In 1654, twenty-three Jews left Brazil for the Dutch Colony of New Amsterdam (Later New York), thus laying the foundation for what would become the world’s largest and wealthiest Jewish community. But what about Brazil, the land from where they came, the country of the first legally constituted Jewish Community in the New World, including the oldest Synagogue in America, Kahal Zur Israel? Stockler Expeditions has launched a program, which will follow the historic route of Jewish life in Brazil and Argentina. Some of the highlights of the trip include a tour of Kahal Zur Israel, the first Synagogue in the Americas, the house of Inquisition where crypto-Jews were held, etc We will also visit Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires and meet with members of the Jewish community, product of a later and different section of the Diaspora. On the way to Buenos Aires, we will visit the fabulous Iguassu Falls, known the world over for its awesome beauty. The tour will end with a visit to Buenos Aires where so much has happened in the Jewish community of that city.Come explore with Stockler Expeditions this fabulous historic heritage that not even the Inquisition could erase
Visit the first Jewish Synagogue of Americas Visit the City of Recife, from where the first 23 Jews that arrive in New York came from.Learn the fabulous stories of the Marrano Jews of Brazil.Visit the Jewish Museum and Jewish sites in Rio de JaneiroVisit the beautiful sights of Rio de Janeiro like Sugar loaf and Corcovado, one of the 8th wonders in the world.Visit the awesome Iguassu Falls in both Brazil and Argentina side.Visit with members of the Jewish communities in Recife, Rio and Buenos AiresVisit Amia, and ORT in Buenos AiresVisit First Synagogue of Buenos Aires, Jewish MuseumVisit "Once" district in Buenos Aires with the highest concentration of Jewish Fabulous foodTime to shop for jewelry and leather goods.Brazil is the 5th largest country in the world. It occupies half of South America and it is different in language, custom, culture and environment from the other countries. Brazil’s climate ranges from temperate in the far south to tropical in the north. Seasons are reversed with the hottest months being December/march and the coolest May/August. It is the only country in South America that has Portuguese as their language. Brazil was one of the first areas settle by the Europeans in the New World. Discovered by the Portuguese in 1500, it was colonized by Jews, Portuguese, Dutch and French as the first settlers and Germans, Polish, Italians, Koreans, Japanese in latter years. All these cultures, together with the slaves brought from Africa, resulted in the most interesting and fascinating culture as the cuisine, music, dance, religion and art reflects this Afro-Portuguese-European melting pot heritage. Recife: The city of Recife started in the shadow of three cultures: Jewish, Portuguese and Dutch. It is a city full of history, where Jews came by invitation of the king of Portugal in 1503 to colonize and develop the lucrative trade of sugar cane plantations. With the implantation of Inquisition, they were banned from the country.
They departed to Cuba, Barbados, Curaçao, England, and 23 Jews the first ones, came to the Dutch Colony of New Amsterdam, later New York.Recife is one of the most important marks of the Jewish History in Brazil and Americas. Kahal Zur Israel - Hebrew: קהל צור ישראל, "Rock of Israel", Sinagoga Kahal Zur Israel, located in Recife, Brazil, was the first Jewish congregation in the New World. It was established by Spanish/Portuguese Jews that had taken refuge in the Netherlands fleeing forced conversion and were joined by New Christians who were already living in the colony. There is now a museum on this site of the oldest synagogue site in the Americas.From 1636 to 1654, the synagogue functioned on the site of the houses no. 197 and 203 Rua do Bom Jesus (formerly Rua dos Judeus, lit. 'Street of the Jews').
It flourished in the mid-17th century, when the Dutch briefly controlled this part of northeastern Brazil.The original synagogue building survived until the early 20th century, when it was torn down. The site has been confirmed by an archaeological excavation. In 2001 the decision was made to create a Jewish museum in two story house with two shops located on the first floor then standing on the site of the old synagogue.The synagogue served a community of approximately 1,450 Jews. It had a cantor, Josue Velosino, and a rabbi, Isaac Aboab da Fonseca, sent to Recife in 1642.
