WHAT TO SEE
Tourism in Ávila, the “pearl” of Castile and León
With the title of World Heritage City awarded by Unesco, Ávila is one of the pearls of Castile and León, a city which is worth discovering on a wander through its cobbled streets.
Its artistic and architectural heritage is extremely valuable and vast, although several places of interest stand out in particular:
The Walls of Ávila. This feature of medieval defence dates back to the 10th to 14th centuries. Work began in the year 1090. The perimeter of the wall is 2516 metres and it has 9 gates, 8 cubes or towers with a semicircular floor and 2500 battlements. The walls are 3 metres thick and 12 metres high. The walled space which includes the intramural city is approximately 31 hectares.
El Salvador Cathedral. Inspired by the Abbey of Saint-Denis, it was started in the 12th century and completed in the 15th century. Building initially began in Late Romanesque style although it is classed in the incipient French Gothic style as it was built by the Gaul master builder Giral Fruchel.
A key feature inside is the Capilla Mayor (great chapel), where pride of place is given to the monumental altarpiece made by Pedro Berruguete from 1499 until his death.
Santa María Basilica. It is in Gothic style and was built between the 12th and 14th centuries by the French master Giral Fruchel, who also crafted the cathedral.
Santa Teresa Convent. Built during the 17th century it stands in the exact place where the famous saint was born.
The Tower of the Guzmanes. This is one of the most outstanding buildings of civil architecture in Ávila. It is currently home to the Provincial Council.
In the old stables of the palace an information centre called La Vettonia has been installed, which is a place where visitors can gain an in-depth knowledge of the culture of the first settlers on these lands.
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