Visit to Cathedral of San Salvador Zaragoza, Spain

UNESCO Heritage sites charm me. And since I am focused on those monuments itinerary gets skewed and drives get meandered along those routes which are populated heavily with heritage monuments. The road trip Madrid to Barcelona was maneuvered via Zaragoza. This post focuses on Cathedral of San Salvador, which is completing 900 years of existence in this century.


History of Cathedral of San Salvador Zaragoza

…the same repetitive constructions…

History of this cathedral is similar to many other cathedrals in Spain. Modern town Zaragoza was initially known as Saragossa. Before this cathedral came up here, it was the site of a mosque Aljama of Saraqusta which was built in 8th century. And it is also claimed that this mosque came up on the ruins of Roman forum though there is no archaeological proof for it. Roman forum existed in the 1st century BC, known during the Visigoth period as the church of San Vicente.

Cathedral del Salvador Zaragoza, today commonly called as La Seo, was built on this site between 12th and 16th centuries. The construction has never stopped. Since then, the cathedral is being rebuilt, reformed, improved and widened over the centuries. Today the Cathedral has Romanesque, Mudéjar, Gothic, Baroque architectural styles, the influence of several styles that existed in those centuries. Parts of its facade are a proof of that.



UNESCO Heritage Site Status

In December 2001, Cathedral of San Salvador (La Seo), in Zaragoza got the status of UNESCO World Heritage site. It is considered as one of the most representative Mudéjar architecture of Aragón. Over the past so many years it has become the final resting place for many archbishops and special people. Kings of Argon were crowned in elaborate ceremony from the 13-15th centuries. The last King to be crown in this church was Charles I.

What to see in Cathedral of San Salvador

There are several interesting things to see in this Cathedral of San Salvador Zaragoza. The main nave is a magnificent Gothic altarpiece. It is a masterpiece of alabaster (a translucent form of gypsum or calcite, typically white, often carved into ornaments.) and is considered to be the best of Europe. Work on this began in 1434 and took about 50 years to complete.



Also noteworthy here is the choir stalls. The choir section is formed by 117 oaken seats built by three monks. It is enclosed by a bronze grating accented with sculptures of gilded wood by Juan Ramírez. You can see it in the foreground of the picture.

Make it a point to look up. Don’t miss the beautiful dome. And look down too the marble patterns in the floor are a sight to behold. Perfection defined all over, from ceiling to floor! The grandeur, the nooks, the paintings, the floor, the roof every part has an aura around it.



Wiki has names of 16 chapels inside the cathedral. Of these Saint Bruno and Virgen Blanca(white virgin) chapels are stunning.

Exteriors of Cathedral of San Salvador Zaragoza too have a personality. You can head to the north side of the church to view the elaborate Mudéjar brick and ceramic work that make up the north wall of the Cathedral. This is one of the remains from 11th century.

Location of La Seo Cathedral Zaragoza

The cathedral is located in Plaza de la Seo.


When is Cathedral of San Salvador open?

Tuesday to Friday – 10am-2pm, 6-6.30pm,
Saturday – 10am-12.30pm &4-6.30pm,
Sunday – 10am-noon & 4-6.30pm.

Tickets to Cathedral Zaragoza

Adults – 4euros. Children – free.

Cathedral of San Salvador, Zaragoza, Spain





The Meendharas of Sunderbans, their Struggle for Existence
A Spanish Road Drive from Madrid to Zaragoza

44 Responses to “Visit to Cathedral of San Salvador Zaragoza, Spain

  • I love UNESCO World Heritage sites as well…Beauty guaranteed! Great pics, Indrani..We went to Zaragoza in 2009. I haven’t really blogged at that time..maybe it’s good to share them now 🙂

  • One of the first things I check out when I’m in a new area is always the cathedral or the church. Not only are they a sight for keeps, they’re also filled with historical value and stories that will make a traveler understand more of the place’s beauty and importance. As always I’m fascinated with your photos and writeup. You are truly talented. 🙂

  • Amazing . Beautiful post and pics.

  • I love big and historical churches. Especially those that have astonishing architectural designs. This cathedral is really worth a visit. The architectural facade is just so amazing. Very picturesque!

  • The architectures of the cathedrals in Spain are indeed breathtaking. Every structure lies with great and deep history. Every detail has a story. I hope to take a tour like this someday. I figured Spain would be the perfect destination since it’s rich with so much history and ancient places!

  • love UNESCO heritage sites. At the very least they reduce the chances of them being tourist traps and turn out as amazing as this gem you’ve described for us. Thanks for sharing

  • Looks magnificent. Nice captures, Indrani.

  • I love world heritage sites, in fact I live in one (Edinburgh). Great photos of the cathedral. I love heritage buildings, especially castles, unfortunately my partner doesn’t like to explore them as much as me!

  • 50 years of work certainly pays off. It’s a shame we don’t build things the way we use to!

  • Wow this cathedral is beautiful. It sorta reminds me of the cathedral is Seville Spain. I really like the embedded star marking on the floor

  • One of the best things about traveling around Europe is that you are bound to stumble upon a beautiful church or cathedral in almost any city. Always great to enjoy fantastic architecture and take a rest inside to enjoy the beauty. Love the interior and ceiling of the Cathedral of San Salvador.

