Journey to Jewish Heritage Trail
Duration :13 Nights / 14 Days
Destination :india
Interested :Best of India Tours
Tour Months :January

Here begins your tour

On arrival at Delhi International airport, Live India Tours representatives will meet, assist and transfer you to your hotel. A traditional welcome with "Aarti & Tikka" awaits you in the hotel. Later check into hotel for overnight stay. HOTEL

Day 2:Delhi
This morning, our guide will meet you in the hotel’s lobby and will proceed for a combined full day city tour of Old and New Delhi, visiting Old Delhi with the Jama Masjid, The largest mosque, built from 1644 to 1658 in the reign of emperor Shahjahan; Raj Ghat where Mahatma Gandhi, The Father of Nation, was cremated. Also enjoy the guided city tour of New Delhi visiting some of the important monuments like the Qutab Minar, the 239 feet sandstone tower, Humayun's Tomb, built in 1570, is of particular cultural significance as it was the first garden-tomb on the Indian subcontinent. Later, we proceed to visit the India Gate; Parliament House (exterior) and the President's Palace (exterior) for a photo-stop session. Also see the Qutab Minar, a superb example of early Afghan architecture circa 1199, the Emperor Humayun’s Tomb, the architectural precursor to the Taj Mahal in Agra. Later visit Judah Hyan Hall Synagogue on Humayun Road. Jews have lived in India since ancient times, and their communities are mentioned in the Talmud (and hinted at in the Bible, itself). The beauty of the Judah Hyan synagogue mirrors the ancient legacy of Indian Jews. HOTEL (Breakfast)

Day 3:Delhi – Agra – Delhi (Shatabdi Express: 06:00 AM / 08:05 AM)
Morning transfer to railway station to board early morning train to Agra. Upon arrival, you will be met and proceed to Fatehpur Sikri - the ancient city built in a fusion of Hindu and Muslim artistic styles by the great Moghul Emperor Akbar. See the magnificent Royal Palace with its famous Panch Mahal, the five-storied palace and the imposing Jami Masjid with its impressive Buland Darwaza (Great Gate). Afternoon, visit Taj Mahal, one of the Wonders of the World (closed on Fridays), the poetry in marble and a symbol of eternal love, where you will also get to learn about the Jewish influence during the Moghul period in India and on Taj Mahal. Later visit Agra Fort. Evening back to Delhi by Shatabdi Express train. Upon arrival, met and transferred to your hotel. HOTEL (Breakfast)

Day 4:Delhi – Ahmedabad (IC 817: 06:00 AM / 08:45 AM)
Morning, fly to Ahmedabad. Arrive and check into hotel. Afternoon, visit Shreyas Folk Museum (Closed on Mondays) - displays the folk arts & crafts of Gujarat. A, unique collection of utensils are kept in the Vishalla restaurant's Utensil Museum. It is an educational museum exhibiting folk arts and crafts of Gujarat. It is located 2.5 kms west of Sabarmati in the suburbs of Ahmedabad district. As the name suggests, the exhibits at the museum include art, craft, textile and clothing, coins, weapons, toys, costumes, masks, puppets and musical instruments. One of the highlights at this museum is a complete elephant skeleton (3.19m high). After the museum drive around town to view some of the architecture of Charles Correa - one of India’s leading architects. Charles Correa was born in Hyderabad, India in 1930. He studied at the University of Michigan and Massachusetts Institute of Technology after which he established a private practice in Bombay in 1958. Correa's work in India shows a careful development, understanding and adaptation of Modernism to a non-western culture. HOTEL (Breakfast)

Day 5:Ahmedabad
Today visit the Sabarmati Ashram, situated on the western bank of the Sabarmati River. This ashram, founded in 1918 by Mahatma Gandhi, was the headquarters during the struggle for Indian Independence. It is now a spinning wheel factory where handmade paper and other local handicrafts are made. Hatheesing Jain temple is one of the best ornate Jain temple in Ahmedabad. Built outside Delhi Gate by Sheth Hatheesing, this is the best known of Ahmedabad's many ornate Jain Temples. Later visit the Calico Museum of Textiles, which exhibits both antique and modern textiles including rare tapestries, wall hangings and costumes. Later, visit Sidi Saiyed Mosque famous for its beautiful carved stone windows and stop by the Calico Museum of Textiles, which exhibits both antique and modern textiles including rare tapestries, wall hangings and costumes. Also on display are old weaving machines. Later visit Magen Abraham Synagogue established in 1933 by Dr. Solomon. HOTEL (Breakfast)

Day 6:Ahmedabad – Mumbai (9W 322: 7:10 AM / 8:20 AM)
Morning fly to Mumbai. Afternoon tour of Bombay city, including Mani Bhawan, Hanging Garden, Dhobi Ghat, and the Prince of Wales Museum, which contains a number of exotic Jewish artifacts. In the evening visit Gate of Mercy Synagogue or Juni Masjid established 1796. The street on which the Synagogue stands was named Samaji Street in His Honor and is at present known as Samuel street. The Synagogue also named "Shaar Ha-Rahamim", Hebrew for Gate of Mercy, celebrated its bi-centenary in 1996. Shabbat services at the nearby Fort Synagogue (Kenesset Eliyahoo, built in 1884), where you will also meet the Sephardic Baghdadi community. Kosher Shabbat dinner supplied by ORT India, the only Jewish school in India. HOTEL (Breakfast)

