The Ahrida Synagogue is the oldest and probably most beautiful synagogue in Istanbul. It was founded before the Muslim conquest of Istanbul in 1453 and has been in constant use ever since. The Ahrida Synagogue is active since 15th century. The synagogue was constructed by the Jewish community coming from Macedonia. The name of it comes from the home town of its builders.
The Ahrida Synagogue was destroyed in the fire of 17th century and reconstructed. The last restoration took place between 1990 and 1992. Ahrida Synagogue has two entrances. The north entrance is used as the main gate.
The main building was built from bricks and stone. The floor is made from Marmara marble. The praying deck, called "Tevah" is at the center of the synagogue according to Sephardic traditions. The Ehal of the Ahrida synagogue is reached by three steps. The wooden door of the Ehal is decorated with mother of pearl. The women section, the "Azara", of the temple is at the west.
|Address||Ayvansaray Mh., 34087 Fatih/Istanbul|
|Fast Facts||You can visit the synagogues only by prior reservation via the offices of the Chief Rabbinate (0 212 293 87 94). You should make reservations during office hours (Mon-Thu: 9:30-17:00; Fri.: 9:30-13:00) and at the least 24 hours before your planned visit. Make sure to have the passport numbers of the people planning to attend the visit and their full names at hand while making the reservation. Also, carry your passport with you for security checks during your visits to all synagogues.|