The Parador of Santiago De Compostela is one of the world's finest hotels - and its oldest! This building has been operating as a hostelery since 1499. In its still-existing 'foundation document' from that same year, it states that the building was to be dedicated, "as a hostelry for pilgrims and to house comfortably and suitably all devout people, both sick and in good health, who come to the city.".It became a place for weary pilgrims to sleep and get medical attention after their long ordeal of traversing the Camino de Santiago - "The Way of St.
James." For centuries, millions of the faithful have trekked here from all parts of Europe.The Parador Santiago De Compostela has all the fine touches and attention to detail that distinguish world-class hotels. Your quarters will have marble bathrooms, and heated towel racks add to the elegant feel. The public areas of the hotel include four cloisters of immense beauty and a dining room that can be described in no other way than regal. The 'signature' of the building is the intricate Plateresque entry which was added in 1678.
The city of Santiago De Compostela is a beautiful repository of the history of Spain. Wandering the old quarter never ceases to fascinate.Interesting sites near Parador Santiago De Compostela:.- Just across the Plaza do Obradoiro is the awesome Cathedral Del Apostol. The Cathedral has two facades completed in different centuries - one Baroque, and one Romanesque.
No matter your religion, you must attend a mass and observe the incredible ritual swinging of the 'Botafumeiro.' This is a giant incense burner that is hoisted, by eight friars, onto ropes the size of a man's thigh - and swung in awesome swooping arcs from one side of the church to the other - really quite a unique spectacle!.- Also right near the Parador of Santiago De Compostela is the Palacio de Gelmirez (open daily for viewing).
- On the western side of the same square is the French Neoclassical Pazo de Raxoi.- Be sure and walk through the old quarter that surrounds the Plaza do Obradoiro - especially to the south and east. You'll come upon the Praza das Praterias with its Fuente de los Caballos, and Praza da Quintana and Praza da Azabacheria which fronts the Benedictine Monasterio de San Martina Pinario.Interesting day trips:.- Drive out to the nearby "rias.
" These are deep jagged inlets - fjiords of great natural beauty. You'll discover many hidden coves and beaches where you can stop and picnic, or swim if you have a bit of polar bear in you!.As you roam around on your excursions out from Santiago De Compostela Parador, stop in any one of the dozens of quaint and "tipico" restaurants you'll encounter and try the national dish of Galica - 'pulpo' - octopus. It is prepared in several different ways and, if you've never had it, may surprise you with its delicious flavor.Whether you consider yourself a pilgrim or not - for dedicated travelers, Santiago De Compostela is one of the world's few destinations that you must try to see at least once in your lifetime..SpainParador.com makes it easy for you to plan and arrange your next trip to Spain. This time stay in palaces, castles, and other places of great historical interest and rare beauty - the wonderful Paradors of Spain.
By: Gary Bumpas