Routes of Sefarad – Discovering Jewish heritage and cultural quarters

General information

Domain: Cultural routes (Jewish history and heritage)
Title: Caminos de Sefarad (Routes of Sefarad)
Launch: 2011
Country: Spain

Project focus

Routes of Sefarad is a multimedia portal that allows to explore the Sephardic tangible and intangible heritage in Spain. The portal has been developed by the Network of Spanish Jewish Quarters in collaboration with Google Spain and providers of local cultural and touristic services. The Network of Spanish Jewish Quarters connects 21 cities and is part of the European Route of Jewish Heritage, which since 2011 is a European Cultural Route of the Council of Europe.



The Routes of Sefarad portal has been developed in a collaboration of the non-profit public association Network of Spanish Jewish Quarters and Google Spain. Google Spain provides tools and services for the portal. Also tied in is RASGO which is a project of the Network together with tourism organisations. It promotes tourist services and products offered by the Jewish quarters, in order to foster quality cultural tourism based on the Sephardic legacy.
The Network of Spanish Jewish Quarters connects 21 cities in Spain. It is also a founding partner of the European Association for the Preservation and Promotion of Jewish Culture and Heritage (AEPJ). Furthermore the network of cities is part of the European Route of Jewish Heritage.

Financing / funding

The Routes of Sefarad portal is funded through contributions of the members of the Network of Spanish Jewish Quarter to the annual dissemination efforts of the association. The RASGO project of the Network is financed by public administrations and private companies, 20% and 80% respectively.

Content & IPR / licensing

The portal allows access to a wealth of information on Jewish tangible and intangible heritage from the 3rd century to the present. The material has been gathered over the last ten years by the network partners. The interactive map and timeline of the portal provide access to information about 523 places, 910 significant dates, 1683 images, 68 supplementary texts and 138 commented lexical terms (status December 2013).
The descriptive content comes from many collections and studies of the network partners. The bibliographical resources are published and can be searched on the portal. The RASGO project links quite some of the historical content with local tourism information (cultural events, restaurants, hotels, local guides, etc.).
The copyrights of the documentation (images and texts) belong to the respective authors. The rights in the portal are with the Network of Spanish Jewish Quarter.

Technologies used / innovative features

The portal aims to document the Jewish heritage as well as relate it to today’s living culture by organising the different content formats in several ways. The navigation bar provides a function to filter the available information according to categories, topics, regions and origins. The timeline feature offers to navigate through the historical content chronologically and find information about historic events.

The interactive map allows users to browse and select places, stories, characters and historic details of the Sephardic heritage. The historical documentation unfolds when users click on the icons of places highlighted on the geographic map. Furthermore current touristic information (e.g. cultural events, restaurants, etc.) are integrated in the map. Using Google Street View offers current visual impressions of sites, streets, buildings, etc.
The portal links users also to the online community of the Network of Spanish Jewish Quarters on the social media platform Google plus.

Target users

Routes of Sefarad addresses residents of the cities and national and international cultural tourists, inviting them to learn about the Jewish heritage in Spain. Visitors will also appreciate the additional information about the cities and sites, local food, traditions and events. The portal is connected with many tourist platforms (e.g., Tripadvisor) and tour operators.

Lessons learned

Cooperation: Routes of Sefarad demonstrates the added value of an active network of municipalities, heritage institutions, and local tourism and other service providers. For example, the portal links to many websites which promote theme-specific products and services in the cultural quarters of the network.

Content: The portal successfully unlocks and makes clear the heritage values of the urban, architectonical, historical, artistic and other Sephardic legacy in Spain.
Technology: Routes of Sefarad makes makes good use of portal technologies and the Google suite of applications (e.g. Google Maps, Street View, Google Plus and others), allowing users to engage with the content in several ways, according to their preferences.

Sources and links