Cozia Monastery, Romania

Cozia Monastery was built by the Prince Mircea cel Bătrân in 1388 in the Valley of Olt and is the place for his grave and one of the most remarkable monuments of medieval national art in Romania. The building has had several modifications; they added a porch, a chapel, a new fountain and a guard tower in addition to its original architecture in the brancovien style. The monastery is covered with frescoes which were made between 1390 and 1931. It’s the only monastery in Byzantine style throughout Romania. There are other primitive Byzantine remains in the decorations murals facets with original stone rosettes and frames. There are also two Byzantine cupolas that reflect on the Olt River.

Tips

In the monastery museum you can see old manuscripts, embroideries and objects of worship.
Inside the church, you can see the representation of Mircea cel Bătrân and his son (near the entrance).

Cathedral of Christ the Savior, Avila, Castilla y León, Spain

The Cathedral of Christ the Savior in Avila, the first Gothic cathedral in Spain, is the bishopric of the same name, in Castilla y León. It was designed as a temple and fortress, its apse being one of the hubs of the city wall. It is located alongside several houses or majestic palaces which ensured the defense of the Loyal Door or the Weight of the Flour. It is not known with certainty the date on which it was built, but most historians say it was in the twelfth century with the completion in the XVI century, except for a tower that has not been completed. The back of the choir is limestone and it is very large. We find a French influence with a resemblance to the Basilica of Saint-Denis. Outside, it is fortified, but inside its double ambulatory with thin columns and arches give it an impression of lightness and clarity, also with a very good light. The three naves are of equal width, but the central one is significantly higher, and opens with large windows to the outside. There are the remains of the penultimate historian and prime minister of the Second Republic in exile, Claudio Sanchez Albornoz and those of the Spanish President Adolfo Suarez (1977-1981) and his wife.

Tips

The cathedral is open daily, but you should consult the daily schedule.
You have to pay an entrance fee for sightseeing, but children under 12 years old and people with disabilities do not pay.

St. Vitus Cathedral, St. Wenceslas and St. Adalbert, Prague, Czech Republic

St. Vitus Cathedral, St. Wenceslas and St. Adalbert is located in Prague, the Czech Republic and is the seat of the archbishop of the city. It is the biggest and most important church in the country, located within the Prague Castle. Henry the Fowler offered to the Duke Wenceslas 1 a relic of Saint Vit around the year 925 and to house it, the Duke Wenceslas built a church on a place of pagan site dedicated to the goddess of mythology Slavic life (Siwa). In 973 the church was chosen as the seat of bishopric and in 1060, a Roman basilica is raised instead. Through the centuries, the original church took the form of what is now a mainly Gothic church. St. Wenceslas Chapel contains the tomb of the saint, it is adorned with murals on the top, representing the saint’s life and in the lower part there are semiprecious stones. The crown jewels are locked in the chapel. There is also the burial crypt of Czech kings, which contains the tombs of Charles IV, Wenceslas IV and Rodolphe II. St. John of Nepomuk has a tomb in silver. The windows date mostly from XX century. Zygmunt Bell (the biggest Czech bell, 1548) is in the south tower. There is also a carved monumental cross, in wood, dating from 1899.

Tips

Do not leave without climbing the south tower from where you can have a beautiful panoramic view of the city. Guided tours in the cathedral are organized by the Administration of Prague Castle but you can not just buy the visit to the Cathedral, this visit will be included by purchasing one of two tours offered. Tickets are on sale in the Information Center. There are discounts for children and adolescents under 16, seniors 65 and over and families.