Located just 2 hours outside of Madrid, Cuenca is a traditional Castilian city that will take you back in time. It is a well preserved medieval fortified city that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The origins of Cuenca date back to the Moors, who built a fortress here in 714. The Christians reclaimed Cuenca in the 12th C. and a number of historic buildings were constructed, including Spain’s first Gothic cathedral.
Cuenca’s main attraction is the Casas Colgadas, or Hanging Houses, dating from the 14th-15th C. The houses have wooden terraces and hang precariously along the edge of the cliff above the Huecar River gorge. Today there are 3 Casas Colgadas that remain: Casa de la Sirena (House of the Mermaid), and two Casas del Rey (House of Kings). One of the Casas del Rey houses the Museum of Spanish Abstract Art. The Casa de la Sirena was converted into the restaurant Mesón Casas Colgadas, where visitors can take in the view while enjoying the traditional Castilian cuisine that is served.
The best place to view and take pictures of the Casas Colgadas is from the Bridge of San Pablo, which is located below the houses. For a 40 page guide on the city of Cuenca, click here. For more information on the city of Cuenca, click here.
Photo Credit: Mario Modesto Mata
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