Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum

Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum

Speciality Museums
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9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
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About
The Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum contains the site of one of only two synagogues in Shanghai, the Ohel Moshe Synagogue, along with two exhibition halls. Volunteers offer informative tours of the museum.
Suggested duration
1-2 hours
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
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4.5
722 reviews
Excellent
447
Very good
223
Average
43
Poor
8
Terrible
1

Jo-Ann
Washington15,801 contributions
May 2021 • Couples
A really wonderfully designed museum with details and stories in English & Chinese. I loved the stories from the refugees although they were mostly sad. It was great to be able to learn so much more about Shanghai’s generosity. Line 12 Tilanqiao metro station takes you straight to the museum and interesting surroundings.
Written May 17, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

steve1118
Shanghai, China93 contributions
Dec 2020 • Family
This museum is worth visiting. This is more than an important memorial to the Holocaust. It is also a testament to hope amidst terror. By visiting you will also learn about a unique moment in Shanghai’s history. This museum is a reminder that shanghai has a history as a leading international city. The exhibits in the museum are professionally curated and informative. The wall outside with names of refugees who were able to escape the holocaust is touching. And the preserved building in the midst of modern shanghai towers shows how much shanghai has developed.
Written December 30, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

SanFrancisco1onthego
San Francisco, CA44 contributions
Oct 2019
This museum opened my eyes to the resource Shanghai was to the Jewish people during WWII. The testimonials and the movie were impactful and I would encourage you to visit. Also, it's located in a part of the city not yet gentrified, so you get a better glimpse of old Shanghai when you are there.
Written January 2, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Jenniferpenguin
Sydney123 contributions
Jan 2020
I decided to visit this museum as I had a family friend who was a Jewish refugee in WWII. It was lovely to see a part of Chinese history that many are not aware of, that China was one of the few countries willing to take in Jewish refugees in the dark days of the 30s. A little off the beaten track, but not too difficult and there is a bonus temple around the corner.
Written January 10, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Extraordinary141139
3 contributions
Nov 2019 • Couples
A quiet, authentic museum in the original buildings which housed a synagogue, meeting hall and tavern for jewish refugees rescued by Shanghai citizens. Map of the surrounding area gives visitors a chance to also explore the neighborhood and see firsthand how the Jews lived side by side with the Chinese during WWII. Fascinating museum.
Written January 6, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Chris P
Shanghai, China4,924 contributions
Feb 2021 • Friends
Loved the improved and expanded museum. So much more to see and read about the Jews in Shanghai. Well worth a visit - COVID restrictions are in place e.g. mask, health code etc
Written February 7, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

RoyStormer
Guangzhou, China331 contributions
Jul 2021 • Couples
We really enjoyed the new museum and their entire collection. Mainly personal stories and lots of history to explore in the multitude of rooms.

There is a lot to learn here about a part of history that is virtually unknown to the uninformed.

Very close to the metro and inexpensive to visit.
Written July 21, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Dan M
Tel Aviv, Israel15,458 contributions
Aug 2016 • Couples
What were the odds to find in Shanghai Jewish refugees from the Holocaust ?
So far from Europe ?

Actually 20,000 were saved from the gas chambers and the crematorium, right here, in this district of Shanghai.

And it was thanks to 2 Righteous Among the Nations, one Chinese and one Japanese that despite their government orders delivered visas to Jews trying to escape the coming holocaust.
And they kept doing that even after being discovered, from their home in Europe.

This Museum is a testimony of the life of these refugees as they lived it here, 70 years ago...and were saved from an horrible fate.

As usual I have attached some pictures to give you a better understanding of this place.

Near the ultra modernism and hyper technology of Shanghai, this is a totally different experience but not so less interesting nor revealing.

