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Zaragoza, also known as Saragossa, is the fifth largest city in Spain with metropolitan population of roughly eight hundred thousand people. It is also the capital city of the Autonomous Community and former Kingdom of Aragon. The city lies along the Ebro River and its main tributaries. The city and region have had an extremely long history starting as a Carthaginian military post, which was conquered by Caesar Augustus.
The Moors took over the city in 714 and held it until 1118. During that time it went on the control of many different Muslim Sultans. The Aragonese took control of the city and setup there own little kingdom. Although by 1137 they were pretty much under Castilian control. Zaragoza was a hot bed of activity during the inquisition, mainly because of a few local Priests that really took it on themselves to spread the message. The city suffered heavily during the Spanish Civil War with 500,000 to 1,000,000 people dying in the region. This is because the area was the centre for Republican Loyalist activity making Franco focus more on attacking it.
Today Zaragoza is a growing into a major economic center. There are also many wonderful sights to see in the city and amazing hiking in the surrounding region. This city is a wonderful place to spend a few days.
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Basilica of Our Lady of the Pillar (Catedral-Basílica de Nuestra Señora del Pilar) is a stunning Roman Catholic Church that venerates the Virgin Mary, under her title of Our Lady of Pillar. It is believed to be the first church ever dedicated to Mary. The church is supposedly on the sight where St. James the greater, an Apostle, saw an apparition of Mary, making this the only known apparition of the Mary that happened before her Assumption. St. James the greater was also the first person to bring Christianity to Spain. Several churches have been built on this sight with different styles. The current church was constructed between 1681 to 1686 in a baroque style, although the final touches were not put on until 1872. The Basilica itself is a large rectangle with a nave, which has 12 huge pillars, and two aisles. There are also two all brick chapels attached giving the church an Aragonese feel. Additionally there are 9 additional small chapels that are part of the main church
La Seo Cathedral is one of the main cathedrals in Zaragoza and is located on top of the old Roman Forum in the city center. A mosque was constructed on the site during the Moorish occupation but when the Christians reclaimed the city they built a Romanesque Cathedral on its spot, although the minaret from the mosque is still part of the current tower. From 1204 to the 15th century all the local kings were crowned in this church. The church has had its designed changed several times over the centuries. Today the church is a mixture of Romanesque, Baroque, Neo-Classical, Mudejar and Gothic styles. La Seo Cathedral and the Basilica of Our Lady of the Pillar share co-cathedral status in the city.
The following Churches are the Mudéjar monuments that make up an UNESCO World Heritage Site
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Zaragoza is mainly a mediterranean continental desert climate, this is because the city is walled in on all sides by mountains. The average rainfall is only 310 mm, which makes for many sunny days. Most of the rain occurs in the spring. The summer is extremely dry with temperatures reaching up to 40 °C. The winters tend to be foggy with temperatures between 0 °C and 10 °C.
|Avg Max||10.3 °C||13.3 °C||16.6 °C||18.7 °C||23.2 °C||27.7 °C||31.5 °C||31 °C||26.7 °C||20.7 °C||14.3 °C||10.7 °C|
|Avg Min||2.4 °C||3.5 °C||5.2 °C||7.4 °C||11.2 °C||14.8 °C||17.6 °C||17.8 °C||14.7 °C||10.3 °C||5.8 °C||3.5 °C|
|Rainfall||22 mm||20 mm||20 mm||35 mm||44 mm||31 mm||18 mm||17 mm||27 mm||30 mm||30 mm||23 mm|
Zaragoza Airport (ZAZ) is a medium sized airport outside of the city. It is also a Spanish Airforce Base and an emergency landing strip for the NASA Space Shuttle. There is a bus service that connects the airport to the city every half hour.Currently, Air Europa flies to Lanzarote, Palma de Mallorca and Tenerife-South, Air Nostrum to A Coruña, Frankfurt, Madrid and Paris-Orly, and Ryanair to Alicante, Brussels-South Charleroi, London-Stansted, Milan-Orio al Serio and Rome-Ciampino.
Intermodal Zaragoza Delicias Station is the main train station downtown. The city is on the Madrid to Barcelona Spanish High Speed railway line. Madrid is only 1 hour and 15 minutes by train and Barcelona is only 1 hour and 30 minutes. There are also long distance railway lines and local Cercanías lines, which are slower.
Intermodal Zaragoza Delicias Station is the main bus station in town.
