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“Worth the visit and listening to tour guide”

Great / Central Synagogue (Nagy Zsinagoga)
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Ranked #33 of 475 things to do in Budapest
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: The world's second-largest synagogue, featuring a room that holds three thousand people, is a center for the large Jewish community of Budapest.
Reviewed August 23, 2014

We did Prague prior to visiting Budapest - and had taken in many of the Jewish memorials and history. This was worth the visit to cap off that historical time in the country. Interesting to see a temple designed this way. The tours are worth the time. The Tree of Life memorial was beautiful --- but if that's what you're really interested in seeing --- you can see from the street through the gated area.

Thank Jill A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed August 22, 2014

We visited the Synagogue with a guide whose parents grew up in Budapest and she gave us a lot of information about the synagogue - if you are visiting by yourself, please read before your visit. We saw the tree of life and it stands as a poignant memory of the dark times. I have been to the Synagogue in Jerusalem and this was equally magnificent.

Thank Vidyap
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 22, 2014

As a Jew who only attends a synagogue only once every 2 years, I thought Budapest was the perfect place to feel connected to the religion. Earlier in the day, I had visited the Museum of Terror and was moved by the monument of the Shoes on the Danube. I went past the Great Synagogue at 5pm and was told the service starts at 6. After rushing home to shower and put on my best to return to the synagogue, I was met by the unfriendliest bouncers who told me that the synagogue was for locals only. An elderly gentleman entered just before me, shabbily dressed in a t-shirt and it appeared that the other locals appeared to be over the age of 60. The bouncers directed me to the Chabad (jewish organisation), where I was told that I could not attend their service because I had not reserved for the dinner and paid the 20 euro fee to attend a Friday night service and dinner. They would not even allow me to enter just for the Friday night service. Overall, the whole experience was disappointing. It seems peculiar that any religious institution would turn away a person of the faith who wishes to pray because either he is a tourist or because he has not paid money in advance. A synagogue is supposed to be a place of worship - not just a building that charges a steep entrance fee to look at. One of the biggest synagogues in the world would surely have enough space for one more? What happens when the local/elderly population dies off? Does that mean it will cease to be used as a place of worship and turn into a museum only? The synagogue looks great from the outside but because of the way I was treated, I am rating this attraction terrible. Never before have I felt so unwelcome as a Jew. Under the current leadership/management, this a tourist trap and defies honourable, welcoming jewish principles. If you're in the area, have a look at the synagogue from the outside but to be honest, the people running the synagogue don't deserve your money. Spend it elsewhere rather.

7  Thank Marlon G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 21, 2014 via mobile

The space, the history, the beauty. Do make sure to do some reading before hand as much is not mentioned on the available plaques. The whole area is rich in a haunting histories.

Thank Christinorchris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 21, 2014

Really enjoyed the Great Synagogue visit. I have a genuine interest in this area anyway, so I suppose if you're not 'into' religious history/info then maybe it wouldn't be so great!
We took a guided tour in English (was only an extra 100ft) and lasted about an hour. The guide was very informative and told us about the synagogue itself as well as stories of the Jewish ghetto and community in Budapest.
Outside is a holocaust memorial / cemetery which is interesting. We didn't visit the museum part as we were short of time.

Thank Esther Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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