Ayelet's Traveling University
Tour to Eastern Europe
Led by Prof. Natan Meir
October 8 - 18, 2018

Tour Rates & Dates:

There are no Departure Dates available for this Package.
*Please note that all rates displayed are based on standard room double occupancy.
Upgraded room categories may be available to book later in the booking process.
If Land & Air price is displayed, the air portion includes tax and fuel surcharges, which are subject to change until ticketed.

Tour Overview:

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Led by the engaging and enlightening Prof. Natan Meir, we'll uncover the stories of Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic. Stroll through former Jewish neighborhoods, marvel at stunning synagogues, and wander centuries-old cemeteries as we bring the past to life through historical documents, poetry, and photographs. Visit exciting new institutions such as the POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews. Prof. Meir's presentations and touring commentary help create an immersive educational experience that won't soon be forgotten.   (Video Source: Documentary "My Dear Children")

2 nights Kings Court Prague Hotel, Prague, Czech Republic
3 nights Kempinski Hotel Budapest, Budapest, Hungary
2 nights Sheraton Krakow, Krakow, Poland
2 nights Hotel Bristol Warsaw, Warsaw, Poland

Jewish Heritage tour of Prague including:
The Josefov & the Jewish cemetery

Jewish Heritage tour of Budapest including:
Royal Palace & the Castle Hill area
Dohany Synagogue & the Raul Wallenberg Memorial

Jewish Heritage tour of Krakow including:
Wawel Castle & Renaissance Cloth Hall
Old Jewish quarter of Kazimierz
16th-century Old Synagogue

Jewish Heritage tour of Warsaw including:
The new POLIN Museum
Chopin's Monument & Old Town Market Square
The Warsaw Ghetto & Mila 18

Natan M. Meir
is the Lorry I. Lokey Associate Professor of Judaic Studies and Academic Director of the Schnitzer Family Program in Judaic Studies at Portland State University. His research interest is modern Jewish history, focusing on the social and cultural history of East European Jewry in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. He is the author of Kiev, Jewish Metropolis: A History, 1859-1914, co-editor of Anti-Jewish Violence: Rethinking the Pogrom in East European History, and served as an academic consultant for the Jewish Museum and Tolerance Center of Moscow. A recipient of the prestigious Cullman Fellowship from the New York Public Library, he is currently completing “Republic of Beggars": The Jewish Destitute, Disabled, and Dispossessed in Eastern Europe, a study exploring the lives and roles of the outcasts of East European Jewish society in the modern period up to the Holocaust. He lectures widely on the history and culture of East European Jewry.

Praise for Prof. Meir from past tour participants:
"Our scholar Natan Meir was terrific - clear, interesting and knowledgeable".-Joe Gilbert

"Professor Meir was just outstanding. His grasp of Jewish history from the Pale Settlement to each of the countries we visited was exceptional. He provided comprehensive and unique perspectives of the evolution of the Jewish culture as it evolved over the centuries. My wife and I came away knowing so much more than we did when we started".-Bill Morales

"Professor Natan Meir was wonderful. We would love to travel with him again. Thanks for arranging this trip, it was inspiring and educational". -Sandy Glatter

Tour Itinerary:

DAY 1: Monday, October 8, 2018: DEPARTURE

• We depart on our overnight flight to Prague.

DAY 2: Tuesday, October 9, 2018: ARRIVAL IN PRAGUE

• Arrival in Prague, the Czech capital, also known as "the City of One Thousand Spires" with its Baroque churches, promenades, parks and ancient city walls.
• Check in to hotel.
• Afternoon tour of Golden Prague, including the 1,000-year-old Hradcany Castle and St. Vitus' Cathedral, the Charles Bridge, and the Astronomical Clock.
• Tonight we enjoy an orientation lecture and welcome dinner with Professor Natan Meir.

Overnight in Prague

DAY 3: Wednesday, October 10, 2018: JEWISH PRAGUE

• Breakfast.
• Morning lecture with Professor Meir.
• This morning we travel to Terezin, the former "model" Nazi concentration camp. We visit the Fortress, Jewish Cemetery, and the Museum.
• This afternoon we return to Prague and enjoy a sightseeing tour of Jewish interest sites, with a visit to the Old City to view the Josefov, Prague's Jewish Town with its Old Town Hall, the Alt-Neu Synagogue, the Pinkas Synagogue, the Maisel Synagogue, the Spanish Synagogue, the Jewish Cemetery and the State Jewish Museum.

