Spain, Toledo – Trip for Romance VII
From old fortress of San Servando I look deep down to a canyon between the rocks where the Tajo River flows. I admire the vista from the rock surrounded with the wall.
The city looks scorched. then I just walk uphill in narrow sreets to find other walls and fortification of houses and palaces. There are cities in the world which a traveller should enter slowly, ceremonially. For instance, one of them is Toledo.
Cuesta del Alcázar street is the only straight street in Toledo. I was fascinated by Calle del Comercio, a wide market street which leads to a cathedral. Luxurious goods like oriental jewelries, expensive cloths from Damask or Chinese silk, Kashmir wool, ceramics from Mallorca, and famous Toledo swords and daggers, the best in the world since the Visigoths times.
The cathedral is Toledo’s pride. It belongs to the trio (with the cathedrals in Burgosa and Sevilla) of the most beautiful cathedrals in the country. It is beautiful but isn’t it bit asymmetrical? Instead of south toer there is a chapel with Baroque dome built by Goya’s son. The façade seems unfinished like something held it from taking off the ground. Why the gable leans backwards? Well, it is simply the Spanish variation of Gothic .
The most beautiful thing about Toledo? The whole of it. Its location just above the river, its high density around the cathedral and the streets… The streets seem worn-out like a poor widow thinking about better times. There lies melancholy, the city seems to rust still beautiful, though. I pass by Cristo de la Luz church, originally Arab mosque Bib Mardum. Compared to the mosque in Cordoba seems simple, like an accord and a symphony yet this accord is clean, melodious. Arches on four Visigoth columns in the middle of a rectangular brick structure covered with nine domes.
And now it is time to move on. I look at the town one more time trying to remember it forever… And now I am heading to Madrid.
So I arrived at Madrid. I find the accommodation 200 meters off Plaza Puerta del Sol, i.e. in the city center. Perfect. Madrid became thanks to Philip II the capital in 1561. There is no beautiful river nor mountain or a hill. Strange that the kind chose this particular place. Still, he created vast gardens with charming arcades, squares and lakes with fountains at least.
Fom Plaza Puerta del Sol I go to the beautiful Palacio de las Cibeles that looks like a palace of a queen but actually there is a post office! Then it is very close to Parque del Retiro (a park of relax). There is a large lake with statues in the middle. People can lend boats and enjoy sun and water. It is very nice in there. In park’s rear there is a palace of Velázqueze and also the Crystal Palace with a fountain in the middle. A man playing saxophone enhances local atmosphere …
To be continued...
Text and photo: Sylvie Halouzková
In the last part, we have just got a glimpse of Avila,a home to 60 thousand people. Today we will continue on our trip and see some more of city's interesting sites.
I visited the Catalonian capital with my family for a week in the time of Christmas holidays. I like to learn about culture of the country I spend my time in so I spent lot of time wandering in the streets, in parks or had breakfast in back-alley cafes with locals. I enjoyed hours-long dinners having great tapas and even better wine. I tried to met as new people as possible. True, only disadvantage was that I didn’t speak Spanish or Catalonian.
In narrow streets of historical center in Barcelona is really easy to get lost. However, you can be sure that you would always end up at some cathedral or, at least, small shrine. They are hard to see from distance, they just suddenly pop up in front of you. On the other hand, famous Sagrada Família is easy to see from distance.
Having 512 meters, Tibidabo is the highest summit of the Serra de Collserola. Therefore, you should miss it if you want to enjoy one of the best vistas over Barcelona. Tibidabo is on city’s northwest. You can easily distinguish it for its white temple on the top.
Spain’s second largest city, the center of Catalonia, popular destination of digital nomads, and mostly the place from where you bring countless great experiences. Barcelona is very kind to any type of traveler and you can visit it in any season.
I walk in the park around Museum Prado. It is the temple of the art. Yet even the greatest of the art enthusiasts would get tired after couple of hours.
Cuenca offers a beautiful view, overlooking the gorge of the river Huecar. The location of the city has the result of a specific architecture in the form of hanging houses rise on steep rocks.
Today, we visit the Spanish city of Salamanca, located in the Autonomous Community of Castile-Leon. Since 1988, the historic center of the city is part of the UNESCO World Heritage List and after reading the following lines you will understand why it is so. You will feel as if you are walking in some huge historical open-air museum.
After our last week's first taste of this amazing city we continue and take you to to some sacras structures and local museums. Sit back, relax and enjoy.
In the west of Spain, close to the borders with Portugal, there is the town of Merida, a city of amazin excavations which are protected by the UNESCO. Merida offers some of the most preserved pieces of Roman architecture.
We will spend the first October Friday in Merida again, where we will visit some of the other ancient sights, such as the Roman amphitheater with a huge auditorium for 15,000 spectators, who were also watching gladiatorial matches. The amphitheater was so vast that there were also naval battles in it, because the stage could be flooded and the ships were let off by a gate.
Whether you are lured by noisy streets of Sevilla, rhythm of flamenco and Sevillans, mystery of Cordoba, charm of Cadiz, or beauty of Granada with the Sierra Nevada in the background. You simply can’t let this slip away...
My trip to sunny Andalusia, rhythm of unbounded and wild guitarist Paca de Lucía, flamenco dancers, people of Sevilla goes on and this time it takes place in marvellous Granada.
I believe I will visit Granada one more time at some point in the future. Yet now I head to Málaga and Córdoba.
Cordoba was the richest city of the West and the center of Islamic culture. First emirs resided in Seville. In the sixth year of Arab occupation (716) Emir Alhor moved his court to Cordoba. The ruled as deputies of the caliph of Damask. They were military warlords subordinated to the might of the House of Umayyad.
It is time to move on in the direction to Cádiz. Everybody recommended me to see it. So why not?
On my road from Cádiz to Toledo, I spent couple of days in Lisbon. I think I really deserve some comfort and a shower. Thus, I would live in a hostel this time.
«I believe in eternity», said the American essayist Ralph Waldo Emerson when proclaimed to see the genius of Greece, Italy and Spain. Without any doubt, Emerson knew Granada or, at least, he had a feeling of how it would be like.
The visitor will feel at home in the Patio de los Leones whose fountain, surrounded by a slim gallery of 124 columns, provides a humane architectonic space put to the service of men, in a miraculous mixture of geometry, light and rhythm.
Welcome to our series dedicated to the fascinating Spanish city of Barcelona, which about we will be following three parts. In them you will know that it is a city that you should see at least once in your life.
In the second part about the beautiful city on the Mediterranean coast you can find out more about the beautiful villas that the famous architect Gaudí left here.
In the third part of our series you can learn about other notable references genius of Antonio Gaudi, which are the Sagrada Família and Parc Güell.
This rich city boasts with more than just architecture of brilliant Antonio Gaudí. In today’s part we will visit local aquarium and Barcelona coast promenade where are berthed historical ships and other interesting things.
We bring you the last part of our series on sunny a shinning Barcelona. The trip will end on Montjuïc.
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