How to get there
Plus where to stay and where to go
The astronaut carving at the Catedral Nueva in Salamanca
Iberia Express flies from Dublin to Madrid, iberiaexpress.com. Until end March 2014, the Dublin-Madrid return flight is €135, excluding checked baggage
We stayed in paradors in Alcala de Henares, Avila and Salamanca. These are high-end hotels, set up with the help of the Spanish government, usually in converted historic buildings or in areas of historic interest, and each are unique. Of the three we stayed in, the Alcala is new, designed in a beautiful Japanese-style theme, doubles from €166; Avila is an atmospheric old building on the site of a former palace, doubles from €107; Salamanca is a striking, new, brutalist-style hotel on the outskirts of the city with fine views across the cathedrals, doubles from €110. The on-site restaurant in the Salamanca hotel is particularly good. Parador.es
You won’t do better for lunch in the centre of Salamanca than the Asador Don Mauro, on the historic main square. Atmospheric interior, and specialising in local meat.
For an extensive cocktail list and modern tapas, try Doze café, at the Plaza de la Isla de la Rua. Don’t be put off by the “café” in the name – it’s a busy and popular restaurant that opens late.
The Museum of Art Nouveau and Art Deco in Salamanca, is at Casa Lis which was originally a private palace. This building, with its stained-glass facade, has a beautiful, art deco style interior and an outstanding collection of glass, jewellery, fans, porcelain and furniture. Museocasalis.org
Spanish tourist website spain.info
Rosita Boland travelled as a guest of the Spanish Tourist Office and Spain Heritage Cities