Plaza del Obradoiro / Plaza de España, Santiago de Compostela
The objective of all visitors to Santiago is the Plaza del Obradoiro, a spacious square surrounded by handsome buildings below the west front of the Cathedral. The square, which lies on the west side of the old town, with its old-world arcaded streets and its many churches and convents, is one of the finest and best preserved squares in Spain.
Convento de San Francisco
At the north end of Calle de San Francisco, directly opposite the multi-story parking lot, stands the Convento de San Francisco, which was founded by St Francis on his first pilgrimage to Santiago between 1213 and 1215 and rebuilt between 1618 and 1783. There is a modern monument to St Francis in front of the doorway of the twin-towered church. There are remains of a Gothic cloister. From the convent Calle San Francisco runs south, passing the long facade of the Faculty of Medicine, to enter the Plaza del Obradoiro at its northeast corner.
Address: Campillo de San Francisco 3, E-15705 Santiago de Compostela, Spain
Convento de San Francisco - Holy Land Museum
The Holy Land Museum was opened in 1993 to house a model of the Holy Sepulchre which was the central feature at the 1950 Sacred Art Exhibition in Rome. Other displays examine the history of conflict in present day Israel, and feature various works of art related to the Holy Land.
At the north end of the Plaza del Obradoiro is the Hospital Real, founded in 1489 by the Catholic Monarchs, which is now a luxurious parador, the Hotel de los Reyes Católicos. In the center of the main front facing the square is a magnificent Plateresque doorway. The Hospital is laid out around four courtyards dating from the 16th-18th centuries. In the center of the building is the Gothic chapel, with beautifully carved piers at the crossing and a grille of 1556.
Palacio de Gelmírez
On the east side of the Plaza del Obradoiro, adjoining the cathedral, stands the Palacio del Arzobispo (Archbishop's Palace), a plain building which incorporates the restored palace of Archbishop Gelmírez (12th-13th C.), one of the most important Romanesque secular buildings in Spain. On the upper floor is the 30m/100ft long Salón de Fiestas, with splendid groined vaulting springing from finely carved consoles depicting Alfonso IX's wedding banquet. On the lower floor is another large vaulted hall, beyond which is a medieval kitchen. To the right of the cathedral is the west wing of the cloister, with an open pillared gallery.
Palacio de Rajoy
The west side of the Plaza del Obradoiro is dominated by the Palacio de Rajoy (1777), now occupied by the Town Hall and the government of the Autonomous Community of Galicia.
Colegio de San Jerónimo
Map of Santiago de Compostela Attractions