The restored windmills of Seguera, which Don Quixote, Cervantes’s mad knight with his colander helmet mistook for the swirling arms of fearsome giants, defend the myth of La Mancha, but its hilltop cities present a wide contrast and represent an important part of the story. from Spain. Albacete has the rare distinction of being recognized as the most boring city in the country, but the regional, and once national capital, Toledo, counters this by saying that it is one of the most beautiful and historically interesting.

Toledo saw its greatest period of artistic development at a time when its political power was on the wane. Just after the mid-16th century, a few years before El Greco from Italy arrived there, Philip II moved his court north to Madrid. By the time the fathers of the city clicked, Toledo was no longer the seat of national power, many of the artists, architects, rich and powerful had left, leaving the city to become nothing more than an architectural and artistic bywater.

Fortunately for today’s visitors, most of the subsequent development took place outside the city walls, and your feet can still step on the same cobblestones that El Greco stepped on while paying his illustrious clientele, and charging them large fees to do so. . Unfortunately for the artist, his outrageous prices outraged many of Toledo’s citizens and when he died in 1614 he was nearly penniless, with his paintings scattered throughout the city. Fortunately for art lovers, they still remain there.

If you walk through the small alleys at breakfast time, waiting for the sun to peek over the tall spiers of the Cathedral, you will feel as if you are in a maze of gray chasms where neighbors can shake hands on the other side of the road. the windows oriole them over his head. The early risers begin to set up their stalls, many of them of the type of tourist weaponry, since Toledo was known worldwide for the quality of its manufacture of swords. For some reason, it seems that there are almost as many marzipan shops as there are goldsmith shops, something strange considering that you hardly see an almond tree in the area. To taste the sweet pasta and help the poor at the same time, you can buy it at the Ursula Convent on Santa Ursula Street where, for unknown reasons, the marzipan is called Santa Rita. You can even pick up a rosary if you feel like it.

Once one of the most important cities in Muslim Spain, after the Reconquest, the overthrow of Arab rule by Christians in the 11th century, the Vatican confirmed Toledo as the center of the Catholic Church in Spain. The architecture of the city shows it is heritage and grand plazas with Modernist (art nouveau), such as the Zocodover which, from 1465 to 1960 was home to El Martes, the city’s Tuesday market, originally the Arabic souq ad-dawab, a cattle market from which the square takes its name. Nearby is the distinctive Alczar, once a grand royal residence, now a museum.

Toledo is worth getting lost because you won’t go very far. In this way you will find some of the most emblematic ramshackle streets of the city that are equipped for tourist routes. It is here that you will find tiny mealDimly lit, grocery stores presided over by matron ladies in white perms and pinnies. Stroll down Calle Pozo de Amargo (Calle del Pozo Amargo), just off the Plaza del Ayuntamiento, and you will come across the ornate goldwork of the Pozo Amargo, whose waters are said to have been soiled by the bitter tears of a young man. The Jewish girl who is a Christian lover was murdered by her father.