Arrival to Vilnius. Hotel accommodation. Overnight in Vilnius.
Walking tour of Old Vilnius. a one-time spiritual and intellectual center for the Jews across the world. Visit the historic site of the Great Synagogue, also the sole surviving active synagogue in Vilnius and many other places commemorating Jewish history. A visit to the Lithuanian State Jewish Museum telling the history of Lithuanian Jews. Classical Vilnius tour including Cathedral, St Anne’s and Bernardines’ Churches, the Dawn Gate with a holy icon of Virgin Mary, Vilnius University etc. Overnight in Vilnius.
Visit to the Jewish Cemetery where the great Rabbi, the Gaon of Vilnius is buried. After drive to Paneriai a pine forest area where the nazis took the Vilnius Jewry. After, drive to Trakai, the ancient capital of Lithuania, visiting Castle on Lake Galve, Karaite Museum. Overnight in Vilnius.
Transfer to Kaunas, the second Lithuania’s largest city. Sightseeing: 9th Fort Memorial, the ‘Blue’ Synagogue, Slobodka Jewish suburb of Kaunas, etc., visit of the house where the Japanese Consul to Lithuania Chiune Sugihara lived and issued transit visas that saved 6000 Jews. A tour round the old town of Kaunas. Overnight in Kaunas.
Departure to Kedainiai, a town where the Vilnius Gaon worked. A visit to three synagogues complex in Kedainiai Market Square. Tour of Panevezys, including the building of the former world famous Ponevezh Yeshiva, Synagogue, the Jewish ghetto, common grave of the Holocaust victims in the outskirts of the city. Overnight in Panevezys.
Departure to Siauliai, visit the Frenkel’s synagogue, tannery and residence given to the Hebrew school. Stop in Jonishkis – an example of a pre-war shtetl in Lithuania. Departure to Latvian capital Ryga, stopover at Rundale Palace. Overnight in Riga.
Tour of Jewish Riga including a Jewish quarter, a memorial to the burnt Big Choral Synagogue, Jewish hospital “Bikur Holim”, a memorial park of previous Jewish Cemetery. Visit to Rumbula and Bikernieki Memorials where nazis murdered thousands of Jews from Latvia. In the afternoon a walking tour of Riga Old Town including the Dome Cathedral, the Swedish Gate, the House of Blackheads, St.Peter’s Church. A visit to the only functioning Synagogue in Riga. Overnight in Riga.