Tuesday, July 7, 2015

First Days in Salamanca

Hey everyone, sorry for the long gap between posts! It has been a very busy week and a half since we arrived in Salamanca! I wanted to give you all a feel for the historical part of the city. We got a tour of the city and old University buildings the day after we arrived. As I've said before, the University of Salamanca is very old. It is the oldest university in Spain and one of the oldest in Europe. Pictured below is the facade of the University, which is very famous.  

If you look really closely on the right side about halfway up, there is a small frog on one of the skulls. Legend goes that students would try to find the frog for good luck on their exams and it is still a popular tourist attraction to this day.

This is a historical classroom. It is no longer used for classes, but does house some special events.

Below is the school's chapel. Since it is such an old school, it obviously has religious roots. Any student that attends the university can get married here. Our tour guide made sure that we all knew that if we really wanted to, we could come back to Salamanca to get married since we are all official students of the university for the summer.

The old university library is one of the oldest in Europe and holds over 900 thousand books, some of which date back to the 11th century.

This is a pretty typical view walking through the historical part of the city, where the university is located and I spend a lot of my free time. Going back to Corvallis is going to be quite the change...

This statue is known as the symbol of the city. It stands at the old entrance to the city after crossing the Roman Bridge. It is a bull and was built before 200 BC, but has obviously been damaged over time.

The Roman Bridge mentioned above that leads into the city. It was built in the 1st century BC.

One of Salamanca's cathedrals. The city has two main cathedrals, and they are referred to as the "old" and "new" cathedrals. The old cathedral was built in the 12th century and the new one was built in the 16th century, so they are both pretty old as far as I'm concerned.

The view from the cathedral

Inside the cathedral's bell tower. The bells rang while we were inside and scared us half to death. :)

View from the bell tower

Thanks for reading this post, even though it was a bit short! I hope it gives you a better feel for the city in which I am studying (at least the historical part). Until next time!

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