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Almazán

Tourism |  Additional Information |  Heritage |  Where to stay |  Where to eat |  What to do

Throughout history, this town has been visited by many different civilizations. The Arabs who once ruled these lands built a primitive stronghold with foundation walls that can still be seen, but that is not their only mark on the village: Almazán means “The Fortified” in Arabic. There are also remains of three 12th-century Christian crosses that marked the Stations of the Cross on three of the four gates (Puerta de Herreros, Puerta del Mercado and Puerta de la Villa).

 

Almazán was the first frontline between the Muslim and Christian worlds, and later it was the place where the kingdoms of Aragon and Castile disputed. What was once a peaceful pastureland became a place filled with tension and disaster due to continuous battles. First Muslim, then Christian, repopulated, besieged, subdued, seized. Almazán lived through war until the 14th century when the so-called Paz de Almazán was signed between Aragon and Castile, a treaty that would bring on a great period of privilege and protective measures for this town torn by conflict.

 

Thanks to the Catholic Monarchs, Almazán came into the historical spotlight and stayed there until the 19th century, giving place to a period a wealth and splendour to a town that only knew devastation. Time and time again it was used as the Kings Court, therefore it was not unusual to see many monarchs, princes and princesses passing by. From Queen Isabella I and Ferdinand II, till Phillip II and III, as well as Prince John and his wife, Margaret of Austria.

 

Both the tense and serene cohabitation of these different cultures left their mark on the town that can be seen in the style of the houses, churches and palaces, all bundled together and being the town’s main touristic appeal. The old town goes up the hill reaching the Cinto Hill (Cerro del Cinto) where you can take in the beautiful panoramic view.

 

There is no better way to penetrate its adamantine streets than to start with the Town Square (Plaza Mayor) filled with civil and religious architecture. La gate Puerta de la Villa gives access to this lovely enclosure where you can find the Gothic-Renaissance Palace of Hurtado Mendoza (Palacio de los Hurtado Mendoza). The Visitors’ Reception Centre is located in one of the palace’s wings where you can see a triptych said to be created by Memling. Also within the Town Square is the Church of San Miguel.

 

However, just by walking through the town you can encounter historical and artistic relics: the mediaevalesque postern of Santa María, noble mansions lining the street Calle de las Monjas, the Convent of the order of Saint Clare (Convento de las Clarisas), the Baroque church of San Pedro, the chapel of Jesus (Ermita de Jesus), remains of the Convent of the Royal, Celestial and Military Order of Our Lady of Mercy and the Redemption of the Captives (convento Mercedario) where Tirso de Molina passed away.

 

Besides these monumental gems, there are many typical taverns and restaurants where you can have a taste of some of Almazán’s local specialities, including wild game meat (caza), pork shoulder (codillo), and traditional Spanish stew (cocido). If you have a sweet tooth, try their typical pastries called yemas (made with egg yolks, syrup, lemon juice and cinnamon), and paciencias (cookies made of flour, sugar, lemon and egg whites).

 

The Jesuit priest and founder of the Society of Jesus, Diego Lainez, was born here. He was an extremely influent clergyman, so much so that he declined the offer to become Pope and the Council of Trent was postponed whenever he was ill.

 

It is in this town, capable of uniting the modern and traditional world, that industry, craftsmanship, agriculture and farming subsist along with the traditions as ancient as the ritual of Zarrón, happening every 17th of May during the local festivities in honour of San Pascual Bailón. This holiday coincides with the Regional Sample Fair (Feria Regional de Muestras) which originally only had to do with agriculture and has ended up including other fields such as craftsmanship, furniture, food products and entertainment. Though if you truly want to experience an exciting Spanish fiesta, the first Sunday of September they celebrate the Bajada de Jesús.

Tourist Map

View Tourist Map
View Tourist Map
Tourist Map
Church of San Miguel in Almazán
Church of San Miguel in Almazán
Town Square Lookout (mirador de la Plaza Mayor)
Town Square Lookout (mirador de la Plaza Mayor)
Puerta de Herreros
Puerta de Herreros
Rollo de las Monjas in Almazán
Rollo de las Monjas in Almazán
Puerta de la Villa
Puerta de la Villa
Puerta del Mercado
Puerta del Mercado

Diputación de Soria (Desarrollo Económico y Turismo)

C/ Caballeros, 17 - 42002 Soria

Tfno. 975 220 511 Fax 975 231 635

turismo@dipsoria.es