The City of Toledo
Old capital of Spain and currently declared “World Heritage City” by the UNESCO, Toledo has a population of 80.000 inhabitants and is the capital of the Autonomous Community of Castilla-La Mancha.
A fortified city, with an explosion of architecture and medieval culture, that is Toledo. Walking through Toledo is like being in a trip to the past and arriving to the Middle Age. Every corner of Toledo remind us that we are in a city fraught of history and art, a magic city whose half of its perimeter is surrounded by the Tagus river. Its narrow and tortuous streets, its ancient buildings and the treasures that they hide are an incitement to enroll its historical background of the history of Spain and Europe.
El Greco casts its shadow over Toledo. Denominated as the City of the Three Cultures, the whole city produces art, harmony and example of serene intellectual coexistence during Arabic, Jewish and Christian centuries. Becoming an intellectual bridge of East to West knowledge during the XII and XIII centuries.
Toledo is not just a Heritage City, it is also a contemporaneous, lively, secure, comfortable for its dimension and pleasant for the affable nature of its citizens.
There are excellent means of communication, among them is the high-speed train (AVE) that allows us to cover the 70km of distance with the capital, Madrid, in less than 30 minutes and once there to have access to the rest of the Spanish territory by a comfortable way.
Map with useful points
In this map we show different points of interest for students during their stay in Toledo:
Enlarge the Map of Toledo
How to arrive from Barajas airport to Toledo:
By taxi: You can take a taxi in Barajas airport, or request one from any point of Madrid (Radio Taxi Madrid: 902 478 200). You must take into account that the rate could be around 100 euro.
By car: It is possible to take the highway A-42, also you can take the toll road AP-41 (toll is around 8 euro). You can easily consult the route in the Google Maps website
By train: You can have access from the airport to the Puerta de Atocha Station by different ways (taxi, underground [Atocha Renfe station, Line 1], urban bus. To consult schedules and book tickets online you can use the website www.renfe.com. The price of the AVE ticket from Madrid to Toledo is 12,10 euro. You can obtain a discount with the Euro Young Card <26.
By bus: In Madrid you can have access from the airport to the bus station of Plaza Elíptica by the underground [Plaza Elíptica station, Line 6], taxi or urban bus. Continental is the company that connects Madrid and Toledo. There are numerous buses everyday from 6:00 to 24:00 hours, you can also check the schedules in the ALSA website. The ticket price is around 5 euro.
Note: many buses going to other points of Spain leave from the Méndez Álvaro bus station in Madrid, also in the underground Line 6, Méndez Álvaro stop).
Underground Map of Madrid: You can consult it in this website.
Urban buses in Madrid: You can consult routes and schedules in the website of the Municipal Transport Company of Madrid
Downloadable Toledo Maps in pdf:
Map of the closest neighborhoods to the Old City, with the University buildings highlighted
Map of the Old City with the monuments highlighted
General view of Toledo neighborhoods (jpg)
Getting around Toledo:
Toledo has an excellent urban buses system. The timetables and lines can be consulted in the website of Unauto Company, and you can get an overall with this pdf (size 2MB). In any case, the outstading points of the city and its urban buses connections are the following:
To get to ESTO office / Residence in the Plaza de Padilla, you can take any of the lines that have stop in the Plaza de Zocodover (for instance, line 5 from the bus station, and line 6.1 or 6.2 from the train station).
To get to the bus station from Zocodover, you can take lines 5 (that will take you to the station) or lines 6.1 or 6.2 (that will get you really close to the station).
To get to the train station from Zocodover, you can take lines 6.1 and 6.2.
To get to the Santa María de la Cabeza Residence, the closest bus is the line 2 (last stop).
To get to the Tres Culturas Hospital, you can take line 9.2.
To get to the Luz del Tajo shopping mall, you can take line 9.2, and to come back to Zocodover, line 6.1 or 6.2.
To call a taxi in Toledo, the Radiotaxi phone is 925 25 50 50.
Most important monuments of Toledo
Primada Cathedral. This magnificent monument, maybe the most representative building of the city, was built between 1226 and 1492. Although the essential part has gothic style, a variety of styles are represented in its decoration, as the Renaissance balustrade, the Mozarabic chapel or the Mudejar antechamber.
Synagoge of Santa María la Blanca. Built in the XIII century, it belonged to the Jewish until half of the XV century in which it was acclaimed as Christian church and used for them as a refuge for the penitence of women who repented of their sins.
Synagoge of Transito. This synagogue, built in 1355-57 by Samuel Leví, belonged to the Hebrews until their ejection by the Catholic Kings, thus becoming a Christian temple. Its walls are decorated with beauty Greek women and Hebrew inscriptions, as well as with vegetal or Mozarab motifs.
Monastery of San Juan de los Reyes. Considered as the most beautiful church in Toledo, was commissioned by the Catholic Kings to the master Juan Guar in order to perpetuate the memory of their victory in the battle of Toro. Attention should be drawn to the five grand shields of the Catholic Kings in the main chapel, as wel as the great beauty of the cloister and the altarpiece of the Main Altar.
More information about tourism is available in the touristic website of Toledo, and in the Official Tourism Website of the Spanish Government.
Places to go out at night:
To have some drinks there are some pubs, discos and tapas bars in the old city. Círculo del Arte or Tshunami are really popular for the students. A lot of foreign students meet in the O’Brians pub in a friendly atmosphere, the tapas of Enebro are also very popular (located in Plaza de Zocodover and Plaza de Santiago de los Cabaleros). Besides, in summer there is a place close to the river (la Peraleda) where the bars prepare their terraces in the midnight. Finally, there is a place for having some “cañas” in the neighbourhood of Santa Teresa (Plaza de Cuba and nearby).
Shopping around Toledo:
In the Old City there are numerous artisanal stores to buy souvenirs and the typical marzipan of Toledo. It is commonly known as the Calle Comercio which links the Cathedral with the Plaza de Zocodover. Here, you can also find clothing stores (Zara, Pimkie, etc.) photo stores, mobile stores (The Phone House and Movistar), electronic stores, etc.
In neighborhoods like Santa Teresa or Buenavista there are all kind of establishments and supermarkets.
There is also an important Shopping Mall with numerous stores and restaurants, you can also find the cinema Luz del Tajo, although you can only get there is bus (line 9.2 from the Puerta de Bisagra and to come back to the center you can use any of the lines 6 whose stop is in Zocodover).
Keep discovering Toledo: