5 Must See and Do Things in Avila, Spain

The ancient town of Avila has plenty to offer in terms of sights and experiences. It is still untouched by the craze for high rise concrete structures. As we approached the fort walls it seemed as if we were approaching a movie setting. Avila is located close to the mountain range of Gredos Sierra and is built on the banks of the River Adaja. Half a day should enable you to experience Avila but for a decent exposure a night halt there would be best; else you would be just chasing the sights there. You can take a buggy and do the tour of the whole of old town or be on your own. Take a map from the tourism office to chalk out your path.

List of 5 must see and do things in Avila

1. Walls of Avila

The walls of Avila undoubtedly tops the list of must see sights of Avila. There are 100 towers and 9 huge gates in the old medieval walls of Avila. You can take the tours organized there. They start in batches from 10 in the morning to 8 at night and closed on Mondays. It is free for kids below 8 and 4 euros for adults. The best views of the walls are from ground level, you can comprehend the mightiness of the wall well. Again the best views are from the wall too, so climbing and tour of it gives lot of virtual delights.

walls of avila indranipics

Walls of Avila

2. Avila’s Cathedral

Avila’s Cathedral is a beautiful example of historical architecture of Spain, the Cathedral here is a must see. With a fortress like exterior the cathedral surprises with interiors having mix of Romanesque and Gothic styles. It was built between 12th to 14th centuries. The contrast of red-white and pure white stone clearly distinguishes the two eras. Cathedral Museum houses good amount of artifact collection dating from the 12th to the 18th century. Several valuable tapestries and embroidered pieces are housed here.

Tickets cost 4euros, with an extra 2euros for audio guide. Open timings are 10hrs to 20hrs and on holidays from 11.30hrs to 19.30hrs. Tour time can take anywhere between half an hour to one hour. With grown up kids it can be quite challenging to a leisured tour of the interiors of the cathedral.

Avila cathedralAvila cathedral indranipics

3. Convent of St. Teresa

At a 10minutes walking distance from the Cathedral is the Convent of St. Teresa. It is believed that St. Teresa was born here. The convent has come up on the childhood home the saint. Look out for the lavishly gilded chapel which is believed to mark the exact spot of her birth. The stain glass windows are a sight to behold! St. Teresa (1515 – 1582) was a devout Catholic nun. She wrote poems dedicated to Jesus in which she expressed her devotion to Him. St. Teresa experienced many visions and mystical ecstasies. She built several churches throughout Spain and was canonized in 1622. The entrance to this convent is free. The open timing almost matches with Cathedral, but check it out before the actual visit.

Avila Convent sacred


Avila street

4. Jewish Quarter of Avila

Jewish community flourished in the town of Avila during medieval period. Their population was more concentrated in the north east and south west parts in the region inside the fort walls of Avila. Walk down Calle de Santo Domingo, which was once the main street in the Jewish Quarter. Even today this area maintains the charm of Jewish times with its low buildings and irregular street plans, humble homes, many with a yard, still enjoying peace and quiet. After the expulsion of the Jews in 1492, the area was abandoned and became one of the town’s marginal areas.

Lions avilafaces of avila

5. Y for Yemas de Santa Teresa

Besides checking out the must see sights of Avila don’t forget to taste a bit of Avila too! Yemas are a kind of pastry made by local nuns. Their origin is believed to be from a recipe from one of the convents of the city. Some say it was produced about 130 years ago by Mr. Isabelo SΓ‘nchez. Whichever, a cake shop which belonged to him sells these pastries which are named ‘Yemas de Santa Teresa’. Basically they are soft boiled egg yolks, cooled and sugar coated with a dash of lemon juice to give a tangy touch. They are deliciuosly delicate, melt in the mouth without pressure and have a pleasant crunchy texture because of the layer of sugar covering them. Pic from www.avila.com




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45 Responses

  1. eileen says:

    Hello, wonderful post and suggestions. The convent is beautiful and the pastries look delicious. Thanks for sharing. Happy Thursday, enjoy your day!

  2. Awesome pics. Thanks for the post πŸ™‚

  3. Love your pic of the two women — beautifully captured. I’ve been feeling a tug to visit Spain again. Went there for the first and only time in 2012. Time to return. From your account and photos, Avila looks like a good choice.

  4. A.P.Singh says:

    Every thing is so beautiful

  5. thomas says:

    Wow! Majestic walls of Avila

  6. Walls of Avila look attractive. Nice guide. Thanks for sharing.

  7. Niranjan says:

    Looks beautiful. Nice captures of these lovely places.

