Rabbinic Familiarization Tour* To Eastern Europe

­­Rabbinic Familiarization Tour* To Eastern Europe

March 12-23, 2017

Organized by Rabbi Richard and Lisa Plavin

Krakow-Warsaw-Prague-Budapest

­­Rabbinic Familiarization Tour*

To Eastern Europe

March 12-23, 2017

Organized by Rabbi Richard and Lisa Plavinuntitled

Krakow-Warsaw-Prague-Budapest


Our accompanying scholar will be Dr. Samuel Kassow

Throughout our journey Dr. Samuel Kassow will enlighten us with lectures and commentary. Dr. Kassow is one of the world’s leading scholars on the Holocaust and the Jews of Eastern Europe. Born in a displaced persons camp in Stuttgart, Germany, he grew up in New Haven, CT. He is the author of “The Distinctive Life of East European Jewry” and is widely known for his 2007 book “Who Will Write Our History: Emanuel Ringelblum, the Warsaw Ghetto, and the Oyneg Shabbes Archive.” “Who Will Write Our History” is currently being adapted into a documentary film of the same title, produced by Nancy Spielberg, and set to be released in 2017. Dr. Kassow is the 2016 Jacob Kronhill visiting scholar at the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research. This spring he taught YIVO’s first online course “Discovering Ashkenaz” which brought together over 3,000 learners from more than 50 different countries.   He served as a consultant to POLIN: the Museum of the History of Polish Jews, which opened on the site of the Warsaw Ghetto in 2013, and co-curated two of the eight core exhibitions. He has accompanied many groups on European tours, and participants have uniformly reported on how much he has added to the quality of their experience.

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Krakow and Warsaw Tour features:

  • 4 starhotels, rooms with private facilities
  • Service charges and hotel taxes
  • Breakfast daily
  • 1 x box lunch
  • 2 x lunches at the local restaurant (Kosher or vegetarian standard 3-course menu, no beverages incl.)
  • 3 x dinners at the local restaurant (Kosher or vegetarian standard 3-course menu, no beverages incl.)
  • Dinner with members of Beit Warsawa (buffet style dinner, 1 glass of red or white wine, table water, 1 coffee or tea)
  • Assisted arrival and departure airport transfers
  • All transfers with standard A/C motor coach as per services
  • Train ticket from Krakow to Warsaw
  • Professional tour director throughout
  • Sightseeing tours as per itinerary
  • Chopin concert in Warsaw (1 glass of champagne incl.) (Will this happen on either Wed or Thurs evening?)
  • Entrance fees included where indicated in bold letters
  • Luggage handling at hotels (one piece per person in / out)

Sightseeing tours included:

  • Krakow
  • Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp and memorial
  • Warsaw

Hotel accommodation:

  • Mar 13-15, 2017 Krakow:   Mercure Old Town or similar
  • Mar 15-17, 2017 Warsaw:  Mercure Centrum Warsaw or similar

Prague Tour features:

  • Selected class hotel, rooms with private facilities
  • Service charges and hotel taxes
  • Breakfast daily
  • 1 x box lunch
  • 1 x Shabbat lunch at the local restaurant
  • 1 x Shabbat dinner at the local restaurant (Kosher or vegetarian standard 3-course menu, Challah bread, wine for Kiddush)
  • 2 x dinners at the local restaurant (Kosher or vegetarian standard 3-course menu, no beverages incl.)
  • Assisted arrival and departure airport transfers
  • All transfers with standard A/C motor coach as per services
  • Professional tour director throughout
  • Sightseeing tours as per itinerary
  • Entrance fees included where indicated in bold letters
  • Luggage handling at hotel (one piece per person in / out)

Sightseeing tours included:

  • Prague
  • Terezin

Hotel accommodation:

  • Mar 17-20, 2017 Prague:    Majestic Plaza or similar

Budapest Tour features:

