Major Synagogue
Major Synagogue
4.5
Plan your visit
The area
Address
Neighborhood: Barrio Gòtico (Barri Gòtic)
With its iconic, old-Europe streets and alleys, this picturesque neighborhood is the very heart of Barcelona. It blends historic artifacts from its days under Roman dominion up through the Spanish Civil War with a vibrant modern-day culture of artisan shops and authentic culinary experiences. Avid explorers will be thrilled to discover quaint terraces and plazas brought to life by the many small bars and local musicians lasting late into the night. Fashionistas will be drawn to Portal de L’Angel, which is lined with well-known brand names and smaller boutique stands.
How to get there
  • Liceu • 4 min walk
  • Jaume I • 4 min walk
Reach out directly
See what travelers are saying
  • Avi G
    Edgware, United Kingdom7 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Lovely for a brief bit of Jewish history
    Lovely little synagogue and some history I'd not thought about. €4 is maybe a little steep if you're just measuring the 10min walk-and-talk about it and don't like how much of it is unoriginal. But it's a pretty unique experience and feels like a thing that is worth a couple of euros to keep going. The guides are engaged and interesting and up for a conversation afterwards. Definitely worth a pop in I think.
    Visited December 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written December 27, 2023
  • Gila
    8 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    An important stop for Catalonian Jews
    We saw the outside of the synagogue, built on the ruins of an ancient Roman structure. The building itself is very small and nondescript, because in Medieval Spain a synagogue 🕍 was never allowed to be taller or bigger than the smallest church ⛪️ in the city. See captions for more detail.
    Visited December 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written January 1, 2024
  • historyfanatic99
    New York City, New York201 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    An ancient gem
    Another historical Jewish site in Spain - not to be missed. This building is down a small street in the old Jewish area. The synagogue is small with parts dating from the 3rd cen CE. It is considered the oldest synagogue in Spain . Here we can see many different levels of building with Roman walls the oldest. There is a short 10-15 min explanation given by the staff which clarifies some questions about the artifacts shown. This area is near the Cathedral and in the gothic quarter - definitely a must see.
    Visited June 2024
    Traveled as a couple
    Written June 11, 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles222 reviews
Excellent
111
Very good
74
Average
25
Poor
9
Terrible
3

historyfanatic99
New York City, NY201 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Couples
Another historical Jewish site in Spain - not to be missed. This building is down a small street in the old Jewish area. The synagogue is small with parts dating from the 3rd cen CE. It is considered the oldest synagogue in Spain . Here we can see many different levels of building with Roman walls the oldest. There is a short 10-15 min explanation given by the staff which clarifies some questions about the artifacts shown. This area is near the Cathedral and in the gothic quarter - definitely a must see.
Written June 11, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Joe V
Fairfield, CT19 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2019
Moving experience, fascinating history.If you are visiting Barcelona, highly recommended. Notice how the Synagogue is below ground after centuries of building the street above, Notice how narrow the streets are as they date from the Middle Ages....
Written March 9, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

754alecs
Las Vegas, NV70 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2014 • Solo
It's hard to believe that Barcelona had a thriving and welcomed Jewish population until the expulsion, of course! The Main Synagogue was the largest of five synagogues in the 14th century and earlier, but is still only a couple of rooms. Trivia - the law at the time was that no religious building could be bigger than the smallest Christian church...This synagogue was rediscovered in the 1990s, and was renovated by a small group of residents. They give a short tour of the building, and some of the excavation is viewable below the current floor, protected by plexiglass. If you are interested in the Jewish history of Barcelona, this Synagogue and the surrounding Jewish quarter (a couple of small streets) are a must visit.
Written December 2, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

donnfs
Amawalk, NY5 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2014 • Couples
My wife and I visited the Temple at #15 Carrer de Marlet today and it was, unfortunately, closed. Standing there next to the doorway entrance that proudly displays a mezzuah(sp?), you become immersed in the history of the Jewish residents of Barcelona and their eventual expulsion from Spain during the Inquisition. As Rick Steve pointed out, the building was built and was pointed East toward Jerusalem. We tested this and he is quite correct.

There are many sights to see in Barcelona but few draw the emotional response to be had from this aged Synagogue from the third century, in disrepair, standing tall in the face of such acrimonius prejudice, a tribute to the people that suffered here and left a permanent memory behind for all of us.

