The Romanesque from Navarre in St. Jacobs Way
The proposed trip starts in the town of Roncesvalles, famous for being the legendary place where the battle of Charlemagne narrated in La Chanson de Roldan took place. The most ancient building on this township is the chapel of Sancti Spiritus, built in the 12th century upon the place where the corpses of that battle were buried, hence its cemeterial function kept until today. It is also worthwhile visiting the chapel of St. Agustín where the Navarrese King of Las Navas de Tolosa (1212), Sancho the 7th, the Strong, is buried.
The next spot of the trip is the town of Murazábal that has one of the most beautiful churches: St. María de Eunate, famous for being one of the few churches with an octogonal plan and besides, in this case, surrounded by a beautiful porticoed gallery.
The tour continues through the famous township of Puente la Reina, a villa founded by Alphonse the Third, the Warrior, by the end of the 11th century, where we find the Church of the Crucifix (la Iglesia del Crucifijo), from the Romanesque period, famous for its Christ in the shape of the letter Y.
The next stop is Estella, a town where two Romanesque monuments stand out: the impressive church of St. Miguel, in the middle between the Romanesque and the Gothic styles, and the Palace of the Kings of Navarre, a construction from the 12th century that constitutes one of the two examples of civil Romanesque architecture in Navarra (the other one being the Hórreo de Iracheta in La Valdorba).
The next stop is the church of the Santo Sepulcro in Torres del Río, that constitutes the second example of a church with a pentagonal plan together with St. María de Eunate. The towers of both served as a lighthouse for the pilgrims of St. Jacobs Way. The trip concludes at the monastery of St. Jorge in Azuelo, located in a beautiful setting that stresses the monastic idea of spiritual seclusion and solitude.
-Planned visits: chapel of Sancti Spiritus, St. María de Eunate, church of El Crucifijo, church of St. Miguel, Palace of the Kings of Navarre, church of the Santo Sepulcro and monastery of St. Jorge.
Total approximate distance of the trip: 139 Km.
-Type of recommended stay: Rural accomodations in the surroundings of Navarre.
Mapa del viaje
Guía del viaje
Roncesvalles is a milestone on the Camino de Santiago, since three major Central European routes converge: those of Paris, Vezelay and Le Puy. But in addition, it is known for being the place where, in the year 778, the battle of Charlemagne against the Basques took place, narrated in the famous epic poem the “Cantar de Roldán”. The oldest architectural vestige is the funerary chapel of Sancti Spiritus or Charlemagne’s Silo, so named because it is said that the Franks were buried there. It was built in the 12th century, it has a barrel vault and its purpose was and is cemetery. It is also worth visiting the chapter house or chapel of San Agustín, from the 14th century, where the mausoleum of Sancho el Fuerte is located, king who participated in the famous battle of Las Navas de Tolosa (1212) from which he brought the famous chains that inspired the shield of Navarre.
Construido a imagen del templo del Santo Sepulcro de Jerusalén, es una iglesia de una nave de planta octogonal abovedada, con ábside semicircular y el claustro alrededor de la iglesia, del que se conserva una arquería, aunque se piensa que estaría formado por dos arquerías que creaban un espacio cubierto.
The church of the Crucifix in Puente de la Reina was founded by the Templars about 1146. In his beginnings, it was possessing the only nave, with apse of drum but, later, it leaned other one in his north side. Emphasizes his magnificent front page placed in the side south and sheltered from the rain by an arch – porch constructed later and for his Christ in the shape of And that gives name to the temple.
Basílica de tres naves con transepto y cinco ábsides, de los que sólo tres se observan desde el exterior. Ofrece una interesante decoración escultorica, en toda la iglesia y, de sus dos portadas, la del costado norte, con cinco arquivoltas con impostas y capiteles y un magnífico tímpano, es un conjunto excepcional.
Esta magnífica obra románica es excepcional por cuanto que son muy escasas las obras civiles de esa época que hayan llegado hasta nosotros. Se trata de un edificio rectangular con una torre adosada en el ángulo noroeste. De las tres fachadas a la vista, la más interesante el la oriental, que constaba inicialmente de dos niceles, con cuatro grandes arcos de medio punto en el inferior y galerías de cuatro arcos sobre ellas en la superior, con decoración esculpida en capiteles y canecilllos.
Church of plant octogonal, that resembles that of Eunate. Constructed between 1160-1170 for the Templars, who were resorting habitually to the concentric plant in recollection of the church of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem. It has a circular torre leaned with a beacon in the top part to use as beacon – guide the pilgrims.
Church of what was Benedictine monastery. Temple of a single nave with cruise nave, dome, presbytery and semicircular apse. It offers a complete sculptural decoration, both inside and outside, which highlights the cover, six archivolts, located on the west wall.