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Madrid or Valencia? Well, somewhere in the middle! Search for cheap air tickets to Cuenca, the medieval jewel of Castile-La Mancha and you’ll see what we mean. Preserving its historical character more than any other European city, Cuenca stands proud over Rivers Huécar and Júcar, shines through the hanging balconies of the Casas Colgadas and can be compared to nothing you’ve ever encountered. Mother of arts, founder of the Abstract Art Movement and a major tourist destination, Cuenca combines the pros of a small town and an important tourist resort. Plan your trip and organise your accommodation in cheap hotels in Cuenca, for the ultimate city-break!
Cuenca stands exactly in the middle of the distance between Madrid and Valencia and it’s Europe’s third most scarcely populated region.
Cuenca was most probably unsettled during the Roman times. Ismael fortified the region in the 11th century and the city’s development began. When the Christians returned, Alfonso VIII reconquered Cuenca.
Cuenca is one of Spain’s most precious cities. A designated UNESCO World Heritage Site, it boasts exceptional medieval architecture and a great variety of sights, particularly interested in arts and culture.
Madrid’s airport (Aeropuerto Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas) is located 170 kilometres west of Cuenca and can be reached by bus and railway.
Getting around Cuenca
You can get around Cuenca by bus and taxi, but you could also move around the city on foot, as Cuenca’s centre is small enough.
Cuenca’s Old Town is the main point of interest during your trip. The city extends to an area designated by what’s left of the Moorish castle and River Huécar. From there, the Old Town meets the New Town and is connected to it through 9 historic bridges.
Your day in Cuenca could begin in Plaza Mayor, the Old Town’s main square, where you’ll come across the Cathedral (Catedral).
Cuenca’s impressive cathedral is a unique phenomenon in Spain. Built in 1177 right after Alfonso VIII’s return, it kept receiving changes, additions and restorations until the 20th century. It keeps captivating visitors with its extraordinary combination of old and new elements.
Cuenca is a major art hub of Spain; there are two foundations you shouldn’t miss:
- The Fundación Antonio Pérez: Publisher, collector and artist himself, Antonio Pérez was a big fan of abstract art and the pop art movement. Being Spanish and having lived half his life in Paris, he chose Cuenca to found his excellent institution.
- The Fundación Antonio Saura: Antonio Saura’s relation with Cuenca was rather dramatic and dark, being forced to visit in order to treat his tuberculosis. This foundation was founded 10 years after his death, to honour the El Grupo Paso movement, inspired and organised by him.
Cuenca’s most recognisable landmark are no other than the Casas Colgadas. Built back in the 14th century at the hill’s slopes, the houses emerge through the rocks with their wooden balconies seeming as they’re actually part of those rocks. The view is fantastic!
Two of the Casas house Cuenca’s first contemporary art museum, the Museo de Arte Abstracto Español. This top museum was founded as an attempt by Fernando Zóbel to gather all the works of abstract art from the artists of his time. Today, you can enjoy excellent collections of Abstract Art and the Pop Art movement from the ‘50’s and the ‘60’s. The museum never stops evolving and updating the collections.Cuenca’s official language is Spanish.