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Guadalajara

(4.4/5 based on 460+ reviews for top 10 attractions)
Things to do: historic sites, religious sites, wildlife areas
Guadalajara is a city and municipality in the autonomous community of Castile–La Mancha, Spain, and in the natural region of La Alcarria. It is the capital of the province of Guadalajara. It is located roughly 60km northeast of Madrid on the Henares River, and has a population of 84,803 .HistoryPre-Arab settlementsA Roman town called Arriaca, possibly founded by a pre-Roman culture, is known to have been located in that region. There is however no archeological proof of its existence, only references in texts such as the Ruta Antonina, which describe it as being in the hands of the Carpetani when encountered by the Romans. The city, as Caracca, was incorporated into the Roman province of Hispania Tarraconensis. The city was on the high road from Emerita (modern Mérida) to Caesaraugusta (modern Zaragoza), 22 M. P. northeast of Complutum (modern Alcalá de Henares).Al-Andalus foundationThe town of Guadalajara was founded by the Andalusians in the 8th century. They named it Wadi-al-Hejara, meaning "Valley of Stones"; in theory the literal translation of the Iberian name (Arriaca), meaning "Stony River".
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