de Santiago / French Way : 07. Los Arcos - Logroño
Los Arcos passing the cemetery whose entrance
has the following inscription:
que fui lo que tu eres, tu seras lo que yo soi I,
who once was what you are, you will be what I am.
through an arch and across the Río Odrón, take the
route through farmland and more vineyards towards
the hamlet of Sansol.
a hill not too far away is the Basilica of San
Gregorio Ostiense. Legend has it that in the
11th Century the Navarra region had succumbed to
a plague of locusts. Pope Benedict the 9th sent
along San Gregorio Ostiense
to look at what could be causing the plague. He
concluded that because the local people were of
low moral character and had lost their devotion
to the church, that the locusts were a punishment
from God. He ordered this behaviour to stop and
soon after the plagues ceased. The local people,
so happy with what had happened, did not want him
to leave and San Gregorio remained in Logroño until
his death in 1044. Following his death two bishops,
the bishops of Nájera and of Pamplona, wanted San
Gregorio to be buried in their respective cathedrals
and an unholy row erupted. It took the intervention
of the King of Navarra, who ordered that a tomb
be built on neutral ground, to end the row and subsequently
the Basilica de San Gregorio Ostiense was built
over the tomb of the saint.
7 kilometres you reach the hamlet of Sansol
which gets its name from the patron saint San Zoilo.
There is a private hostel here as well as a café
and restaurant that offer a Pilgrim menu. From the
forecourt of the Iglesia de San Zoilo you can see
your next port of call, the village of Torres del
Río, down below in the Río Linares valley 1 kilometre
ahead in the distance.
Sansol by crossing the main road and walking down
hill and across a stone bridge over the Río Linares,
climbing up into the village of Torres del Río.
The village has 3 refugios, a bar/restaurant, a
shop and a bank as well a beautiful 12th century
Romanesque church, la Iglesia del Santo Sepulcro.
The church is octagonal in shape and is believed
to have been built by the Knights Templar. Its design
is similar to mosques found in southern Spain with
Byzantine and Hispano-Arabic influences. If you
want to visit the church you will need to ask for
the key and possibly make a small donation.
out of Torres del Río up through some orchards,
past the cemetery and onto a dirt track. Continue
along this track past the Santuario de Nuestra
Señora del Poyo. Looking out over the open countryside
you should be able to see Viana and your final destination
on this leg of the Camino de Santiago, Logroño.
From here the route rises and falls as you walk
in and out of the valleys.
a dirt track you drop down into the Cornava valley
and then back up again over the main road and into
the outskirts Viana. Taking the Calle Algorrada
walk through the archway through the high walls
surrounding the town and onto Rua de Santa María.
The heavily fortified town of Viana was founded
by King Sancho III known as El Fuerte (the strong)
in 1219 as a defence against the Kingdom of Castile.
During peacetime the town needed to make alliances
with the surrounding villages and therefore opened
up the town as a trade route. Over the years the
Kingdoms of Navarra and Castilla continually fought
over land and in 1507 sees the town come under siege
again. It is during this siege that the infamous
Cesare Borgia loses his life.
Borgia was the son of the equally infamous Pope
Alexander VI and brother to Lucrezia. A very capable
general in his day, he was exiled to Spain by Pope
Julius II and was imprisoned in the Castillo de
la Mota. Cesare managed to escape and went to join
his brother-in-law King Juan III of Navarra who
made him captain of his army. This ultimately led
to his death at Viana whilst trying to overthrow
the Count of Lerin.
of the best buildings in Viana is the impressive
gothic Iglesia de Santa María, built between
1250 and 1312, with the Renaissance style tower
being added in the 16th century. Cesare Borgia’s
remains were initially buried in a marble tomb beneath
the altar. His debauched and sinful past so angered
the church that, following a visit by the Bishop
of Calahorra in 1527, his remains were moved and
buried beneath a cobbled pavement in unconsecrated
ground to be “trampled on by men and beasts”. His
remains were dug up accidentally by workmen in 1945
and moved to the town hall. Over the years there
have been many requests by the locals to give Borgia
a proper burial which the Catholic Church has constantly
rejected. However, in 2007 the Archbishop of Pamplona
finally relented and agreed that Borgia could finally
be re-buried within the church on 11th March 2007,
1 day before the 500th anniversary of his death.
