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Six Spanish cities with a single dream

The Spanish cities of Burgos, Cordoba, Las Palmas, Segovia, San Sebastian and Zaragoza all have their individual style and unique character that make them stand out from the crowd. At the moment, though, they have one important thing in common: they are all aspiring to become European Capital of Culture in 2016.

Six of Spain city's share a dream to be in the European spotlight in 2016. Mosques, cathedrals, basilicas and synagogues; beaches, bridges, people and history; shops, gastronomy and lifestyle... the reasons and arguments put forward by the cities to support their own claims are many and varied. First, though, in the coming years, other nations and cities will have their turn: Turku (Finland) and Tallinn (Estonia) in 2011; Guimaraes (Portugal) and Maribor (Slovenia) in 2012; Marseille (France) and Kosice (Hungary) in 2013; Umea (Sweden) and Riga (Latvia) in 2014; Mons (Belgium) and Pilsen (Germany) in 2015. Then in 2016, one Polish and one Spanish city will be named European Capital of Culture and share the honour of this award that aims to raise awareness between the peoples of Europe, to highlight their rich heritage and diversity, their common features and their individualism, and, above all, to further mutual understanding among the citizens of Europe. Now, therefore, each of these six Spanish cities is focused on promoting itself within the bigger picture of the Spanish culture. The result will be announced in 2011.

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Burgos
Burgos is probably one of the less well known of the six Spanish cities bidding for the 2016 honour 

Burgos
The newly opened Museum of Human Evolution in Burgos 

Burgos
Along with the other European Capital of Culture candidates, Burgos has been staging special events and activities to support the city's claim 

Cordoba
The elimination of Malaga from the running leaves Cordoba as the only Andalusian city still in with a chance for 2016 

Cordoba
The mosque-cathedral and the flower-bedecked courtyards are two of the emblematic images of the southern city of Cordoba 

Cordoba
Cordoba has long been associated with the Flamenco culture 

San Sebastian
San Sebastian is also pulling out all the stops in its bid to become European City of Culture 

San Sebastian
The Kursaal extension, the new San Telmo Museum, the Film Festival, the Jazz Festival... there's no doubt about San Sebastian's rich and varied cultural offering 

San Sebastian
The custom of  tapas is a hallmark of the provincial capital San Sebastian 

Las Palmas
The Casa de Colon, Las Palmas, residence of the first governors of the island of Gran Canaria, is where Columbus stayed before his first trip west and the discovery of America 

Las Palmas
Las Palmas' modern Alfredo Kraus Auditorium hosts many major events, including the Canary Islands Music Festival and the Opera Festival 

Las Palmas
Las Palmas also boasts a wonderful climate year round, and beaches such as Las Canteras with its golden sands and crystal waters 

Segovia
The Old Town of Segovia centres around the city's magnificent cathedral 

Segovia
Segovia boasts a wealth of cultural and monumental heritage to back its claim to be European Capital of Culture 

Segovia
Segovia's iconic aqueduct has been the site of some of the events promoting the candidacy of the city 

Zaragoza
Set on the River Ebro, Zaragoza (also known as Saragossa) is another Spanish city whose cultural heritage stretches far back 

Zaragoza
The Aljaferia Palace in Zaragoza is an example of eleventh-century Moorish architecture and the seat of the Parliament of Aragon 

Zaragoza
Zaragoza's Teatro Principal has played an important role hosting events during the city's candidacy for European Capital of Culture 2016 

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