The Bodegas Winery provided a fountain of red wine and water for pilgrims. Yes, a wine fountain, and it was free. I had prepared for this moment and carried a new, blue, plastic cup. I rinsed it out with water, placed it under the wine spout, and poured about a quarter full. The wine was okay and I’m sure not their best vintage, but the company should be commended for providing it. I can’t imagine how much wine they supply in one day, let alone an entire year. I wanted my photo taken in front of the fountain and asked a woman for help. She and her friend had filled their glasses with wine twice in the few minutes I was there. They laughed and giggled loudly like intoxicated schoolgirls… From Page 56, Camino de Santiago In 20 Days. Good thing there isn’t a wine fountain near where I live. The line-up would be a mile long.
Now, I’ll continue with my journey on the Camino de Santiago, in the chapter, Day 3: Canadian Boy. Even if you don’t have my book, you can still enjoy this post, and learn more about walking the French Way or Camino Francés (map from Wikipedia Commons). I left my last post, On the Camino de Santiago: Puente la Reina to Estella, Spain, looking over the city of Estella. Let’s descend the hill and take a closer look.
As I rounded a bend on the outskirts of Estella, I was greeted by this cute horse tied up in front of a bank of mustard flowers. His owner had left him with only a small pile of hay and no water. I was concerned because the afternoon temperature was very warm.
Entering the ancient city of Estella. I didn’t dare drink from the old fountain on the left.
The Iglesia de Santo Sepulcro originated in the 12th century, although what you see is from the 14th.
The tympanum featuring the crucifixion among other scenes was very detailed, and benefited from having some protection from the weather.
These sculptures had also kept much of their detail.
The Puente Picudo that spanned the Río Ega had been rebuilt in the 1970s. I found this bridge interesting because it required a climb to the peak. There would be more of these bridges in the days to come.
As I wrote on page 55 of my book when referencing Estella,”The origins of the city were in the Romans’ time, but it didn’t flourish until the eleventh century, when King Ramirez focused on the Camino and pilgrim traffic. He also looked outside the region to parts of France and attracted people to open businesses. I didn’t know much about Estella before my Camino. I had the pleasure of sipping Estrella Damm beer once or twice, but that was actually from Barcelona and spelled differently.”
The narrow road that the Camino followed in Estella. The city was fairly quiet as it was siesta, and stores were closed.
The Old Town Hall or Old Ayuntamiento. The rock bluff in the background had a lone Pine tree sitting on top.
The Camino exited the old city through this portal.
An interesting sculpture. I wasn’t sure what it represented.
A few kilometers away was the Bodegas Irache Winery.
The aforementioned wine fountain.
The Museo del Vino or wine museum.
The wine was inexpensive, with many bottles costing less than €5.
Across from the museum was the 11th century Monasterio de Irache. If you need a break, and possibly have more wine, there is a small rest area across from the monastery and wine museum.
I don’t remember too many fields where poppies were scattered like this.
Back into the farmland. Please remember the castle on top of the hill. I’ll soon refer to it.
I had not seen another pilgrim walking since Estella, and felt very isolated in the small forest west of Irache.
A Camino marker clearly showed the right direction.
I safely emerged from the forest back into farmland but was concerned with an incoming storm. The village of Azqueta is on the near side of the hill.
There is a small climb to Azqueta.
The Camino from Azqueta to Villamayor de Monjardín was quite scenic. Whether it was the path lined by a rockwall and shrubs…
the bright green from the farmland with small vineyards…
actually walking through a vineyard, on orangey-brown soil…
or the path lined with mustard flowers and farmland. A truly memorable evening walk.
A rebuilt (1991) Moorish fountain or Fuente de Moros. I was surprised how far north in Spain the Moors had conquered, but was amazed when I later found out their land extended well into France.
Just before entering Villamayor de Monjardín, I stopped for a moment to watch a man sketch on his pad.
The Church of San Andrews the Apostle.
On top of the hill, or mountain Monjardín, is the castle of San Esteban de Deyo. This area had been the site of many battles over the years, and the castle has always been an important part of them. For more on the history of Villamayor of Monjardín, please check out this excellent page from Monjardín.tk.
I hope you enjoyed this post as I had a tiring, but pleasing, afternoon and evening walk. On my next post, On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Villamayor de Monjardin to Los Arcos, I continued through the rain and cold to Los Arcos, but found solace in the peaceful and inspiring Iglesia de Santa María. Please join me.
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