South African Jewish Museum

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The South African Jewish Museum, situated in the Museum Mile in central Cape Town, was officially opened by former president Nelson Mandela in December 2000. Clad in Jerusalem stone, the museum offers visitors a one of a kind visit with bold architecture, interactive multimedia displays, and first-hand accounts of South African Jewish history.

The museum borders the National Gallery and Company’s Garden, with its exquisite landscaped gardens, walkways, fountains, statuses, and water features. The main part of the museum faces a paved courtyard which links the Old Synagogue (first of its kind to be built on South African soil in 1863) and the Albow Centre which houses the South African Jewish Museum Shop, Gitlin Library, Café Riteve, the Israel Abrahams Hall, and Cape Town Holocaust Centre.

Displays include rare Judaica artefacts, animated video footage of the famous Barney Barnato and Max Rose, the first Torah scroll brought to South Africa, a Shofar made of ram’s horn, and a documentary film “Nelson Mandela. A Righteous Man” which is screened daily.


  • Café Riteve – serving a selection of kosher meals and snacks.
  • Volunteer museum guides
  • Tailor made tours
  • Special needs access and toilets for disabled visitors
  • South African Jewish Museum Shop - offering embroidered challah covers, ceramic Judaica, designer jewellery, mezuzahs, books, gifts, and more.



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