Avila – Landmarks and Attractions
Avila and its most important landmark is the medieval city wall.
It is unique in the world and entirely encircles the Old Town.
In fact it is uninterrupted and intact since it was built between the 11th and 14th century.
A World Heritage Site, it´s also the only fully illuminated monument of its size.
The walls have a perimeter of 2516 meters, feature 87 towers and 9 gates.
They rise up on a plateau on top of a rocky landscape with the left bank of the river Adajar down below.
1.5 km of the walls are actually walkable with several access points along the wall.
The views from the walls and towers reach far and several palaces and monuments.
A part of the cathedral, are integrated into the walls which means you can see stone carvings and details up close.
A second line of defense within the walls is formed by a number of palaces which served as dwelling and fortresses at the same time.
Outstanding among them, although not forming part of the wall itself, is the Palacio de Superunda near the Tower of Guzman.
It´s the best restored of all the palaces and has an interesting history.
In 1916, the Italian painter Guido Caprotti from Monza, went on a tour to Spain to study the works of Spanish masters.
On his way to Leon he got stuck in a snow storm in Avila and never left.
He fell under the spell of the city and proceeded to purchase the Palacio de Superunda.
He restored it and converted it into his atelier and living quarters.
He quickly became a `son of Avila`, painting city scenes again and again in all seasons and making a good living through portraits of the local society.