Segovia, the Roman city

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Segovia, the Roman city

Amongst other things, there is its star dish: suckling pig roast in a woodburning oven, an irresistable temptation for your palate. Without doubt, Segovia’s tourist highlight is its Roman aquaduct, an engineering jewel which stands in Azoguejo Square. Built by the Romans, it carried water to the upper city from a distance of 9 miles. Consisting of 163 arches and 96ft tall at its highest point, it lies on ashlar blocks from the Sierra de Guadarrama mountains, which were put together without using either mortar or lead. This masterwork, which is still in perfect condition, welcomes visitors and acts as a gateway to the city’s old quarter.

Segovia can be divided in two, the part which lies within the old walls, and that which lies outside. The former is full of significant medieval and renaissance buildings, such as the Casa de los Picos, the Alhóndiga and the Lozoya Tower. Walking towards the Main Square, visitors will find several religious buildings, before they arrive at the cathedral, known as the queen of cathedrals.

The Los Caballeros neighbourhood is another must see. There lie the houses and palaces of rich nobles, along with Romanesque temples. On another side of this walled zone lies the Alcazar fortress, behind the Queen Victoria Eugenia gardens. A 250ft tower dominates its exterior, with 12 more turrets and its defensive moat. Inside there are different patios, chambers and rooms, but best of all is the view from the top of the battlements of Segovia’s landscape among the mountain ranges.

The part of Segovia which is outside the walls has squares, gardens and various Romanesque constructions, such as San Millán, San Clemente, San Justo and the San Antonio el Real monastery. Another sight which cannot be missed is the Museum House of the poet Antonio Machado.

Segovia’s cuisine is rich and varied. In any restaurant in the city, you can try La Granja butterbeans, Castilian garlic and bread soup, superb suckling pig and lamb roasts, stews and game dishes. Cantimpalo’s chorizo sausage is justifiably famous, as is Segovian punch. All of these dishes are ideally accompanied by the best Ribera del Duero wines bearing the Guarantee of Origin quality mark.

There is no excuse not to enjoy this small, yet large city. Culture, monuments, history and great cuisine, a combination which you cannot afford to miss.