If you’re visiting Barbados on a cruise ship and have a couple of hours to spare, be sure to visit the restored Nidhe Israel Synagogue (the oldest intact synagogue structure in the Western Hemisphere). The Synagogue and its adjacent mikvah, cemetery and museum are in the Synagogue Historic District (old Jewish Quarter), which is a half-hour walk from the cruise port, or a ten minute taxi ride (about USD$10). Hours are Monday – Friday, 9am-4pm (arrive by 3pm). It’s okay to just stop by, but if you want a guided tour from a member of the Barbados Jewish Community it’s best to Book a Tour in advance.
The Nidhe Israel Synagogue (1654) is located within the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Bridgetown and its Garrison. It forms part of the Synagogue Historic District, a heritage site containing several buildings that are vested in the Barbados National Trust. One of the buildings houses the Nidhe Israel Museum which tells the story of the Jewish settlement of Barbados. Visit synagoguehistoricdistrict.com for more information on the restored Historic District, its daytime visiting hours and entrance fees.
If you happen to be in port on a Friday evening, please join us for our weekly Kabbalat Shabbat services at 6:30pm (held at the Nidhe Israel synagogue from Hannukah to Pesach; visit our Services page for details.)