Great Synagogue, Budapest

Great Synagogue, Budapest (must see)

Built in the 1850s as a place of worship for the Neolog Jews, this is the second-largest synagogue in the world, running up in size only to the Temple Emanu-El in New York City. Just like its counterpart in Rumbach Street, the Dohány Street synagogue was also designed by Viennese architect, Ludwig Forster, in a similar Moorish Revival style. Set in the old Jewish quarter, the synagogue forms part of a larger complex that includes the Heroes' Temple, the graveyard, the Memorial, and the Jewish Museum. During WWII, Dohány Street marked the border of the Budapest Ghetto and today still carries strong Holocaust connotations.

The massive damage sustained by the Great Synagogue during the Second World War, followed by a long period of neglect under the communist rule, called for an extensive restoration work which finally took place in the 1990s.

The octagonal twin towers of the building, guarding the main entrance topped with a beautiful stained glass rosette, are crowned by onion domes that make it visible all over the city. Inside, the enormous nave rises almost 40 feet high revealing influence of the Gothic, Romantic, and Byzantine styles. Dominating the interior is a new mechanical organ replacing the original one created in the 19th century.

Just as in many other synagogues, the seats on the ground level are reserved for men, while the upper gallery is for women. In all, the place can seat up to 3,000 people.

Those interested in the Jewish history, can explore the Jewish Heroes’ mausoleum next door, or the museum and archives upstairs which are quite informative, thought-provoking and enlightening, if you like... Buried in the local graveyard are the Jews died during the Holocaust, as well as the non-Jews who helped saving Jewish lives. The adjacent park holds a memorial to these people.

Tip:
The Great Synagogue offers group tours in a variety of languages. Visitors must observe a strict dress code, though. If need be, there's a special “overall” type of clothing provided at the entrance.

Opening Hours:
https://www.greatsynagogue.hu/gallery_syn.html#4

This sight is featured in a self-guided walking tour of Budapest, Hungary within the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" which can be downloaded from iTunes App Store or Google Play. Please download the app to your mobile phone or tablet for travel directions for visiting this sight. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Great Synagogue on Map

Sight Name: Great Synagogue
Sight Location: Budapest, Hungary
Sight Type: Religious
Guide(s) containing this sight: Jewish Heritage Walking Tour   Pest Orientation Walk  

Walking Tours in Budapest, Hungary

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Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.0 km

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