After bustling Madrid, Toledo is nothing but eye candy.
The inner wall of the city is said to have been founded in the 7th century by the Visigoth, the architecture, and the masonry are of Moorish influence. One of the most interesting aspect of the walled city, that sits on a rock above the rio Tajo is that from the 8th to 11th century, it was known as La Convivenca.
Under Arab rule the city new a golden age of tolerance, and sitting in the center of Spain was the crossroad between Muslims, Jews, and Christians culture. I wonder what the Caliphate of Cordoba new then that the Muslims, Jews, and Christians have forgotten today, more then a thousand years later.
Like all good things coming to an end, La Convivenca ended in 1085, when Alphonso VI retook the city, and begun an iron fist rule. This would later become the first concrete step taken by the Castilla y Leon alliance to initiate la reconquista by the Christian armies.
For us the small city was a perfect resting stop. We spent two days visiting, and recuperating from the Madrid marathon. ST thought nothing of the 70 km that separates the two cities, and taking the autopista we made it well within an hour. We booked at the Toledo Eurostar with lastminute.com, and paid a very reasonable € 85.00 for 2 days in a **** star hotel.
This is the view from the room.
Wow what a feast for the eyes. On the subject of feast, last night we opted to stay home to enjoy the comfort of the room, and picnicked from a delicious home made snack. We discovered artisan made chips (fried in olive oil). Forget Lays.
some of this, a bit of that, and add the -comosellama thingamagig- por favor, and don't forget the patatas fritas artesanas
And while sipping a glass of Rioja
Toledo is also known for its craftsmanship in all things steel, but specially knives of all types, swords, and armours.
For a collector, or someone like me who just likes knives, it was quite a treat, and I was lucky to received an authentic stiletto from Toledo. Hand made, with a blade of 420 stainless steel, and handle made of cuerno de torro (bull horn).
Of course in return for the gift, I parted with a penny thus ensuring that the ties of friendship between Jackie and Valentino could not be severed.
Dood where's my penny
It was funny as we amble in the very confusing sinuous streets of the old city to witness other tourists looking haggard as they tried to figure out where they were, and how to get where they wanted to go. Loved every minute of it.
We also took ST for a little city tour. It was great fun to ride around the paved streets, and around the city walls just wearing helmets and jackets.
ST was happy not to be stuck at the hotel this time
Valentino what are you doing?
... here let me try!
The large square structure is the Alcazar
A few more pics of this beautiful city, even this early in the season the roses were already in full bloom
That Valentino he's so cooool!
We found this beautiful courtyard
And this really tall tower
The arcades and the streets were so charming and well decorated
What's behind this door?
A mini street
After sampling some local delicacies
Of course we had to go see the cathedral
The weather has been ok, but not great, mostly cloudy with sunny breaks with the mercury barely reaching 19-20 C. tomorrow is forecasted to be similar even further south. Our ride to Cordoba planned for tomorrow is 340 km, with a stop in Ciudad Real...