Beauty and religion

April 27, 2009

Main squareBeauty and religion have always been synonimous in art. The labour of several religious orders have bestowed the humanity the great artistic field on which the architecture is based today. Romanic, gothic, baroque… all these styles were born and were developed thanks to the support of the Church.

La Alberca, situated in Castilla Leon, specifically in the province of Salamanca, has been become one of the most characteristic villages which shows its beauty throughout the religious trail of its ancestors. With more than nine religious buildings whose arquitectonic styles vary from the romanic to the gotic style, La Alberca offers a great walk to remember the Spanish and European history of the last four centuries.

Among these buildings stand out the Chapel of Nuestra Señora de Majadas Viejas, situated in the centre of a thick wood of oaks which bestows it a mystic halo , and the Chapel of San Marcos which offers the visitors the opportunity of contemplating the great landscape whichErmita de Majadas surrounds the village.

But, La Alberca is not only churches and Ermitas but the nature also plays an important role. The national park of Las Battuecas where it can be found prehistoric caves and the Carmelita Monastery where literary myth of Batuecas was born.

Indeed, a city to admire where from its walls you can learn a piece of the Spanish history. If you have the chance,Do not think twice and go to this wonderful place.


A paradise in the middle of nowhere

March 13, 2009

AstorgaA good food, a better hospitality and the best monuments of the plateau of Castile are enough reasons to gain a spot in my blog. Astorga, city situated in the northwestern zone of the Autonomous Region of Castilla y León, has been a nerve centre since its foundation in the Roman age.

From the Roman age there are still some historical remains which bestows the town an halo of greatness and majesty. The most important Roman contruction in the city is its wall. Dated in the third Century this wall surrounds the city along 2295 metros leading the Roman route in which it is found all the historical remains from this ancient civilization.Cathedral

Not only the Romans antiques remain in this town but numerous buildings an monuments were built along the history. Among all the monuments there are two which deserve a special mention: Saint Mary’s Cathedral and the Episcopal Palace.

The contruction of Saint Mary’s Cathedral started in 1471 and it was finished 1965, 496 years later of its beginning, because of a several eathquakes which affected to the basis of the cathedral. This slowly contructions also gave the cathedral the opportunity of inlcuding new features and styles to its walls. So, this building combines so different styles like the Romanesque or the Baroque. Indeed, a monument to see.

Episcopal PalaceFollowing the religious tradition of the zone, there is a monument which shines over the other ones: The Epispocal Palace. Designed by the magnificient architec and sculptor, Antoni Gaudi, this palace is the architectural jewel of the zone. Built between 1889 and 1915 the building shows marvellously the Gaudi’s characterists and all the atmosphere which can be seen in his masterpiece: The Sacred Family.

But I could not leave this post whithout saying that people in this region are known for their hospitality and their delicious foods such as the Cecina and the Mantecadas.

Indeed, a place to see and taste!!!


Gernika: A symbol of peace

March 8, 2009

Guernica by PicassoThe bulk of people have only heard about Guernika because of the fantastic and well-known picture painted by Picasso in the Spanish civil war. But Guernika is much more than a picture…

Situated in the North part of the Spain,specifically in the Basque Country, Guernika has always known how to overcome its difficulties to survive. Founded in 1366 by the Count Don Tello, this village has its roots in the ancient civilizations Indo-Europeans and Romans who settled down in the Iberian Peninsula several centuries before. Unfortunately, most of the traces of these ancient civilizatons were destroyed in the brutal bombing featured by the Condor Legion in 1937.

But, like a phoenix which rebirths from its ashes, Guernika resuscitated to recover all its splendor. Nowadays, wideCasa de las Juntas streets, marvellous parks like “Pueblos de Europa” park, which contains several statues of Eduardo Chillida, and the Udetxea and Joy Palaces dated in the XIX Century decorate the place Don Tello founded 650 years ago.

A special mention deserves “La Casa de las Juntas” with its oak in front of the building. This construction was originally devised to house the Government of Vizcaya, but with the passage of the time its functions became more cultural than official, since the introduction of the “Oak of the freedom” bestows the building a new cultural face. At last, Guernika had the well deserved peace that it never had.

Indeed, a place to visit if you have the chance, and if you have the chance …Remember!

PEACE AND LOVE ( they have had enough battles)