August 2013
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Travel – Cuenca – Spain – Part 1

Cuenca is actually a city within the autonomous community of Castile–La Mancha in central Spain.

Overview of Cuenca

• It’s the capital in the province of Cuenca.
• Cuenca is located across a steep spur.
• These slopes descend into deep gorges from the Jucar and Huecar rivers.
• It splits into two separate settlements:
– The “new” city is located south-west
– The old one that is split from the Huecar course

Main Sights of Cuenca

Museum of Spanish Abstraction-ism
• Calle Canónigos 16001
• Phone number : +34 969212983
• Cuenca was the longtime home of artist and photographer Fernando Zobel.
• He chose it for the positioning of this museum.
• It had been situated in two converted centuries-old “casas colgadas”.
• Most of the pictures hang in glorious isolation with the entire wall to get a single picture.
• Few windows provide imposing views out in the gorge.

Archaeological Museum
• Dedicated largely to Roman finds in the area.

• Its facade is unfortunately marred by 19th century work for balance remodeling.
• It has a beautiful Gothic interior with very detailed carvings.
• There’s a ban on photography or maybe sketching, inside this cathedral.
• Exception is that one may obtain an explicit permission which is typically granted only based on a portfolio.

Cuenca Cathedral
• Cuenca Cathedral was built from 1182 to 1270.
• The facade was rebuilt after it crumbled down in 1902.
• This is the first Gothic style Cathedral.
• The reason being the influence of Alfonso VIII’s wife.
• Eleanor of Aquitaine introduced the Anglo-Norman style.
• From that date, the cathedral has undergone some changes.
• An apse-aisle (doble girola) was put in the 15th century.
• The Renaissance Esteban Jamete’s Arch was erected in the 16th century.
• The primary altar was re-designed through the 1700s by famous architect Ventura Rodriguez.
• It possesses a great precious iron-work gate.
• The facade was rebuilt in 1902 from ruins.
• This is because of the collapse in the former bell tower, the Giraldo.
• Modern colored windows were bought in during 1990s.
• One of the two old baroque organs which were from Julian de la Orden were found in 2006.
• The alternate organ has also been restored.
• On 4 April 2009, an inauguration ceremony was held.
• The naves do not follow a straight line.
• The San Julian altar, focused on Saint Julian of Cuenca, on the apse-aisle, is made of columns manufactured from green marble.
• Another point of interest are “Unum ex septem” signs at some chapels.
• It is stated that if one prays taking a look at these signs, one might obtain a five-year forgiveness for the sins and seven years if a person prays throughout the patron saint’s day.

Church of Saint Peter
• With Romanesque origins, the church of St. Peter was rebuilt by Jose Martin de la Aldehuela.
• It was constructed over the 1700s.
• The displays ever since then are of the Baroque facade.
• Outside, it shows an octagonal shape.
• It is circular inside.
• It can be located at Plaza del Trabuco.
• This church can be accessed by going up from Plaza Mayor along San Pedro Street.

Best time to visit / climate

• The climate of Cuenca would be a typical continental Mediterranean of Spain’s “Meseta”.
• Winters are relatively cold, but summers are quite hot.
• Spring and autumn seasons are short.
• You will discover pleasant temperatures during the day.
• It gets rather cold at nights.
• This is due to altitude from 956 m above sea level.
• It is about 1000 m altitude for the old town.

Location on Google Maps

View Larger Map

Or click and paste the URL below on the browser:,+spain&hl=en&ll=40.073474,-2.136669&spn=0.076319,0.110378&sll=-2.908938,-78.996676&sspn=0.199213,0.220757&gl=in&hnear=Cuenca,+Castile-La+Mancha,+Spain&t=m&z=13&iwloc=A

How to get there?

• Cuenca lies on the secondary rail route which runs from Madrid to Valencia.
• There are at least 4 trains to and fro every day.
• The journey takes about two and a half hours from Madrid.
• It takes about three and a half hours from Valencia.
• The trains have poor quality.
• It becomes better to travel on road.
• It requires 1h 30m from Madrid.
• Cuenca will have broadband trains.
• You will need 45m from Madrid.
• It’s actually a popular weekend destination.
• Hotels are sometimes less crowded through the week.
• There exists a bus station called Cuenca bus depot.
• It is located in the core of Cuenca.
• There are buses available that travel to nearby cities.
• Travel time to Madrid is around two hours.
• Expect the same travel time to Valencia.
• It costs around €12.
• Metropolis is served with the Cuenca Railroad station.
• It is a popular day or weekend trip from Madrid, that it is rather well connected.
• A brand new AVE (high-speed rail) link was established between Madrid – Atocha station and Cuenca – Fernando Zobel station.
• Travelers have frequent connections every day.
• It cuts down on the journey time as it is only 50 minutes.
• RENFE also operates a non high-speed service.
• It takes about three hours from Madrid.
• Auto Res is a bus operator.
• It links Madrid to Cuenca.
• It takes about 2 hour or 2:30 hour duration.
• The A-40 motorway connects town using the A-3 to Tarancon.
• This is about 82 kilometres (51 mi) away from Madrid.
• It totals to 166 kilometres (103 mi) to Spain’s capital.
• Cuenca is 200 kilometres (120 mi) faraway from Valencia, through the A-3 from the opposite sense.

Get Around
• It’s better to travel around in a car or go by walk.

Some Travel Books on Spain

Rick Steves’ Spain 2013 Lonely Planet Spain Spain…A Culinary Road Trip

Places to stay (hotels / restaurants along with website / contact numbers)

Hotels at
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Hotels at

Blogs/Sites about Cuenca – Spain

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blogs and reviews at

Images and photos about Cuenca – Spain

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Videos of Cuenca – Spain

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