Segovia: A Little Taste of Ancient Rome

By Melissa Benedek

Before we left on our journey to Madrid, I asked my dad if there were any interesting small towns in Spain, he replied, “Well of course, Segovia. There’s a classical, Spanish guitarist named Andrés Segovia who grew up in another small town called Linares in the province of Jaén.”  An old city with a castle and gothic designed churches, small shops and delicious restaurants, who wouldn’t want to take a visit?

After an hour bus ride we started to see mountains and more open landscape. Stopping for a look at the Alcázar of Segovia, meaning Segovia Castle from the distance, I realized we were going into medieval times. We took a short walk up to the castle and came to a vast valley full of lush vegetation. The Alcázar was once a fortress and then a royal palace, as we were informed by our tour guide. Each room had ornate ceilings, each different along with various, large tapestries and paintings of kings and queens.

Visiting the Catedral de Segovia was a different experience because the late Gothic style of architecture was so intricate and complex. With ceilings so high and lots of gold, one might imagine they were in a palace. We learned that during the time of the reformation, the Catholic church had to attract more people to come back to the church and feel so connected with the religion that they made very elaborate churches. An interesting aspect to the cathedral was how there were other chapels inside the church itself. Each family or person who donated money for renovation of the church received their own chapel and would be buried in it.

Lastly, we saw the Roman aqueduct. Its massive height made us feel quite small as we walked under it. Made out of gray stone and lead pipes for water distribution, the aqueduct is definitely not something you would find in urban Miami. The bridge waterway is still used today, showing that old inventions can still be used!

Besides Segovia having a lot less people than Madrid, it has a much more homely feel with its small houses and narrow roads. If you’re a go big or go home person than Madrid is probably your place, if you like natural places, Segovia would be your pick.  Aqueduct