Friday, June 19, 2015

A Day in León

{view on our way to the Catedral}
This past weekend, my friend Mette and I planned a spontaneous trip to the north of Spain. And by spontaneous, I mean that we decided which cities to visit on Thursday afternoon, bought the tickets and booked the hostels around 10 PM, and by 5:45 AM the next morning, I was headed towards the bus station. We planned our trip around three cities—León, Oviedo, and Gijón—with a day in each.
{Catedral Santa María} 
León was incredibly beautiful and charming. I have a soft spot for small cities; since they're so easy to navigate, you can travel on foot and save the cost of transportation and in doing so, you also get to know the area better anyway. Since everything about this trip was so last minute, I finished packing and planning around 1 AM and was able to get a whole four hours of sleep before getting ready for the day, but as usual, a combination of caffeine and excitement got me through most of the day.
{Mette and me being touristy}
{Plaza Mayor}
After arriving in León around 12:45 PM, Mette and I headed straight to our hostel to drop off our bags and start exploring. Thanks to some kind American tourists I met at the bus station, we were well-equipped with a decent map of the city, and we started our tour by heading towards Catedral Santa María de Regla. Along the way, we also saw Casa de los Botines, which is a Modernist building designed by Gaudí. Casa de los Botines is definitely different than many of Gaudí's other works (la Sagrada Familia, Parque Güell, etc.) and if it weren't for a small plaque explaining Gaudí was the architect, I wouldn't have believed it. 
{Casa de los Botines}
Soon enough, we reached the Catedral, which was so beautiful. We only looked at it from the outside though, and perused through an open market in the area. We grabbed some quick bites here and at one point, we decided to stop in a bar, where we each got a beer and split some delicious patatas bravisimas, which were essentially fried potatoes dripping in oil and seasoned with garlic.
Throughout the rest of the day, we also managed to visit the Museo de León, Basilica de San Isidoro, and Plaza Mayor. Unfortunately, I was running on very little sleep and was also tired from the long bus ride, so we headed returned to our hostel a mere four hours after we had initially checked in, completely exhausted. I passed out nearly instantly, managing to only take out my contacts before passing out, still in the same jeans from the day. 
{Plaza Mayor}
After breakfast the next day, we grabbed our bags and headed back to the bus station for our ride to Oviedo. Here are the rest of our pictures from León:
~ V

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