Salamanca is about 250 km (150 miles) from Toledo, so we stopped off half way for lunch at Ávila. Ávila is an historic walled city to the north west of Madrid which I’d visited previously when I did a cycle tour back in 2010, and was keen to return to. As we arrived so did the low cloud, and which obscured the great views our walk from the van up to the city gate. Once inside the city walls we found a traditional bar and ordered some tapas for lunch where the portions were enormous. By the time we had finished our meal, the low cloud had lifted and so we enjoyed a walk through the old town in the sunshine.

Ávila city walls
Ávila Cathedral
Great postbox
More city walls

We’ve really noticed a big change in the weather since moving north from the coast. A week ago we were walking around in t-shirts by day, and popping a jumper on at night. Now we’re wearing three layers under our coats along with hats, scarves and gloves, and the heating goes on when we’re back at the van.

A cold and frosty morning

The site we’re staying at is an ACSI one just outside Salamanca, but it’s very basic and probably not worth the €18/night, particularly as the shower block is very outdated and isn’t heated. It is however very convenient for Salamanca with an hourly bus service to the old town, so we’ve been there a couple of times.

We were last here for a couple of days on a family holiday about ten years ago, but nothing looked as either of us remembered it apart from the Plaza Mayor and one of the restaurants. We spent an enjoyable couple of days wandering around the old town, eating in some traditional tapas bars and mooching around the shops.

Salamanca Cathedral
The Plaza Mayor
The university entrance
The Salamanca Cathedral
Salamanca old town
Street sculptures…

… and an indoor sculpture
Local guy Vicente del Bosque managed the Spanish football team which won the World Cup in 2010 and Euros in 2012
In the mercado
We were surprised to see many women wearing fur coats on Sunday
Painted ceramic tiles

I’ve had more than my fair share of Menús del Día over the years, and the one served at the El Bardo was up there with the best – three courses, dessert, bread, water and a glass of wine all for just €13. The food was delicious and the rabo de toro (bull tail) in particular was superb, just falling off the bone. By the time we’d finished the third course we felt so full that we couldn’t even manage the dessert. If you find yourself in Salamanca, the El Bardo is definitely worth a visit.

The El Bardo restaurant…
… and the menu

Tomorrow we shall head for Burgos, stopping off at a couple of places along the way.


2 thoughts on “Salamanca”

  1. We enjoyed Salamanca on our last trip although the Plaza Mayor had an exhibition which spoiled the view. We have been looking at a route home and couldn’t believe how low the night time temperatures are inland. Currently in the Costa del Sol we will most likely stick to the coastal shelf up the east coast of Spain for as long as possible. However your previous visit to Toledo is somewhere I would like to visit so I will keep an eye on the forecasts.

    • Yes we can definitely recommend Toledo, we don’t think you’ll be disappointed. Hopefully you won’t need your thermals!

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