Day off, then Touring Caceres
Sep 9, 2015
|Wednesday, September 9th.
In order to catch the bus we had to hoof it through the parking lot of the soccer stadium, up and over the highway, then down the other side, and walk about 200 m to the bus stop.
I was almost exhausted before we had arrived in Caceres!
The downtown area was very green with many treed parks and fountains. The boulevard separating the one way streets was at least 5 lanes wide!!
Our bus stop had a lovely fountain and gardens across from it.
Unfortunately, the tourist information center was in the old town and there was no signage as how to get there. I had my little map of the city, torn out of the Lonely Planet Book and just kept asking people where “The Plaza Mayor” was. They pointed down the street and that’s where we headed. Winding our way through these streets was quite interesting.
I don’t know how they planned the city streets, if in fact they did. My guess; people built a series of houses together then joined them with an alley, a square or a street. It was quite a maze but people kept helping us and finally the street broke out onto the Main Plaza. Unlike other squares we had seen this one had the wall and an entrance to the old city along one side.
After entering the 18th C. gates of the Arco de la Estrella we found the tourist information desk received our maps and started our tour.
This was an enchanting medieval town with its narrow cobblestone streets twisting and climbing among ancient stone walls lined with palaces and mansions.
The first square we popped out onto was the Plaza de Santa Maria with the Concatedral de Santa Maria. The altar piece to us was the most impressive thing in this simple church, carved out of cedar in the 16th century.
We wandered this city and enjoyed its emptied streets then stumbled out into Plaza de San Jorge with Iglesia de San Francisco Javier soaring into the sky at the top of a long stair way. There were many churches on just as many squares but all closed for the afternoon at 2 PM.
A café on the Plaza Mayor beckoned us for lunch. As we waited for our meal we realized that we were in the middle of “Frosh” week. Hundreds of Uni students with groups dressed in different coloured T-shirts were parading up and down the plaza. Most of them were carrying a VERY large drink in hand. There must have been some sort of a check in post at the other end of the square because that is where they headed with lots of noise and cheering. Two noticeable facts; the girls all had long dark curly hair and wore very tight shorts!
It was quite fun watching the antics.
A leisurely up-hill stroll took us out to the tree lined street and our bus stop.
After some journaling and reading we hit the sack – pretty hard if I remember correctly!