Windsor Castle, Windsor, Berkshire, United Kingdom

Windsor Castle is a medieval fortress located in Windsor, Berkshire in the United Kingdom; this is one of the British Royal family residences where there are more than 500 people who live and work there. This is a real example of English Gothic architecture. Built in the XI century and designed to ensure the Norman domination on the outskirts of London and control a strategic portion of the Thames. Each king who lived, made changes to the palace. It was reinforced with stone walls; Henry III built a luxurious palace inside. The castle is also used for diplomatic meetings. There are more than 1,000 rooms in an area of 52,000 square meters with different styles: medieval, Gothic, Georgian, Victorian and modern. There is the tower atop the castle mound that has also changed during the years and is home to the royal archives. The upper part of the castle has several buildings that form a central courtyard which is bounded by the state apartments monitoring of private apartments, the door George I and Edward III Tower. Each state apartment has a different style furniture and decoration. In the north side of the lower part, there is the official St Georges Chapel, Order of the Garter, being a royal necropolis too. Today Windsor is the favorite residence of Queen Elizabeth II as well as a tourist attraction.

Tips

You can get there by train from Paddington or Waterloo stations.
For a detailed idea of your visit, it is best that you check on their website because the spaces to visit will depend on availability.
St George’s Chapel welcome those who want to attend Sunday services, this day the public visiting is not available.
The entry is free for children under 5 years and there is also the possibility of a family ticket (2 adults, 3 children). On days when the state apartment are closed, the entry price is reduced to almost half. The group rate is possible with 15 people or more.

Cathedral of St. James of Compostela, Spain

The cathedral of St. James of Compostela, dedicated to the Apostle James of Zebedee (saint patron and protector of Spain) is a cathedral located in the historical center of the city of St. James of Compostela, purpose of one of the great pilgrimages of medieval Europe; initiatory way in which people followed the wake of the Milky Way. At the beginning of the ninth century, Alfonso II had built the first church; in 899, Alfonso III replaced it for a greater pre-Romanesque church. The present cathedral is a Romanesque building built in granite, which work began in 1075 and was finished in 1211. It is dedicated to the relics and pilgrimages. The two towers of the western façade (Baroque churrigueresque) are from the Middle Ages and its monumental staircase of 1606. Its chapels form a museum of paintings, sculptures, reliquaries and altar pieces accumulated over the centuries. The cathedral has a plan of three naves, a large transept with aisles and stands and a sanctuary with ambulatory surrounded by a ring of chapels. The original plan had additions of the Renaissance and Baroque. A sumptuous statue of St. James is in the main altar; the crypt is below with the remains of St. James and his disciples, St. Theodore and St. Athanasius. The ambulatory, the beautiful gates, the vault of the Chapel of Mondragón, the Renaissance door of the sacristy and the cloister are the most outstanding items. Above the transept of the cathedral stands a lantern tower from whose summit is hung by steel cables a brass censer of 54 kilos which is used in special ceremonies as in Compostelan years. The treasure is housed in a Gothic chapel in the south transept of the cathedral; it has a tympanum representing the equestrian figure of the Apostle (XIII century). The King of France, Charles V had made a very important gift for it to be celebrated daily a mass for the prosperity of France, so the San Salvador chapel is also known as the Chapel of the King of France; this is where the pilgrims after confessed, received the Compostela; certificate of pilgrimage.

 
Tips

Pilgrims can go to kiss the holy mantle by a staircase behind the altar.
You can also visit the library which displays the censers and tapestries (it’s part of the cathedral museum), even as the pieces found in the excavations .
The archives of the cathedral has a copy of the Codex Calixtinus (set of texts dated around 1140); in the texts you can find practical advice for pilgrims.

Montenegro

Montenegro is a Balkan country in Southeastern Europe, bordering the Adriatic sea border of Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Kosovo and Albania. Its name makes reference to the dark forests that once covered the Dinaric Alps. Although it has a wide outlet to the sea, the country doesn’t have important ports because of a very rugged coastline although its main port is Bar. We found Mount Orjen (1,894m) which is the culmination of coastal limestone chains, Prokletije Mountains (2,534m) and the lowest area is the valley of the Zeta (500m) and there are also some natural cavities. During the last ice age, the most eroded in the Balkan peninsula spaces are in the country. The capital is Podgorica and Niksic and Pljevlja are other important cities. The country was part of several other countries throughout its history and since 2006 Montenegro declared formal independence. Its Adriatic coast stretches over 295 km of which 72 km of beaches and has many old preserved villages.

Tips

Currently Montenegro and its coastal region are considered a major tourist discovery of recent years, cruise lines have included it in their itineraries.
We also find two international airports and a railway network. Regarding the roads, there is still much to do.
If you like museums and art galleries, visit Cetinje and Podgorica.