Castilla y León is the largest autonomous community in Spain. It is located in the northwest of the Iberian Peninsula and made up of nine provinces: Ávila, Burgos, León, Palencia, Salamanca, Segovia, Soria, Valladolid and Zamora.
León, Zamora and Salamanca formed the so-called Kingdom of León while the rest formed part of the so-called Old Castile, along with La Rioja and Cantabria. Interestingly, Castilla y León has not declared any capital in its statute of autonomy.
Castilla y León has lays claim to eleven differnt UNESCO World Heritage Sites: the medieval cities of Ávila, Salamanca and Segovia, the archaeological sites of Siega Verde (Salamanca) and the Sierra de Atapuerca (Burgos ), the Cuesta Fría and Canal de Asotín beech forests in León and the Riaza beech forest in Segovia, the natural monument of Las Médulas in León, the Camino Frances de Santiago and Burgos Cathedral.
In addition, this autonomous community has more than 300 castles, more than 400 museums and 23,000 archaeological sites. The traditional gastronomy of Castilla y León is another of its strong points, along with its wine, which has 17 separate designations of origin, including Ribera del Duero, Rueda and Toro, among others, and is also the Spanish region with the most certified wine routes where you can sample the Wines.
With this astronomical getaway you will enjoy the starry sky of the Sierra de Gredos in the most emblematic accommodation in the province of Ávila, which also has the Starlight certification: the Parador de Gredos. From this place, located in Navarredonda de Gredos, just by looking up, you will be able to contemplate the wonders of the sky and visit, a very short distance away, the Polaris astronomical observatory, a small place of wood intended for learning astronomy and observing the stars and planets while a Starlight guide explains and shows you the most outstanding celestial objects of the night with the professional telescope.
At Nativics we have put together this weekend route for you to discover Ávila in the best way, visiting the main monuments of the city and enjoying the city at your leisure. pace. It includes 2 hotel nights in Ávila, a planned itinerary in detail and some tips for your visit.
At Nativics we have put together this getaway for you to discover Ávila in the best way, visiting the main monuments of the city and enjoying the city at your own pace.> It includes 1 hotel night in Ávila, a planned itinerary in great detail and some tips for your visit.
From Nativics we have prepared this medieval route by car for 5 days through the cities of Toledo, Ávila, Salamanca and Segovia. All of them were declared World Heritage Sites by UNESCO. It includes 4 nights of accommodation in the two Castillas with one hotel night in each city for you to enjoy day and night and the best itinerary with suggestions and practical advice.
If you don't have much time to visit Segovia, at Nativics we have prepared this getaway so that you can discover the most relevant places of interest in the most optimal way. Segovia is a medieval walled city full of history, culture and excellent gastronomy that is easily explored on foot. It includes 1 night's accommodation in a hotel in the city center, tickets to the emblematic Alcázar and the itinerary with the main monuments, including the Segovia aqueduct.
Salamanca is an ideal cultural city to enjoy a weekend getaway as it is small but has a lot to offer. At Nativics we have prepared a great trip that includes 2 hotel nights in the city center and a wonderful itinerary so you don't miss a thing.
Thinking of enjoying a weekend in Segovia? At Nativics we have prepared this trip specoally so you can discover the most beautiful places of interest in Segovia.
Segovia is a medieval walled city full of history, culture and with excellent gastronomy that is easily explored on foot. included is 1 night of accommodation in a hotel in the city center, tickets to the emblematic Alcázar and the itinerary with the main monuments, including the Segovia aqueduct.
Salamanca is an emblematic city in Castilla León, full of history and culture. Its university was the first in Spain and its surroundings are the most beautiful and Salamanca has a great lively atmosphere. At Nativics we have prepared this plan for you to enjoy a complete getaway that includes one night in a hotel in the center of Salamanca and an itinerary thought out in detail so you don't miss a thing.
