Parador of Ubeda, Spain

The Parador Ubeda sits majestically on one side of the Plaza de Vasquez Molina – a plaza with as much character as any in Spain. It is shaped rather like an “L.” Adjacent to the Parador is the wonderful chapel of El Salvador. The Palacio de Vasquez de Molina – today acting as city hall – is on one side, and the Renaissance church of Santa Maria de los Reales Alcazares is at the far end of the plaza. In other words, the Parador Ubeda sits in the exact center of the most historically important section of the city.In addition to a marvelous main plaza, Ubeda is the town in Andalucia with perhaps the largest number of Renaissance palaces. The town has been called the “Florence of Andalucia.” Wander through the old parts of town and admire the many centuries-old structures still standing and in fine shape.The Parador is the former palace of Don Fernando Ortega Salido. Originally a Moorish palace – he had it rebuilt to his liking – then had the chapel built right next to it. Hemingway, Pio Baroja, Garcia Lorca, and Paul Bowles have all stayed here at the Parador, so it has attracted a particularly literary crowd!Interesting excursions from Parador Ubeda into the city:– Don’t miss the Hospital De Santiago.- The Isabelline style Iglesia de Santiago is well worth a visit.- The grand Iglesia El Salvador.- The 17th century Convento de Santa Teresa.- The chapel of San Juan de la Cruz contains relics of Saint John of the Cross.Interesting day trips include:– Driving over to the “twin” town of Baeza makes for a pleasant half-day trip. For a special treat, ask around for directions to the olive press of Nunez De Prado. There are two brothers here that produce the finest hand-crafted varietal and blended olive oil in all of Spain.- Cordoba is an easy day trip, and its many wonders are far too numerous to list here – don’t miss the awesome Mezquita, and the Barrio Juderia.

– The Cazorla Nature Preserve is very near and presents great opportunities for hiking and wildlife observation.- Jaen is an interesting town with another great Parador that sits atop a massive rocky hill. Drive over and have lunch – the views from the Parador are incredible.Ubeda is one of those cities that most tourists pass by. For those that do visit, a very appealing blend of the 16th century and modern times awaits – as does the magnificent Parador of Ubeda.For more on all of Spain’s wonderful Paradors, go to:

Spain ParadorsFor more information, and images of Parador Ubeda, click here:

Parador Ubeda

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