Overnight in Prague

DAY 4: Thursday, October 11, 2018: BUDAPEST

• Breakfast and check-out.
• Transfer to the airport for our short flight to Budapest, the capital of Hungary. Situated on the opposite banks of the Danube River, the former cities of Buda and Pest are linked by a series of graceful bridges.
• Upon arrival, we enjoy a panoramic bus tour of Budapest, including Parliament, the Royal Palace, and the Castle Hill area, Fishermen's Bastion, Coronation Church, Hero's Square and Gellert Hill.
• Check into our hotel.

Overnight in Budapest

DAY 5: Friday, October 12, 2018: JEWISH BUDAPEST

• Breakfast.
• Morning lecture with Professor Meir.
• We begin our touring at the Raul Wallenberg Memorial, and then visit the Dohany Synagogue, the 2nd largest synagogue in Europe.
• Continue to the Jewish Cemetery and Museum.
• Tonight we enjoy Shabbat services at the Dohany Synagogue, followed by Shabbat dinner together.

Overnight in Budapest

DAY 6: Saturday, October 13, 2018: SHABBAT SHALOM!

• Breakfast.
• In the morning, we invite you to join us for optional Shabbat services.
• Afternoon at leisure to explore this beautiful city at your own pace.

Overnight in Budapest

DAY 7: Sunday, October 14, 2018: TO KRAKOW

• Breakfast and check-out.
• This morning we depart for Krakow, driving through the lovely hills and countryside of Slovakia, past the Tatras and into the Great Plains of Poland. Professor Meir lectures on the bus.
• Upon arrival, we pass by Wawel Castle, St. Mary's Church, the Renaissance Cloth Hall, and other ancient landmarks.
• Check into our hotel.
• This evening we enjoy dinner together with Jonathan Ornstein, executive Director of the Krakow JCC, who updates us on the many exciting projects they have undertaken in what is now a growing and flourishing Jewish community in the heart of Krakow.

Overnight in Krakow

DAY 8: Monday, October 15, 2018: AUSCHWITZ-BIRKENAU

• Breakfast.
• This morning we travel to Auschwitz-Birkenau, the infamous Nazi Concentration Camps where many Jews and others perished in WWII. Here we see the museum and pay tribute to the victims.
• We return to Krakow and have the remainder of the afternoon to reflect.
• Enjoy dinner together this evening at a local restaurant.

Overnight in Krakow

DAY 9: Tuesday, October 16, 2018: KRAKOW TO WARSAW

• Breakfast and check-out.
• Morning lecture with Professor Meir.
• This morning we enjoy a Jewish Heritage Tour that includes the Old Jewish District, Kazimierz, where we see the Old Synagogue (a massive fortress-like building erected in the 15th and 16th centuries), the "Temple," and the Ramuh Synagogue. We continue to the Little Museum at the Drug Store inside the Jewish Ghetto, Schindler's Factory, and the Plashow Concentration Camp.
• This afternoon we travel by train to Warsaw and check into our hotel.
• Tonight we meet with members of Beit Warszawa, the new progressive congregation in Warsaw. We enjoy dinner and hospitality as we learn more about the Judaism alive in

Overnight in Warsaw

DAY 10: Wednesday, October 17, 2018: JEWISH WARSAW

• Breakfast.
• This morning we enjoy a guided visit of the New Museum of the History of Polish Jews.
• This afternoon we have a sightseeing tour encompassing Chopin's Monument, the Warsaw Ghetto, the Jewish Resistance Bunker at Mila 18, Stawski Street buildings (where the SS had their headquarters), and the Gensa Cemetery (established in 1806, containing the graves of about 250,000 people and known as the largest cemetery in Poland).
• We also see the Royal Castle, and walk to Old Town Market Square, and Lazienki Park.
• Tonight we enjoy a special farewell dinner together and a wonderful gala event!

Overnight in Warsaw

DAY 11: Thursday, October 18, 2018: DEPARTURE

• Breakfast.
• We transfer to the airport for our flight home.

*tinerary subject to change