The town of Zamora lies on a rocky hill in the northwest of Spain, near the frontier with Portugal and is crossed by the Duero river, which some 50km/30mi downstream reaches the Portuguese frontier. With its 24 Romanesque churches of the 12th and 13th centuries it has been called a "museum of Romanesque art".
The nearest commercial airport is Villanubla, located just a few kilometres out of Valladolid, the capital of the Castile-Leon region. Valladolid lies some 90 kilometres from Zamora.
This small airport is served by flights run by Iberia, Air France and Ryanair. The low-cost carrier travels to and from London-Stansted airport, Brussels-Charleroi airport and Milan-Malpensa.
Long forgotten by all governments, no highways connected other capitals to Zamora until a few years ago. It is now possible to get to/from Valladolid (and therefore Madrid). The construction of other highways linking the town with Benavente, its neighbour Salamanca, etc. are now underway.
Historical bridge over river Duero in Zamora
Cathedral of Zamora: Romanesque dating back to the 12th century, taking only 23 years to build.
Castle of Zamora: Built in the Middle Ages, offering magnificent views of the city.
San Juan de Puerta Nueva church (12th century, featuring a stained glass circular window, symbol of Zamora);
San Claudio de Olivares church (12th century carvings on the columns);
Museo de Semana Santa de Zamora: Opposite the Santa María la Nueva church, devoted to the Semana Santa de Zamora processions which are celebrated with particular ceremony in Zamora. The museum displays a large collection of pasos, the figures which are carried in procession through the streets by various 'cofradías' or brotherhoods.
The excellent raw materials used in the local cuisine really stand out. The pulses, the famous chickpeas from Fuentesauco or 'garbanzos', the exquisite cheese made from sheep´s milk, honey from Sanabria, asparagus from Guareña, peppers from Benavente, steak from Aliste, mushrooms, game, cold meats, cakes and sweets...
Apart from the tasty roasts, also worth tasting are the rice dishes from Zamora. Traditional dishes include bacalao a la tranca (a cod dish), el pulpo a la sanabresa (an octopus dish), dos y pingada (two fried eggs with fried ham, usually served in Easter) and '"presas de ternera" (a veal dish). For dessert there is the rebojo Zamorano, a very tasty though hard type of bun, and "las natillas almendradas" (Spanish style custard with almonds).
The Toro wines (very dark, almost black, nowadays made using modern techniques - with a rapidly growing reputation for their taste and quality). Popular local brands include Colegiata, Bajoz and Fariña.
The city has 18 hotels, 4 of them in the four-star range.
Parador Nacional de Turismo: Located at the historical centre of the city, in Plaza de Viriato, near the Cathedral. The building dates to the mid 15th century. This four-star accomodation boasts two conference halls, an outdoor swimming pool surrounded by greenery and a restaurant serving traditional local cuisine. Its 52 rooms are fitted with A/C, a safebox and minibar, among others.
Hotel Dos Infantas: This 4-star hotel is situated only a few steps from one of the main (if not the main) streets in Zamora, Santa Clara Avenue, full of shops suitable for all budgets. It was fully renovated in 2001 and its 68 rooms offer all the services expected in a top-quality accomodation.
Hotel Meliá Horus: Located in a pedestrians-only area of Zamora, this 4-star hotel is located just outside the traditional local market, the Mercado de Abastos. It has a total of 45 rooms (7 of which are junior suites), with all the services expected in a top-quality accomodation.
Hotel AC Zamora: Another hotel offering 4-star accomodation. It is situated in the University district, only a few minutes from both the Bus and Train Station. Hotel AC was the last hotel to be built in the city, offering 75 rooms and a fitness centre equipped with a Turkish bath ideal to relax from an exhausting morning of sightseeing.
Hotel NH Palacio del Duero: Situated in the artistic centre of the town, just by the river Duero and next to the Romanesque Church of Santa María de Horta. It was built on the remains of and old Convent of the order of Jerusalem erected in the 14th-15th century and an old wine factory. Some of the old equipment and features of the convent can be seen on the entrance to the restaurant, where you can indulge in a three course menu for €20, except on Saturday nights.