The Sierra de Gredos is a mountain range located in the western sector of the Central System of the Iberian Peninsula, in Spain, which extends through the provinces of Ávila, Cáceres, Salamanca, Toledo and Madrid. It is a protected space declared a Regional Park for the biological value of its land and a Starlight Reserve for its quality and conservation of the night sky. The maximum altitude of this mountain range is found at Pico Almanzor, in Ávila, at 2,592 meters. The Sierra de Gredos covers an area of 86,236 hectares and is made up of 28 municipalities and 230 different species. In it we find La Laguna Grande, a glacial cirque of Cenozoic origin whose waters flow into the Tormes River; mountain goats, vultures, eagles, deer, roe deer, wild boar, snow vole, toads and salamanders; pines, broom serrano, century-old oaks, holm oaks and chaparral and the most emblematic building in the province of Ávila: the Parador de Gredos, certified as Starlight accommodation. Some of the activities that can be done in Gredos are hiking, horseback riding, discovering some of the charming villages, enjoying astrotourism and astronomical observation in one of the most beautiful villages in the area, Navarredonda de Gredos, where is the Parador and the private observatory Polaris; make the route of the Five Villas that includes the caves of the Valley, Mombeltrán, San Esteban del Valle, Santa Cruz del Valle and Villarejo del Valle or visit Hoyos del Espino and the Barco de Ávila or, simply, rest and disconnect in the middle of the nature in a privileged environment.
Navarredonda de Gredos is a town located in the Sierra de Gredos, to the south of the province of Ávila. Here is the entrance to the Sierra de Gredos Regional Park, certified as a Starlight reserve for its sky free of light pollution and the facility for astronomical observation where you can contemplate the stars and planets from the Navarredonda stellar viewpoint or staying at the Gredos Parador, the most representative building in Ávila for being the first parador built and which also has , with the Starlight accommodation certificate. The municipality of Navarredonda has another population center, Barajas, less than 1 km away and with magnificent natural landscapes where you can enjoy nature, active tourism and astrotourism. In its urban centers there are different places of interest such as the Church of Our Lady of the Assumption, the Church of San Benito and the hermitages of the Virgen de las Nieves and San Antonio. Next to the Church of Navarredonda de Gredos you will also find an old stone bridge and remains of a road used historically as a line for cattle transhumance.
The Convent of Las Dueñas, located in Salamanca, belongs to the Dominican Order. This convent is noted for its beautiful cloister and for its fabulous sweets made by the nuns, among which are amarguillos, cream cookies, puff pastries and the typical mantecados of the region
This former Palacio de la Salina is located in Salamanca. Also known as Fonseca, it was also the city's salt pond. Currently, access to the courtyard is for public use and you can admire its Dantesque columns with different characters with twisted torsos.
The Casa de las Conchas is a stately mansion located in Salamanca. Built at the time of the Catholic Monarchs, Noted for its façade filled with more than 300 shells. Its architectural style is a combination of late Gothic, Mudejar and Renaissance art. This family mansion has had different uses throughout history: university jail, barracks and library, and there is a legend that says a gold coin is hidden under each shell.!!
The Clergy is the name of the Royal College of the Holy Spirit of the Society of Jesus. This building consists of a baroque-style church built by Queen Margaret of Austria in the 17th century. La Clerecía is located in the city of Salamanca, at the highest point of the city, so the views are unbeatable. Currently, you can access one of its towers, the permanent exhibition called "Scala Coeli" (stairs to heaven) to admire the city from the top.
The University of Salamanca is a building with more than 800 years of history. Its façade is the main attraction for tourists who come to find the famous little frog of the university. This public university was the first university in Spain and is one of the oldest in the world. Its creator was Alfonso IX de León who in 1218, being an illustrious man ahead of his time, wanted to have a higher education center in his kingdom. The University of Salamanca was, together with those of Paris, Oxford and Bologna, one of the first European universities. Currently, it is still active and full of students. It is the only university in Spain that has managed to remain open after so many centuries. It is the university that gives Salamanca its zest for life, the culture of student life permeates throughout the city.
The Roman bridge of Salamanca was built in the 1st century and rebuilt in the 11th century after a flood-damaged it. Of its 26 arches, there are still 15 from Roman times. This bridge that crosses the river Tormes, at the time, was one of the most important Roman roads as it linked Astorga with Mérida on the so-called Vía de la Plata. Declared a national monument in 1931, this bridge is worth visiting as when you crossover you will see some magnificent views of the city of Salamanca.
