Vatican Museum Tour, part 1

Any tour of the Vatican Museum is worth the time and money. I was fortunate enough to take the “Waking the Vatican” tour which begins at 6AM sharp, when the doors are unlocked, yet the public is not yet permitted to enter.

DSC_3262Yes, those are the keys actually used to unlock all the doors. Of course, the museum holds artifacts from many eras of history, including Egyptian pieces like this tablet:

DSC_3224There are plenty of Roman objects as well, literally huge rooms full of them:

DSC_3223Including this magnificent sculpture:

DSC_3228And this bathtub of an empress:

DSC_3219Must have been a ladder to get in and out of that thing. More posts to come, showing the Hall of Maps and other marvels. Check back often!

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Cristo de la Luz, Toledo, Spain

Not the largest religious building in Toledo Spain, the Church of Cristo de la Luz, was originally built in the year 999. That’s right, more than a 1,000 years ago.

DSC_2975The facade features the interesting “moorish” architecture.

DSC_2986Inside, you’ll find the remains of some frescos:

DSC_2978And more:

DSC_2977This building is definitely worth a stop while in Toledo as it shows the continuity from one culture to another as it evolved in this area. Do a little homework before you go and you’ll discover the details more easily.

Castilla Termal Valbuena, Spain, Room

The previous post showed the Castilla Termal Valbuena’s pools and common areas. Now, we’ll take a look at one of the rooms. This was a duplex affair, with a lower area fitted with desk, mini bar, and couch that you see in the photo below:

DSC_2848The staircase to the right leads up to the bedroom or sleeping loft as it might be called which feature a large bed, closet space, and the bathroom:

IMG_1819The bathroom was quite modern as the next photo shows:

DSC_2851All the amenities are there from the bathrobe to the shampoo. The Castilla Termal was a fine place to enjoy several days, relaxing and recharging after a jaunt through northern Spain. I hope to return soon.

Casa de Tepa, Astorga, Spain

Casa de Tepa is the type of unique accommodation that I enjoy most. It has the unique taste and style of the owners as well as plenty of history. Tucked behind a wall, you’ll find this place complete with a lovely courtyard which is perfect for relaxing after a long day of business or touring.

DSC_2770

As for rooms, there are plenty to choose from. Here’s a large one in which I stayed.

DSC_2765And the view from the other side:

DSC_2766And here’s a view of the spacious bathroom:

DSC_2767Plenty of space with all the fine toiletries you would expect. Then there are the common areas:

DSC_2771There are several:

DSC_2769Plus, a charming staff, delicious breakfast? What more could you want. If you’re in the Astorga area, I can highly recommend this place.