A visit to the ancient aquaducts

Trip Start May 03, 2009
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Trip End Dec 22, 2009


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Flag of Spain  , Castile-León,
Monday, May 18, 2009

Segovia, a city in Castilla, was selected as my 3rd day trip from Madrid, because I really wanted to see the old Roman aquaduct for myself.  This Roman feat is 894 meters long, and 28 meters high and built without any mortar!  The aquaduct was built to carry water from the mountains, located 15 KM (10 miles) away! 

In addition the the aquaduct, there's another beautiful cathedral and an alcazar (fort), on top of the hill, as usual, overlooking the town. 

So, off I went, to the Principio Pio bus station (that's the name of the metro stop, I believe), and paid 7 Euros for this bus ticket.  The trip was to the north this time, a different route.  The bus station in Segovia is loacated near the action, so I was able to get to the aquaducts pretty easily

So, here we are!  On the Calle Real, with my first glimpse of the aquaduct!  Even from this distance, it is really impressive.  Walking toward the aquaduct, I encountered my first tourist event: a church on the side of the Calle Real.  This church has a very well-kept courtyard, as you can see.

Heading on to the aquaduct, I am met with several outdoor cafes, with people lingering over cafe con leche and cerveza.  Or whatever they call it here.

Finally, I made my way to see the aquaduct up-close, and it is really amazing.  There are throngs of tourists that were hauled in here by tour buses; souvinere shops line each side of the plaza, offereing gifts of all kinds.

Up close, a person can see that these stones are just set together, with no mortar.  Of course, I saw alot of that kind of construction in Peru, especially Cusco.  These aquaducts go up and down, accompanied by sidewalk stairs for pedestrains.  From the top of the hill, looking downward, a person can see just exactly what an engineering and construction feat this really was.

Away from the aquaduct, I took a photograph of the mountain range, still covered with some snow.  I was in mid May, so I guess the snow had not all melted.  I don't know if it ever all melts away.

While just wandering around, I noticed the water drainage construction; I guess it must work well enough.  I have no idea how long this drainage has been here.   I also show another view of the wall exterior.  I do have to admit that sometimes while taking walking tours of these places, I don't always know where I am or exactly what I am looking at.  I believe I walked out of the walled city, and into the "new" town. Here's a very nice looking street.

But, I return to the old town, and here's another church and plaza.  You can see some beautiful spires on this church.  Soon, I arrive, finally, at THE cathedral which is just huge.  Nearby is the Plaza Mayor, where, again, outdoor cafes abound.  I did enter the cathedral to have a lookround, and to take some photos.  It is reported that this cathedral has 20 chapels, all of which are outstanding.  A gold carriage is present, as well as "the red room", where the priests congregate.

After leaving the cathedral, I meandered over to the alcazar, or the castle, which inspired Disney's castle in Sleeping Beauty.  We can see one of the towers here in the alcazar; it's reported that the view is spectacular, but I didn't climb the tower.

Of great interest in the surrounding grounds, is the stork feeding its young in the nest, high high above the ground in a pine tree.

Well, another day well spent, and back to the bus station, and back to the hostel in Madrid.

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