The Cathedral in Avila is quite overwhelming and later that day we felt we needed a walk in a park – well, I needed the comfort of trees.
Park of San Antonio
The park came about in the 16th century as part of the Monastery of San Antonio. From c.1860 it started to be developed as a public park. The original monastery was demolished in the 20th century and a new church stands on the site today.
There are several huge pine trees in the park, as well as horse chestnuts and conifers I couldn’t identify. Here, as in many other places in Spain, I noticed that the plane trees are drastically pruned in the autumn to create a green umbrella of shade. It is interesting but I am always a little sad when trees and plants aren’t allowed to follow their natural growth patterns. The parks covers 12.5 acres.
Road education for children1
The park is one of the oldest in Avila and has a rather unusual feature: a road traffic education area for children. Apparently school children visit for a day every year, during school time, and are taught by a traffic officer.
Former Convent of St Anne
I had noticed this building on a map. The 14th century convent of Cistercian nuns2 was where Isabella I, one of the Reyes Catolicos, was educated as a child. Today the building is part of the provincial administration but it is still possible to see the three-storey cloisters.
The Park of San Antonio was a very pleasant end-of-day walk and mercifully free of ‘crocodiles’.
- Road education for children: https://www.avilaconniños.com/parque-san-antonio-ninos-avila/ ↩︎
- Convent of St Anne in Avila: https://www.spain.info/en/places-of-interest/royal-monastery-santa-ana/ ↩︎