Sunday, October 24, 2010

Day 4: Toledo

Travis was pretty excited to take me to Toledo. Another city just an hour away from Madrid, and another city that was completely amazing. I was awestruck with so much history in one city. Toledo was at one point the capital of Spain and during the 13th century was one of the few places where Moors, Christians, and Jews could live together semi-peacefully which makes the architecture and history of the city very unique and rich. We were able to see many churches, synagogues, and mosques while there. While doing a little research on the city, most people would say that Toledo is one of the most amazing cities in Europe.

We decided to walk up to the city, and I'm so glad we did because we were able to walk along the city wall.

Yes, the old city is still surrounded by a city wall. And it was beautiful to see.

When we reached the top we went right through the City gate.

And once through the gate you are brought back in time. Breathtaking.

Every single turn you take in Toledo you find some eye candy. I just walked around with my jaw dropped open at the beauty of this city.
If the streets in Segovia are narrow, then the streets in Toledo shouldn't really be called streets. The cities pathways are crooked, and I found myself turned around very easily there. You can go from ally to ally and you may only be seeing people's homes, they are still just stunning. I loved being there because Travis and I would be in an ally all alone, strolling, and then all the sudden we'd run into another ally full of people, with a gorgeous church in the middle. It was just really, really cool.
A cathedral on the streets in Toledo.

I wish I would have taken a picture of the signs in front of the buildings so I could remember what they all are....
The City Hall, 16th Century.
Toledo Cathedral,1226.

Walking towards the bridge in Toledo, T under the keystone.

The bridge in Toledo spans the Tagus river and was built by Romans after they founded the city. Back in the middle ages is was one of the only ways to enter the city. It still has defensive towers on each end.
The door on one of the towers at the end of the bridge. The book nerd in me could totally picture slamming the huge door down when invaders would try to come to the city. (I should really stop showing you all how completely and totally nerdy I am.)
View from the bridge.
The other end of the bridge. Notice the gate doors that can be slammed shut. Beyond the bridge lies the Castillo de San Servando, a castle we would have liked to have gone in, but weren't sure how to get over there and inside.
A view of another really old bridge, from the really old bridge we were standing on...
View of the cit from the bridge.

Love birds. And if you haven't noticed yet, I didn't do my hair once on the trip. And I'm quite aware that I look like scum.
This is the bridge we were standing on moments before, it's beautiful don't you think?
After the bridge we shopped in the city for a while. Toledo is famous for making swords and also for making the lladro figurines. We browsed, ate in the plaza, and said goodbye to this amazing city.
That night back in Madrid we went for a stroll in the Banco de Espana area. This part of the city was by far my favorite part of Madrid that we went to. It was gorgeous at night, and very quiet. The buildings there are all just amazing to see, and lit up in all their glory. There is also a really cool fountain in the center of the road here of a Greek goddess being pulled by 2 lions. The artist forgot to put reins on the sculpture when he was done, and they killed him. Crazy! It was a very nice way to end a very, very good day.
Tomorrow: El Escorial


The Wolfley Family said...

I'm thinking that it's a good thing you left the girls at home, or you may never have come back! How is it possible that so many beautiful things are in one place?!

Eileen said...

Scum? Nerdy? That is exactly why I love you. And Travis.

Trisha said...

I am in awe. So wonderful!

The Bechtel's said...

WOW!!! you've captured it all so well hayley. i love it, but please - stop calling yourself names :)

Amy Johnson said...

Simon was my tour guide as we strolled through your pics. He said one of the buildings was "templeus ultralus". And when we got to one of the "older" houses he said "man, they have some trashy houses there." :)

mstokes said...

OOOH- Trevor went on his mission to Sapin and he's been telling me - "when I take you to Sapin" for a lot of years! So Jealous!
Ps - You look skinny! Good Work!