- This seminar, taking place in Spain (for 6 days) and in Israel (for 5 days), will be led b Haim Aronovitz, Director of Melton Travel Seminars. The seminar is open to adults who enjoy in-depth Jewish educational travel, including all Melton students and graduates.
- Accommodations: 10 nights
- Meals: Breakfast and one additional meal daily
- Educational Programming: All entrance fees and programs as per the Melton itinerary.
The "Sefarad: Then and Now" seminar begins in Madrid and ends in Jerusalem.
DAY ONE: Monday
"…AND THE EXILE OF JERUSALEM THAT IS IN SEFARAD..."
2:00 p.m. Program begins at our Madrid hotel with introductions to the program and to each other
Depart for the city center: Ground Zero!
Explore Early Madrid and post-Expulsion Madrid
Opening dinner and meeting with a member of the Madrid Jewish Community.
DAY TWO: Tuesday
TOLEDO: JERUSALEM OF SPAIN
Depart for Toledo
Toledo as a symbol of Jewish success
Visit the Santa Maria la Blanca and El Transito synagogues
What is a Jew?
Meeting with a member of the Order of Maria Estrella
Who was a Jew? Who is a Jew?
Group discussion on way to Cordoba
A Truly Golden Age…
Dinner with musical accompaniment at Casa Mazal, in the old Jewish Quarter (Juderia)
DAY THREE: Wednesday
CORDOBA: MOORISH WONDER CITY; CITY OF JEWISH LEARNING
Free until 10:00 a.m. to explore the Great Mosque - La Mesquita - on own
Explore Cordoba's Juderia - birthplace of Maimonides
Of History and Culture:
Two study sessions at Casa Sefarad
Lunch and free time to explore
Travel to Seville
Seville: Sometime Capital of all of Spain
Introduction alongside Guadalquivir River
Expo and Identity: Visit Plaza de España
Dinner on own and free evening (enjoy Seville's famed night entertainment, including Flamenco clubs)
DAY FOUR: Thursday
SEVILLE: POINTS OF DEPARTURE, FORCED AND UNFORCED
Seville, Scourge of Jews and Center of Imperial Power
Visit the Alcazar of Seville
Study session in Gardens of the Alcazar
1391: The beginning of the end
Explore the Santa Cruz neighborhood
Go West? Go East? Futures Unknown
Visit the cathedral, including the tomb of Christopher Columbus
Lunch break and free time in Santa Cruz
Summary study session
Travel to Granada via Lucena, "The Jewish City" (Time permitting)
Brief Introduction and overview of Granada on arrival
Dinner on own and free evening
DAY FIVE: Friday
GRANADA, LAST HOLD OF THE MOORS; SYMBOL OF EXPULSION
"…A Tradition… that they are descendants of Judah and Benjamin"
Visit to the Alhambra, jewel in the crown; site of signing of the Edict of Expulsion
Study session in the Gardens of Alhambra
Drive to Madrid
Prepare for Shabbat, including optional Kabbalat Shabbat services
Special Shabbat meal at the synagogue with members of the Kehilla and other guests.
DAY SIX: Saturday
Shabbat at leisure (no programming until late afternoon)
Seudah Shlisheet (snacks) and study session at our hotel
Dinner on own and free time
DAY SEVEN: Sunday
Depart for the airport
Flight to Israel (not part of land package and to be purchased individually; please book the morning El Al flight or the comparable Iberia flight, departing around 10-11 a.m.)
Arrive at Ben Gurion Airport around 4:00 p.m.
Transfer to Tiberias
Dinner at hotel
DAY EIGHT: Monday
FROM EXILE TO EXILE
The Great Eagle: Maimonides
Go up to the Rambam's grave and study session
An Unlikely Story: The Greatest Jew of Her Time
Visit Casa Donna Gracia and study session
Between Exile and Redemption
Visit Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai's grave complex and study session
Travel to Tsfat
Bringing about Tikkun after the Expulsion
Study session overlooking the Old Cemetery
Dinner at Ilan Roberg's family gourmet restaurant at Moshav Livnim
DAY NINE: Tuesday
CONVIVENCIA: IS THERE AN ISRAELI MODEL?
Visit Kfar Kassem
Majority/Minority: How Does It Feel?
Meet with a leading member of the Southern Islamic Movement
Visit Beit Hatefutsot
- The Golden Age of Spanish Jewry: An Examination of Contrasting Narratives
Tour of sections of the exhibition
- The First Hebrew Language Revival
Arrive in Jerusalem in time for group dinner
DAY TEN: Wednesday
JERUSALEM OF SEFARDIM
Between Jews and Others in Medieval Jewish Thought
Study session with Dr. Zohar Raviv
Enter the Old City Walls
Jerusalem of Sephardim: Inside the walls
(… following the Sephardi storyline over four hundred years)
The Four Sephardic Synagogues and Their Story
Lunch in the Jewish Quarter
An Invitation to Piyut: The Songs of Spanish Jewry
(with light refreshments at private home)
DAY ELEVEN: Thursday
JERUSALEM OF SEPHARDIM: BEYOND THE WALLS
In Search of Things Past: From Yemin Moshe to Nahlaot
Lunch break in the market
A new Jewish Golden Age?
