The Old Synagogue (Polish: Synagoga Stara) was an Orthodox Jewish synagogue situated in the Kazimierz district of Kraków, Poland. In Yiddish it was referred to as the Alta Shul. It is the oldest synagogue building still standing in Poland, and one of the most precious landmarks of Jewish architecture in Europe. Until the beginning of the Second World War in 1939, it was one of the city's most important synagogues as well as the main religious, social, and organizational centre of the Kraków Jewish community.
The Synagogue was built in 1407 or 1492; the date of building varies with several sources. The original building was rebuilt in 1570 under the watchful eye of an Italian architect Mateo Gucci. The rebuilding included the attic wall with loopholes, windows placed far above ground level, and thick, masonry walls with heavy buttressing to withstand siege, all features borrowed from military architecture. There was further reconstruction work in 1904 and in 1913. The Old Synagogue is a rare, surviving example of a Polish fortress synagogue. In 1794 General Tadeusz Kościuszko spoke from the synagogue to gain the Jewish support in the Kościuszko Uprising. A plaque in the entrance hall commemorates this event:
|Monday||10:00 AM – 1:30 PM|
|Tuesday||9:00 AM – 4:30 PM|
|Wednesday||9:00 AM – 4:30 PM|
|Thursday||9:00 AM – 4:30 PM|
|Friday||9:00 AM – 4:30 PM|
|Saturday||9:00 AM – 4:30 PM|
|Sunday||9:00 AM – 4:30 PM|
Biggles McKoy | Feb 6, 2018
Worth a visit if you are in Krakow. You will probably spend about an hour there and entry costs 10 zloty. There is not currently much mention of women's contribution to Jewish life in the city though.
Karol Wilkoszewski | Feb 20, 2018
Oldest and largest Synagogue in Kraków. Unfortunately, it was heavily damaged during WW2, and was not really able to rebuid its exposition. Museum workers are helpful and friendly. Still, most tourist choose Remuh Synagogue.
Timon Hareven | Feb 20, 2018
Very informing and beautiful old synagogue turned into a museum. Bilingual Polish-English information plates and well-equipped exhibition.
ddur77 | May 26, 2018
Different from all other synagogs I have seen before.
carl burnett | Apr 17, 2018
Very educational with some lovely artifacts on exhibit
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