Friday, November 20, 2009

San Lorenzo de El Escorial, España

El Escorial is a 16th century palace / monestary located within the town of  San Lorenzo de El Escorial, about 41 kms to the northwest of Madrid's city center.  Philip ll was the master mind behind this plalace. This was an amazing fortress, though on the down side I wasn't allowed to take pictures within the inside!!  So I snapped away on the outside of the property.  Here is a link with detailed information on the site. ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Escorialv)

After the tour we headed over for pintxos and cervezas. OSTIA!!!

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After relaxing and having some super yummy pintxos, we head over to Valle de los Caidos ( Vally of the Fallen ). Which is a monumental memorial in the region of San Lorenzo de El Escorial, built within the the cliffs of the Cuelgamuros Valley in the Sierra de Guadarrama, also near Madrid. Spanish Dictator, Francisco Franco, had it built to honor those fell during the Spanish Civil War. However, only two names are commemoarated, Jose Antonio Primo de Rivera ( Franco's right hand man ) and Franco himself.

This place is very controversial, you’d have to speak to an actual Spaniard to get the real story, instead of reading a wikipedia sugar coated version. Franco for the most part, was not a very liked person.

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