Church, Santilana, Spain. Santillana del mar

Spanish north - the pearls of Cantabria

The congregational church and monastery of Santa Juliana, built in the 12th century by monks who want to create a small chapel in which to display the relics of the martyr Juliana, are the most important Romanesque buildings in Cantabria

Santillana del Mar is a very curious town. On the one hand, this is a mini-village of two and a half streets no more than half a kilometer long. On the other hand, Santillana, located in the middle of nowhere, has a rich - literally and figuratively - past.

A small chapel at the burial site of the holy relics quickly grew into a large abbey, highly respected by the people and local nobility, who did not stint on gifts and donations. In 1045, the abbey church was promoted to colleague, which meant its very high status. A small settlement quickly formed around the abbey, named, naturally, in honor of St. Juliana - Santa Juliana, which later became today's Santilla.

Spain is among the three most visited countries in the world, annually it receives more than fifty million tourists, and many, having visited it once, come back here again and again. After all, a trip to Spain is a meeting with the sun, the sea, good cuisine, hospitality and the joy of life, it is an opportunity to discover the richest cultural and historical heritage, take part in traditional folk festivals and enjoy the magnificent landscapes.

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Church, Santilana, Spain
While vacationing in Spain, do not forget that during lunch time all residents rest for a couple of hours - this is a siesta. All establishments and institutions are closed. City plans and maps can be obtained free of charge either at your hotel or at the Tourist Information Office, where you will not only be given a map, but also kindly put the upcoming itinerary on the map. Medical services in Spain are paid. In case of serious illness, use your insurance policy. If the illness is mild, you can go to a pharmacy and ask for help from a pharmacist: he will make a simple diagnosis, prescribe a medicine, tell you how to take it.

Church of the Colegiata in Santillana

Santillana is an unconditional masterpiece not only of Cantabria, but of all of Spain. And from other well-known "open-air museums" it differs only in its small size. And the fact that you can see the most authentic Spain in Santillana is beyond doubt. Built in the 12th century in the classical Romanesque style, the church has largely been preserved to this day in its original form, since some of the inevitable reconstructions during this time were mostly external outbuildings.

The church is protected as a historical monument by royal decree of March 12, 1889. A particularly interesting part of the collegiate is its patio - cloister. Most of it was created in the 12-13th centuries and is the epitome of the classic "romanik". And only the eastern wing, built much later, in the 16th century, stands out sharply for its massiveness and gothic motifs. Santillana del Mar is rich in tourist attractions.

An example of Renaissance architecture in Santillana is Velarde Palace, built in the middle of the XVI century with a noticeable stepped gable and decorative ornaments and its balconies with wide lintels, the building is located in the Plaza de las Arenas and Casa de la Plaza. The Regina Coeli Museum, located in the building of an old monastery of Dominican monks called Regina Coeli (goddess of the sky), is a preserved example of baroque architecture. It was founded in 1592 under the auspices of Alonso Velarde and contains more than 8OO works from many parishes in the region. The main exhibition specimens are Gothic sculptures, icons, products made of silk and ivory, silver.

Tourists should not miss the opportunity to visit the Jesus Otero Museum, where you will find exhibitions of works created by the sculptor from Santillana del Mar, Jesus Otero. He was a native of Cantabria and in his works are often performed on the subject of nature and animals. Many of his works can be seen right here, in this museum and garden in the immediate vicinity of the church square, and were donated to them shortly before his death in 1994. Entrance to the museum is free.

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