Toledo, three cultures: the Christian quarter
It was hard for Toledo to reach its Christian supremacy, which came to stay with a strong hold from the Reconquest and thanks to the onslaughts by the army of King Alfonso VI, who managed to finally take the city in 1085. With King Carlos I in power in the 16th century, Toledo became the capital of his kingdom, in other words, the capital of that modern Spain that emerged after the marriage of the Catholic Kings and the subsequent union of the kingdoms of Castile and Aragon, Navarre included, under the figure of the aforementioned king. It was a period of splendour for the city, although the decision by his son King Felipe II to move the Court to Madrid in 1561, initiated a period of decadence for Toledo.
After the conquest of the city, there was a period of coexistence between the three cultures which sadly did not last long and would be witness of intolerant acts with the past, such as the construction of the new cathedral over the main mosque, which had also been built on top of a Visigoth cathedral. Could there be a bigger fusion, or rather a stratification of cultures, in a single place?
This part of the city, also known as the “convent city” due to the large number of ecclesiastical buildings, has permeated the rest without neutralising its personality and one can begin to discover it by starting at the Alfonso VI gate, of great symbolic value, even though it maintains an Arabic structure. After, we continue towards the church of Santa Isabel de los Reyes, inside of which you can find the tomb of Princess Isabel of Portugal, firstborn of the Catholic Kings, in a complex that includes Mudejar elements and different buildings, such as the Casas de las Reinas, integrated in the structure.
We culminate this route discovering Christian Toledo with the cathedral, built between 1226 and 1492, a sample of solemnity and Catholic power. The whole ensemble is a monument of great value but it is worth stopping and seeing the sacristy in more detail, which holds works by artists such as El Greco, Rubens, Zurbarán, Goya or Van Dyck.
Hotel Carlos V is one of the hotel references in the centre of Toledo and a privileged place to stay for those who come to discover the important historical legacy of our city. Do you know about the different offers that we have for these first days of autumn?