Jewish Heritage Europe

Tourism & Genealogy

This material is for information only. JHE does not endorse any of the guides or agencies listed here and declines any responsibility in case of problems.


Many mainstream travel agencies offer Jewish heritage tours and itineraries. Here are some that specialize in Jewish tours.

Istanbul Jewish Heritage Tours

Ishak Pasa Caddesi 6 Floor 1
Cankurtaran /Sultanahmet
Istanbul, Turkey
Tel: +90 (212) 638 12 15 Cell: +90 533 738 58 62
Fax: +90 (212) 638 76 06

An Istanbul-base travel company specializing in Jewish tours of the city. The web site has useful background information on sights and history.

Jewish Heritage Tours

Itineraries in and around Izmir and elsewhere in Turkey. Part of a cultural heritage development project associated with the Izmir Project.

Jewish Heritage Turkey

A travel-oriented web site and tour organizer that offers a range of Jewish heritage tours. The web site has useful lists of sights and other info.

Tips for Touring Turkey’s Synagogues

 JHE post with links to travel article from The Forward. Security is very tight and you need to plan ahead to visit some synagogues: tour operators usually can handle this.

Excavating Turkish Jewish Roots: a 21st Century Adventure

A travel and genealogy blog series in Times of Israel, launched in February 2018


Foundation for the Advancement of Sephardic Studies and Culture (

A comprehensive web site with a rich collection of links, archives and other resources including a big section on heritage and genealogy

Ottoman Sephardic Genealogy: An Introduction

Informative “getting started” article by David Sheby on the web site

Ottoman Turkish Sephardic Culture Research Center (blog)

The web site of this center no longer is online: we link here to the Center’s blog, which also is dormant and out of date but still has some useful links and info.

Portal to a variety of links to help trace family history in Turkey, Greece, the Balkans and other countries

Malka, Jeffrey S. Sephardic Genealogy:  Discovering Your Sephardic Ancestors and Their World. Avotaynu Press, Second Edition 2009 (Click highlighted link to see Table of Contents)

The publisher’s description states: “The first edition, which won the “Best Judaica Reference Book” (2002) of Association of Jewish Libraries, has been completely updated and improved. Nearly 100 pages longer, this new edition revises all the chapters to include new information and updates all internet and mail addresses. It adds a new chapter on DNA as well as new chapters on the available resources for the Sephardic communities of Portugal, England, Rhodes, Hamburg-Altona, and Vienna, Austria. There is also a new chapter on how to research the Spanish archives with clues on deciphering old Spanish script. The section on the Internet is fully updated and now includes more than 300 links to sites that have information valuable to Sephardic research.”