The capital of Spain before Madrid was Toledo. Toledo is located approximately 42 miles south of Madrid in the region known as New Castile. It was capital of the region of modern-day Spain from 513 until 1561.
Toledo is a walled city built on a portion of high land that extends over the mouth of the Tagus River. In 513, it became capital of Visigoth Spain and eventually became capital of an independent kingdom. It became a seat of the Spanish court in 1083 after being conquered by King Alfonso VI. As a capital city, Toledo was a site of political and artistic accomplishments. In 1561, King Philip II decided to move the capital north to Madrid.