I hope everyone had a fabulous Christmas and you’re all gearing up for the New Year celebrations! I’ve taken a couple of weeks respite from the blog over Navidad as we’ve had loads of visitors and a house full for Christmas lunch.
We decided to take a little road trip between Christmas and New Year to visit friends in Portugal and take in some of the sights on the way. This week has us in Mérida, a lovely city in Extremadura. It was founded by the Romans in the first century B.C. and has some fabulously interesting Roman remains.
There is the Teatro Romano, which is still used today and is an impressive example of Roman architecture and general cleverness.
Visit the ancient Amphitheatre and learn about the various gladiators who entertained the crowd thousands of years ago.
The ancient Puente Romano, a 792m bridge spanning the Rio Guadiana is the longest Roman bridge still standing.
There are numerous temples and structures that demonstrate just how forward and industrious the Romans were.
A house located on what used to be the outskirts of town shows an impressive example of how the Romans used to live. You can also see the remains of some frescos and mosaic floors. About 500 meters from here is an ancient burial site!! This was extremely interesting. You can see various head stones, some of which still
bear the inscriptions and you’ll get a general idea of how the Romans used to prepare their dead for burial.
Alcazaba, built in 835 A.D. by the Arabs to control the city is also a must see!
There is a train station not far from the old part of the city and plenty of good hotels. We stayed in the Parador, which has been converted from an old convent and is in and of itself a historical delight.
I recommend purchasing the complete tour ticket, which gives you entry into many of the Roman remains.
Mérida is jam packed with history, fabulous architecture and beauty – it truly is a MUST SEE!