On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

January 13, 2012 — 6 Comments

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.

Horse and Mustard Flowers Estella Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

Entering the ancient city of Estella. I didn’t dare drink from the old fountain on the left.

Entering Estella Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

The Iglesia de Santo Sepulcro originated in the 12th century, although what you see is from the 14th.

Iglesia de Santo Sepulcro Estella Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

The entranceway of the church. The doors were locked, and I’m certain it’s no longer open to the public.
Entrance Iglesia de Santo Sepulcro Estella Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

The tympanum featuring the crucifixion among other scenes was very detailed, and benefited from having some protection from the weather.

Tympanum Iglesia de Santo Sepulcro Estella Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

These sculptures had also kept much of their detail.

Scuptures front facade Iglesia de Santo Sepulcro Estella Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

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.

Puente Picudo Estella Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

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.

Narrow streets of Estella Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

The Old Town Hall or Old Ayuntamiento. The rock bluff in the background had a lone Pine tree sitting on top.

Old Town Hall Estella Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

The Camino exited the old city through this portal.

Portal Estella Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

An interesting sculpture. I wasn’t sure what it represented.

Metal sculpture art Estella Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

A few kilometers away was the Bodegas Irache Winery.

Bodegas Winery Irache Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

The aforementioned wine fountain.

Me Bodegas Winery Fountain Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

 The Museo del Vino or wine museum.

Museo del Vino Irache Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

The wine was inexpensive, with many bottles costing less than €5.

Bottles Museo del Vino Irache Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

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.

Monasterio de Irache near Estella Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

I don’t remember too many fields where poppies were scattered like this.

Field outside Irache Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

Back into the farmland. Please remember the castle on top of the hill. I’ll soon refer to it.

Farmland outside Irache Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

I had not seen another pilgrim walking since Estella, and felt very isolated in the small forest west of Irache.

Forest between Irache and Azqueta Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

A Camino marker clearly showed the right direction.

Camino marker Forest between Irache and Azqueta Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

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.

Approaching Azqueta Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

There is a small climb to Azqueta.

Azqueta Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

The Camino from Azqueta to Villamayor de Monjardín was quite scenic. Whether it was the path lined by a rockwall and shrubs…

Path outside Azqueta Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

the bright green from the farmland with small vineyards…

Landscape outside Azqueta Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

 actually walking through a vineyard, on orangey-brown soil…

Vineyard between Azqueta and Villamayor de Monjardín Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

 or the path lined with mustard flowers and farmland. A truly memorable evening walk.

Path between Azqueta and Villamayor de Monjardín Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

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.

Rebuilt Moorish fountain near Villamayor de Monjardín Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

Moorish fountain interior near Villamayor de Monjardín Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

Just before entering Villamayor de Monjardín, I stopped for a moment to watch a man sketch on his pad.

Approaching Villamayor de Monjardín Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

The Church of San Andrews the Apostle.

Church Villamayor de Monjardín Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

 

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.

Flowers and castle Villamayor de Monjardín Spain Camino de Santiago On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

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.

If you have my book, Camino de Santiago In 20 Days, or have ordered it, I really appreciate your support. It’s also out on Kindle. My Goodreads page has reviews and more information. Please share this post, and thanks for your time.

 On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

About Randall St. Germain

Randall St. Germain, author of Camino de Santiago In 20 Days, is a middle-aged Canadian Boy who is passionate about nature, photography, hiking, music, and self-improvement. After the death of his mother, he chose to walk the famous pilgrimage, the Camino de Santiago, across the north of Spain, despite knowing little about it. He certainly didn’t plan to write a book until the latter days of his Camino. Similar to walking the Camino, writing and publishing a book was a learning experience. It was also very rewarding, and part of his ongoing journey. Please join him as he takes you along on his journey in Camino de Santiago In 20 Days, and on his blog Camino My Way.

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6 responses to On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Estella to Villamayor de Monjardín

  1. As usual, your photography, landscape & architecture was beautiful. I was struck by the sheer lack of human inhabitants, and understood your feeling of isolation. Even Estella appeared so void of life. Thanks again.

    • Thanks again. I only used my point-and-shoot camera on my Camino, because I had to consider the weight of an SLR. Yes, the afternoons were very quiet on the Camino. It wasn’t odd for me to go three or four hours and only see a few people. It gave me lots of time to think though.

  2. If I were to offer a guess about that “interesting sculpture”, I’d say it looks like the Virgin Mary and the baby Jesus with a star between them, the star signifying the town of Estella (“estrella” being “star” in Spanish).

    Just a guess…

    Thanks for the photos!

  3. Like Laura, I saw the outline of the star framed by two figures….could very well be a woman and child.

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