Casa Lis is a modernist-style mansion located in Salamanca, with a striking facade and many colorful stained glass windows. This building houses the Art Nouveau Art Déco Museum inside.
The Old Cathedral was built between the twelfth and thirteenth centuries but underwent a major reform in the seventeenth century. Romanesque style with transitional arches to Gothic, this basilica with three naves is dedicated to Santa María de la Sede and has a Latin cross plan. Annexed to the Old Cathedral, it was inaugurated in 1733. It was ordered to be built in 1513 with the collaboration of the Catholic Monarchs, so its style is mostly late Gothic. The New Cathedral stands out for the Portada de Ramos where you can find the famous astronaut in 1993. You can access the Towers of the Cathedral, from the leronimus exhibition, here it is possible to walk through the terraces that overlook the interior of the temple and admire the views of the city.
The Convent of San Esteban is a convent in Salamanca belonging to the Dominican Order. This church has a facade full of relief details and is an example of late Gothic and Renaissance art. Its interior stands out for the choir, the main altarpiece and the twisted columns. This was where Christopher Columbus lived and studied. Also, Fray Francisco de Vitoria, theologian, philosopher, jurist and professor, was the precursor of human rights and international rights.
The Polaris observatory is a small wooden observatory located in Barajas, in Navarredonda de Gredos, near the Casa del Altozano, in the Sierra de Gredos, Starlight reserve which means that the sky is ideal for astronomical observation of the sky and the stars. This observatory, although small, has a powerful professional telescope, a CPC-800 with a 2000 mm focal length and 200 mm aperture that allows you to see more than 40,000 celestial objects and a mobile wooden roof through which you can gaze at the sky. The Polaris Observatory is private but offers astronomical observation activities to the public that includes a monitor certified by the Starlight Foundation.
The Basilica of San Vicente is located in Avila, outside the city walls. Romanesque in style, its construction began in 1120 and is still a place of worship. The orange color of its facade is striking. Tradition has it that it was here that St. Vincent was martyred and buried and, as a result, was named in his honor.
The Monastery of Santo Tomás is a Dominican monastery located in Ávila, built between 1482 and 1493 under the patronage of the Catholic Monarchs, their treasurer and his wife - Hernando Núñez de Arnalte and María Dávila - and Fray Tomás de Torquemada. The monastery was the seat of the Inquisition and, between the 16th and 19th centuries, it was the University of Santo Tomás. Over the centuries it has suffered damage, plundering and modifications and in 1931 it was declared a National Monument. the facade of the church has a large rose window, a huge coat of arms of the Catholic Monarchs and ten sculptures but, unquestionably, its interior is the most interesting for its beautiful ribbed vault, its choir, the three cloisters and the tomb of the Infante Don Juan, the only son of the Catholic Monarchs who did not reach the throne because of his premature death. In addition, inside the palace, you will also find the Museum of Oriental Art and the Museum of Natural Sciences.
The convent and birthplace of Santa Teresa de Jesús is a Baroque Carmelite-style church that was built on the house where Teresa de Cepeda y Ahumado was born and is, now the chapel of Santa Teresa. Below it is the Teresian museum, in the great burial crypt. The facade is divided into three parts in which the image of the Saint in marble and the coats of arms of the Cepeda and Ahumada stand out. In the same square where the Church of Santa Teresa is located, you will also find the Hall of Relics.
The Cathedral of Avila or Cathedral of Christ the Savior is a construction of Romanesque style although there are also elements of several influences such as the Gothic, visible in its impressive High Altarpiece, and the Renaissance, which highlights the laborious Choir, crafted in detail on walnut wood, and the Choir stalls, pilasters decorated with high reliefs representing "The Presentation in the Temple, The Adoration of the Kings and The Slaughter of the Innocents".
The Palace of Superunda idates from XVI century. Built on granite masonry, it consists of two towers and two floors. On the lower floor, there are two windows with doorposts and lintel moldings. The upper floor has three balconies overlooking the inner courtyard and has a staircase with a bust of Jesus Christ, the work of Vasco de la Zarza.