  • Selected class hotels, rooms with private facilities
  • Service charges and hotel taxes
  • Breakfast daily
  • 1 x lunch at the local restaurant (Kosher or vegetarian standard 3-course menu, no beverages incl.)
  • 2 x dinners at the local restaurant (Kosher or vegetarian standard 3-course menu, no beverages incl.)
  • Dinner Cruise on the Danube (Duration: 2 hours. 3-course menu lunch or dinner, 2,5 dl wine, mineral water)
  • Assisted arrival and departure airport transfers
  • All transfers with standard A/C motor coach as per services
  • Professional tour director throughout
  • Sightseeing tours as per itinerary
  • Entrance fees included where indicated in bold letters
  • Luggage handling at hotel (one piece per person in / out)

Sightseeing tours included:

  • Budapest

Hotel accommodation:

Mar 20-23, 2017 Budapest: Radisson Blue or similar

Day 1, Mon., Mar 13, 2017    

Arrive in Krakow

Meet and greet upon arrival at Krakow airport. There will be scholarly insights from Dr. Samuel Kassow throughout our tour as we start with the former Jewish quarter Kazimierz. Even today Jews from all over the world travel to Kazimierz and Poland to find roots of their spirituality. We will visit the Old Temple, and Ramuh synagogues, as well as Schindler’s factory. Transfer to our hotel for dinner and an overnight. (D)


Day 2, Tue, Mar 14, 2017

Krakow – Oswiecim – Krakow

Breakfast will be at your hotel. We travel to the infamous World War II Auschwitz-Birkenau complex. Along with Professor Kassow, a local guide will join us to explore the two camps, including the barracks and poignant museum exhibits at Auschwitz One, and the gas chambers, watchtowers and moving memorials in Auschwitz Two-Birkenau. We will delve into the history of the site during the war and its liberation in 1945, including individual stories of some of the camp’s prisoners. Return to Krakow for some free time in the Old Town. Dinner at a kosher restaurant or similar.Overnight in Krakow.     (B, BOX L, D)


Day 3, Wed, Mar 15, 2017

Krakow – Warsaw

Breakfast will be at your hotel. Transfer to Krakow train station where we will board a train to Warsaw. Before the Second World War, Warsaw was home to the largest Jewish community in Europe. It is also renowned for the courageous Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, and today the city is the center of the movement within Poland to re-establish Jewish communities. Lunch Break. We will visit POLIN: the Museum of the History of Polish Jews with its multi-media exhibits of Polish Jewish life for the last millennium. Dr. Kassow was an instrumental consultant in the design of this museum and will share many insights. Check into our hotel. Dinner at a kosher restaurant or similar.Overnight in Warsaw.(B, L, D)


Day 4, Thu, Mar 16, 2017

Warsaw – Treblinka – Warsaw

Breakfast will be at your hotel. Travel to Treblinka for a visit to the Memorial Park. Return to Warsaw and lunch break at the kosher restaurant. Continue with a visit to Gensa, the Jewish Cemetery of Warsaw (1806) holding the graves of several important figures. Continue with a visit to the Monument to the Ghetto Heroes where Professor Kassow’s insights will be particularly enlightening. Visit the Nozyk Synagogue – the only surviving synagogue from the pre-war period, the Warsaw Ghetto Wall remnant on Zlota St, Umschlagplatz – the gathering place for transport to Treblinka, and Mila 18.Dinner will be at the Beit Warszawa with community members. Overnight in Warsaw. (B, L, D)


Day 5, Fri, Mar 17, 2017

Warsaw – Prague

Breakfast will be at your hotel. Transfer to Warsaw airport for early morning flight to Prague.

We begin with a walking tour through Josefov, the Jewish quarter, and surrounding area and visit the following Prague synagogues: the Spanish, Maisel, Pinkas and Klausen – nowadays serving as exhibition halls for the Jewish Museum, with many documents and artifacts pertaining to Prague’s 1000 years of Jewish history. Lunch break on our own in the Old Town. Visit the Old Jewish Cemetery, and the Alt-Neu Synagogue – Europe’s oldest surviving synagogue. Transfer to our hotel to prepare for Shabbat. Shabbat services at the Masorti Synagogue, followed by Shabbat dinner at Dinitz Restaurant or similar. Overnight in Prague.(BD)


