Municipal hostel (20, 8€) Molino de Pan Caliente. Turn left after crossing the Roman Bridge / Puente Romano, the hostel is past the new bridge, to the left of the road beside the river. Vending machine for coffee, etc. Contact details posted on the door. Tel 682 514 366
Mérida, with a population of 57,000, is the capital of Extremadura. All facilities are available. Supermarket on Calle Jesé R Mélide, open 7 days. Banks on Plaza de España and along Calle F Valverde Lillo which runs north from it. Restaurant Mesón El Pestoreje on Plaza de España has excellent tapas and raciones. Vegetarian restaurant Shangri-La on Calle Sagasta has been recommended. Also good reports of Casa Nano on Calle Castelar.
Hostal Senero on Calle Holguín has clean rooms, singles from about €28. Tel 924 317 207. Website www.hostalsenero.com
Mérida was founded by the Romans in the first century BC and named Emerita Augusta. To this day it has many well-preserved relics of its Roman history. The Roman Bridge / Puente Romano, which you will cross when arriving is, at 790m, the longest Roman bridge still in existence. At its northern end is the Alcazaba, a fortification built by the Muslims. The Roman Theatre dates from 15BC and is considered one of the best preserved examples in existence. Nearby the well-preserved amphitheatre was the scene of gladiatorial combats and other popular entertainment. It could hold 16,000 spectators. The Circus, which was used for horse and carriage racing, could hold 30,000 spectators. These sights are all a little to the east of the city centre. The Museum of Roman Art is housed in a Roman-themed modern building and has a good collection of mosaics, statues and other artefacts. There are also several temples to Roman Gods, such as the Temple of Diana. Mérida also has a world famous Aquaduct which the Camino passes on its way out of town. More information form the city's tourist Website www.turismomerida.org
Leaving town on the Camino, Bar Acueducto opens at 06:30 (07:00 on Sundays).
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