After a morning of windmills, we spent the afternoon doing a bit of ‘house work’, (but mainly chilling) at Camp Greco just outside Toledo. I’d recommend it as it’s very relaxed and the pitches are generous and divided by hedges which gives a nice feel… but the showers are scalding hot!
In the morning we headed into Toledo and found a parking spot close to the bottom of a set of escalators that take you up into the main old town. Toledo is a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its extensive monumental and cultural heritage. The streets are like a labyrinth, they are certainly narrow and steep and there are many churches. We managed to get lost and had to rely on Google Maps to get us to the touristy bit. Once there we treated ourselves to Cafe con leche and a Marzipan Tarte for Dave and hot chocolate and churros for me.
Toledo is famous for its marzipan and it has Protected Geographical Indication for its mazapán de Toledo. Almonds have to be at least 50% of the total weight, following the directives of Mazapán de Toledo regulator counseil. This means it is not as sweet as the Marzipan we are used to eating at Christmas.
We then headed to the El Greco Muesum. We didn’t now anything about El Greco and his art but we did not want to spend the day looking at churches.
The museum opened in 1911 and is located in the Jewish Quarter of Toledo. It consists of two buildings, a 16th-century house with a courtyard and an early 20th century building forming the museum, together with a garden. The house recreates the home of El Greco, which no longer exists. The museum houses many artworks by El Greco, especially from his late period. The recreation of El Greco’s house was very innovative for its time as it wanted to show people how he lived and his inspirations. The museum contained many original works and explained how El Greco feel out of favour with the King and the church due to his unusual style of painting. His paintings were certainly different to many of the religious paintings we have seen on our trip. They depict the figures as tall and thin and they are more impressionist in style.
Next door to the Museum was the Synagogue El Transito which is home to
Sephardic Museum. As it is also in a style of rich stucco decoration, which comparison with the Alcazar of Seville and the Alhambra palaces in Granada. As we have visited these we wanted to visit the synagogue also. The Synagogue was very beautiful but the museum was a bit baffling and there was no translation for the artefacts themselves leaving us mystified to the use and importance of them.
We then wandered to town a bit more before realising that we had historical city fatigue. We headed back to The Van and relaxed for an hour before setting off to Madrid. We were keen not arrived too early as out stop for the night was a car park popular with commuters near the Metro so we knew we had to wait until the evening to arrive to get a space.