Toledo, once the capital of Spain, is situated on a hill above the River Tagus, which is traveling to the Atlantic via Lisbon. Places of tourist interest include the Cathedral, the Alcazar, and the Casa-Museo de El Greco (containing twenty of the Artist’s best-known paintings).
On the southern tip of Spain, the port city of Cadiz has been active since 1100 BC and through the days of the Roman Empire, when its dancers were famous throughout the Mediterranean region. Today you can enjoy its two beaches, fortifications, seafront avenues and the salty air of its maritime history. The city is also a departure point for ferry boats to the Canary Islands. Cadiz has the liveliest Carnival celebration in Spain (with the possible exception of Tenerife in the Canary Islands).
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Salamanca is a historic university town known for its outstanding and well-preserved, historic architecture.
Avila is a wonderful 1,000-year-old city. One of its main attractions is its medieval wall, which measures 2 km in circumference and completely encircles the old part of town. The ramparts have nine gates and 88 towers, many topped with stork nests. Avila also has interesting narrow streets and intimate squares, many churches both inside and outside the walls, including an intriguing fortified cathedral and the Real Monasterio de Santo Tomas (the summer home of Ferdinand and Isabella).
Yet another of Spain’s cities awarded UNESCO World Heritage status, Segovia’s well-preserved Roman Aqueduct is a world famous attraction.
Valencia is the gateway to the Costa Blanca, another of Spain’s noted beach areas.
Bilbao makes the list based, mainly, on the Guggenheim Museum designed by Frank Gehry. Visitors will not want to miss the grid of streets overlooked by rows of historic townhouses that constitute the Casco Viejo, or old town.
Reachable by ferry, Palma de Mallorca, is an exotic destination. The town (Palma) has two fine cathedrals, interesting shopping, and is a great place to wander. Many “party animals” prefer the island of Ibiza, as Ibiza is known for its active club scene, great weather and beautiful beaches.
With its international airport and central location, the resort city of Alicante is the capitol of the Costa Blanca area. The city is worth checking out for its relaxing atmosphere, warm weather and beaches.
These islands boast a fair, spring-like climate year-round. Visitors flock to the islands’ casinos, golf courses, tennis courts and natural wonders, including fairly good beaches of white, gold and black sand.
The greenest and lushest of the Canary Islands, La Palma is interesting for its pretty towns and steep, rugged geography. Be sure to drive to the summit of Taburiente for a view over the massive volcano. Cigar smokers should take advantage of the high quality, inexpensive hand-rolled cigars that can be purchased everywhere. Butterfly lovers will want to make their way to Palmitos Park to see Europe’s largest tropical butterfly house. The park is also home to more than 1,500 exotic birds representing 230 species.