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Fodor's Spain 2014
Possibly dating from Roman times, this castle was considerably expanded in the 14th century, remodeled in the 15th, altered again toward the end of the 16th, and completely remodeled after being gutted by a fire in 1862, when it was used as an artillery school. The exterior, especially when seen below from the Ruta Panorámica, is certainly imposing, and striking murals and stained-glass windows pepper the interior. Crowned by crenellated towers that seem to have been carved out of icing (it's widely believed that the Walt Disney logo is modeled after this castle's silhouette), the ramparts can be climbed for superb views. The claustrophobia-inducing winding tower is worth the knee-wobbling climb and small extra fee, though the views of the green hillside from below the tower are excellent as well. Inside, you can enter the throne room, chapel, and bedroom used by Ferdinand and Isabella. The intricate woodwork on the ceiling is marvelous, and the first room you enter, lined with knights in shining armor, is a crowd-pleaser, particularly for kids.
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