Salamantinos started constructing their “new” cathedral in 1513 in an old-fashioned style that made it “the last gasp of Gothic style,” as architectural historians put it. Located in the south end of the old town, it is the largest and highest building in the city. The soaring spaces inside welcome pious contemplation. All three Churriguera brothers (see box above) served as supervising architects of the late stages of the cathedral’s long construction (it wasn’t consecrated until 1733), so many of the surface details and twisted-rope columns are truly Churrigueresque. One bas-relief column, for example, resembles a cluster of palm trees. The tradition of inspired stone carving continues. When the lower portion of the Puerta Ramos on the west side was rebuilt in 1992, the stonemason and restorers decided to update the carvings with the image of an astronaut floating in space, a monkey eating an ice cream cone, and a stork carrying a branch in its beak. (Panhandlers hanging out near the entrance will point them out for a tip.)