Valladolid is the capital city of the autonomous region of Castile and León and the Province of Valladolid in north-western Spain. It is situated at the confluence of the Pisuerga and Esgueva rivers, and located within threewinegrowing regions: Ribera del Duero, Rueda and Cigales. It has a population of 313,437 people, making it Spain's 13th most populous municipality and northwestern Spain's biggest city. Its metropolitan area ranks 20th in Spain with a population of 413,605 people in 23 municipalities (INE 2011).
Valladolid was originally settled in pre-Roman times by the Celtic Vaccaei people, and later the Romans themselves. It remained a small settlement until being re-established by King Alfonso VI of Castile as a Lordship for the Count Pedro Ansúrez in 1072. It grew to prominence in the Middle Ages as the seat of the Court of Castile and being endowed with fairs and different institutions as a collegiate church, University, Royal Court and Chancery and the Casa de la Moneda. The Catholic Monarchs, Isabel I of Castile and Ferdinand II of Aragon, married in Valladolid in 1469 and established it as the capital of the Kingdom of Castile and later of the united Spain.Christopher Columbus died in Valladolid in 1506, while authors Francisco de Quevedoand Miguel de Cervantes lived and worked in the city. It was also a cultural centre in theSpanish Renaissance, although a fire in 1561 forced Phillip II to move the capital toMadrid. It briefly returned to Valladolid under Charles I between 1601 and 1606, before returning indefinitely to Madrid. The city then declined until the arrival of the railroad in the 19th century, and with its industrialisation, already in the 20th century.
Valladolid's Old Town preserves a set composed of historic houses, palaces, churches, plazas, avenues and parks, along with a heritage museum which features the National Museum of Sculpture, the Museum of Contemporary Art Patio