Most travelers visit the ancient Spanish capital of Toledo on a day trip from Madrid. However, this UNESCO World Heritage-listed city—which is replete with medieval Arab, Jewish, and Christian monuments—deserves more of your time. Here’s how to spend 48 hours in Toledo.
Day 1: Unpeel Toledo’s Layers of History
Morning: Get your bearings on a private or group sightseeing tour of Toledo. Tours typically cover the Alcázar, Jewish Quarter, Monastery of San Juan de los Reyes, and the Church of Saint Tomé, home to a masterpiece by El Greco. For more flexibility, opt for a hop-on hop-off bus tour.
Afternoon: Take a closer look at one the city’s most important landmarks—and skip the long line to enter—on a private tour of Toledo Cathedral. Tours typically visit the Primate Temple, Chapel of Kings, cloister, and Chapel of San Blas, and give you ample time to admire masterpieces by El Greco, Tiziano, Velazquez, and Caravaggio.
Night: Dive into the history of the Knights of Templar on an evening walking tour. Guides take visitors to places associated with the secretive religious order and point out hidden symbols along the way. Tours typically finish with a dinner prepared with gourmet products from the surrounding Castilla-La Mancha region.
Day 2: Revel in Local Culture
Morning: Kick off your second day by soaring across the sky in a hot-air balloon. Get birds-eye views of the historical center, the River Tajo, and the Alcázar of Toledo while your pilot talks about Toledo’s rich history. Balloon tours typically include a glass of Cava and brunch.
Afternoon: Devote the afternoon to attractions you missed yesterday. If you’re interested in Renaissance painter El Greco, admire more of his work at the Museo del Greco or, if the city’s Jewish history is of interest, visit the 14th-century Sinagoga del Tránsitosynagogue, which houses the Museo Sefardí, dedicated to Sephardic culture in Spain.
Night: Conclude your visit to Toledo with a taste of its food scene. Options include a wine show with tastings and a virtual tour of the region’s wineries, or a cheese, olive oil, and wine tasting experience focused on foods from the Castilla la Mancha region.