Day 7:Mumbai
Morning proceed to excursion to Elephanta Caves, a small island that houses the Elephanta Caves with its beautiful frescoes. These caves are filled with intricate sculptures of Hindu Gods, which were carved between the 5th and 8th Centuries. Return to you hotel by lunchtime. Later, visit Fort Synagogue also known as Kenesseth Eliayahoo Synagogue, established in 1884 by Mr. Jacob Sasson in memory of his father and Magen David, and attend prayer services. At Shabbat lunch, you will meet distinguished members of the Jewish community; with whome you can discuss Jewish life during British Colonial times. Dinner at the JDC -Jewish Community Center of Bombay. HOTEL (Breakfast)

Day 8:Mumbai – Excursion to Navgaon
During the religious persecutions in Israel in the time of King Antiochus 2,200 years ago, some Jews escaped to India and were shipwrecked off the coast of Bombay. The few survivors came ashore, kept the faith, lived in interior villages They were known as the Bene Israel or "Sabbath oil pressers". You will visit the original landing site at Navgoan, see the historic monument, visit a primitive Bene Israel village and meet with the remaining Bene Israel Jews. You will have the chance to photograph a historic and unusually picturesque synagogue at Alibag. Lunch will be at the home of a Bene Israel family. Evening return to Mumbai and overnight at the hotel. HOTEL (Breakfast)   Mumbai – Pune (Drive: 5 hours) Morning, drive to Pune - an important commercial city but once the capital of the Maratha and the Pehwas Empires. Arrive and check into hotel. Afternoon city tour of Pune, including Gandhi Ashram etc. HOTEL (Breakfast)

Day 9:Pune – Mumbai (Drive: 5 hours)
Morning, visit Ohel David Synagogue, established in 1867, built by the Sasoon family. Also visit Succath Shelmo Synagogue established in 1921, the foundation stone of which was laid in 1919. Afternoon, drive back to Mumbai, arrive and check in to hotel. HOTEL (Breakfast) Mumbai – Cochin (9W 202: 09:30 AM / 10:05 AM) Morning transfer to airport for early morning flight to the seacoast city of Cochin where you will walk through the site of one of the most fascinating and least known chapters of the kindest Diaspora in Jewish history. Afternoon, visit Jew Town and the Pardesi Synagogue. These Synagogues were, built by Samuel Castiel, David Belila, Ephrahim Sala and Joseph Levi. It stands on the grounds of the Maharaja of Cochin’s residence, one of the oldest synagogues in the world. It has a Hebrew clock tower and a gold Torah crown, a gift of the Maharajah. You can hold the original copper plates that established a Jewish kingdom in the 4th century. HOTEL (Breakfast)

Day 10:Cochin
Morning, city tour of Cochin visiting the Mattancherry Palace, the palace built by Portuguese in 1557 and presented to the Cochin Raja (King) Verra Kerala Varma as a gesture of goodwill. The Dutch substantially renovated it after 1663. Hence it is also called the Dutch Palace. The St. Francis Church this is India is India’s oldest European-built church. Vasco de Gama the first European to reach India by sailing around Africa, died in Cochin 1524 and was buried here for 14 years before his remain were transferred to Lisbon in Portugal. Also visit the Chinese Fishing Nets, showing the traditional methods of sea fishing and the spice markets, a rich-trading center in medieval times. In the evening, you will see the Kathakali Dance performance, incorporating elements of yoga and mythology. HOTEL (Breakfast)

Day 11:Cochin – Alleppey (Drive: 1 & 1/ 2 hours)
Morning, drive to Alleppey and embark the Houseboat for a unique backwater experience. Overnight on the Houseboat. HOTEL (Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner)

Day 12:Kumarakom – Cochin – Chennai - Kolkata
Disembark houseboat around 1030 AM drive to Cochin airport. Fly Chennai and taking connecting flight to Kolkata, The City Of Joy, and once, the proud intellectual and cultural capital of India.. Met and transferred to hotel The Park. HOTEL (Breakfast)

Day 13:Kolkata
After an orientation with member from the Jewish Council of Calcutta, we first visit the Neveh Shalom Synagogue, established in 1825, the first Synagogue in Kolkatta. Our next stop is the Magen David Synagogue, built by Mr. Elias David Joseph Esra in memory of his father Mr. David Joseph Esra. It is a charming walk to this synagogue. We also visit Beth EL Synagogue. Lunch, with some of the Jewish people of Kolkatta. After lunch, we stop by the Nahoum Bakery, owned by a Jewish family. Evening service at Magen David Synagogue.(20 minutes walk from hotel). HOTEL (Breakfast)

Day 14:Kolkatta – Mumbai - International departure
Morning, services and socialize with the members of the synagogue. Afternoon city tour, including the Dakshineshwar Kali temple built in 1847, the Victoria Memorial, the white marble monument of Queen Victoria and the flower market. Late afternoon fly to Mumbai and later take a connecting International flight back home. HOTEL (Breakfast)

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