Valladolid

Valladolid is the capital of the county of Castilla y León in Central Spain. The exact date of the foundation is unknown, but after the Reconquista (recapture) in the 15th century from the Moors (term used to refer to the Arabian population in Spain during the Medieval Ages) it was appointed Capital of the Spanish kingdom. It kept this status until the 16th century when El Escorial (a monastry) was built and became the new Capital.

Though the city has seen many historious events there are hardly any historical buildings left to testify the great past.

One of the few buildings left is the Cathedral, built by Juan de Herrera (who also was the architect of El Esorial), Cervantes’s house (which you see below) and the Plaza Mayor (Main Plaza).

The Plaza Mayor, as you see on the picture below, is the archetype of a Main Plaza in a hispanic city. You will find main places all over the Spanish-speaking world who look like this one.

An other historical relict is the University of Valladolid, founded in 1346. After joining the four university campuses of Palencia, Segovia, and Soria under the head of Valladolid, it is today one of the most important and highly evaluated university in Spain.

The historical building of the Facultad de Derecho (Law Faculty) was the first to house the university in the 15th century. Today it holds a mainly representative character with a big auditorium.

I lived in Valladolid for half a year two years ago during my Erasmus term in Spain. Though the city itself has a quite industrial imprint there are lots of nice niches.

E. g. the Campo Grande Park in the city center – the green lung of the city – is a place where you can spend the afternoon, enjoying the sun and listening to the fountains. On the weekends the city’s inhabitants like to take a stroll at the bank of river Pisuerga.

In summer you can sunbath at the local beach or make trips to the countryside. While winter offers a nice Christmas market on Plaza Mayor and the traditional appearance of the three kings on Jan. 6.

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