Sephardic Museum in Toledo

Sefarad is the name given in the Jewish tradition to the Iberian Peninsula,  in modern Hebrew is just Spain.

And nowadays the Sephardic Jews are those whose ancestors where Spaniards or Portuguese and where unfairly expelled from their countries in the late 15th century.

From many centuries, the Jewish communities living in Spain produced a magnificent heritage, some of it is still available for us to admire.  Here is a small sample:


Toledo was one of the most prosperous Jewish Quarters, and it preserves a very rich heritage. There used to be ten synagogues and two of them are still standing.

Santa Maria la Blanca Sinagogue, former Ibn Shushan Synagogue.

Toledo former main synagogue

Synagogue of El Transito, commissioned by Samuel ha-Levi. Today holds the Sephardic museum.

Toledo Synagogue hebrew inscriptions


In Segovia one Synagogue is still standing because it was sadly transformed into a church in the 15th century. The architecture is preserved, including the women’s gallery.

synagothe with women gallery
Interior of the former Synagogue in Segovia, with a Women’s Gallery


Cordoba has a small Synagogue build in 1315, with it’s fundational plaque inside that reads as follow:

“Provisional sanctuary and abode for the Testimony completed by Yitzhak Moheb son of Mr. Ephraim Wadawa, in the [Hebrew] year [50]75 [(1315 C.E.)] So return, oh God hasten to return to Jerusalem”

Former Synagogue in Cordoba

Website of the Cordoba Synagogue

In Cordoba you can also find an sculpture of Maimonides, the Sephardic Jewish philosopher, who was born here.

Maimonides, also known as Rambam


Avila is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, but there is not much still standing from its Jewish past. Inside of the citywalls, we find the archway of one of the Synagogues.

archway of a Synagogue
Archway of the former Synagogue Don Samuel in Avila


This small town in the Mediterranean coast had a big Jewish Quarter, and there are still some remains, like the entrance arch in the walls, a Mikve, a defensive tower, the ruins of a synagogue (under some modern houses), a cementery, etc.

stone arch in the walls of the Jewish quarter


The city of Oviedo has a beautiful square with a market, that was originally the location of the Jewish butcher.

Trascorrales square in Oviedo
Trascorrales square – Former Jewish butcher. Sculpture of a milkwoman.