Span: Valley of Fallen to Lose Franco?

Old Jul 8th, 2018, 03:22 PM
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Span: Valley of Fallen to Lose Franco?

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/07/w...in-franco.html

A popular day trip from Madrid goes to El Escorial - lavish old royal palace and also often includes a look around the Valley of the Fallen -where heroes of Span's Fascist Franco days were memorialized - but if wanting to see Franco's tomb better hurry - but even without the Valley of the Fallen is a rather unique place to visit on a day trip to El Escorial just a short train ride from Madrid:

https://www.google.com/search?q=vall...w=1280&bih=631

The Valley of Fallen is an acclaimed archietctural landmark so if visiting El Escorial check out this nearby monument too - with or sans Franco.
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Old Jul 8th, 2018, 06:34 PM
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Pal, I just have to say that you amaze me with your knowledge of so many facets of European travel. I've been traveling in Europe since 1965, and I know virtually nothing compared to you. You must have a phenomenal memory, as well as an amazing amount of traveling.
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Old Jul 8th, 2018, 07:35 PM
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I. never wanted to come near the Valley.


Escorial was easy to visit on my own ( by bus .)
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Old Jul 8th, 2018, 10:32 PM
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Old news, this was announced about 2 weeks ago.
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Old Jul 8th, 2018, 11:24 PM
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I chose to visit the Valley of the Fallen in 2004. I saw a line of Spaniards that extended throughout the basilica there - at least as large as St. Peter's (once you count the space outside the gates) -- and beyond. And when I was there, every one of those people went to spit on Franco's grave.

I don't know whether those people were representative of other Spaniards or not.

The controversy about this site extends well beyond Franco's grave -- there are complicated ethical questions about how to approach a site built by slave labor.

IMO, whether to visit this particular church is a matter worthy of serious and conscientious attention to the issues and values in play.

To suggest visiting it, without providing context, strikes me as painfully irresponsible and insensitive. JMO.

Last edited by kja; Jul 8th, 2018 at 11:52 PM.
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Old Jul 9th, 2018, 05:07 AM
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What kja said. I chose not to visit.

Knowledge of the Valley of the Fallen is hardly esoteric. The Spanish Civil War and its aftermath should be covered in any basic European History course, and if not, the Valley of the Fallen will be in any half-way decent Spanish guidebook.
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Old Jul 9th, 2018, 05:15 AM
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I went in the late 1990's. There were no lines, just a few stragglers and a large wedding party, all of whom, as mentioned, were there to spit on Franco's grave, including every member of the wedding party, once the outdoor photos had been taken.

As noted, this is hardly an historical footnote.
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Old Jul 9th, 2018, 05:19 AM
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I would also be wary of talking about "heroes" and an "acclaimed archietctural [sic] landmark "
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Old Jul 9th, 2018, 07:35 AM
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>> . . . you amaze me with your knowledge of so many facets of European travel.<<

Based largely on Google, wiki and the NYT
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Old Jul 9th, 2018, 07:50 AM
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janis why the personal attacks? As you well know, my yes vast knowledge of European travels comes from 40 years of being a professional travel writer specializing in European travels and having written zillions of detailed articles on zillions of places. The past several years, debilitating illness has sidelined me from traveling but I still very much keep up and post general info that many actually have said they found helpful. Cheers!

Last edited by PalenQ; Jul 9th, 2018 at 08:44 AM.
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Old Jul 9th, 2018, 04:26 PM
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<<my yes vast knowledge of European travels comes from 40 years of being a professional travel writer specializing in European travels and having written zillions of detailed articles on zillions of places. >>

mmmm...sounds oddly Trumpian
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Old Jul 10th, 2018, 09:14 AM
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C'mon, folks. These attacks are unnecessary.
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Old Jul 10th, 2018, 09:52 AM
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Creepiest place I have ever visited. Had my hair standing all the time I was there to the point where I regretted the visit. IMO, the only thing it is good for would be as the setting of a Batman movie. I think that Spain's soldiers deserve a less tainted memorial.
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Old Jul 10th, 2018, 11:27 AM
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I was in the Valle de los Caidos, just for historical/political interest.
But people who have less than 3 months left for the visit of Spain waste their time with the visit of this horror.
A visit of the war museums in the Ebro Delta (Terres de l'Ebre) might be more interesting.
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Old Jul 10th, 2018, 12:48 PM
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Yes I mention only because of proximity to El Escorial Palace - definitely worth it. By itself not much but historical/political interest like you say.
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Old Jul 10th, 2018, 04:09 PM
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To each his/her own. I found the Valley of the Fallen very interesting, and I didn't think it creepy at all -- I found it oddly beautiful, but profoundly unsettling and thought-provoking, and seeing the reactions of the people who were there that day was also powerfully moving. I actually preferred it to El Escorial, but again, preferences are very personal. But I do believe, quite strongly, that it is extremely important to know enough to make an informed choice about whether to see it. And I don't think there's a right or wrong answer to that -- that seems to me to be a very personal decision.
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Old Jul 10th, 2018, 08:11 PM
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There's an interesting article about the Valley of the Fallen in this months Smithsonian magazine.
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