The Wall of Ávila is a symbol of the city. This impressive medieval wall from the 11th century has a perimeter of 2,516 metres, 87 towers, 9 access gates -including the Puerta de San Vicente and the Puerta del Alcázar-, 2 gatekeepers and 2,500 merlons. What's more, it is the best-preserved walled enclosure in Spain, you can walk along the top of the wall to see the beautiful city of Ávila, a World Heritage Site, down below..
The Mirador de Ávila, known as the Humilladero de los cuatro posts, is located past the city's Roman Bridge. From this viewpoint, you can see the beautiful views of the city.
The Alcázar of Segovia is a medieval fortress where the Castilian court was based for centuries. It dates from the 12th century, although it is thought that it may have been built much earlier, during Roman times, since the granite is the same as that used in the Segovian aqueduct. It looks like a fairy tale castle and is a symbol of the city. Currently you can visit its interior and discover the medieval palace and its different rooms, the museum and the Tower of Juan II. The castle also has two courtyards: the Clock Courtyard and the Arms Courtyard.
The Mirador de la Pradera de San Marcos is located in Segovia. From its green meadow you can appreciate the magnificent views of the imposing Alcázar of Segovia.
The Plaza del Medina del Campo de Segovia is also known as the Plaza de las Sirenas due to the sculptures that are found in it which have nothing to do with the sirens that we are used to seeing in fairy tales. Rather these sirens are a mix of the body of a lion and a woman with a crown and veil, more similar to a sphinx. You will also find In the statue of Juan Bravo, a politician, military man and alderman of Segovia in the 15th century.
The Tower located in the Plazuela de San Martín in the city of Segovia. This defensive house was built in the 14th century and was modified into a Renaissance palace in the 17th century. It is currently used as an exhibition hall.
The church has been declared an Asset of Cultural Interest and is located in the Plazuela de San Martín, next to the Plaza de Medina del Campo where the statue of Juan Bravo and the Torreón de Lozoya stand. The church of San Martín is Romanesque in style and has three naves with three bays each, a transept with a brick dome and three apses, as well as a huge brick bell tower. The most outstanding feature is undoubtedly its exterior, where we find various sculptures representing different mythical scenes of Christianity, including the Nativity.
The Juan Bravo theater is located in the Plaza Mayor of Segovia, next to the Town Hall. It stands out for its unusual pink facade.
Segovia Cathedral, built between the 16th and 18th centuries, is one of the latest Gothic cathedrals in Spain and Europe. Its full name is Santa Iglesia Catedral de Nuestra Señora de la Asunción y de San Frutos and it is located in the Plaza Mayor . Its slender structure consists of 3 naves in the shape of a Latin cross, it is 33 meters high, 50 meters wide and 105 meters long. It stands out for its apse and its interior ambulatory but, above all, for its tower.
Building located in the city of Segovia that owes its name to its facade full of diamond-shaped points (peaks) that stand out in an orderly manner. Legend has it that under these 360 peaks there is a hidden treasure. It was built in the 15th century by Juan de la Hoz as a mansion for Pedro López de Ayala and his family. Currently and since 1977, it is the headquarters of the School of Applied Arts of Segovia.
The Segovia Aqueduct is a Roman aqueduct dating from the 2nd century AD. Although the exact date is not known, it is believed to be from the time of the Flavians (after 112 AD). Its excellent state of conservation and its construction made with granite ashlars without mortar between them is striking. and somewhat surprising considering that it has 20,400 stone blocks and 167 arches. This demonstrates the magnificent work of engineering, the force is distributed in such a way that it achieves a perfect balance that has been maintained for almost two millennia. Its maximum height is 28.10 meters and its route begins at the Palacio de la Granja until it reaches the El Caserón cistern. This impressive Roman feat of civil engineering had the function of bringing water from the Sierra to the city and has become an emblem of the city.
TThe Fuente Dé Cable Car is located in the heart of the Picos de Europa National Park. It has a height difference of 753 meters and takes passengers up to 1,823 meters in 4 minutes. When you reach the top, you can appreciate a beautiful unspoilt landscape, snowy in winter and green at other times of the year.
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