Tom & Roberta take on Spain and Portugal 2015 travel blog


After unpacking Tom and I eventually found our way back to the reception desk and ventured out to lunch right across the street. It was a scorching 32 degrees Celsius (feeling like 100 F)the outdoor café had misters which lessened the effects of the heat. We then braved a walk around town to just sort of to get accustomed to our new location. We walked past the cathedral and Alcazar (royal palace - built many hundreds of years ago and still in use today) we walked towards the canal and passed by a bull fighting arena still in use today. Tired and too hot we taxied back to our Hotel Las cases de la Juderia. While Tom rested I found my way back to one of the actual outdoor patios and as all the tables were taken I set up shop on a staircase. The people at the closest table were American and invited me to share their table which I eagerly did. Carl and Valerie were from Pleasanton CA and rather than log we chatted for quite a while and it is here I learned the history of this "Winchester Mystery" hotel. Carl pulled out the map given at check in (I had one too but it made no sense to me) and showed me and the blocks on the map shaded differently. "These are all different houses laced together by underground tunnels.". "At some point in history either prior to or after the Spanish Inquisition the Jewish people were only allowed to live in this one section of town. Unable to go outside they lived together through these tunnels.". OKAY NOW I GOT IT! CASAS DE LA JUDERIA...Houses of the Jewish..... wow unbelievable.... just unimaginable. There are maybe 35 or more of these houses that are part of this hotel. Now that the hotel map makes more sense I can see that each set of rooms also have the name of the house next to them. No wonder on one side of our room it looks Spanish and the other completely different and Arabic. The houses built at different times by different people were joined together. The tunnels run throughout the city of Seville. Again quite amazing.

Now I am going to need to review the history of this city to learn more about its past. Christopher Columbus, Jewish history and yet another Cathedral built on top of a former Mosque.... just like in Toledo. I really wished I'd paid more attention to "world history" while in school.



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