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10140 Guadalupe, Cáceres, Spain

Spain's Black Madonna

Come to this small town to see Spain's Black Madonna as well as paintings by Zurburan. The Royal Monastery of Santa Maria de Guadalupe is a world heritage site and holds a statue of the Black Madonna which was hidden away from Moorish invaders in 714. Legend has it that the statue was carved by Saint Luke in the 1st century. As an important Catholic pilgrimage site, Spaniards come from all over the country to visit the Black Madonna which some believe to have healing powers. The lovely Mudéjar cloister (1389-1405) is also worth a visit. Stay across the street at the comfortable Parador of Guadalupe, the former Hospital of St. John the Baptist and a historical 15th century building.