The University of Salamanca is the oldest Christian university in Spain, and one of the oldest in the world. It was founded by King Alphonse IX just after the Universities of Bolonga and Paris and as a result features some extremely impressive buildings, which were constructed in the early Renaissance “plateresque” style. The buildings feature ornamented figures, and one of the most renowned of these is the now famous tourist attraction of the “frog on the skull.” The university quarter is also home to the Palacio Anaya palace and the Casa de las Conchas, which has a 15th façade in the style of the “Isabellinian” Renaissance design.

The university quarter is near the city’s cathedrals, which include the older Romanesque cathedral as well as its twin with the newer 16 th century cathedral. The older of the two was constructed in the 12 th and 13 th centuries, and its design was clearly inspired by the Hagia Sophia in Constantinople. Its sister, which is called “La Nueva” (or the new one) was built in the 16 th century, with the plateresque style, that marks the transition form the late Gothic to the Renaissance designs. Near the cathedrals are several monasteries that also were built in the plateresque design, and further help to add allure to the beauty of Salamanca.