Madrid & Two Medieval Walled Cities

 

Our few days in Madrid and surrounds have been even better the second time around.  Here are a few impressions.  For more information about these areas, please scroll down to my previous trip to Northern Spain.

Madrid

Our brief tour of the city took us past the newly renovated modern art gallery, the Reina Sofia, which houses Picasso’s “Guernica,” a mural that triggered the Republican resistence in the Spanish Civil War.

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When Egypt built the huge dam at Aswan to power Cairo, a number of temples were going to sink under an artificial lake created by the dam.  UNESCO made a call around the world to save the magnificent Abu Simbel temple.  The temple was saved

and it took an engineering feat to move it to Egypt’s southern border with Sudan where it was re-assembled.  Spain was the biggest donor and to show thanks, Egypt gave Spain the Debod temple.  Spain erected it in a park.  We only got a peekaboo view:

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Here it is up close [not mine]:

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The sumptious cherry lobby in the Prado, one of the most important art galleries in the world:

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Preparations were being made for the Madrid marathon taking place on Saturday.  To spur on the runners along the 47 km route and to celebrate the Prado’s bicentennial, large reproductions of the best of the Prado’s collection were installed at each kilometer.

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Of course the food was fabulous in Madrid, especially at La Catedral, just steps from our hotel.

 

Segovia

I went to Segovia again mainly because of the food, but I was pleasantly surprised to see things at a new angle.   We stopped at a low spot to get a great shot looking up at the castle (“Alcazar”) in which Isabella was crowned Queen of Castille.  

We walked along the medieval wall of the city, then toured the Alcazar.

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We walked down through the town to the Roman aquaduct.

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We went to what I anticipated would probably be the best meal of the trip, at La Postal (“the Post Card”) – here’s how it got its name.

We feasted:

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Rosa cut the roast suckling pig in the traditional way (Bonnie, you may want to scroll past these images):

It is the tenderest meat I have ever tasted with a filo-thin crust of crackling.  I was grateful not to get a hoof or a curly tail on my plate.

We toured the nearby Bourbon palace built by a king homesick for Versailles.  Since I’d seen it before, I took a stroll in the gardens.

Segovia was a lovely getaway from the bustle of Madrid.

Toledo

On our free day, I decided to return to the historical city of Toledo, about  20 minutes by train from Madrid, to see some of the things I wasn’t able to see on our first visit due to time constraints.  I was meeting tour friends.  who had left for Toledo earlier in the day.

Iglesia de Santo Tome

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The Burial of the Count of Orgaz is a 1586 painting by the great artist and Toledo emigre,  El Greco. Among his finest works, it has been called “one of the most truthful pages in the history of Spain”, as a masterpiece of Western Art and of late Mannerism, and as the epitome of Greco’s artistic style.

First gazpacho!

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Synagoga del Santa Maria del Blanca

A quick trip back to Madrid, another delicious dinner, and the end to another magical day.  Tomorrow, new ground.  Vamos!

Best,

Jan

 

2 thoughts on “Madrid & Two Medieval Walled Cities

  1. Being an arm chair traveller isn’t so bad when I receive such wonderful blogs from you Jan.Such a trip enriches not only your life but that of all your friends and family.
    Love and Hugs.Joyce

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