Salamanca: Top 5 Spots

Cailey Oehler
March 5, 2014

I love Salamanca, and this city has everything a student could want. In the exploring I’ve done since I’ve arrived, I’ve found a few places I particularly enjoy. Here are my five favorites:

1. Pancake take-away

There are dozens (perhaps hundreds) of coffee shops here, and all of the ones I’ve tried have been quite good. However, this is far and away the best one, in my opinion. Its location is accessible, the owner-manager is personable, hardworking, and bright, the coffee is fantastic (they even have soymilk, which always makes my day and for which there’s no extra charge), and there’s a variety of delicious and well-priced pastries and other snacks available as well. They also have a sign that reads “unamuno nunca tomó café aquí”, a clever play on its historical location. I’m here more often than I’d like to admit, stopping in to caffeinate between classes at least once most days.

2. La plaza de Anaya

Located between the Palacio de Anaya, the Anayita (both of these buildings are part of the Facultad de Filología, in which I have a Literary Theory course), and the Cathedral, this is a beautiful spot to relax between classes, talk with friends, or just sit on the steps of the Palacio and people-watch: there are always tons of visitors to the cathedral. I think this is one of the most beautiful places in the city

3. Tahona Delicatessen, Calle Azafranal

This is the bakery equivalent of Pancake. Bakeries abound in this city, and many of them are quite similar to one another. I tried this one for the first time because it’s located so close to my homestay, but I keep going back because their products are so delicious. They have all kinds of pastries, both sweet and savory, the employees are friendly, they’re open all day (rare in Spain!), and the prices are good. It seems that there’s something new to try every time I visit- earlier this week, for example, I found homemade poppyseed bagels with pastrami, aioli, cucumbers, and arugula.

4. Plaza Mayor

An obligatory addition to any list of Salamanca landmarks, the plaza mayor lives up to the hype. It’s gorgeous at night-the entire thing is lit up every night around sundown and stays that way well into the night-and during the day it’s Salamanca’s equivalent of any college campus’s quad. Students and visitors alike lounge on benches and on the ground chat and eat, and there are plenty of restaurants to stop for a coffee, an ice cream cone, or any of Salamanca’s regional specialties, all of which can be found in the restaurants in the plaza, most of which cater to tourists.

5.Biblioteca Antigua at the University of Salamanca

I’ve only been here once but it’s the most interesting place I’ve been since I came to Spain. Part of the University’s oldest campus, this and a chapel, along with some exhibitions of items from the university’s collection, can be seen together a part of a tour of the University. The library is no longer in regular use, but students and faculty can consult its holdings for research purposes. There are illuminated manuscripts and printed books, globes (“round books”), some of which are as old as the university, and beautiful furniture. Visiting is a step into the glorious past of this venerable institution where I’m proud to have a chance to study for a semester.

The view of the cathedral from the steps of the Palacio de Anaya The cathedral doors Salamanca's characteristic cobblestone streets Pancake! The USAL's Chapel Inside the USAL's old library Our language class's visit to the Biblioteca Antigua A view of the counter at the Tahona More Tahona pastries Bakery goods at the Tahona Delicatessen

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Cailey Oehler

<p><span style="color: rgb(29, 29, 29); font-family: Arial, Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal; background-color: rgb(237, 237, 237);">I am a junior at Bowdoin College, where I am majoring in Spanish and minoring in Art History and Teaching. I&#39;m outgoing and inquisitive, and getting to know other people is how I make sense of this mixed-up and beautiful world. My favorite hobbies are baking bread, playing ukulele, and camping. I love exploring new places and am looking forward to getting to know Salamanca as well as the fun and challenges I&#39;ll encounter in my travels around Europe.</span></p>

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