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In the northern part of Tenerife is San Cristóbal de La Laguna, a city that was declared a world heritage site in 1999 and is the second most populous city on the island. San Cristóbal de La Laguna, more commonly known as La Laguna for short, is a part of the city of Santa Cruz as both of the cities and municipalities form a single large urban centre.
La Laguna is the old capital of Tenerife, but it is the Considered the cultural and religious capital of the Island. This mainly because it is host to the San Fernando University and the Bishop’s Palace. The city was founded in 1496 by Alonso Fernández de Lugo, La Laguna. The good thing about the city was it’s located as it was found inland which meant that patrolling pirates wouldn’t raid and pillage it as that want to stay near the sea’s. In turn this mean that this was a place where most of the islands religious and noble aristocracy would live. Near the beginning of the 18th century there was decline in population and economy which forced the transfer of the capital city to neighbouring city Santa Cruz de Tenerrife in 1723.
The University of San Fernando de La Laguna which is also known as the ULL (Spanish Universidad de La Laguna ) is the oldest university of all the Canary Islands and it also has the highest population out of all the islands, with roughly 30,000 of the students living on campus whilst others would be living in student apartments in Tenerife. The university’s origins date back to 1701 when there was an advanced studies centre developed by Augustinians, and it wasn’t until 1744 where it was proposed to be converted into the Ecclesiastical University of San Agustín, although these plans never came to fruition.
Almost 50 years later that the king of Spain Charles IV ordered that the San Cristobal de La Laguna, in the capital of Tenerife at that time, become the first Universidad Literia of the Canaries. Although thanks to a political situation on the mainland this was prevented. But thanks to the restoration of the House of Bourbon in the guise of Fernando VII, the University was sanctioned despite those against it from governments of neighbouring islands. La Laguna is often coined as the ‘City of the Anticipated ones’ this is thanks to the city having the first university of the archipelago.
The cultured side of the city comes from the old quarter, this is a part of the town that has been wonderfully preserved and classified as a world heritage site. Here you can see some fantastic monuments such as the Cathedral of La Laguna which began construction in 1904 and didn’t finish until 1915, it is dedicated to the Virgin of Los Remedios (Virgin Mary) and is one of the most important temples of the Canary Islands. Also in the cathedral is the remains of the man who found the city Alonso Fernandez de Lugo. There is also the Iglesia de la Concepción otherwise known as the Church of Immaculate Conception.
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