Toledo is not exactly short of monuments but from tomorrow, March 1st, there will be another one for visitors to put on their lists. It is a shame so many people only go to Toledo for the day as there is just so much to see and absorb. I don’t know about you, but my brain just can’t cope with so much history and culture if I’m rushing from one thing to the next. Toledo is definitely a city where you should take things slowly.
Anyway, the church and courtyard of the Colegio de Doncellas Nobles (School for Noble Young Ladies) is opening to the public for the first time from tomorrow, under the auspices of the Archbishopric of Toledo and the Patrimonio Nacional or National Heritage Organisation, which handles the most important palaces, monuments and gardens in Spain.
The Doncellas Nobles was founded as a school in the mid-16th century by Cardinal Silíceo and was rebuilt in the 18th century by José Hernández Sierra and Ventura Rodríguez. Since the 1990s it has been used as accommodation for female university students.
The church contains the elaborate tomb of Cardinal Silíceo and a wealth of artistic treasures. As it has never been used for public religious services, very few people have seen what is inside. The aim now is to reinstall two El Greco paintings which used to hang in the church and are currently stored by the Cathedral.
To vist the Doncellas Nobles, it seems you need to buy a tourist bracelet, which costs €9. The bracelet is issued by the Archbishopric of Toledo and presumably is available from the tourist office. It also gives access to Santo Tomé church, where El Greco’s painting The Burial of the Count of Orgaz is on display, as well as the Santa María la Blanca synagogue, the Cristo de la Luz mosque, the San Juan de los Reyes monastery and the Salvador and Jesuitas churches. The bracelet is also part of the package with the various tourist passes available, which include guided tours and cost from €17.