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Visit Cuenca

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A city sculpted onto a rock...

Few cities in the world have be awarded World Heritage City status by UNESCO but Cuenca has been one of the few to hold this title since 1996. The combination of nature and civil and religious architecture that fuses into a sculpture emerging from the rock, make Cuenca a BEAUTIFUL city.

The harmony between nature and architecture in the streets and alleyways are signs of the major cultural and monumental legacy it houses.

The city is located in the heart of the Cuenca Hill Country, under an hour from Madrid and Valencia by train, and is one of Spain's crown jewels.

A city of contrasts, it is home to several of the best art collections from the second half of the 20th century, has a rich and varied culinary history, and offers rich nature and landscapes that seduce travellers.

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The year 2016 marks the 20th Anniversary of its World Heritage City Status.

The programme of events includes exhibitions, theatre, festivals, gastronomy and concerts to celebrate Cuenca's deep ties to the world of culture.

For further information: Cuenca 20th Anniversary

What to see

  • The Cathedral of Santa María La Mayor. This was the first building started after the conquest of the city, on the site of the former Moorish citadel.
  • Church of San Miguel. Built in the 13th century, this period church preserves it original apse, with the remainder dating to the Gothic transition with renovations in the 18th and 20th centuries. It offers wonderful views over the Júcar River.
  • Church of La Merced. Behind its spectacular Baroque façade, the church opens out into three sections. It was part of the Mercedarian convent founded in 1684 next to the palace of the Marquis of Cañete and the former Moorish citadel.
  • Mangana Tower. This is another of the city's emblematic buildings. The city's clock tower constantly reminds us of the fleeting nature of time with its monotone peals.
  • Museum of Abstract Art. Located in the Hanging Houses, it is one of the main attractions in the city.
  • Holy Week Museum. The museum offers an overview of the different processions during Easter Week in Cuenca.
  • Antonio Pérez Foundation. The foundation is located in what was once the Discalced Carmelites Convent. The mezzanine and basement rooms house national and international Informalism, Abstract and Pop Art works.
  • San Pablo Bridge. Before crossing the bridge, visitors have the chance to view a bronze sculpture: The Pastor de las Huesas del Vasallo (Shepherd of the Vassal Graves) by the sculptor Luis Marco Pérez. According to the artist, the sculpture is an homage to shepherds.
  • The Hanging Houses. Their exact origin is unknown: for some, they date to the Moors while, for others, they date to the mediaeval period ( 14th-15th centuries). They may well have been the family seat of Canon Gonzalo González de Cañamares, whose family crest was found inside.
  • Castile-La Mancha Science Museum. Located in Plaza de La Merced, it runs over two buildings: a former convent and the modern-day extension. The museum's presentation opens with the Time Machine.
  • San Martín Skyscrapers. Built between the 15th and 19th centuries and located in the San Martín neighbourhood, some of the buildings run ten storeys high with some lower floors being excavated in the rocks themselves.
  • Ars Natura Nature Visitor Centre. The complex offers visitors the chance to see landscaped areas with paths and pools running over 60,000 square metres. The perimeter runs for over one kilometre.
  • Tour around Hidden Cuenca (Alfonso VIII tunnel and the Crypt of the Church of San Andrés).

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