My trip to Toledo did not start well. I had planned to catch the 10.30am train but had to change dorms in the hostel so couldn’t leave until after 10, so decided to sort some stuff out and then go for the 12.30 train. It’s a fast service and only takes half an hour and foolishly I allowed around 15 minutes to buy a ticket. Ha! Like many large railway stations the queuing system involves taking a number like in a deli. My number indicated that there were approximately seventy people in front of me. Clearly I wasn’t going to catch the 12.20 train. I pondered abandoning the mission for the day but decided to press on and go for the 1.50pm train instead. It took an hour to buy my ticket and as he sold it to me, the man behind the desk told me it was the last one for that train. Why on earth they don’t run more trains or put more carriages on them I do not know. Or indeed why Spaniards put up uncomplainingly with an hour wait to buy a ticket. I can imagine people at a British mainline station getting shouty at the twenty minute mark.
Finally I did make it to Toledo, caught the tourist bus up the steep hill into the still partially walled old town and went exploring. The town has evidence of 2000 years of history, including Roman, Visigoth, Moorish and medieval remains and was an important artistic centre in the Renaissance. It is also, as I understand it, the birthplace of the Mudejar style, which blends Moorish islamic influences (such as geometric designs and horseshoe arches) with romanesque, gothic and renaissance architecture.
I managed to cover most of the bases, visiting the high gothic cathedral, a monastery cloister with a Mudjar ceiling, a church converted from a 12th century synagogue and another from a tiny 10th century mosque.
On the walk back to the very pretty railway station I was taken by this later gate in the city wall.
So here it is in Lego, with a bat standing in for the two headed eagle which Lego have somehow managed to overlook when chosing animals for reproduction in plastic.