El Escorial Monastery
Trip Start Feb 20, 2012
13Trip End Mar 12, 2012
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This place was built in austerity, no over the top adornments anywhere except in the crypt where the kings are buried and the altar in the basilica. That doesn't mean the palace is not impressive, it has a very simple elegance to it. The mere size of the building is mesmerizing.
Inside only a tiny portion of the building is accessible to visitors, and it's in form of a museum. The exhibits are pretty interesting, but you follow a tightly controlled route from one room to another without much exploration of your own. The first exhibit was so, so cool! The exhibits were about the construction of the building, featuring some of the tools they used, a crane, some of the original blueprints, and a scale model of the palace. It's a shame that they prohibit photography.
Outside, the gardens are simple but pretty. The surrounding area is very nice since the palace is by a forest. Once we had taken pictures outside the building, we headed out to our next destination: Valle de los Caidos.