One which makes you think and reflect ...
Written November 28, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

MrJoeG
Minneapolis, MN178 contributions
Aug 2013 • Solo
Unless you were a Jewish refugee in Shanghai, there's no compelling reason to go to this museum. It largely consists of plaques to read and photos to look at. You can read all this information at home on the internet. There's maybe 10-15 physical items on display in the whole museum, and they are mundane items like chairs and suitcases. A good portion of the museum is dedicated to explaining the Jewish Holocaust in Germany, probably the most well documented event of the last 100 years. No need to travel to a Chinese museum to read about it by someone who grew up speaking Mandarin. The 50 RMB price also seems high for a rather dull place. Since this was the location the refugees lived, you'd THINK they'd have a sample apartment to walk through, right?? Nope. I walked away not even understanding what happened here, how the refugees got to China, how their lives were when they lived there, etc..... The sole purpose of the museum seems to be so China can brag about helping the refugees.
Written August 9, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

lalabelle84
Berlin, Germany58 contributions
May 2014 • Solo
Few people know that Shanghai made it possible for thousands of European Jewish refugees to escape the senseless mass murder of WWII. The story of the Shanghai ghetto is actually really touching though; Shanghai was more generous with accepting refugees than just about any other place that Europe's Jews sought shelter. Shanghai had fewer, if any, entry restrictions than just about anyplace else, and a fairly affordable visa fee as well. So, right there, it was a sign of how open Shanghai truly was to embracing and doing as much as they could to help these people. And they didn't turn the occupants over even when German-allied Japan (who was, in turn, occupying the city of Shanghai) tried pressuring them to do so.

There are many testimonials of former ghetto inhabitants with very fond memories of their Shanghai home and the locals' incredible hospitality. And don't forget that the people of Shanghai were occupied themselves, at the same time -- so they were welcoming and assisting the Jewish refugees while already dealing with the stress and duress of their own wartime experience, a fact which, perhaps, makes what the Shanghainese did all the more special.

The museum is lovely. Photos, artifacts, a very informational video, a preserved synagogue from during the 30s and 40s. And the tour guides are fantastic. Upstairs, there is an exhibit that is (otherwise intended to be) dedicated to Auschwitz and other Polish camps (and some ghettos) as well, and the photos chosen for this exhibit are powerful. I say "otherwise intended to be (dedicated to the Jews' experience)," however, because there is a sign with a cheap, passive-aggressive shot at Japan's wartime conduct, which struck me as out of place and distasteful. Then again, China had a brutal experience during WWII, is still very bitter about it, and takes every shot it sees to shame Japan on that point, so if you're aware of this, it's not surprising when you encounter it upstairs at the museum.

If you go to the museum, spend some time walking through the surrounding ghetto and visiting Huoshan Park. There is a surreal feel, frankly, when you reflect on how many people's lives were preserved here, and in such cramped quarters. Today, nothing remains to remind anyone that they were there, except for the museum and some plaques in the tiny park. And the people of the neighborhood always view foreign visitors with curious, unassuming smiles, as if amazed that foreigners might have any interest in this quiet little place. The locals are very sweet, aware of the history that played out there (many of them rather old and probably saw it with their own eyes) -- and are seemingly proud of the hospitality their community displayed -- but they are proud in a totally understated way, and it seems to strike them that the outside world still takes any interest in or still has any admiration for what they did. I can't even put it into words.

There's a very special feeling in this neighborhood. A place where once there was salvation, an inexpressible generosity of heart and of spirit, that has softly faded out into a nearly-forgotten antiquity. You feel something move deep within your heart when you visit it. It stays with you. To be honest, after moving to Berlin following two years in Shanghai, I saw some Shanghai film clips at a Berlin Jewish museum. They were clips of the Shanghai ghetto and of the refugees' arrival on the Bund. Standing in Berlin, seeing these images of Shanghai, and being able to connect those black-and-white reels with an actual place I have explored, having actually walked the alleys and the footpaths in the park where those same people walked and waited out the war, grateful for the life-saving hospitality the Shanghainese were offering to them and their families made me misty-eyed. This place leaves an impression on you that you don't expect.

It's hard to explain to you why the museum and the ghetto are worth checking out, but they truly are. There's a lot in Shanghai that is very superficial and flashy, that dazzles the eyes but does nothing for the heart. This place is the exact opposite. It will leave a very tender mark in your soul.
Written November 9, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go

Frequently Asked Questions about Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum

Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum is open:
  • Tue - Sun 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
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We recommend booking Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum tours ahead of time to secure your spot. If you book with Tripadvisor, you can cancel up to 24 hours before your tour starts for a full refund. See all 47 Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum tours on Tripadvisor