Perennially underrated, Aragon in Spain is oft overlooked by tourists, and for no good reason too. The reason is rich (I mean, really rich) in medieval history, lined with majestic mountain landscapes, and dotted with marvellous architecture.
From North to South, the provinces of Huesca, Zaragoza, and Teruel make up landlocked Aragon. A part of Huesca borders France, and all three provinces lie beside Catalonia. There are flights that land in the airport in Zaragoza. An alternative would be to head to Madrid or Barcelona via air and board the Madrid-Barcelona high speed rail that stops by in Aragon.
The medieval town of Albarracín is situated some 3878 feet above sea level. Declared a National Monument in 1961, the villages’ architecture – churches, castle walls, houses, is heavily Moorish-influenced. Spending some time in one of Spain’s most beautiful towns is a unique experience akin to a sojourn back to the olden times. Located in Teruel, just over a thousand people live in the quaint neighbourhood.
A huge mountain range that separates the Iberian Peninsula from the rest of Europe, the Pyrenees is accessible via Huesca. Aneto, the highest peak in the range, is located in the Aragon Pyrenees. Adventure sports fans would be delighted, as there are loads of activities, including mountain biking, white water rafting and paragliding, to partake in, especially amongst the stunning scenic backdrop. Romanesque churches, and medieval buildings lie in the vicinity of the mountain range.
The fifth largest city in Spain, with over two thousand years of history, Zaragoza is the regional capital of Aragon. The Basílica del Pilar looms, a symbol of the city’s cultural richness. The ancient Romans, Moors, Jews and Christians came and left a mark and a legacy. Visit the San Salvador Cathedral, Aragon’s most treasured monument, for an insight to medieval art. And the Aljaferia Palace, a fortified Arab castle, now the seat of the Aragonese Parliament. Need a break from the many more historical monuments that dot the city? Chill out at a bar or grab a tapas.