Explore the Ancient Jewish Cemetery of Venice with Extraordinary Guided Tours
Date: Sunday, August 27th
Guided Tour Times: 10:30 AM, 12:00 PM, 3:30 PM, 5:00 PM
A place of extraordinary charm and memory awaits you on the Lido of Venice. Following the success of previous tours and the mention in The New York Times, the Jewish Community of Venice, in collaboration with Opera Laboratori, continues to offer guided tours in Italian and English at the Venice Jewish Ghetto.
The Ancient Jewish Cemetery, located on the Lido of Venice, will exceptionally reopen its doors on August 27th. Following the visits on June 18th, July 9th, August 6th, and August 15th, four new sets of guided tours will be available. These tours provide an opportunity to discover a place that holds extraordinary charm and deep memory. It is one of the world’s oldest cemeteries and represents one of the earliest testimonies of Jewish presence in the lagoon city.
History of the Ancient Jewish Cemetery of Venice
In 1386, Doge Antonio Venier granted a group of Ashkenazi families a vast area of about 6,000 square meters near San Niccolò on the Lido. This isolated location, situated outside the city’s boundaries, was designated as a burial place for the Jewish community.
Over the centuries, the cemetery has seen the construction of significant tombstones, many of which still narrate the lives of distinguished individuals.
A Story of Resilience
The cemetery is located near the port entrance and has often been crossed by troops during times of war. These passages not only caused damage to the tombstones but also resulted in disruptions within the cemetery grounds. During the Napoleonic era, the cemetery was used as a quarry, and numerous tombstones were repurposed for the reconstruction of Forte di San Nicolò and as bases for cannons pointed towards the sea.
A Place of Eternal Memory
Despite the damages incurred over time, the Ancient Jewish Cemetery of the Lido continues to captivate visitors with an atmosphere rich in romantic historical memory. In the 19th century, poets and literati such as Goethe, Byron, and Shelley were fascinated by the ambiance of the site during their stays in Venice.
Today, the Jewish cemetery of the Lido welcomes visitors with timeless charm and an atmosphere that seems to have suspended time within an eternal shared memory. Many tombstones have been recovered over the years, and thanks to significant restoration work funded by both public and private resources, over a thousand tombstones dating from 1550 to the early 1700s have been cataloged.
Guided Tour Details
The doors of the Ancient Jewish Cemetery will exceptionally open on August 27th, and guided tours will be available at the following times:
- 10:30 AM
- 12:00 PM
- 3:30 PM
- 5:00 PM
Meeting Point: Riviera San Niccolò, corner of via Cipro – 30126 Lido di Venezia. View on Map.