SEGOVIA, ESSENTIAL HISTORY
Juan Vaquero. Acueducto de SegoviaI will dream of you on the streets of Segovia
Between the verdure of the mountains and the brown Castilian plains, the Roman aqueduct soars above Segovia, welcoming us. The streets of the city, where Isabella I of Castile was crowned queen and which was named a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1985, twist and turn, leading us almost accidentally to its three main landmarks: the Roman aqueduct, built in the 1st century under the Flavian dynasty; Saint Mary’s Cathedral, built at the end of the 16th century; and the Alcázar, the Spanish Monarchs’ traditional fortress.
Empresa Municipal de Turismo de Segovia. Iglesia San JustoAs we journey deeper into the city, we’re surprised by the large number of small Romanesque churches, home to countless treasures, such as the frescos decorating the apse of San Justo Church, which feature rich iconography flanking Christ in Majesty or Pantocrator.The sculptures adorning the capitals tell Evangelical stories and the gargoyles of its imposing Gothic cathedral warn of sin and hellish consequences.
Empresa Municipal de Turismo de Segovia. Iglesia de la Vera CruzLeaving behind the upper part of the city and its encircling wall, we head towards the outskirts, to the Eresma river valley, which extends placidly between lush gardens and poplar trees. Monasteries, convents and sanctuaries open their doors, inviting us in to bask in their history and artistic riches. Among them is the Church of Vera Cruz, one of Segovia’s Romanesque jewels. Built in 1208 by the Knights Templar, it commemorates and emulates Constantine’s Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem with its 12-sided structure. Continuing on our way, another essential monument is the Monastery of Saint Mary of Parral. Built in the middle of the 15th century by Henry IV, it belongs to the monks of the Order of Saint Jerome and is still used today for the same purposes for which it was constructed.
Juan Vaquero. Casa particular.As dusk falls, or early in the morning, we accompany you to see houses—which could be museums—whose inspiring ochre views of Segovia’s plains reflect the deep, austere Castilian spirit articulated so clearly by Antonio Machado, one of the leading figures of the Spanish literary movement, Generation of ’98.
Culture awaits around every corner. In addition to its music, puppet and gastronomy festivals, the area is also well-known for its restaurants. Wine tastings, food and wine pairings, ham carving and delicious roasts will add flavor to our journey through this small but spirited city. And if you’d like to learn the basics of Castilian cooking, we’ll tie on our apron right along with you.