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Castile–León and Castile–La Mancha Travel Guide

  • Photo: WellyWelly / Shutterstock

Plan Your Castile–León and Castile–La Mancha Vacation

Madrid, in the center of Spain, is an excellent jumping-off point for exploring, and the high-speed train puts many destinations within easy reach. The Castiles, which bracket Madrid to the north and south, and Extremadura, bordering Portugal, are filled with compelling destinations, steeped in tradition.

Top Reasons To Go

  1. See El Greco's Toledo El Greco’s paintings, previously displayed around the world, returned to Toledo in 2014 for the 400th anniversary of the painter's death. Museums have been renovated and El Greco–theme tourist trails link the sites in the stunning city that the Greek-born painter chose to call home.
  2. Be mesmerized by Cuenca's "hanging houses" Las Casas Colgadas seem to defy gravity, clinging to a cliffside with views over Castile–La Mancha's parched plains.
  3. See Salamanca's old and new cathedrals The cathedrals are a fascinating dichotomy—the intricate detail of the new contrasts with the simplicity of the old.
  4. Visit Segovia's aqueduct Amazingly well preserved, this still-functioning 2,000-year-old Roman aqueduct is unforgettable.
  5. Get stuck in a time warp The walled city of Cáceres is especially evocative at dusk, with its skyline of ancient spires, towers, and cupolas.
  6. Medieval musing Explore León's Gothic cathedral, with its kaleidoscopic windows. Royal snacking Aranjuez is known for its strawberries, and in spring and summer vendors sell them with whipped cream at the market and along the river by the Royal Palace of La Granja's San Ildefonso, whose opulent gardens rival those at Versailles.

When To Go

When to Go

July and August can be brutally hot, and November through February can get bitterly cold, especially in the Sierra de Guadarrama. May and October, w...

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