  • I always try to visit UNESCO World Heritage Sites when I travel too. Admittedly, after living in Europe for so long now, all these cathedrals really kind of start to look and feel the same. I usually only visit when they are UNESCO sites these days.

  • The cathedrals in Spain are amazing. So intricate and ornate right?

  • Beautiful images – they really highlight the intricate details! The churches and cathedrals throughout Spain and the rest of Europe make for great places to escape from the summer heat – or a place to hide from the rain in winter!

  • I’m also a huge fan of Unesco world heritage sites…I mean, they made the unesco list for a good reason after all. The architecture of this cathedral is beautiful but, for me, the most impressive element are the 117 oak chairs. Imagine the blood, sweat, tears and time those 3 monks put into creating them…spectacular!

  • I love UNESCO World Heritage sites too. The cathedral looks like a beautiful place to enjoy architecture. I would love to spend some time here.

  • Laveena Sengar
    1 year ago

    The pictures look very beautiful. Every detail has been well captured. I think I would definitely look for a beautiful church in any new place. Being a UNESCO world heritage site says a lot about the place.

  • How have I never heard of this cathedral? Wow! The dome ceiling is magnificent. Spain is full of treasures I’ve yet to discover.

  • I can see the French influence here compared to the Moorish architecture of southern Spain.

  • Looks like a truly fascinating cathedral – I love the Gothic altarpiece, so magnificent. And what charms me most about Cathedrals are the choir stalls and massive organ pipes – I grew up singing in church choirs, so am always drawn to these parts of a church 🙂

  • Maniparna Sengupta Majumder
    1 year ago

    Amazing architecture! No doubt it’s one of the UNESCO world heritage sites. Thanks for sharing the beautiful clicks, Indrani… 🙂

  • The details on the altar piece are just gorgeous. I can stand there watching it for sometime and keep finding new things there. Lovely cathedral.

  • The cathedral is so big and beautiful. I love the different cupolas. There is so much detail in the inside of the cathedral, no wonder it took over 50 years to complete.

  • History and Architecture always fascinate us. And this cathedral is one such outstanding piece of architecture. The Gothic altarpiece is remarkably stunning. Spain definitely has so much to explore.

  • I love the mix of architecture here. Gothic is my favorite because it’s unlike any other! The choir stalls are gorgeous, would love to hear it played!

  • The architecture of the cathedral is incredible! I’m always fascinated when entering such a massive edifice

  • I love places that let children in for free! I love the marble floors, it (and everything in general!) looks so beautiful – I’d love to give it a visit.

  • Spain has such a fascinating history and it’s portrayed beautifully in the architectural masterpieces everywhere. Arabic influences are seen everywhere and makes them so unique. Haven’t actually been to Zaragoza yet but it looks like it’s definitely worth a visit!

  • Great write up on the history and stellar photos. I love the seats built by the three monks, that must have taken them ages and so much dedication!

  • I LOVE visiting cathedrals!! It’s so interesting to learn about the history. The intricate details in these photos amazes me!!

  • Yogi Saraswat
    1 year ago

    The main nave is a magnificent Gothic altarpiece. It is a masterpiece of alabaster (a translucent form of gypsum or calcite, typically white, often carved into ornaments.) and is considered to be the best of Europe. Work on this began in 1434 and took about 50 years to complete. It looks live . I am amazed , how they create so intricate piece without any advanced technology.

  • blair villanueva
    1 year ago

    Just like others who are not religious, I like visiting cathedral because of its enormous designs just like San Salvador, and always makes me wonder their secret techniques on building this structures that could last for hundred of years. Amazing!

  • Love that you bought in the historical elements of this place! Pictures look absolutely ethereal and have a gothic feel to it. Looks like a charming place!

  • The cathedral has a splendid architecture, beautiful details!

  • It’s obviously that this place deserves a visit for minimum a couple of hours! I am a passionate about history and right now I am reading and studying a lot about Art and architecture! It’s possible to find many different style in this kind of Art and that’s impressive and suggesting! Wonderful pictures and it seems you have got a nice experience, thanks for sharing it

  • The architecture of this Cathedral looks magnificent and fascinating indeed! You’ve captured it very beautifully in your pictures!

  • Cathedrals look fantastic!

  • Just like you, I find UNESCO heritage site beguiling. I keep a personal list of UNESCO heritage sites. Will include Cathedral of San Salvador in the list. Thank you! 😀

  • Wanderlust-inducing structures makes me wanna pack and go! I must say that what captures my attention i its beautifully decorated and I’d love to give it a visit.

  • Truly a sight to behold. Amazing Pictures Indrani!! 🙂

  • I lI’ve visiting heritage site too.The guides have such amazing stories to tell.Enjoyed this thoroughly

  • That sure is a breath-taking view! Unesco sites are really fascinating but I only get to see them on postcards that I collect. One day I would love to see them up-close and personal. Hopefully, I can start with our local Unesco Heritage sites very soon.

  • I’m not religious but I LOVE visiting churches. I love how old they are and all the work that obviously went into building them.

  • UNESCO World Heritage sites are getting added every year and it is really encouraging and inspiring to see that these monuments fall under the category

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