#ParadoresPlans: 3-day getaway to Toledo
19 de March 2014

How would you like to spend a weekend in a historic city? Today we take you on a getaway to Toledo, the historic city where three cultures (Muslim, Jewish and Christian) lived together. And it's just one hour from Madrid by car!

The Parador de Toledo is a spectacular hotel which offers the best views of the Imperial City from its function rooms, terrace, guest rooms and even the fabulous swimming pool (a must for a refreshing dip during the summer months). Inside, the elegant furnishings are complemented by wooden beams, staircases, wooden railings and Mudejar motifs on the rugs and tilework.

Parador de Toledo

Toledo is part of a select group of World Heritage Cities. Naturally, it merits a leisurely visit, without missing a single detail. Ready for our tour?

Day 1: museums, cathedrals and an abundance of culture in the city

Toledo was listed as a World Heritage City in 1986, well-deserved recognition of a site that is truly original. Located atop an isolated promontory nestled in the course of the surrounding Tagus River, the city offers numerous unique viewpoints. These include the Parador itself, a hotel from which visitors can admire the beauty of a city filled with monuments and points of interest. Of the many choices available, we encourage you to discover:

  • Greco House Museum: The building boasts a large selection of El Greco's work, as well as paintings by Luis Tristán, Murillo and Valdés Leal, among others. In the year we celebrate the 400th anniversary of the death of the artistic genius, this museum is practically a must-see. 
  • Cathedral: Since 1088, this has been Spain's primate cathedral, over all others in the kingdom. Construction was begun under the reign of Ferdinand III, the Saint, and incorporates a number of French Gothic elements (which will remind you of Notre Dame), along with fine gold and silver work.
  • Alcázar: This fortress is located on the highest hill in the city. It was built on the orders of Emperor Charles V as a residence worthy of such a personage. Artistically, each façade of the building is determined by the time in which it was built, marking the different phases of the Spanish Renaissance.
  • Synagogues: Santa María la Blanca Synagogue and El Tránsito Synagogue are two key sights for visitors to Toledo.
    Santa María la Blanca was built in the 13th century and features characteristic Toledo-style Mudejar elements. It was used as a synagogue until the 15th century, when it was converted into a church. El Tránsito is a fusion of the three cultures and is one of the finest examples of the traditional local architecture of Jewish communities.
  • Santo Tomé Church: This is the most-visited parish church in the entire city, as the interior houses one of El Greco's most important paintings, The Burial of the Count of Orgaz. Top of the list!
  • San Juan de los Reyes Monastery: The church is extremely important, as it was built to house the mausoleum for the dynasty of Queen Isabella the Catholic. The cloister also has excellent examples of gargoyles. Don't miss it!
  • Cristo de la Luz Mosque: Preserved almost in its entirety, this is the most important example of Islamic art in Toledo. A must-see!
  • Bridges: Alcántara Bridge was originally built by the Romans and San Martín Bridge was listed as a national monument in 1921.

At the end of this intense first day, take the opportunity to enjoy a relaxed dinner at the Parador restaurant. The incomparable panoramic view of the city and high quality cuisine make for a unique evening. Among the best dishes, we recommend: stewed partridge, roast lamb and pisto manchego (La Mancha-style ratatouille).

Day 2: routes and natural trails through the city

In addition to boasting countless cultural and architectural points of interest, Toledo is also an excellent place to enjoy green spaces. Take advantage of the second day of your getaway to explore some of Toledo's paseos (avenues):

  • Jewish quarter and Paseo del Tránsito: the figure of the El Greco found here allows you to truly appreciate the city's devotion to the painter. 
  • Remembering Toledo's Visigothic heritage: Paseo de Recaredo runs along the city walls to Cambrón Gate.
  • Paseo de la Vega, also known as Paseo de Merchán, completes the route, offering the chance to admire statues of former kings set in wooded spots and a spectacular rose garden. 

And now that you're in the heart of the city, take this opportunity to end the day at one of the laid-back sidewalk cafés along the banks of the Tagus River or go for tapas at a few of the bars in the popular Santa Teresa neighborhood.

Day 3: visit to Aranjuez

Begin your last day by enjoying the breakfast buffet at the Parador de Toledo restaurant, before setting off for the town of Aranjuez, located 50 kilometers away in the province of Madrid. It is well worth the trip. The land for the municipality was granted to the Order of Santiago in the 12th century by King Alfonso VIII as reward and recognition of their works. Today it is a remarkably charming city. 

What to see in Aranjuez: We recommend visiting the Royal Palace, Casa del Labrador (a royal residence), Real Cortijo de San Isidro estate and the city's many gardens.

So what do you think? Don't wait any longer, book your stay at the Parador de Toledo now.

Book my getaway to Toledo

As always, we provide a map to help you get oriented during your stay and plan your routes from the Parador de Toledo.