TOLEDO WALKS & ITINERARIES



ITINERARY 4

Note: Please refer to the map of this itinerary, where all numbered monuments below may be found. Click any of the images for a larger view in a new window.

Starting at the Puerta del Cambron and walking down the Paseo de Recaredo to our right, we can enjoy a long walk along one of the best preserved sections of the city walls. The next stop is the old Bisagra gate or Puerta de Alfonso VI24 dating from 838 and one of the purest Moorish constructions. On the side, we find a small square and proceed up on Calle de Alfonso VI to the Church of Santiago del Arrabal. Shortly, we reach the Calle Real del Arrabal and proceed along this street until we find the Calle del Cristo de la Luz on our right.

We go through the Puerta de Valmardon, a 10th century Moorish gate and to the left, protected by wrough iron gates, we find the Mezquita Cristo de la Luz25, one of the most important monuments and the best example of Islamic art in Toledo. Erected in the year 999 by the architect Musa Ibn Ali, it has a square ground plan witb the aisles and columns forming nine architectural spaces covered by caliphal vaults. The Romanesque-Mudéjar apse was added in the 12th century, comprising a semicircular apse and a straight presbytery. Inside, it was decorated with Romanesque frescoes with a view of adapting it to Christian worship. The exterior is decorated with blind horseshoe arcades. Unfortunately, visiting hours are very irregular, and it is not easy to find it open.

We.continue walking to the end of the street of Calle del Cristo de la Luz until we come to Calle de los Alfileritos, and to our right we continue down the street until we reach the Plaza de San Vicente. Here we find the neoclassical University palace of Lorenzana, the 13th century Mudejar Cburch of San Vicente, and Las Gaitanas, a cloistered convent including a church considered to be one of the best examples of the Toledan Baroque style.

 Walking through two of the Cobertizos, typical woodcovered passageways in Toledo, we reach the Plaza de Santo Domingo el Real, one of the most secluded places in the city. The square is framed by the walls of several convents, one of the most interesting being Santo Domingo del Real26, a Baroque building with a splendid classical doorway, in former times a stopping place for kings.

After crossing the Plaza de Santo Domingo el Real and proceeding on the Calle Buzones, we turn to the right and arrive at the Palacio de la Diputación, built in the 19th century. Opposite and on the top of a steep incline, we find the lovely 13th Mudejar Church of Santa Leocadia27; although restored, it stiII preserves a magnificent Moorish tower.

Museum of Santo DomingoRight behind the church, we find the first monastery built in Toledo, Santo Domingo el Antiguo28 (Plaza de Santo Domingo el Antiguo. Tel: 925 22 29 30. Open: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 4 to 7 p.m. Closed Sunday morning. In winter, open only holidays and weekends), situated on the plaza of the same name, dedicated to Santo Domingo de Silos and cited in different written documents as far back as 1085. It contains various artifacts of Visigothic origin and paintings by EI Greco. Inside the grille which separates the choir from the rest of the church, a glass window allows us to see the crypt where El Greco is buried.

Nearby and after crossing through the Plaza de Padilla and taking the Calle de San Roman, we find the Casa de Mesa, an old palace with a Renaissance doorway; the convent of San Clemente with a Plateresque doorway by Covarrubias; the old monastery of San Pedro Martir, and the Church of San Roman29 (Calle San Clemente, 4. Tel: 925 22 78 72. Open: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 4 to 6:30 p.m. Closed Monday and Sunday afternoon), presently the Museum of Councils and Visigothic Culture. Visigothic in origin, San Roman was later used as a mosque, but its present appearance is Mudejar from the 13th century. It contains elements from various styles: Caliphal arches, Roman columns, Visgothic and Mozarab capitals, and even a Byzantine one. Almost all of the walls are covered with Romanesque paintings. The museum exhibits reproductions of the famous treasure of Guarrazar, medieval codices and numerous Visigothic antiquities, including gold and silverworks.

Continuing along the Calle San Roman, we come to the Plaza Juan de Mariana where the huge imposing Church of San IIdefonso30 can be seen, the best Toledan Baroque style and an excellent example of Jesuit construction. Proceeding along the Calle Alfonso X el Sabio and turning to the right to get the Calle Nuncio Viejo, we once again arrive at the Cathedral and at the end of our tour of the city of Toledo.

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