JEWISH LLEIDA 1/2 DAY

SUMMARY

  • Tour length: 5 Hours

  • Max. number of Participants: 9

  • Tour Type: Transport Based*

  • Tour Price: Please ask for an updated fee

  • Tour Exclusions: Transportation and entrance fees are not included

*Transport: bullet-train trips are very feasible from Barcelona, lasting an hour.

TOUR DESCRIPTION

Lleida possesses two unique jewels in Europe: the impressive, large monumental Gothic cloister of its old cathedral and the almost unknown 9th century Mikva, the oldest in the continent.

An hour train ride away from Barcelona, Lleida boasts two gems that are unique in the Continent: the impressive monumental Gothic cloister of its old cathedral and the almost unknown 9th century Mikva, the oldest to be found in continental Europe.

Hidden in the basement of the City Hall and located in the Museu de la Paeria we’ll find some most important archeological remains dated between the 9th and 10th centuries: Europe’s second oldest ritual Jewish baths -being the oldest in Siracusa, Sicily- and therefore Europe’s oldest Mikva on continental soil. Already back in 1989 prominent professor David Romano made this acknowledgement clear.

A simple glance at other examples of medieval Jewish baths, such as the Mikva in Montpellier/France, in Worms/Germany or that in Besalú/Catalonia will allow us to verify the surprising similarity, almost identical in the case of Worms. Other experts in the field of Jewish culture found a certain parallelism with one of the two Mikvaot located in Massada, Israel. This huge, monumental pool had capacity to allow the total immersion of two dozen human bodies. The origin of its water supply was due to filtrations of the Segre river -through its irrigation channel, the Sèquia d’Alcarràs, fed by the river-, which used to run next to the building from Roman times until the end of the middleages.

The local family name of the original palace owners in the early 12 hundreds, Sanaüja, was later also given to the Call Menor -Lesser Jewish Quarter- in Barcelona in the early 13 hundreds: the Call d’en Sanaüja, which happened to be the same popular name given in the late 12 hundreds to the Old Jewish quarter in Cervera, another major town situated in the middle point of the 100 miles old road linking Barcelona and Lleida.

The old deconsecrated medieval cathedral -Seu Vella- located on top of the hill in the core of the city, is a unique architectural masterpiece that combines both Romanesque and Gothic structures in a massive scale, especially its unique monumental panoramic Gothic cloister, overlooking the whole Segrià County’s impressive flat landscape, some 30 miles away. A spectacle given by its large, most ornate filigree windows, one of them showing a huge one meter wide Jewish star.

On the way back from the Seu Vella you’ll walk by the former 4 acre large medieval Cuirassa or Jewish Quarter -recently demolished, although one acre of it has just been excavated. Among the very few remains left there’s the ruins of a wealthy family’s mansion burnt down by a Christian pogrom in 1391. Experts’s excavation works have shown pieces of carbonised tissue -evidence of the riot- the pavement of its inner patio and significant vestiges from the time of the Moslem occupation of Lleida, contemporary to the city hall’s Mikwa.

JEWISH LLEIDA 1/2 DAY IMAGE GALLERY

REFERRALS / REVIEWS

We really enjoyed the tour of Barcelona. We saw so many wonderful sites in such a short time, thanks to your ability to reschedule events due to our flight delay. Thought you would enjoy having this picture with the Levy boys – Jack, Jude and James. Should we return to the area, or have friends that visit, you’ll be the first person we recommend to show them around the city!

Diana, JULY 2016

Ton-David Jover was the perfect guide for our first time visit to Barcelona. His extensive knowledge and experience are impressive, but it was his passion for sharing his love of his home and his heritage that made our tours with him unforgettable and our joint time together both informative and fun. Ton-David brought Gaudi to life as he walked us through Casa Batlló and Park Güell. It provided the perfect background for us to fully appreciate the incredible Sagrada Familia. Throughout our walking tour of the Old City, Ton-David gave us unique insights into both Catalan and Jewish history, bringing its people and buildings to life. We enjoyed the Picasso Museum immensely, as we learned about the artist’s early years and works. Our train trip to Girona was beautiful, and learning about the city through Ton-David’s words enabled us to understand what once was and is no longer. And of course, the food and cava! Ton-David shared our culinary interests and his recommendations were outstanding!

Shari L. (NY, USA) JULY 2016

We had numerous guides during our Spain and Portugal vacation, but Ton-David was definitely the best. He was knowledgeable, personable, interesting and took great care of us. We have already recommended him to friends and will use him again when we return to Barcelona

Cindy P, 02 MAY 2015

A five-star service

Renato M, 27 DEC 2014

Excellent guide – abundant information – gave us plenty of insights and loads to think about after. Would highly recommend.

Christine B, 05 JUL 2013

Ton-David was a very knowledgeable, interesting and accommodating tour guide. He had a great wry sense of humour. He took us to four Gaudí sites in 5 hours

Theresa C, 30 JUN 2013

Our tour with Ton -David was a lifelong dream come true. In a few short hours , he made sure I saw and learned everything I ever wanted to know to satisfy my passion for the life & work of Antoni Gaudi. Even after my pre trip exhaustive research, this charming & energetic man had much to teach and show us. I HIGHLY recommend Ton- David for your special adventure; you will be totally satisfied

Dorothy W, 17 SEP 2012

Amazing!!! We learned so much from Ton David. He went above and beyond by teaching us so much about Gaudi and his designs. He made the day so interesting and fun. We also now understand and appreciate the Catalan part of Spain. Barcelona is a beautiful city. Ton David is a wonderful guide who we would highly recommend

Carol S, 08 JUN 2012

Wonderful experience visiting the Old City! Loved not waiting in lines for museum access.Ton David was enthusiastic and so very knowledgable. He is an excellent guide. We loved visiting the market. What interesting foods are sold! The tour pace was quick and we were thrilled as we got to see so much on this 4 hour tour

Carol S, 08 JUN 2012

Very good tour. So glad that we decided to visit the Jewish area of past. Ton David is so knowledgeable and made the Jewish history of Barcelona come to life. He is an excellent guide!

Carol S, 08 JUN 2012

Ton-David was extremely knowledgeable and interesting to be with. Enjoyed he guidance through the Picasso Museum, the Jewish Quarter, and everything Gaudí

Jacob K, 18 MAY 2012

Ton-David combined the Old City Walking Tour and the Jewish Barcelona Tour for us based on his understanding of our group’s interests. He took the time to answer in detail my questions prior to booking the trip and met us promptly at our hotel on the specified date. He was a true pleasure to be with and was eager to show us around a city he feels passionate about. He is extremely articulate. We learned many interesting details. Great guide

Gail W, 12 JUL 2011

Ton-David was a fabulous tour guide. He showed us all the sights of Barcelona in a fun and interesting way. He was extremely knowledgeable about Barcelona, Catalonia, and Spain, as well as European history in general. We truly enjoyed our day with Ton-David and would highly recommend him to anyone going to Barcelona

Jennifer C, 01 MAY 2011

Excellent job –fluent in English– very knowledgeable and made the tour very, very interesting. Would highly recommend to anyone

James A, 04 MAY 2010

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