If you visit Valladolid and ask a native how far it is to the Plaza Mayor don’t be surprised if they reply: “96 calories”, and don’t think they’ve gone mad. Because the distances in this city aren’t measured in metres!
The capital of Castile and León is the first city in the world to measure its walking routes in calories. This is part of the ‘Walking is good’ project, an idea of city native Javier del Río, the aim of which is to fight inactivity and encourage those from Valladolid and visitors alike to get out there and walk. Our lives are becoming ever more sedentary and it’s not unusual for people to take the car nearly everywhere, even just to go and get bread.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), 60% of the world’s population don’t do enough physical activity and sedentary lifestyles are now the fourth biggest cause of death.
So Valladolid is giving a thumbs up for exercise and a healthy lifestyle. Signs placed around the city show the distance to various places of interest measured by the calories you’d need to burn to get there walking. The medical profession are supporting the project and have written as a medicine, for those patients who need it.
There are 20 routes, plus a circular itinerary that visits 40 different places around the city, with the starting point near the Plaza Mayor. The routes will take you to the Academia de Caballería (the Cavalry Academy), the town hall, the churches of San Pablo and Santa María de La Antigua, the cathedral or Campo Grande station, amongst other fascinating places. There will also be educational talks to help people understand the importance of doing daily physical activity.
The distances in calories burnt have been calculated by specialist doctors, using an average walking pace of 5km/h for people of average weight. Studies have shown that pedestrian areas can be used to encourage physical activity, so Valladolid is going to create more of them in its bid to be a leader in the fight against sedentary lifestyles.
* Campo Grande,Valladolid. / Photo: Flickr.
It’s clear the capital of Castile and León is backing healthy tourism, and if you’re keen to explore its ancient sites and try the walking tours yourself we’d recommend you stay at ourhotel in the city, the Vincci Frontaura 4* Valladolid. It’s located on the city’s main avenue, from where it’s easy to pick the walking route that best suits you.
And if you’re a sport fanatic the Vincci Frontaura 4* Valladolid has a spa and gym so you can take care of both body and mind from the moment you arrive. The hotel itself is spaciously spread over seven floors, and is charming in both form and function.
Vincci Hotels understand the importance of exercise for a healthy life but don’t forget that a healthy diet is equally important, and where better to eat well than in our hotel’s Tastevin restaurant, where you can enjoy a mix of tradition and modernity in a relaxed, welcoming atmosphere.
* Restaurant Tastevin in the Vincci Frontaura 4* Valladolid
So why not come and get to know Valladolid and look after yourself at the same time.