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A Cultural and Jewish Heritage Tour to the Baltic States

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Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia in the year of the 25th Anniversary of these nations’ Independence from the Former Soviet Union, August 25-September 2, 2016

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Sophia Kulich’s Travel, Winner of the 2016 Travvy Gold Award for Best Small Retail Travel Agency and its sister company The Jewish Travel Agency announce a new Jewish Heritage tour to the Baltic States: Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia. The 8-night, 9-day tour takes place August 25-September 2, 2016 in the year of the 25th anniversary of these nations’ independence from the former Soviet Union. Major tourist sites will be visited in all countries, but a special emphasis will be placed on the Jewish Heritage of the region.



According to the travel industry website TravelPulse“Heritage Travel is the ‘Next Big Thing’.” For Sophia Kulich, a Jew, who emigrated from the former Soviet Union, Jewish heritage has been her passion. The tour is based upon a minimum of four persons. The starting price per person is $4,800. (Additional customizations beyond the stated itinerary could add to the cost.) Says Sophia, “Participants will eat delicious local food, marvel at the magnificent scenery and architecture, immerse themselves in Jewish culture, and return with a rich appreciation of the region and maybe even their own heritage, in this important anniversary year.”



Highlights of the 8-night/9-day educational tour include:


*The Jewish Quarter in Vilnius, called “Lithuanian Jerusalem,” and the Ghettos where 40,000 Jews were concentrated.

*The Jasha Heifetz music school, the historic ORT school building, the Tarbut Gimnazia (now the JCC), the former Yiddish theatre, and the Rabbis' Council (hosted Theodor Hertzel’s visit to Vilnius).

*The grounds of the Great Synagogue of Vilnius (destroyed by the Soviets in 1955), the Vilna Gaon monument and his former house.

*Trakai, the ancient capital and residence of the Grand Dukes of Lithuania, where the Karaims - a small ethnic group from Crimea that confessed Judaism – was brought by Vytautas the Great 600 years ago.   

*Mapu and L. Zamenhoff Streets in the Old Town of Kaunas, the location of the pre-War Jewish Real and Schvabe gymnasiums and the site of the Ghetto during World War II.

*The Seventh and the Ninth Forts of Kaunas, which were the murder sites of thousands of Jews from Lithuania, France and Germany during World War II.

*The remarkable “Curonian Spit,” that runs along the southeastern coastline of the Baltic Sea and is split between Lithuania and Russia's Kaliningrad province.

*The lovely Lithuanian Baltic seaside resort communities of KlaipÄ—da, Nida and Palanga

*The Lithuanian city of Siauliai, including the Jewish neighbourhood, Chaim Frenkel tannery, and the synagogue.

*The Great and Small Guild Houses of Riga, Latvia

*Riga’s chic “Art Nouveau” District, where many prominent Jewish Latvians, such as the philosopher Sir Isaiah Berlin, once lived.

*The memorial to the burnt “Great Synagogue of Riga,” the 19th C Jewish school, the museum “Jews in Latvia,” and the Jewish community Center.

*Riga’s “Spiker Quarter,” with its Ghetto Museum and Hospital Bikur Holim—all small traces of past, brave Jewish lives.

*Riga’s Rumbula and Bikierniki Memorials, where Nazis murdered tens of thousands of Jews from Latvia, Germany and Czechoslovakia. 

*The Salaspils in Riga -- the memorial site of a concentration camp during World War II

*The Janis Lipke Memorial Place, in Kipsala, Lativa, memorializing how this Riga dock port worker saved 55 Jews during World War II

* Jurmala – one of the oldest Spa resorts on the Baltic Sea

* Sigulda – a Latvian town with much culture, nature, and recreational activities

* “Old Town,” Tallinn, Estonia and the “Singing Field,” the site where 25 years ago, Estonians “sang” for independence from the former Soviet Union

*Tallin’s Jewish sites, including: the modern Tallinn Synagogue, the JCC, and Jewish Museum.



Hotels: All hotels in the major cities (Vilnius, Riga and Tallinn) are centrally located, 5* boutique and historic properties with luxury and personality.



For more information, Contact Sophia Kulich, Owner of Sophia’s Travel at: Sophia@sophiastravel.com or info@jewishtravelagency.com


April 21, 2023

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