are a couple of Albergues in Viana as well as hostels
and some hotels. There are a number of cafés, restaurants
and bars where you can eat and drink before you
start on the final leg of this stage of the Camino
Viana through the Portal San Felices and
turn left down Calle la Rueda and then take a second
right down a street noting the tiny pilgrim situated
in a small niche on the house numbered 1. Follow
the yellow arrows past the allotments and towards
the N111 and after crossing the main road follow
the track through the fields eventually bringing
you to the Ermita de la Virgen de Cuevas
(Hermitage of the Virgin of the Caves). Unfortunately
this building is no longer a chapel but a private
house where you will find a fountain and a picnic
area where you can rest awhile.
path takes you through fields, past woodland and
finally through more woodland. You will pass a large
paper factory (Papelería del Ebro) and after crossing
the footbridge over a small river you have left
Navarra and entered into the more famous wine region
of La Rioja. There is a newly tarmacked lane here,
unusually in red tarmac, which leads to a tunnel
under the N111 and under the flyover for the motorway.
The path takes you through another tunnel and up
towards the remains of the ancient city of Cantabria
which is currently being excavated. Heading downhill
you will pass the Casa de Chozo where the daughter
of Doña Felisa used to stamp your credencial whilst
you enjoyed refreshments under her large fig tree.
path continues for approximately 1 kilometre and
brings us to a cemetery on the outskirts of Logroño.
walking down Avenida de Medavia towards the 19th
century Puente de Piedra over the Río Ebro,
one of Spain’s longest rivers flowing from here
all the way to the Mediterranean. The current bridge,
restored in the late 19th century, replaced a medieval
pilgrim bridge which had been built in the 11th
century. The original bridge had 3 towers and is
included in the Logroño coat of arms.
city map (Rabe) - Logroño
city map (Pombo)
is the capital of the world famous La Rioja
region with a population of over 150,000 and is
the third largest town along the Camino Frances.
As well as being a university city it is also the
centre of the region’s wine industry. Because of
its location, like its neighbour the fortified town
of Viana, the city was often a battle ground between
the Kingdoms of Castilla and Navarra which is the
reason the city has a fortress-like
over the bridge take the second right down the Calle
de la Rúa Vieja passing the Iglesia Maria del
Palacio with its pyramid tower known as la aguja
(the needle) and one of the hostels and continue
down the Calle de Barriocepa into the medieval centre
the Plaza de Santiago you will see a chequer
board paving depicting sites along both the Camino
Frances and the Camino Aragonés. This is actually
used a board game called Juego de la Oca,
something similar to snakes and ladders. In the
same square is the Fuente de los Peregrinos
(the Pilgrim’s fountain).
Catedral de Santa María la Redonda can be
found in the Plaza del Mercado.
church worth visiting is the Iglesia de Santiago
el Real located on the route at the end of Calle
Rúa Vieja with its impressive statue above the entrance
of Santiago Matamoros (Santiago, the Moor slayer).
The current building replaces the 9th century church
which had been built to commemorate the legendary
battle of Clavijo. Legend states that in 844 the
Christians were fighting the Moors. Greatly outnumbered
by the Moorish troops and facing certain defeat
a knight on a white horse appeared brandishing a
huge sword, who promptly set about slaying the Moors.
The Christians believed the knight was Santiago
returned from the dead and from that day onwards
he became known as Santiago Matamoros.
is a large refugio as you enter the town near the
Iglesia Maria del Palacio and a smaller one close
to the Iglesia de Santiago as well as plenty of
cafés, restaurants and bars.
à CF description
at wanadoo.fr - 10/01/2014