Alcalá de Henares, Cervantes' birthplace
Alcalá de Henares, Cervantes' birthplace

Alcalá de Henares, also known as the birthplace of Cervantes, was the birthplace of the popular Spanish classical writer Miguel de Cervantes, who wrote the work Don Quixote of La Mancha. Here we can find the Cervantes House-Museum, one of the city's main attractions.

The city is characterised by the preservation of numerous buildings and streets dating from the 17th century, most of which are located in the old part of the city, where you will also have the opportunity to see the typical Corral de Comedias, where plays from the Golden Age were performed. The Monastery of San Bernardo, built as a women's convent in the 17th century and now converted into a museum, is a fantastic example of the life of the nuns during these centuries.

The University of Alcalá de Henares, founded in 1499, is the third oldest in Spain and one of the most prestigious institutions, becoming in 1977 the first university campus in the world. Nowadays, the Cervantes Prize for Literature is awarded every year on April 24th, presided over by the King and Queen of Spain.

Finally, Alcalá de Henares also preserves the so-called "Roman City", a collection of Roman remains from the 2nd and 4th centuries. An example of this is the Casa de los Grifos, which contains a collection of Roman mural paintings from the Imperial Age of Augustus, as well as the Casa de Hippolytus, a former Roman college for young men and a leisure centre for young patricians, consisting of thermal areas, swimming pools, gardens and a mausoleum dedicated to the memory of a local patrician family.

Cultural tourism