RIO DE JANEIRO:
Sun drenched beaches, music, dance, bikini clad cariocas and a night life that refuses to quit. The allure of Rio has been attracting foreign visitors since the 16th century. Rio’s physical setting of mountains, ocean and lush tropical vegetation delights the eye while the sophisticated pleasures of Rio’s restaurants engage the palate. As birthplace of the bossa nova and samba, Rio moves to a musical beat and whether you are there for Carnival or not, every night is a party. Corcovado and Sugar Loaf Mountainsare the post cards of Rio and a must to see.
and the Christ Statue, one of the 8th wonders of the world, is one of the must places to go when in Rio. You will travel through downtown Rio to the base of Corcovado Mountain. Here you board the cog rail train that will take you through the Tijuca Rainforest to the top of the mountain. At the top stands the 125ft statue with its arms outstretched over the city. The view of the ocean, city and lagoon are spectacular from this vantage point.
This tour takes us through Rio’s most famous beaches, Leme, Copacabana, Ipanema, Leblon, to the base of Sugar Loaf Mountain. We will take the first of two cable cars to the smaller of the mountains off the coast of Rio. Walk around the flowered walkways enjoying the magnificent view. Then continue up to the second cable car to the summit of the second mountain. The view of the city of Rio from this peak is breath taking.
There is a place where Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina come together, the same place where the Iguassu River flows into the Parana River forming a series of awe inspiring waterfalls in the middle of a forest, formed 150 million years ago. It does not seem to be scenery; it is more like a happening, something taking place here and now with the greatest urgency. The name Iguassu means “Great Water” in Tupi Guarani Indian Language. There are 19 large falls which can be better seen from the Brazilian side. The roar of its 260 cataracts, some of which reach a height of 250 feet can be heard 20 miles away. There are rainbows, bands of butterflies and birds, and all around you the air vibrates as thundering water dissipates into clouds and then, there is Iguassu Falls, with all its majesty with its immense semicircular formation measuring 2700 meters across and separating Brazil from Argentina.
Capital of Argentina is located on the banks of Rio de la Plata. It is also the capital of tango, the gaucho and famous “asado” the Argentine style barbecue.It is a modern and dynamic city that still keeps some of its old traditions. To catch the spirit of the city, it is necessary to walk around: to stroll along the streets in downtown, to do some shopping in its elegant boutiques, to have a coffee in a sidewalk café or to visit the residential neighborhoods, where old buildings alternate with modern crystal skyscrapers. It is also interesting to underline the enormous quantity and variety of restaurants offering typical food, as well as excellent international cuisine. Another unmistakable example of its assorted ethnical composition. Some of the main important places to visit are:Casa Rosada, San Telmo, La Boca, Puerto Madero, Recoleta, Palermo.
*Dinner & Tango ShowIt is the music of Buenos Aires par excellence. Its origins are traced back to 1880 and its birthplace where the slums, inhabited by Italian and Spanish immigrants, black people and “gauchos”. From this racial mix appeared the “ compadritos” (small-time hoods) who tried to reflect in their music, their letters and their dance the typical “cuchilleros” (knife fighters) duel characteristic of their social ambient. Their music appears as a mix of Cuban and Spanish rhythms, some polka and, as some people say, also a little bit of African music. Their lyrics, difficult to be understood and impossible to be translated, are deeply poetic and have a story to tell about the city, its history and its people. Despite its humble origins, in the 20's tango left the brothels and the underworld districts to reach the high-class ballrooms, but to do so it had to travel to Paris to come back triumphantTango is still alive. A good way of penetrating its spirit is visiting one of the restaurants that offer tango shows of an excellent level, to enjoy tango sensual magnetism taken to the stage by some of the best dancers, singers and musicians in Buenos Aires.