The main night club districts are El Tubo, El Casco Viejo, La Zona, El Rollo and El Ambiente. El Ambiente is the gay friendly scene.
|Albergue Zaragoza Hostel||C/ Predicadores 70||Hostel||79|
|Apartamentos Turisticos||Coso 152||Apartment||-|
|Aparthotel Los Girasoles||Avda. César Augusto, 27||Hotel||-|
|Apartment Gotor 9||Gascon de Gotor 9 1oD 50.006 Zaragoza||GUESTHOUSE||-|
|B&B Siesta||Sobrarbe, 34-36 Zaragoza||GUESTHOUSE||90|
|Hotel Husa Puerta de Zaragoza||Miquel Roca I Junyent, 5||HOTEL||-|
|Hotel Sauce||C/Espoz y Mina 33||Hotel||83|
|Husa Via Romana||C/ Don Jaime I 54 56||Hotel||80|
|Sabinas Apartments||C/Alfonso I, 43 C/ Bayeu, 4||Apartment||-|
|San Miguel Apartment||14 Calle San Miguel level 2, door #6||Apartment||-|
|iSleep Hotel||San Francisco 1C, Pol. Ind. Centrova, La Muela||HOTEL||-|
|Hotel Hispania||Avenida César Augusto 103||Hotel||89|
|Eurostars Plaza||Los Fayos 11||Hotel||84|
|Hotel Oriente 3||Coso 11 - 13||Hotel||87|
|Hotel Tibur||Plaza SEO 2||Hotel||-|
|Hotel Inca||Manifestación 33||Hotel||-|
|Hotel El Príncipe||Santiago 12||Hostel||92|
|Hotel Maza||Pza España 7||Hotel||-|
|Hotel Plaza Feria||Avda. Diagonal, 11||Hotel||-|
|Albergue Ciudad de Zaragoza||C/ San Juan Bautista de la- Salle||Hostel||-|
|Hotel Altovento||Paseo Ramiro I, 2||Hotel||-|
|Pension Roma||Duquesa de Villahermosa, 4, esc. Izda. , 5o A||GUESTHOUSE||81|
|Hotel las Torres||Plaza Nuestra Señora del Pilar, 11||Hotel||-|
|Hotel Paris Centro||Calle San Pablo 19||Hotel||89|
|Pension Santa Gema||Santander, 3||Guesthouse||79|
|Casa Palacio de los Sitios||C/ Pozo, 7||Apartment||89|
|Hostal Central Zaragoza||Av Cesar Augusto 72 Principal||GUESTHOUSE||80|
|Apartamentos Paris Centro||C/ San Pablo, 4||Hotel||-|
|Apartamentos Augusta Centro||C/ San Pablo, 24||HOTEL||-|
|Apartamentos Murallas||C/ San Blas, 29||HOTEL||-|
|Hostal El Carmen||Paseo Maria Agustin 13||HOTEL||77|
|Hostal San Miguel||Calle Trinque 8 Fuentes de Ebro Fuentes de Ebro||GUESTHOUSE||-|
|Hotel Rio Arga||Calle Contamina Nº 20-24 (Alfonso I)||HOTEL||83|
Internet is widely available within Spain. Most airports have wifi-zones and in most towns there are internet cafés or shops where you can use internet for a fixed price. Wi-Fi points in bars and cafeterias are available after ordering, and most hotels offer Wi-Fi connection in common areas for their guests.
See also: International Telephone Calls
The international access code for Spain is +34. The emergency number for police, ambulance and the fire brigade is 112.
In cities you can find plenty of public phones, and 'locutorios'. The latter are small shops where you can use the phone and use internet. Most of them also sell prepaid cards for mobile telephones. These shops are used a lot by foreigners to call to their mother country.
The main mobile network operators in Spain are Yoigo, Vodafone, Movistar and Orange, as in most of Europe voice and data coverage is generally good in urban areas however it can be patchy in rural locations. Cheap mobile phones (less than €50) with some pre-paid minutes are sold at FNAC or any phone operator's shop (Vodafone, Movistar, Orange). Topping-up is then done by buying scratch cards from the small stores, supermarkets, vending points (often found in tobacco shops) or kiosks.
If you want to post a card, you can head to the post office (Correos). The Spanish post is not yet as efficient as colleagues in other countries so receiving a card can take a bit longer than the number of days that it should take. On the website of Correos, you can find the locations of nearby post offices.
Post offices are generally open from 8:30am to 2:00pm, although times will vary according to the size of the city/town and the main post offices might be open until the early evening. Most will also open again on Saturday mornings, but in the smaller towns will close as early as 12 noon. When posting a letter, look for a yellow box and, if possible, post at the post office itself where there will also be divisions for local, national and international mail. Be prepared for long queues at the post office. This is why tobacco shops sell stamps and many will also have the facility to weigh packages. Standard letters/postcards of up to 20 grams sent within Spain are €0.34. However, non-standard letters/postcards of up to 20g are €0.39. Letters/postcards of 20 to 50 grams are €0.45. In the case of international shipping, the price is €0.64 to most countries within Europe for standard envelopes (letters/postcards) up to 20g, for a few European countries and outside Europe it is €0.78. If you want to send a package you are probably better off with a private courier company like TNT, DHL or UPS, as they offer quick and reliable services against competitive prices.
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