From Cairo we flew to Barcelona and then Madrid, Spain's capital. The
contrast was quite significant - Spain was a lot more "civilized"
compared to Egypt, but it was quite expensive and the people weren't
as friendly. We didn't get much sleep on the red-eye flight but no
matter, upon arrival we hit the highway right away.
The first major stop was the town of Segovia, which has a really cool Roman aqueduct (built in the 1st century AD) running through the center of town.
Of course, one of us just had to climb on top of the aqueduct to get a view of the channel through which the water used to run.
The Alcazar was the pre-eminent European center for artillery science for several centruies and there are many wonderful examples of cannon and other artifacts, including an extensive archive of the history of the artillery school.
Next stop - the town of Avilla. It was now time to look for a place to spend the night and we found an available room within the old city walls, in what used to be a 15th century palace, right next to the cathedral. The hotel is the building on the right in the second picture below.
Next day we headed back into Spain and we encountered some interesting traffic on the road.
We stopped for lunch in Trujillo, the birthplace of Francisco Pizarro (the conqueror of Peru). The food in Spain and Portugal was invariably wonderful, needless to say.
The last stop before returning to Madrid was the town of Toledo, and what a wonderful surprise it was - the old town is built on a granite hill surrounded by a deep a gorge of the river Tagus.