Take a Step Back into Georgia’s History with a Tour of Congregation Mickve Israel
With our congregation being the third oldest Jewish congregation in America and being the first synagogue built in Georgia, Congregation Mickve Israel has a rich and unique history. Your guided tour of the synagogue will begin in our magnificent sanctuary where an experienced, enthusiastic docent will take you on your journey into Mickve Israel’s unique past. In our award-winning Lawrence & Nancy Gutstein Museum, you will find artifacts, documents, and other historical items that tell Congregation Mickve Israel’s fascinating story. There are items going back to the founding of Savannah and Congregation Mickve Israel in 1733, the American Revolution, the Civil War, the founding of the Girl Scouts of America as well as congratulatory letters from many presidents (including George Washington) and a 15th Century Torah (the first five books of the Bible), the oldest Torah in North America.
Congregation Mickve Israel was named one of the “15 Most Beautiful Synagogues in the World” by Condé Nast Traveler and rated among the “15 BEST Things to Do in Savannah” by Trip Advisor. In 2016, our museum won the Coastal Museums Association’s “Excellence in Exhibition Award.” Every year, over 10,000 people from around the world come to take a guided tour of our synagogue.
Whether you are coming to Savannah on your own, or you are travelling with friends and family, we invite you to visit this special place. Tours last approximately 45 minutes, but we recommend allowing extra time for browsing and visiting our Judaica & Gift Shop.
Museum & Tour Highlights
During your tour of Congregation Mickve Israel, you will have the opportunity to:
- Explore our neo-Gothic building and magnificent sanctuary
- View the two oldest Torah scrolls in North America
- Learn about our Holocaust Torah and its ties to our congregation
- Learn about the critical role early Jewish settlers played in the founding of Savannah
- Read letters to the congregation from George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and 10 other presidents
- Learn about congregation members who were leaders of the American Revolution, spies during the Civil War, the first Girl Scout Troop Leaders, and who have always played key roles in the Savannah community.
- And more
Hours and Tickets
We offer tours Monday through Friday starting at 10:00 a.m. The last tour of each day starts at 3:30 p.m. Tours last approximately 45 minutes and include docent-guided access to the sanctuary and the museum.
The tour price is $8.00 per person. These funds are used for the upkeep and maintenance of our historic facilities. Tickets can be purchased at the synagogue when you arrive.
Judaica & Gift Shop
The Judaica & Gift Shop is open Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Our museum is closed to the public on Saturdays and Sundays (excluding Super Museum Sunday, when it is open from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.). It is also closed in observance of all public holidays, including Jewish holidays when services are being held in the sanctuary.
If you will be visiting Savannah during a period that includes a Jewish or Federal holiday and would like to find out if we’ll be open, please call the Temple at 912-233-1547 for assistance.
Mickve Israel is happy to host group tours. However, in order to tailor our tours for your group, we require advance arrangements. Group Leaders should call us ahead of time and speak to our Group Tours Coordinator, Ina Kuller at (912) 233-1547 or email Ina at email@example.com for reservations and to give us information about the number of guests, names, ages, areas of interest, etc. of your group.
Directions & Parking
Congregation Mickve Israel’s physical address is 20 East Gordon Street, but the entrance for tours is at 20 Wayne Street. Please note that our facility does not have a parking garage or lot so you must use on-street parking. There is ample on-street parking around Monterey Square and other nearby streets. Parking rates are generally $1.00 per hour, payable at parking meters (coins), parking payment kiosks (cash or credit card), or the “Park Savannah” app, which makes paying for parking very easy.