  8. This is perfect! I hope to do all these one day. 100 towers in the wall? Wow! I have to see that with my own eyes.

  9. magiceye says:

    I sincerely hope to visit some day!!

  10. budget jan says:

    The walls look great and I would like to be sitting at the tables gazing at them. The two ladies photo is superb – they were really into posing.

  11. looks amazing…
    I really need to plan a vacation n soon

  12. Arun says:

    The Avila walls are brilliant! I would really like to try Yemas. Sounds really tempting!

  13. Oh, such a nice tour you gave us – I felt like I was right there with you strolling through town. Hope you submit the photo of the two women to Evelyn Hannon’s ‘Journeywoman’s’ annual International Women’s Day photo roundup – you’ve caught friendship at its finest there.

  14. Bhavani says:

    Beautiful…. Love the pics!!!

  15. Chaitali says:

    Wow….gorgeous is the least to say.

  16. Awesome and brilliant.
    Long to visit and experience these places personally some day..!
    Thank you.

  17. I’d love to visit Avila some day. it must feel like walking through history.

  18. Priyanka says:

    Fantastic details, and th picture of the two beautiful ladies is my favourite! The pastries look yummy too πŸ™‚

  19. Informative post with beautiful captures πŸ™‚

  20. Oh yes, so many beautiful places in the world to explore, isn’t it? Thanks.

  21. The cathedral looks very vintage & classy. Beautiful post πŸ™‚

  22. Spain is so high on my list!

  23. dNambiar says:

    Avila looks architecturally very rich. And artistic too.
    Nice knowing more about the place.

  24. Ami says:

    History all around…loving it. Love the pictures.

  25. Jyothi D'mello says:

    The Avila walls and convent are a visual delight. The pastries sounds adventurous πŸ™‚

  26. ladyfi says:

    What a gorgeous city!

  27. nima says:

    Lovely pictures,interesting place.

  28. Asha says:

    Lovely place ! Thanks for sharing

  29. Adding another place to the list of must visits now! Informative one ..

  30. sri kri says:

    Adding to out wish list.Informative Post.Thanks for sharing.:)

    Sriram & Krithiga

  31. I love the photo of the two Spanish ladies. What a great picture! We are checking out to visit Spain later this year and will see if we can make it to Avila. It looks original and not so busy, which suits us #TPThursday

  32. Jerny says:

    The walls look great, you’d know it very different from the other place you;’ve been and I would like to be sitting at the tables gazing at them but not for long. The two ladies photo is superb – they were really into posing and smiling at the camera. Are you with them?

    • Indrani Ghose says:

      Hi Jerny, thanks for the visit and comment. πŸ™‚
      The women are locals there, I clicked as I crossed hem and said hi.

  33. Julie says:

    Yemas look so delicious. I’ve never heard of these before, but i can imagine that the delicate egg yolk is completely delicious with the lemon and sugar additions. Decadent!

  34. Thanks for this informative tour of Avila. I have visited many years ago and your blog post reminds me of what a lovely town it is to visit.

  35. Great tour- those yemas look delicious! I’ve been to Spain before but never made it to Avila.

  36. Carol says:

    I love those old walled towns. They are so perfect for strolling and Spain is a great place for strolling

  37. Annie says:

    I absolutely love stained glass windows, so I’d be heading to Convent of St. Teresa first! It looks like a lovely place, need to put on the Spain roadtrip πŸ™‚

  38. What a beautiful town! I’ve been to Spain a few times but not for many years and would love to return and explore more of the country. Polly

  39. Mia Herman says:

    What a beautiful place! I haven’t tried Yemas but they look delicious. Although, I tried something that looked similar in Hong Kong and it was awful. Hopefully, these were much better!! I’m sure those little ol’ nuns put lots of love in them. πŸ™‚

  40. Sweet overview of Avila. Those Yemas though sound so delicate and delicious. An egg yolk!!

  41. Rosemary says:

    Yum…that beautiful melt-in-your mouth pastry. Could eat it right through the screen πŸ™‚ Great overview of Avila. Love your article and the charm of the city through your pictures. Sounds like I better get there soon, while it still has its charm:)

  42. Megan says:

    Avila looks like a beautiful city to explore. I’m heading to Spain this fall and will have to try and add it to my trip. I think getting to try those Yemas would be worth the trip.

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