Sunday, June 2, 2013

Buitrago del Lozoya

     Jack's girlfriend was in town a few weeks ago and we decided to take a day trip to a small village. We decided on Buitrago del Lozoya because it appeared on several "top day trips from Madrid" lists. Don't always trust these lists. We arrived after an hour and a half bus ride and walked over to the Picasso "museum," which consisted mostly of a couple dozen hastily drawn sketches made for and collected by Eugenio Arias, one of Picasso's friends. The town is very small, and the main point of interest is the old town, which has maintained its walls since the Middle Ages. This part of town is very small and very quiet. It is home to a small castle and a church, but the rest of the buildings are mostly from the 20th century and are very uninteresting. We quickly realized that the best part of the visit would be seeing the village from above due to its riverside location. With this in mind, we walked outside of the town to try to find a way to a higher elevation.

(Jack and Unity)

     We eventually found a path that led us up the side of a large hill, and at the top we had great views of the village below.

(Katie, Rocks)

(Buitrago del Lozoya)

     For better or for worse, the hike up the hill and the ensuing views were the highlight of the day. The town, like many formerly successful and important places, has lost all of its luster. I think a contributing factor to this is that the town is now located just off of a highway, and so is not properly isolated. This, combined with the fact that the antiquity is overshadowed by unimpressive 20th century housing, makes me wonder why the town is on so many "top day trips from Madrid" lists. Nevertheless, we managed to have a good time and enjoyed the calmness and clean air. And really, there isn't much to complain about, all things considered. 

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