The second day of our trip included a morning in Madrid and traveling to Toledo that afternoon.
After eating a small breakfast at the hostel, we walked over to the Prado Museum.
On top of it just being the biggest museum I’d ever visited, they had a huge collection of Velazquez paintings, rooms full of sculptures, and a really neat still life exhibition.
Obviously, I couldn’t take pictures in the museum, but it was a fun activity. It had been a while since I’d visited one and I’m really happy I got to go and indulge my love of art.
After leaving the museum and getting our bags, we headed to the train station in Madrid to catch our 30 minute train to Toledo.
This train station was crazy! They had this rain-forest type thing in the middle of it and there were birds flying through the building.
We got off the train in Toledo and had a short walk to the entrance in the city walls, but it was worth every minute.
Toledo does stretch further than the original city walls, but I’ve never visited something like this. The old city walls that used to protect it from intruders are still standing.
Every part of Toledo was beautiful.
I found myself holding my breath a few times while walking through the city, just hoping that I didn’t miss anything.
THIS is what I thought of when I thought of Spain.
And not even a mile into the main part of the city, we found another old city gate + tower! And the door was open, so we headed up :)
And this was the staircase! We all had to duck to get through there with our backpacks on – and I’m not very tall (5’5”), so you can imagine how tight it was in there.
But the steep and narrow staircase was worth it – the view from the top was one high point from our trip to Toledo.
After coming down from the tower, we walked through the city to find our hostel for the night.
The streets were so narrow; it was hard to believe the people actually drive cars down the roads.
The week we were in Spain also happened to be Carnival, so there were big parties outside each night and lots of people walking around in costumes.
Girls trying to read maps is always funny ;)
We found our hostel, dropped our stuff off and headed back out to explore!
We tried to find this place that Tiff and James had eaten at before, but we never did.
One thing we did find?
I’ll tell you one reason I loved Toledo so much: This city took my breath away more than once.
This view popped up out of nowhere. We were walking down a street lined with houses and it just opened up to this.
Call me dorky, but I honestly had tears in my eyes – and that was only the first time that happened to me in Toledo. I just wasn’t expecting to see this, and (as pretty as it looks in the picture) it was so much more beautiful in person.
After posing for pictures in front of the view, we went looking for dinner. Luckily, most places with outdoor seating had heaters by the tables, so we sat and enjoyed a pizza dinner together out on the plaza while listening to the Carnival parade going by.
After demolishing 3 pizzas, we (of course) went in search of dessert before heading back to the hostel.
I know you may not like this picture, Mom, but I love it :) Especially since you can see James making a funny face in the background.
We took my parents back to the hostel after this and then us youngins headed back out for a while. We ended up at an outdoor concert in another plaza – all these families and groups were dressed up in costumes and dancing! It was fun to watch, so we hung out there for a little while before heading back to bed.
After this 1/2 day in Toledo, I wasn’t sure it could get any better – but it did.
Day 2 in Toledo, Another Teary – Eyed Moment, and Snow in Sequellamos