Thursday, July 26, 2012

El Escorial

On Saturday, June 23, 2012, Beverly and I took the train to the Royal Seat of San Lorenzo de El Escorial, a historical residence of the King of Spain, in the town of San Lorenzo de El Escorial, about 28 miles northwest of Madrid. El Escorial is one of the Spanish royal sites and functions as a monastery, royal palace, museum, and school.

We traveled by Bus 32 to Atoche Renfe train station and then took the cercanía ("near-by") train to El Escorial. From there we took a taxi to the Valle de los Caídos, a Basílica and monument in the Sierra de Guadarrama. Conceived by Spanish dictator Francisco Franco to honor and bury those who fell during the Spanish Civil War, it was also claimed by Franco that the monument was meant to be a "national act of atonement."

Valle de los Caídos, Basilica of the Holy Cross of the Valley of the Fallen:

Closer-up view of the huge Holy Cross of the Valley of the Fallen on the hill above the basilica:

 Archway, Basilica Valle de los Caídos:

After our half-hour stop at the Valle de los Caídos, our taxi driver took us to El Escorial:

Another view of El Escorial (photos inside the monastery were not allowed):

A wedding had just taken place in the basílica of El Escorial:

A picture of some of the wedding party in the basilica courtyard:

A Rolls-Royce awaited the newly married couple:

A view of El Escorial from the other side:

A closeup of the monastery garden:

Our final view of El Escorial as we walked back to the train station:

It was an enjoyable day in a wonderful part of Spain.

1 comment:

  1. Your mission sounds like it is wonderful. I love all the pictures and am glad you are able to get out and see some wonderful sights. Our best to you both.