A Sneak Peak at Regina’s Upcoming Tour Through Europe

Kate Crawford, Staff Reporter

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On April 10, 2020, Señora Paula Duran along with many Regina girls will depart from Chicago to begin their journey through Madrid, Paris, and Rome. The tour will include browsing through museums, visiting famous historic landmarks, and experiencing everything these cities have to offer. A few places they will venture to include such famous destinations as The Eiffel Tower, the Colosseum, the Louvre, and the Garden of Versailles.

Below is a preview of all the wonderful places, Regina students and staff will visit.

Madrid, Spain

If you didn’t know, Madrid is the capital of Spain in Europe. Madrid is the third-largest city in the European nation, having a population of 6.55 million people and spanning over 2,000 square miles. Spain’s capital is home to the Spanish Government and the Spanish Royal Family. You’ll find that 8 in every 10 residents are native Spaniards. The local language is Spanish, so few people you will encounter are likely to speak English. Three of the many sites the group will visit are Plaza Mayor, the Royal Palace, and the Reina Sofia Museum.

Plaza Mayor

The Plaza Mayor is one of the largest public spaces in Madrid. It was designed by Juan Gómez de Mora in the year 1619. In the past, the Plaza Mayor was used as a marketplace where food and other goods were sold. Surprisingly, it was once even a site where public executions, bullfighting, and royal crowning ceremonies took place. Plaza Mayor wasn’t always its name. It was originally named Plaza del Arraba but was changed multiple times throughout the years. The official name “Plaza Mayor” was decided after the Spanish Civil War. 

Royal Palace

During the Royal Palace’s use of residency, it housed the Kings of Spain from Charles III (1716-1788) to Alfonso XIII (1886-1941). The Palace is no longer used as residency, but it occasionally holds different ceremonies and displays historic artifacts. The palace has a room called the Royal Armory which displays armor and weapons that were once used by Kings and other royalty dating back to the 13th century. The Royal Palace has an average of 1.5 million visitors per year.

Reina Sofia Museum

The Reina Sofia Museum in Madrid is named after Queen Sofía who reigned from 1975 to 2014. The museum was originally the Old Madrid General Hospital which was closed down in 1969. The Reina Sofia Museum holds art pieces of two very famous Spanish artists of the 20th century, Pablo Picasso and Salvador Dalí. The building also has a library with over 100,000 books. The museum was officially opened on September 10th, 1992.

Paris, France

The famous city of love, Paris, is the capital of France with a population of around 2.5 million people. The city spans a distance of 890 square miles with an area of 41 square miles. Paris is famous for its museums, landmarks, and culture. The French capital attracts an average of 15 million tourists per year, making it the most visited city in the world. As you can guess, the local language spoken is French; the English language isn’t widely spoken. Four cites the majority of tourists will visit are the Notre Dame Cathedral, the infamous Eiffel Tower, the Garden of Versailles, and the Louvre.

Notre Dame Cathedral

The Notre Dame Cathedral is hands down one of most iconic part of Paris. Built in 1163, it’s one of the oldest buildings in the city, standing for 856 years. The church was built atop the ruins of two churches, one of which having been dedicated to the Roman god Jupiter. The Notre Dame is considered the most famous Gothic Cathedrals to be built in the Middle Ages. Although it’s faced many hardships and has suffered immense damage over the years, people have continued to rebuild it. Sadly, during construction at the beginning of 2019, a fire broke out in the Cathedral’s attic. Unfortunately, the fire destroyed a small amount of the rib vaulting, the infamous Viollet-le-Duc’s 19th-century spire, and a majority of the roof which was built with wooden planks that dated back to the time the Cathedral was first built.

Eiffel Tower

What’s the first thing people think of when they hear the word Paris? The Eiffel Tower. This iconic iron building stands at 1,063 feet in the air and is one of the tallest buildings in Europe. The Eiffel Tower kept the title of “tallest man-made structure in the world” for 41 years, but that title was recently given to the Burj Khalifa in Dubai. With 7 million visitors annually, it is the fourth most visited monument in the world. The tower was built to celebrate France’s industrial power to the world and as a symbol of the French Revolution.

Louvre

The Louvre in Paris is the world’s largest museum with a display of some of the most famous art pieces in history. One of these pieces being Leonardo da Vinci’s “the Mona Lisa,” which is considered to be the most famous painting ever. A few other pieces the Louvre has is the Venus de Milo, the famous armless sculpture of the Roman goddess of beauty by the artist Alexandros of Antioch. It has a large display of artifacts from ancient Egypt, Greece, and Rome. The Louvre was originally built in 1190 as a palace but was eventually turned into a museum in 1793.

Rome, Italy

Rome, the capital of Italy in Europe, is one of the most famous and oldest cities. Rome was founded in 753 BC by the supposed brothers Romulus and Remus, the sons of the Roman god of war, Mars. Its history spans 28 centuries and still has an impact on modern life there and even other countries. It has a population of 2.8 million people and has an area of 496 square miles. It’s the fourth most populated city in the European Union.

Colosseum

The Roman Colosseum is the largest amphitheater in the world. It once held several different events every day, such as gladiator fights, mock sea battles, and chariot races.
It was built between the years 72 AD and 80 AD, making it around 1,949 years old. It has a base area of 24,000 square feet and could once hold a crowd of 87,000 people.
Sadly, with all the damage throughout the years from earthquakes, it can only fit around 50,000 people today. The colosseum has an average of 4.2 million tourists annually, making the sixth most visited monument in the world.

Forum Romanum

Located in the center of the city, the Forum Romanum is a site where important religious, political, and social events were held in ancient Rome. Back then, there were many important political buildings, statues, and monuments in that area. Many temples were built there in honor of their gods and goddesses.

 

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