The Monastery of El Escorial, commonly referred to as simply El Escorial, is one of the most outstanding works of Spanish and European Renaissance architecture.
El Escorial is located in a beautiful little town called San Lorenzo de El Escorial, located 50 kilometers northwest of Madrid in the Sierra de Guadarrama mountains.
It has been considered, since the end of the 16th century, the Eight World Wonder due to its massive size and functional complexity as well as its symbolic value in history.
It was built by Felipe II to commemorate his battle victory at San Quintín (1557) against the French. Of the many architects involved in its construction is Juan de Herrera, for whom the architectural style that is consdered the step between Plateresque Renaissance and Classicism was named.
It was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1984.