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Private Jewish Tuscan Community Tour
Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Sun
Pick-up at your hotel, more details at booking
Your full day private Jewish Tuscan Community Tour will take you on a fascinating journey to discover the beautiful medieval towns of Pitigliano and Sorano.
Your driver and guide will meet you at your hotel to take you on a full day excursion.
The journey will start immediately while you enjoy the enchanting views from the car. Leaving Rome you will head to the North and pass through the beautiful countryside of Lazio and Tuscany. In less than two hours you will reach your destination: the province of Grosseto.
Your fist stop will be Pitigliano which is also called The Little Jerusalem thanks to the historical presence of a well integrated Jewish community.
For many centuries this was a border city between the Gran Duchy of Tuscany and the Papal State. The Jewish community grew thanks to the numerous people that escaped from Rome to avoid persecution during the Counterreformation period.
The community was so well integrated with the rest of the population that during the fascism all the Jews were able to escape capture thanks to the help of their Christian fellow citizens. Today there are almost no Jews in town but the 16th century synagogue is still officiated from time to time and it is possible to visit many of the spots where the community lived.
Here you will have some free time; you can either continue exploring the city on your own or have lunch in one of the Pitigliano’s delicious restaurants. Be sure to be back on time to continue your tour to Sorano!
The small town of Sorano has managed to preserve its striking medieval character throughout the centuries. This ancient village is located on a tuff stone hill right over the Lente River. Sorano’s ghetto was established in 1619 by the Medici family. It is still possible to spot the signs left by the revolving doors used to close the ghetto at night.
Like in Pitigliano the Jewish community left the city during the 20th century; although its presence is still strong. Your guide will show you the sign of the Synagogue, the oven of unleavened bread and other old buildings.
At the end of your tour your driver will bring you back to your accommodations in Rome.
– Round trip transportation with private car
– Expert English speaking driver coordinator
– Visit of Pitigliano
– Visit of Sorano
– Confirmation will be received at time of booking
– Voucher and detailed operator information, including local emergency numbers will be received three weeks before the date of your tour.
– Adult pricing applies to all travelers
– We suggest wearing comfortable shoes because the historical centers of Pitigliano and Sorano are pedestrian areas.
Pick-up at your accommodation
Drop-off at your accommodation
Pitigliano is located on a tuff’s cliff in southern Tuscany.
This was the center of the Etruscans civilization. Around the village it is possible to admire the cave-tombs built during their domination. Most of the caves are still in use as cellars and lockers.
The subsequent Roman domination on the other hand didn’t leave many signs; hidden in the cellars under some old houses there are niches that were used to keep the urns of the dead.
During the medieval period the city was ruled by three major aristocratic families: the Aldobrandeschi, the Orsini and the Medici.
For many centuries the city housed a very well integrated Jewish community.
Pitigliano’s location, at the border between the Papal State and the Gran Duchy of Tuscany caused many Jews here to find the peace that they couldn’t have under the Pope’s jurisdiction. When the Reign of Italy was founded the Jews became citizens and many families started to leave the small village for bigger cities. When the Mussolini’s government passed the Racial Laws there were only a small Jewish community left in Pitigliano; all the Jews fled to avoid capture thanks to the help of their Christian fellow citizens.
Things to see
After the Second World War almost no Jews went back in Pitigliano; however the cultural heritage is very well preserved. Entering the ancient Ghetto is possible to visit the 16th century synagogue, restored and reopened in 1995. Beneath the temple are located the areas used for the ritual bath, the kosher butcher and winery and the outstanding Forno delle Azzime (the old kosher bakery).
Also the Jewish cemetery survived the many changes that involved the community.
Walking through Via Zuccarelli and the alley Goito it is possible to reach the Old Mill Pelliccetti used by the Jewish community for many years.
Pitigliano is very famous for its wine; the Bianco di Pitigliano (White of Pitigliano) has won many awards. Lately also its kosher version is becoming very celebrated.