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prague
Prague
Jewish Quarter (Josefov)

In Prague, there has been a Jewish community for over a thousand years. Fortunately, it has withstood the ravages of time, and this section of Prague is unique. The Jewish Quarter is the setting for the golem story, which kids will find fascinating. In the legend, Rabbi Loew created the golem, a giant from clay, to aid and protect the Jewish community. To begin with, the golem was a big help, but as it became more powerful, the golem ran amok, until the Rabbi removed the magic stone that gave the golem life.

Old Jewish Cemetery - The Old Jewish Cemetery is densely filled with tombstones, almost 12,000 of them. You'll follow a path through the cemetery, past sandstone and marble headstones, right by the grave of Rabbi Loew (candles are lit), and other famous 17th century personages. (This is not a cemetery where kids can wander as they please, but the path is well laid out.)
Old-New Synagogue - The Old-New Synagogue is the oldest synagogue in the Jewish Quarter, dating back to the 13th century. The small, medieval style building has such a presence, a spare simplicity, with whitewashed walls, old golden burnished metal sconces to hold candles, and smooth wooden benches, where generations of people have sat to worship.
The Spanish Synagogue - The Spanish Synagogue is just amazing - glorious Moorish patterns, golden stars on a blue background, geometric designs in maroon, forest green and teal, exquisitely gilded. The Synagogue was built in the 19th century, but it has been recently restored and it's a real gem.

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