City Outskirts

On the fringes of the city, a New Jewish quarter came into being in 1478 when the Jewish community were forced to regroup in a zone outside of the city walls. The Island Palace, built by a offshoot of the Blázquez Mayoralgo family, occupies the space of the old synagogue. Sadly, there remains only a few tower-palaces outside of the city perimeter. The Godoy tower with its splendid corner balcony is one such example. It was built on the insistence of Francisco de Godoy, deputy of Francisco de Pizarro, in the conquest of Peru. The Galarza Palace (vista torre y ventana) was home to the Bishop of Coria and according to legend, this is where Philip II had the heir to the title of King of Portugal groomed in groomed in secrecy. On our journey, we take in the viewpoint offered by the Cáceres-Galarza Tourist Centre which treats us to some stunning views of the city’s monumental zone from its outskirts (vistas). The Santiago Church is related to the Order of the Brothers of Cáceres, a brotherhood who took vows of obedience and devotion and who were the precursor to the Military Order of Santiago. This is one of the city’s most popular buildings, for the fascinating history that it holds within its walls as well as for the great artistic hertitage that it has left us. The principal noble families joined the Catholic Kings and Cardenal Mendoza, in a combined effort to construct the old Saint Francis Covent. Over 100 coats of arms of many of Caceres’ most important families adorn its walls. A pleasant alternative to the traditional concept of a museum is the Prince’s Park. An inviting collection of 27 statues are distributed over a wide green space which invites the traveller to take a well deserved break during the walk. The history of Cáceres’ first inhabitants, dating back between 15.000 and 20.000 years, is depicted in the Maltravieso Caves conservation centre. Paintings of around 30 hands trace a civilization in one of the most remote parts of the city and form the most important archeological site in the entire Extremadura region. We bring our walk to a close at one of the most emblematic and cherished places for Caceres’ locals, the Hermitage of the Mountain. Legend has it that it was at this spot where the hermit Francisco Paniagua carried the image of the Virgen which now presides over the main altarpiece. It is from this rocky hill that we bid farewell to a city that has known, better than anywhere else, how to combine its past with its present.