Day 6, Sat, Mar 18, 2017

Prague

Breakfast will be at your hotel. Shabbat services. Shabbat lunch at Dinitz restaurant or similar. Shabbat services. A walking tour of the Old town, including views of the Astronomical clock and Charles Bridge, with commentary by Professor Kassow. Havdalah with the Jewish community.Dinner at the local restaurant. Overnight Prague. (B, L, D)


Day 7, Sun, Mar 19, 2017

Prague – Terezin – Prague

Breakfast will be at your hotel. Travel to Terezin. Visit Small Fortress – former Gestapo prison; a tour of the Ghetto Museum. Continue with a tour of the Crematorium and the Terezín. Big Fortress – former Jewish Ghetto.. Return to Prague. 22). Return to Prague for free time to visit Lesser Town and Prague Castle:  Dinner at your hotel. Overnight in Prague.(B, BOX L, D)


Day 8, Mon, Mar 20, 2017

Prague – Budapest

Breakfast will be at your hotel. Check out of hotel and depart for Budapest. Continue through the wine country of Moravia.(Lunch in the Moravian countryside ) Arrive early afternoon in Budapest, 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 beautiful bridges. We will take a panoramic bus tour of Budapest; continue with a walking tour on the Pest side of the city starting with the Parliament district. Dr. Kassow will talk about history and politics in Hungary including the events in 1956. Stop by the statue of Imre Nagy – a Hungarian statesman, independent Communist, and premier of the 1956 revolutionary government whose attempt to establish Hungary’s independence from the Soviet Union which cost him his life. Continue to the Glasshouse – a building used by the Swiss diplomat Carl Lutz to help Jews in Budapest during the Holocaust. Our last stop today will be at the Liberty Square to see the Shoe Memorial to the victims of the German occupation along the Danube. Check into hotel. Dinner is at Hanna kosher restaurant or similar. Overnight in Budapest.(B, L, D)


Day 9, Tue, Mar 21, 2017  

Budapest

Breakfast will be at your hotel. Morning: Jewish district walking tour, visits to the three most important synagogues in the area, first the Dohany Synagogue, the second largest synagogue in Europe. On its grounds is the Raul Wallenberg Memorial park with the Weeping Willow Tree Holocaust Memorial, and The Jewish Cemetery and Museum. Next the Rumbach and the Kazinczy synagogues. These synagogues represent the three major religious wings of Hungarian Jewry. The tour will help to understand Hungarian Jewry’s past and present. Lunch is on your own in the Jewish district. Afternoon visit will continue with visits to the Carl Lutz Memorial, Gozsdu Courtyard, and the Ghetto Memorial. With continued commentary from Professor Kassow,visit The Holocaust Museum, a refurbished 1920’s synagogue which stands as a museum & memorial for Hungarian Jewish Holocaust victims. (Visit the Jewish Theological Seminary –TBA). Evening: meeting at Moshe House with the local Masorti Community with dinner following at Carmel kosher restaurant or similar. Overnight in Budapest. (B, D)


Day 10, Wed, Mar 22, 2017  

Budapest

Breakfast will be at your hotel. Morning: Cross the Danube River to the Buda part of Budapest. See Castle Hill, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visit the medieval Jewish sites including a medieval praying house. Visit the Fishermen’s Bastion and Matthias Church. Return to the Pest side. Lunch is on your own in the Jewish district. Afternoon: free time to explore Andrassy Avenue and visit the renowned outdoor market. Dinner Cruise is on the Danube. Overnight in Budapest (B, D)


Day 11, Thu, Mar 23, 2017   

Depart Budapest

Breakfast will be at your hotel.

Transfer to Budapest airport for your flight home. (B)

Tour Rates

Trip Cost per person:

$3150.00 Land Only (based on 25-29 people)

Round trip air available from NY Area $1200

Call for competitive air pricing for you departure gateway

Group Travel and Health Insurance is available “ highly recommended”

ITC Tours llc 66 West Mt Pleasant Ave Livingston NJ 07039 # 800.247.7235

View Itinerary and Online registration at www.itctours.com/rabbi-fam

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