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With sunny skies almost year-round, friendly locals and a reputation for buena vida — a good life — Madrid has a lot to offer a visitor. Whether you’re an art connoisseur, a history aficionado, a foodie or a shopaholic, Spain’s capital is teeming with choices that could impress even the most seasoned traveler.
Here are 10 things to put on your Madrid must-do list.
To create entertainment out of tragedy is to demean, disregard, and forget the suffering of its victims.
PRAGUE (JTA) — A new Torah scroll is being used in this historic city by one of its two Reform Jewish congregations to welcome the High Holidays and the series of solemn and joyous celebrations that conclude with, what else, Simchat Torah — the rejoicing of the Torah.
But it’s really not a new scroll at all.
Originally a Czech scroll, the Torah has spent the last several decades at a Reform synagogue in London. How it got there — and how it made its way back to Prague — points to the continui...
When Yael Cobano, the President of the Comunidad Judía Reformista de Madrid (CJRM) or the Reform Jewish Community of Madrid, planned her congregation’s potluck Rosh Hashanah dinner last year, she focused on nine ingredients. Members were asked to bring dishes that contained any of the following: Apples, honey, leeks, beets, dates, beans, squash, pomegranate, and fish. Known as simanim, these ingredients are essential in conducting a Rosh Hashanah Seder – a meal rich in symbolism in which each...
At first glance, Yoleni’s looks like an Athenian grocery store of a bygone era. You can taste cold cuts, cheeses and halvah before you buy; the feta is sold by the slice from a large slab preserved in salty brine; and there is a bakery and a fruit and vegetable section. But walk a few steps farther in, and you’ll realize this multi-floor food emporium in Kolonaki, an upscale neighborhood of Athens, is all about showcasing the gems of Greek gastronomy.
“I was thrilled every time I found ...
When most people think of fiestas in Spain, they likely imagine tomato throwing or the running of the bulls. But Spain’s 17 autonomous regions offer a variety of fascinating celebrations, each infused with the history and culture of that particular area. Here are a few to consider attending on your next visit to Spain.
MADRID (JTA) — Every Passover, Danielle Elliott joins her parents in Chicago. She helps prepare haroset, delights in her mom’s elaborate Passover decorations and enjoys spending the holiday with her family.
But this year Elliott will be recounting the story of the Jews’ exodus from Egypt several thousand miles away from home — in Spain. She is organizing the first Passover seder at the Universidad Camilo José Cela in Villafranca del Castillo, a town on this capital city’s outskirts.
Every year on March 19, the coastal city of Valencia, Spain, explodes with close to 400 fireworks and then twice the number of fires. The burning of the niñots — figurines made of Styrofoam, cardboard, wood, papier-mâché and plaster — is the culmination of the Festival de las Fallas.
Visit the coastal city of Valencia, Spain, between March 15 and 19, and you’ll witness a flurry of activity: Firecrackers exploding on the main square, streets closed for paella cookouts and parades, and workers busily installing giant puppet figurines, or ninots, that will be integrated into a larger statue, called a falla, and eventually set ablaze in spectacular fashion.
Making Venetian masks the old-fashioned way.
If there is one thing more ubiquitous to Venice Carnival than the elaborately costumed patrons, it’s the famous maschera, or Venetian masks. From simple eye masks to more intricate full-face ensembles, masks are available in almost every tourist shop in the city, even outside of the carnival period. But not every item on offer is worth its sparkles. For a true piece of Venetian history and art, look for a mask made in Venice by a company that uses ...
The origins of the Venetian Carnival go back to the Republic of Venice, known as the Most Serene Republic of Venice, or Serenìsima Repùblica Vèneta in Venetian. Some attribute Carnival’s beginnings to 1162 when Venetians celebrated their victory over the Patriarch of Aquileia, yet others claim it started at the end of the 11th century when Vitale Faliero Dodoni, the 32nd doge of Venice, allowed the poor a short period of fun and festivities.
With a mask and a costume, the inhabitants of Seren...