Holiday Images
The Way of Saint James - continued
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There are some amazing treasures in the Cathedral of Santo Domingo de la Calzada, including an example of outstanding 16th-century Plateresque ornamentation on the choir stalls. We spend an hour here, before departing at 5pm for the Parador at Lerma.
The hot afternoon continues as we drive past Burgos on the way to Lerma, seeing some spectacular clouds on the way. The Parador is located in an amazing former ducal palace, the hotel featuring a central courtyard surrounded by lovely columned galleries. Although our bedrooms are again large and comfortable, they are situated on the top floor and have a somewhat claustrophobic feeling due to dark and sloping ceilings.
With dinner not due until 8:30pm, we explore the Parador's surroundings. With the town located on a hill, there are extensive views of the nearby countryside. Except for the main square (Plaza Mayor) that the Parador faces, the town is deserted. We pass the Collegiate church of San Pedro (below); the Monastery of the Ascension; the Monastery of St Teresa; and a statue of Alfonso Oneco.
After our evening meal we go out into the Plaza Mayor to admire the Parador's illuminated facade.
 
 
Saturday, June 17th
 
Our stay at the Parador de Lerma is for one night only, and today we move onto the Parador at Leon.
On the way we will make stops at Burgos and at the Royal Monastery of San Zoilo at Carrion de los Condes.
A local guide (Rebecca) begins our tour of Burgos at the great white bulk of the Arco de Santa Maria - the magnificent city gate is embellished with statues, including (right: top to bottom):
- Emperor Carlos I;
- Fernan Gonzalez;
- El Cid Campeador.
 
'El Cid' is also commemorated nearby in a splendid equestrian statue.
Our guided tour takes us along a tree-lined promenade (the Paseo del Espolon), past the equestrian statue of El Cid, and then to the crowning glory of Burgos - the Cathedral, which has a florid filigree of spires and pinnacles. On the way, we pass some interesting examples of door architecture; Casa de Cordon (a house named for a belt ornamentation on the facade); and a plaque commemorating the visit of Christopher Columbus to Burgos on April 23rd 1497.