Despite its numerous places of attraction, the province of Zamora has always been the great unknown for tourists, and even for many Spaniards. The preservation of the traditional rural character and the limited amount of industrial development have given a very special charm to the many villages and cities of Zamora, characterised by the survival of traditions and untouched natural landscapes. It is therefore not surprising that this traditional region provides an ideal setting to learn the Spanish language in its purest form.
Location, map, useful information
The territory of the province of Zamora covers a total area of 10,559 km2 and has a population of 198,028 inhabitants (2005). Located on the northern sub-plateau of Castilla, the territory of the province of Zamora shows a multitude of contrasts: a mountainous area in the north, which forms part of the Mountains of León, with heights of up to 2,127m (Peña Trevinca); the Culebra Mountain Range in the western part of the province, with heights of up to 1,243m (Peña Mira). In the southwest part of the province, the Duero River carves its way through the narrow pass of Los Arribes del Duero, with height differences of up to 200m. The centre, east and south parts of the province belong to the typical plains of the Spanish Meseta.
History, Art and Heritage
Zamora is one of the European cities with the largest concentration of Romanesque churches in its city centre, as is therefore often referred to as "the Romanesque City". You are invited to discover the charm of the historical and artistic patrimony of Zamora: Fermoselle, Puebla de Sanabria, Toro, Villardeciervos and Zamora... towns that have managed to preserve the flavour of old times. You will be able to visit the jewels of Zamora's heritage: the Cathedral and the Romanesque churches of Zamora, the Collegiate Church of Toro, the Monastery of Moreruela, the ruins of Castrotorafe, the Monastery of San Martín de Castañeda, the Visigoth Church of San Pedro de la Nave. The first documented reference on the celebration of the Holy Week in Zamora dates back to the 13th century. During the High and Late Middle Ages, the monasteries and convents of Zamora - especially among the mendicant orders - organised processions near their cloisters and adjacent streets, with the firm didactic and spiritual purpose of showing people the different moments of the Passion, Death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. The Holy Week was a valuable catechism used to proclaim the message of Christianity in a very shocking way.
Leisure and gastronomy
The gastronomy of Zamora, with its own traditional characteristics and closely linked to the territory, is another major tourist attraction. Considering the importance of the nearby rivers, it is not surprising that the local gastronomy is largely based on fish, such as trout or frog legs, the latter being a very typical dish of the province. Thanks to the abundance of rich pasturelands, all local restaurants offer plenty of juicy veal meat from Aliste and Sayago, delicious Iberian sausages and cheese with Designation of Origin, wine from Toro and Los Arribes de Duero, apart from the traditional chickpeas and delicious bread loaves. Zamora's confectionery is as widely varied as the rest of its gastronomic offer.
- Bacalao a la Tranca (dried salted cod with eggs and peppers)
- Trucha sanabresa (trout dish)
- Habones de Sanabria (beans from Sanabria)
Near the city
You will be able to enjoy the breathtaking beauty of Mother Nature, with incomparable landscapes such as the Lake of Sanabria, the only glacier lake on the Iberian Peninsula; the remote Culebra Mountain Range, land of wolves and loneliness; the Lakes of Villafáfila, a paradise for water birds; and the Arribes del Duero area with deep river canyons on the border between Salamanca and Portugal.