Toledo, the heart and soul of Spain is a captivating monumental ancient which is also declared as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Behind its daunting medieval walls, in a labyrinth of winding pedestrian streets, are some of most important historical landmarks in the country. Magnificent old stone buildings and quiet cobblestone streets whisper the legacy of the past.
Catedral de Tole
With its soaring tower and marvelous Gothic architecture, Toledo’s cathedral is one of the most important Christian landmarks in Spain. The cathedral was built in the 13th century on the site of a Muslim mosque next to the Judería. The exterior is somewhat obscured by the tightly packed buildings surrounding it, but the interior is breathtaking.
Standing watch over the city, the Alcázar has a commanding presence on its hilltop location. This ancient Moorish fortress, built on the site of an earlier Roman fort, was later renovated by the Christian Kings Alfonso VI “the Brave” in the 11th century and Alfonso X “the Wise” in the 13th century. The imposing fortress has a square shape with crenellated defenses and four corner towers added under the reign of Emperor Charles V in the 16th century.
La Muralla (Town Wall)
Constructed originally by the Romans, renewed by the Visigoths, expanded by the Moors, and enlarged again after the Christian reconquest, Toledo’s walls are surprisingly complete today, with well-preserved reminders of their – and the city’s – mixed history. You can walk along the walls, stopping in the little parks and at the gates that gave access to the city.
Carcamusas Toledona is a hearty stew that originated in Toledo. This dish, according to one of the many stories told about Toledo, comes from a bar located in the Plaza de la Magdalena, the Bar Restaurante Ludeña.
It is said that the owner of this bar, many years ago offered this dish to his customers.. The bar was often patronized by older men (carcas) with their younger women (musas). The story says that the bar owner joined the two words together carca+musas to come up with the name Caramusas.
The ingredients of Carcamusas include slow cooked pork, chorizo, and peas stewed with tomatoes and bay leaves.
It is typically served n a small clay dish called a cazuela roja and is eaten with chunks of crusty bread.