Walk through the Rehavia neighborhood
Between Jews and Jews and Between Jews and Others: Sefarad and Modern Israeli Society
A discussion with distinquished Israeli thinker
Festive farewell dinner at Darna, a Berber restaurant
Note: Itinerary subject to change. Museum visits and personal shopping time may be disrupted due to unforeseen circumstances or the many religious, state and local holidays observed in the destinations being visited.
- The Golden Age of Spanish Jewry: An Examination of Contrasting Narratives
Details will be available soon.
Note: We will do our best to assist you with extensions both before and after the seminar.
Need to Know
- Group rates are per person based on double occupancy and a minimum of 15 fully paying participants per bus. Should the number of participants drop below the minimum listed above, we may adjust the cost of the trip to reflect the additional expense of operating the program.
- Tour prices are per person in U.S. dollars. All hotel accommodations, motor coach transportation, special dinners, sightseeing, admissions, luggage handling and the services of local guides, drivers, and the tour guide/educator are included.
- A non-refundable sum of $500 is required for registration. This sum will be put towards the overall cost of the seminar. If the seminar is cancelled, the registration fee will be refunded.
- Hotel Accommodations: The tour price includes all hotel accommodations, in hotel rooms with private bathrooms. Our standard is to provide the best available hotels while considering value. Although the level of the accommodations may differ slightly from hotel to hotel, we are committed to your comfort. Two-bed rooms are reserved in most hotels. Triples are two-bed rooms with a rollaway cot where available and are not recommended when considering the comfort of those in the room. King-size beds are not available in most hotels; what is considered king-size usually consists of two single beds pushed together and made up separately, but with one headboard. Some two-bed rooms may have two twin - not full- or queen-size - beds.
- Meals are included as indicated in the itinerary. All meals provided in Israel are kosher. In travel beyond Israel, group meals are kosher unless otherwise specified. Participants can order additional kosher meals at prices set by our local agents.
- All trips are conducted by a Melton educator who remains with the group throughout the tour.
- Gratuities Included: All gratuities for restaurant staff are included.
- Baggage: The Travel Agent and/or Tour Operator, shall not be held responsible for any damage to or loss of luggage/personal items. All damage/loss must be reported at time of incident and documented in writing by local authorities for submission to the insurance company. With regard to airline baggage allowance, different carriers have different regulations for business and coach, please check with your individual carrier with regard to permitted number of pieces, weights and dimensions. The tour operator is not responsible for fees levied by any air carrier for the transport of personal belongings of any kind.
- Porterage at hotels. Please note that room service is not included.
- Flights and personal insurance are not included.
- Transfers from / to the airport unless as part of an organized group travelling together.
- Personal Expenses, including meals not mentioned above or drinks during meals, unless specified above, or room service.
- Travel and health Insurance.
- Airline Security Measures: In the U.S., you must provide identification in the form of a passport at the time of airport check-in for travel to international destinations. Your passport name must match the name on your tour reservation and airline ticket or you may be denied boarding.
- If you are traveling from an airport outside the jurisdiction of the U.S, you will need to determine what travel documentation and identification is required for that particular airport.
- Due to heightened security regulations, certain items such as a metal nail file, pocketknife, cigarette lighter or tweezers, and some liquid, gel, or aerosol items may not be permitted in your carry-on luggage. Please call your airline prior to departure to obtain current information on non-permissible carry-on items and recommended airport check-in times. You may also wish to visit the Transportation Security Administration website at www.tsa.gov to obtain more information on acceptable identity documentation and prohibited luggage items.
- Holidays and Museum Closures - Museum visits and personal shopping time may be disrupted due to unforeseen circumstances or the many religious, state and local holidays observed in the destinations being visited.
- Photography During Tours: We will occasionally use photographs taken by fellow guests or your trip director for promotional purposes. If you prefer that your photo not be used in any marketing activities, please notify us at the start of your tour.
We strongly recommend that comprehensive health coverage and trip cancellation insurance be purchased.
Gil Travel recommends RoamRight Travel Insurance. Consider travel protection for:
- Trip Cancellation
- Trip Interruption
- Emergency Medical Expenses
- Emergency Evacuation/Repatriation of Remains
- Trip Delay
- Baggage & Personal Effects
- Baggage Delay and more…
For more information on the available plans or to enroll, visit RoamRight Travel Insurance or contact RoamRight at 1-866-891-6614 and reference Gil Travel.
Please Note: To be eligible for the waiver of pre-existing medical condition exclusion, the protection plan must be purchased within 21 days from the time you make your initial trip deposit, the entire non-refundable amount of the trip must be insured, and you must be medically able to travel at the time the premium is paid. However, the travel protection plan itself can be purchased any time prior to departure.