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15/11/2012

CÁCERES, A STROLL THROUGH HISTORY

A stroll through the most representative monuments of Cáceres will not last more than 10 km, but this distance we will be enough go through 25,000 years of history (and prehistory). This is the age of the Matravieso Cave, a palaeolithic enclave that forms part of the city. It was discovered in the 1950s in a large chalk operation. Remains of bodies, ceramics and cave wall art highlight the value of this grotto as compared with the neighbouring Cueva de Santa Ana and El Conejar. A leap in history brings us to the Norba Caesarina, the name with which the Romans baptised this area. In the outskirts of the city, in Aldea Moret, we can find the last remains of this civilisation, watchtowers that were of little use when the Visigoths conquered the region, and there is also the famous Vía de Plata that crosses the city.

From the Romans to the Moslems. We continue along the kilometres separating two civilisations and we come to the earth wall that should have protected this Caliph town from the reconquest. But once more this did not happen, and the Christian supremacy is shown by the temples that proliferated at that time. Of all of these, the most outstanding is the Ermita de la Montaña hermitage, located on top of the Sierra de Portachito hills. From here we can see the famous Santa María co-cathedral and the remains of the city’s temples.

Seen from a mountain, even a castle looks small. From the Sierra de Portachito we can see several fortresses, Cáceres municipal area has eight and the city of Cáceres has one of the best preserved mediaeval and Renaissance urban complexes in the world.

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