Some cities have been done to death and some aren’t worth the trouble. We’ve found the ten European cities you haven’t seen that are definitely worth a trip. You’ll have a great time and still impress your friends with some intrepid exploration. It’s a connoisseur’s choice.
10 Salamanca, Spain
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Salamanca, in the region of Castilla y León is famous the world over for its lively student atmosphere. The University, founded in 1218, is said to be the third oldest university in Europe and as a result, Salamanca is home to a youthful population who throng the streets every night and give the city vitality.
Salamanca abounds in Renaissance and Plateresque (A late gothic variant peculiar to the area) architecture. The local golden sandstone adds an extra degree of warmth to the many monuments including two cathedrals, the university buildings and the exceptional Plaza Mayor. The latter, considered the finest of its type in Spain is particularly memorable when floodlit at night.
Salamanca, like all Spain is more about the lunch than the dinner. From approximately 1.30pm till 4pm the city will stop and everyone will eat. The evening meal is more likely to be tapas in a bar along with several drinks. As in the rest of Spain, if you go to bed before 3am the evening has been a failure! This part of Spain is particularly proud of its rich Iberico ham; air cured for up to 3 years and very much a delicacy. Pork in general is the speciality of the area.
USP: Join students from all over Spain in the Plaza Mayor on the last school Thursday of December to celebrate ‘University New Year’ and join in with the associated revelries!
Flights: Click here. Returns to Madrid from the UK start at around £35 and then it’s seven stops on the Madrid Metro to Chamartin Train station and a further two and a half hours and twenty euro’s to Salamanca.
Where to stay: The Hotel Rector is Salamanca’s favourite boutique hotel and double rooms can be had from about €193