Travel photography: Spain
Cities and Architecture
June 20, 2022
If you have spent some time on my website before, you probably noticed that an article series on Spain already existed before this one. I visited the south of this amazing country in 2015 and even back then I knew that I had to return at some point to see the center and especially the north. This spring, seven years after my first visit, it was finally time to return. The northern part is so different from the south that it's almost hard to believe that this is really the same country. Not only the stark difference in geography and climate, but also in culture is unmissable.
Another thing you might have noticed is that this trip is my first large outing after a rather long, pandemic induced break. Thankfully photography is a bit like riding a bike- you don't unlearn it even if you don't do it in a while. Still, it's not easy picking up the camera with the confidence I put it down almost two years ago. Therefore the results may be not quite be on par with what you're used to.
Regardless, in this first installment I'd like to present some cities and architecture, just like in my previous Spain series.
Famous for its long tradition of sword-smithing, Toledo was an important center for Romans, Visigoths, Moors and the Leon-Castilian Kingdom. The conquest of Toledo by Alfonso VI of Castile in 1085 marked one of the most impactful steps of the Reconquista and established the city as the capital of Spain for half a millennium.
As a border city between the Moorish Andalusia and the Catholic Castile Salamanca especially suffered from the conflict between the two nations as a subject of regular raids. Only after the aforementioned conquest of Toledo did the city finally find peace.
Santiago de Compostela
The final destination of the Caminos de Santiago, one of the most famous network of pilgrim paths in the world, is also the capital of the autonomous community of Galicia.
Oviedo was a city I especially liked, but more because of the beautiful Asturian Landscape that surrounds it which we will explore in a later article.
One of the most interesting cities I visited in Spain and the largest city of the Basque Country, Bilbao has managed to transform itself from an industrial town to a cultural and economic center. It has undergone a major aesthetic revitalization process and is now definitely one of Spain's most beautiful cities.
Although a charming little town in Navarra, especially famous for the annual bull run, from a photographic perspective I didn't find much that struck my eye. Even the picturesque main square was unfortunately filled up with rather ugly market stands and made photography very difficult.
In contrast to Pamplona, Zaragoza offered an abundance of interesting photo spots, especially along the river Ebro.
Since Philipp II moved the Spanish court to Madrid in 1561, it has been the cultural, economical and political center of the country. It is by far the largest city in Spain and one of the largest in the EU.
I hope you enjoyed this little introduction to my Spain trip. In the following articles I plan on showing some of the spectacular landscapes and of course some wildlife photography is also usually a mandatory part of my travels.
To be continued…
I hope you enjoyed the highlights of my trip so far. You can find the second part about Spain here.
Thanks for reading!