Private Jewish Heritage Tour of Lisbon cruise excursion

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As the tour starts too early, about 08.30am, everything will be closed till 10.00am, a good introduction to the city of Lisbon and the first settlers including too the arrival of the first Jews in the Iberian Peninsula, will be welcome from the top ofEdward VII Park viewing the oldest part of the city and the river. 

Marquês de Pombal Square, Sebastião José de Carvalho e Melo the Marquis of Pombal as the name shows, himself from Jewish origin. It was under his government as Prime Minister of the King Joseph I, from 1750-1777, and by decree, that the distinction between New Christians and Old Christians finished. 

Following to Ohel Jacob Synagogue, formerly the Ashkenaze Synagogue but now the Crypto Jewish Community Synagogue at Av. Elias Garcia. 

Folllowing to Alexandre Herculano Street, the place of the actual Synagogue in Lisbon Shaare Tiekwa, maybe a visit will be allowed if the restoring works for the centenary celebrations have been finished already. Built by donations of the Lisbon Jewish colony in 1904, whose architect was Ventura Terra. The façade shows a mixture of several motives from different styles, with ten high fists with stained glass windows. At the interior paintings from Veloso Salgado can be seen as well as a magnificent silver lamp by Christofanetti.   

Av. da Liberdade, the main avenue in Lisbon that links Marquês de Pombal Square to the old part of the city.

Restauradores Square and Rossio, one of the main spots of the Holy Office headquarters in Lisbon (Estaus Palace where nowadays we have the Theatre Mary II), and the place where the condemned by the Inquisition were burned. 

Praça da Figueira and Martim Moniz, two old squares completely restored and looking different nowadays were once entrances of Lisbon, under this squares vestiges of an old Jewish Cemetery were found (we can also pay compliment to the actual Jewish Cemetery in Lisbon in case the group is interested). 

Then following to St. George’s Castle on top of the oldest settled hill, maybe a visit to the Castle depending on the group wishes. The castle was the residence of the Portuguese Kings till the 16th century and from up here there’s a magnificent city view, as well as over Tagus river, 25th April Bridge and Christ King Monument. 

Alfama, one of Lisbon’s oldest quarters into Rua da Judiaria in the Old Jewish Quarter, with its narrow cobbled streets that has to be done on foot, it will be done according to the group. 

From Alfama to Praça do Comércio along the old part of the harbour passing by Igreja da Conceição Velha with a beautiful 15th century Manueline façade but where existed once one of the oldest Synagogues in Lisbon. 

Praça do Comércio a short stop to admire the square and to have another sight of the Alfama hill, not forgetting that this was also a place used by the Inquisition for their public activities. 

According to the group and to time, from Praça do Comércio we can also follow to Praça do Município that was once a Jewish area and onwards to Chiado area and to Bairro Alto, the 16th century quarter and the second oldest hill to be settled, considered the first planned area of Lisbon built by a very wealthy and well known Jew of the time named Guedelha Palaçano.   

Lunch Break – according to the options of the group!!!     

Afternoon – Belém Area  

Belém area was during the 16th century a long beach and one of the spots from where the Portuguese navigators set out for their discovery voyages all over the World.

A panoramic visit to this area will be appropriate due to the time left and the returning hour to the ship. 

So, entering this area, several interesting places will be pointed out as the Coach Museum, then the 18th century Palace transformed nowadays into the Official Residence of the President of the Republic, The Square of the Empire where the Mosteiro dos Jerónimos, the Navy Museum, the Archaeological Museum, the Planetarium and the Cultural Centre of Belém stand. 

Nevertheless, in spite of the time, a visit to Mosteiro dos Jerónimos from the 16th century and a World Heritage that houses the tombs of Vasco da Gama (the well known navigator that first routed to India) and Luís de Camões (the 16thcentury Portuguese epic writer) is worthwhile even for some brief minutes, it’s one of the finest Portuguese monuments. 

Then, in this same area but closer to the riverside the group will have the opportunity to see the Torre de Belém, another magnificent monument from the 16th century and World Heritage too that watches the entrance of the estuary and the Lisbon harbour. 

Last but not the least, the Discoveries Monument, maybe a short stop to watch it closer from both sides and identify the New Christians who contributed with their knowledge for this great enterprise of the Portuguese discoveries that turned the Portuguese 16th century into one of Portugal’s Golden Period. 

Back to the ship in Cais da Rocha do Conde de Óbidos along the riverside and the Lisbon Harbour.”