Arriving into Toledo we were taken around the most scenic views I have seen, winding around tight roads eventually pulling in to a parking area where we literally jumped off the coach to take in the views.
The ancient city of Toledo stands on a hill above the Castilla-La-Mancha plains of central Spain. There is a mixture of Christian, Jewish and Arab monuments located in the city. I wasn’t aware but I am now – its also the birthplace of the Spanish painter El Greco.
Looking across the river Tagus to the town of Toledo was one of the best views I have ever seen. I look at the photos and its so hard to choose which ones to put on the blog.
“Did you know the river Tagus is the longest river in the Iberian Peninsula. It is 1,007 km long, 716 km in Spain, 47 km along the border between Portugal and Spain and 275 km in Portugal, where it empties into the Atlantic Ocean near Lisbon. It drains an area of 80,100 square kilometers.”
After our fill of the view and many photos taken we all climbed aboard the coach to be taken to a drop off point. Again as in many Portuguese and Spanish towns, tourist coaches are not allowed in the city.
To get to the main part of Toledo we had to go via several “flights” of escalators.
As we were walking to the escalators a group of young men tried to get in between us. They were clicking away with their cameras following us up the escalator’s when one of our group turned around to one of them, they were ahead of us and told one young man to stop and move away. It seems it was all a rouse to get us all distracted so they could pick pocket. Our group was very lucky as this was the first time we had encountered pick pockets. Most of us had cameras slung around our necks saying “here we are come and get us”. Lesson learnt for the gentleman, do not have your wallet etc in your back pocket. Remember when Muriel and I were in Lyon and Muriel had a close call with her backpack and theft! Scary!
Once up the top it opened up to a huge square where there were so many food options, the hop on hop off bus and sunshine.
We had an hour to find some food so I went with Peter as he wanted Mcdonalds or Hungry Jacks. In Europe its called Burger King. I knew that both places would have gluten free burgers, not your ideal lunch but at this stage in the tour I didn’t want any problems.
I ordered a gluten free burger and fries and hard as it may be to admit it, it was delicious.
We caught up with the others and had some ice cream, yes gluten free ice cream also. Wow I’m loving Europe.
That hour went quick and it was back down the escalators to the coach. The view was stunning.
Toledo is famous for several things apart from the beautiful view and the gluten free options.
Did you know that Toledo used to be the Capitol of Spain until 1561 when the Spanish court was moved to Madrid.
Toledo is famous for its swords and marzipan. Funny though I didn’t see either being sold in the shops.
Toledo swords were made between the 15th and 20th century. Toledo steel was known for its strength, durability and flexibility. The movie Highlander in 1986 used the Toledo Salamanca which is a rapier. It was based on the real historical sword of King Phillip 11’s rapier which is on display at the Royal Armory Museum in Madrid.
Toledo also produced all the swords and some of the rings used in the trilogy of Lord of the Rings. Apparently there are Lord of the Rings themed shops in Toledo however didn’t see any of them either. We only had an hour to wander to probably wasn’t time to see much. Its such a shame that it was such a fleeting visit as there is so much to see and do in Toledo Spain.
Madrid will be our next stop where we will spend a few days before heading home (this was back in April 2019)