaust taking the form of small brass plaques located in front of the victim's former home. This memorial was initiated by the local artist Gunter Demnig. You will learn about Cologne’s involvement in starting the Stumbling Blocks project across Europe, which is regarded as the world's largest decentralized memorial. Today, more than 60,000 of these memorials are found in over 610 locations in Germany, as well as 17 other European countries.
Next to discover is the Gothic City Hall and the Gürzenich, a festival hall built in the 1440's.
A high point of this tour is a visit to the grand Roonstraße Synagogue*. Dedicated in March, 1899, the grand Neo-Romanesque building was severely damaged on Reichskristallnacht but was reconstructed in all its former glory in 1957. Seating up to 1,400 people, it is a proud centerpiece of Cologne's Jewish community today.
Explore some of the ancient Roman fortifications found throughout the city, as well as the Rhine River, a wonderful spot for a moment of reflection and relaxation and a great way to end your trip to Cologne.
- If you would like a different departure time, please contact ShoreTrips.
- This is a private tour and the itinerary is adjustable based on your interests. Please discuss any specific requests with your guide at the beginning of the tour. All changes are subject to time, traffic and policies of chosen sites.
- This is mostly a walking tour with a vehicle transfer to Roonstraße Synagogue. Please wear comfortable shoes.
- Admissions, food, beverages and gratuities are not included in the price of this tour and are payable at the time of the tour.
- Entry fee to the Cologne Cathedral Treasury is 4 EUR
- Entry fee to South Tower is 2 EUR
- Entry fee to Roonstraße Synagogue is 50 EUR per group.
- Please note: The Roonstraße Synagogue is closed to visitors on Friday, Saturday and some Jewish holidays. On those days the tour includes a guided viewing from the outside.
- * You must bring your passport in order to visit the Roonstraße Synagogue.
Days offered: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Sunday