See it, feel it and support it.
Written September 21, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

smakibbfb
Belfast, UK289 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2012 • Friends
Nearest metro station is Jaume1 on the yellow line. Its only 5 minutes walk from the metro and worth your time to visit if you have any interest in the roots of your Christian faith. 2-50 Euros entry fee to help with the restoration. There isn’t really a whole lot to look at, its only 2 small rooms and much of the original building has been lost over the centuries. However, Roy, the guide/narrator was excellent and painted a fascinating portrait of the history of the Jewish community in Barcelona. Most of the artefacts on display are not specific to this particular synagogue but they do lend it authenticity. I was impressed with the silver ‘pointer’; presumably the rabbi prefers not touch the scroll with his own hands as the Word of God is too precious.

Hopefully, you found this review useful, if so please take a second to click the 'yes' button below, and of course should you have any questions I am happy to offer an informed opinion via tripadvisors web mail.
Written September 17, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Deborah T
Lebanon, NH73 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2015 • Couples
The Old Synagogue, in the Serafad neighborhood, is the best "attraction" we saw in Barcelona. Two rooms were the original synagogue, currently showing a Roman wall from 300 AD that was an original, with the Gothic and current built on top to be level with the developing street line. The short tour (in English) was astoundingly excellent, a young woman who was chockablock with historical information that explained an awful lot about what is generally known about the Jews in Spain (i.e., The Inquisition) and the absolutely fascinating historical significance of the community. Housing a wonderful donated collection of Jewish artifacts, the most amazing is a Torah that a couple (not Jewish) found in a flea market (yes, a flea market) in Morocco and donated. This history became a new lens for being in Barcelona. Incredible.
Written June 19, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Alfred F
Miami, FL85 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2015 • Couples
Barcelona is rich in Jewish history. The Disputation in 1263, the Programs in 1391 and the Inquisition in 1492 all left their marks on this small Jewish community. Begin your trip at the Main Synagogue with a brief lecture by the staff. Then walk around the few blocks of small streets a short distance from the Barcelona Cathedral. If you want to know more, ask the staff at the Synagogue to arrange a private tour. Our tour guide was Andres Fajngold who speaks perfect English and told us much more about this important place in Jewish and Spanish history.
Written June 18, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ilanashemesh
Tel Aviv, Israel106 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2014 • Couples
Learn about the history of the old Jewish community in Barcelona which was eradicated 100 years before the inquisition because the Jews were blamed for the Bubonic Plague. It is the oldest standing synagogue in the world. Very small and simple still in use only on occasions like Bar Mitsvah or holidays. There is a girl who gives a very good talk about it in English and Hebrew.
Written July 30, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

snowydog
London, UK304 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2011 • Couples
I saw a recommendation for this synagogue whilst browsing a Barcelona guide and am really glad I took the trouble to seek it out.

Location wise it is just a few minutes from the main square Placa de Sant Jaume (where City hall is located) - with your back to the City hall head up Carrer de Sant Honorat and then turn left after about 50 metres down a narrow side street.

From the street there is not much to see - all that is left of the original synagogue is the basement area through a low doorway and down about four narrow steps.

Entrance was EUR2.50 but this included a "tour" (its just two rooms!) from one of the museum volunteers who spent about 10 minutes talking to me about jewish history in Barcelona, the building itself and its relics -all fascinating stuff.

Although the synagogue dates back to the 3rd century and is in fact the oldest in Europe, it was only rediscovered as a synagogue about 20 years ago. As such there is little of the original building left except a few walls and keystones so dont expect anything grand!

Most of what you see in terms of artefacts has been donated by well wishers but even so is still very beautiful and there is a real sense of history here.

For the price of a cup of coffee I would certainly recommend 15 minutes here discovering one of the less well known sides of Barcelona and its history.
Written October 5, 2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

BGJ-DC
Washington DC, DC4,566 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2015 • Couples
The ancient main synagogue in Barcelona is one of the oldest in Europe. The synagogue is tiny – two rooms below street level – disguising the fact that before the pogroms of 1391 and the expulsion of 1492, roughly 15%-20% of Barcelona’s population was Jewish. The synagogue was lost to history until rediscovered in 1987. The synagogue is now open to the public for a small contribution (2.50 Euros per person). It contains numerous interesting artifacts. The docents give a short talk that is both moving and informative. The synagogue still is not listed in many guidebooks, but it is worth a visit.
Written October 21, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Major Synagogue, Barcelona

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