Spain Destinations: Leon, A Remarkable Historical City


Leon, a city in the region of Castile and Leon, is not as well-known as other bigger cities in Spain but if you are an architecture lover, you are in for a treat. Leon is home to some of the most important historic buildings in the country, from convents and cathedrals to contemporary museums.

What To See In Leon

San Marcos Convent is one of the most famous and beautiful buildings in Leon. Built around 1541, this striking building stands out with its beautiful exterior made up of columns and intricate medallions. San Marcos Convent features a church and an archaeological museum and the former convent is now a luxury five-star hotel.

Inside San Marcos Convent
San Marcos Convent

Los Guzmanes Palace with its Renaissance façade was built in the 16th-century as a home for the Guzman family. Today it is the headquarters of the government of Leon. The building has four towers at the corners and an indoor courtyard with columns and incredible stained glass windows on the second floor. There are usually guided tours of the patio between 11:30 am to 4:40 pm.

Los Guzmanes Palace

Leon’s cathedral is unique in Spain for its windows and for its defined elegance. The first church built on this site was in 924, the current Gothic church is the fourth and is mostly a copy of the cathedral at Rheims, France. Leon’s cathedral is known as the cathedral without walls, as it has more glass than stone walls. The stained-glass windows bring out an amazing stream of color. Adult tickets are 6 euros, students and senior citizens pay a reduced rate of 5 euros, and kids under 12 can enter for free.

Leon’s Cathedral

Barrio Humedo (Old Town) is where you will find most of the city’s main attractions. This is one of the liveliest areas in the old medieval quarter of Leon, and it owes its name (‘the wet neighborhood’) to the numerous bars and restaurants you can find there. It is well worth taking the time to walk around and enjoy the lively atmosphere or wander around its charming side-streets and squares.

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