This was my 3rd visit to El Escorial - 14yrs since my previous visit. It is an amazing place. Imagine the wealth that it took to create such a building. Much of what the Spanish were bringing in from the new world went into creating this massive, massive structure.
Inside you will see a collection of great art, history of how the building was designed and built, sleeping chambers, a basilica and most impressive (to me) the royal Pantheon. The marble coffins are beautifully arranged and shaped. The dark colors highlighted in gold are beautiful.
The basilica is amazing. The work behind the high-alter is beautiful with gold columns and sculptures. Also the dome is supported by massive columns which emphasize the immense size of this undertaking.
On this most recent visit, it was quite cold within the building, and actually in my previous visits in the summer, it was never very warm inside. While the building may not be as warm and inviting as others, it is a testament to the wealth and power of Spain at that period in time.
Be aware, they don't allow pictures inside El Escorial. My posted pictures were from my previous visit, when they did allow them. On our most recent visit we parked in the parking garage a couple of hundred yards from the entrance, which was great, because searching for street parking can take forever.
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