1. From Madrid: Toledo Cathedral & Jewish Quarter Half-Day Tour
Set out from Madrid to discover a city where Christians, Jews, and Muslims intermingled hundreds of years ago in this half-day tour of Toledo. Visit the High Gothic cathedral, Plaza de Zocodover, and Church of Santo Tomé. Walk the same streets described in Cervantes’s Don Quixote. The tour starts with a bus ride from Madrid. Upon arrival in Toledo, stop first at the Mirador del Valle. Snap a picture of the panoramic view. The historic center of Toledo stands on the other side of the Tagus River. Spot the Alcazar and the Toledo Cathedral with their prominent towers. In the old city, stop in the Plaza del Ayuntamiento. Learn about the Toledo Cathedral before entering. Look for features in the mudejar style. They are one example of the influence Islamic architecture had on the church’s design. Don’t miss the ornate retable while walking through the cathedral. From the Cathedral, wind along the streets into the Jewish Quarter. The buildings showcase the mixing of cultures hundreds of years ago, such as the Church of San Tome. Go inside to see a large painting by El Greco. Note the elongated faces and hands. They are the painter’s trademarks. Continue further to the Synagogue of Santa Maria La Blanca. Look around to find the various Jewish, Christian, and Islamic influences. Learn more of Toledo’s history and contributions to Spanish culture before heading back to Madrid.