Estremadura It is one of the autonomous communities of Spain and is made up of two provinces, Badajoz and Cáceres. It is a land with many thousands of years of history, as witnessed by the dolmens, cave paintings and idols that are preserved to this day.
These millennia bring us many tourist destinations and a very rich culture, so today we propose a trip to Extremadura and its attractions. Today then what to see in Extremadura.
It is an area that is southwest of the Iberian Peninsula and as we said before, it is made up of two provinces whose capitals are the most populated cities. With a warm to temperate climateTomatoes, peppers, tobacco and grapes are grown here, from which tasty wines are made.
The Romans they settled here, built roads, rich cities with circuses, markets and public buildings. Merida, for example, became a huge, lively, culturally rich city. Later the empire would fall and some barbarian peoples would arrive, among which were the Visigoths, displaced in turn by the Saracens in the middle Ages.
This muslim period He was no less rich than the Roman and lasted five centuries until the Reconquest, with the Kingdom of León first and the Kingdom of Castile later. After the unification of both kingdoms the two regions of Extremadura under those crowns were also united. The communion of Jews, Christians and Muslims ended with the order of the Catholic Kings that all must convert to Christianity or they would be expelled.
Many of the Spanish adventurers who came to America in the XNUMXth century were from Extremadura. For example, Hernán Cortés, Francisco Pizarro, Pedro de Valdivia… Later the internal conflicts and the War of Independence of Spain would arrive, and from his hand, sorrows and sufferings and massive internal migrations to escape from them.
What to visit in Extremadura
Having said that Extremadura has centuries of history, in principle we must speak of the legacy of those hundreds, thousands of years. Of roman period we can visit the Mérida Roman. The Roman ruins are in the Plaza Margarita Xirgu and it opens a window to the Roman way of life on the peninsula. it is Heritage and one of the most important archaeological sites in Spain.
The Roman ruins are within the walls of the colony: there is a theater, the house of the amphitheater and the amphitheater, a circus and a basilica. There is the Aqueduct of Miracles, the Pórtico del fro, the Arch of Trajan, the House of Mitreo and the Temple of Diana. Outside the walls there is another aqueduct, that of San Lázaro, a bridge over the Guadiana river, Alange hot springs (18 kilometers from Mérida, it is believed to date from the XNUMXrd century AD, with its domes), and two dams, Proserpina and Cornalvo.
This archaeological complex is open from April to September from 9 am to 10 pm and between October and March from 9 am to 6:30 pm. The entrance costs 15 euros for the whole set and 6 euros for each monument. Another Roman site are the Cáparra ruins, a few kilometers from the city of Plasencia. There is a route that the visitor follows and that guides him through the interpretation center, three necropolis, gates and amphitheater. Admission is free.
Leaving the Roman period behind we enter the arabic period us The Alcazaba, the residence of the kings of the rate since the beginning of Badajoz. Today what we see dates from the Almohad period, the XNUMXth century, but it is believed that its origins date back to the XNUMXth century.
The Alcazaba is a fortress that also controlled the border with Portugal and it is very large and imposing. It has four doors and you can enter through any of them. In addition to the doors of La Coraxa and that of Yelves, there are the doors of the Apéndiz and that of the Capitel, which are from the Almohad period.
There are also towers, the Torre de Espantaperros, octagonal, stands out among them. Inside is the Palace of the Counts of Roca with a patio that today functions as the Provincial Archaeological Museum, the Tower of Santa María, the Tower of the Episcopal Palace and the gardens.
Companies that panoramic views of the wall of La Alcazaba they are great. Admission is free and admission is not charged. It is located on the Cerro de la Muela. In Cáceres is the Royal Monastery of Guadalupe It derives from a small hermitage that became a Mudejar church under the reign of Alfonso XI. The monastery church has had three versions and the current one is in the Gothic style. The altarpiece has sculptures of El Greco's son, Jorge Manuel Theotocópuli.
It really has very beautiful interiors and its museums are worth it: one is for embroidery, another is for painting and sculpture, and another is for miniature books. The monastery opens from 9:30 am to 1 pm and from 3:30 to 6 pm. The general rate is 5 euros. Another interesting monastery is the Royal Monastery of Yuste, an imposing monastic complex in which he spent his last days Carlos V. His stay only beautified him. The monastery is part of the National Heritage of Spain. In winter it opens from Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 6 pm, and in summer from 10 am to 8 pm. The entrance costs 7 euros.
If we talk about natural landscapes then it is the turn of the Monfragüe National Park, for lovers of flora and ornithology. It is located in the triangle formed by Plasencia, Navalmoral de la Mata, and Trujillo. The Tagus River is its column and UNESCO has declared the park Biosphere Reserve.
In these mountain ranges there are reservoirs, streams, rocks, forests and bushes that are the ideal habitat for a varied and rich flora and fauna. Birds of all kinds, black storks, vultures, eagles, and animals such as wildcats, deer, otters ...
Inside the park is the castle of Monfragüe, Arab, inhabited at the time by Princess Noeima, according to the legend in love with a Christian and for that very reason she was punished. There is also the town of Villareal de San Carlos, where you can stay, eat and visit tourist centers to get information about the area. There are signposted routes that take you through the park and especially towards the Gitano waterfall, a 300 meter high cliff over the Tagus River. That beauty!
Another place to do Hiking and getting into natural pools can be the meander of the Melero. He Los Barruecos Natural MonumentIn Cáceres, you will see a striking rocky landscape with ponds and domes. The Orellana Beach It is the beach of the reservoir of the same name, in Orellana la Vieja, in Badajoz.
It is a blue flag beach and it is an inland beach. It is also known as Playa Costa Dulce and you can do various water sports. On the shores of another reservoir, the Gabriel y Galán reservoir, but in Cáceres, is the Granadilla Historical Complex.
It was a city founded by Muslims in the XNUMXth century, walled, and in the process of being recovered to become a cultural tourist destination. It preserves its Almohad walls, the citadel turned into a Christian castle, the family residences of important people, sometimes original in their structures, and the parish church from the XNUMXth century.
With this brief list of what to see in Estremadura we are surely falling short. And it is that Extremadura is a very large community, impossible to go all over if you have a few days. If this is your case, one last tip, to concentrate places and ideas: Mérida and Cáceres are unmissable, Badajoz too, but in addition to what we add, if you want something quieter than these cities, go to the towns. There you can really rest.