When you are planning your next visit to Madrid, be sure to carve out a day in your itinerary to visit the beautiful city of Cuenca. Located 165 kms. from Madrid, Cuenca is about a 2 hour drive from Madrid, or it can easily be reached in 50 minutes via the high-speed AVE train that leaves from Madrid’s Atocha train station.
Designated by UNESCO as a World Heritage site, Cuenca is a well-preserved medieval fortified city. It was originally established by the Moors in 714. In the 12th C. it was conquered by the Castilians and was then considered a royal town where important historic buildings, including Spain’s first Gothic cathedral, were built.
Cuenca is perhaps best known for its “hanging houses” which were built in the 15th C. over the ravine of the Huécar River. Today only a few of the houses remain. For more information, click here.
For a real treat, you can dine in one of the historic houses that has been converted into a restaurant, the Mesón Casas Colgadas, where you can not only enjoy the views, but also enjoy a fine meal featuring traditional Castilian cuisine.
In addition to visiting the hanging houses, be sure to see the 12th C. Cathedral, the Castle, St. Peter Church, St. Paul Bridge, Mangana Tower, and the Museo de Arte Abstracto Español, which houses a fine collection of works by Spanish abstract painters. For more information on Cuenca, click here.
Photo credit: Zarateman
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Note: The restaurant Mesón Casas Colgadas is temporarily closed for renovation.