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Burgo de Osma

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

The origin of El Burgo de Osma goes way back to the primitive Arevaci settlement called Uxama which centuries later would be under Roman jurisdiction.

 

The town centre as it is today was built in 1101 when the Bishop Pedro de Bourges (San Pedro de Osma) chose a monastery located near the Ucero River as the Cathedral. This decision helped the village develop into a prosperous burgh with merchants and craftsmen. This privileged situation lasted during many centuries, and in the Renaissance, El Burgo de Osma even had its own university.

 

This ancient and monumental episcopal city is located near the Ucero River and there we can see one of province’s the best preserved medieval quarters. Not surprisingly, the town has been declared a Historic-Artistic Ensemble.

 

The town square (Plaza Mayor) presents an 18th-centruy Baroque style in which there are quite a few magnificent buildings, such as the Hospital of San Agustín on one end, and on the other, the Council House. On the other sides there are typical Castilian houses with arcades. This square is the heart of the city’s cultural and social scene.

 

The Hospital of San Agustín’s construction was sponsored by Bishop Arévalo y Torres, and was finished in 1704. It is has a Heritage of Cultural Interest status (Bien de Interés Cultural) and nowadays is the cultural centre and the Tourist Information Office. This impressive building has two magnificent towers decorated with the sponsor’s coat of arms, capped with steeples decorated with balls, pyramids and rhombuses that give it a Herreran feel that blends perfectly with the Castilian-Baroque style.

 

The Town Hall is located in the Council House, which replicates the hospital’s structure with humbleness and simplicity. Inside there are two floors with a lintelled gallery. The lower floor has Tuscan columns that came from the medieval town hall. The three-level towers with their simple steeples and the clock, bell and weather vane in the centre seem to emulate the niche located in the hospital in front.

 

The porticoed street called Calle Mayor, as its own name suggests in Spanish, is the main street that connects two distinct areas of the town, but also seems to connect two different time periods: the medieval Cathedral Square (Plaza de la Catedral) and the 18th-century Town Square (Plaza Mayor). This street is lined with shops, typical bars and taverns with their distinctive Castilian flavour where you can try some of the traditional tapas accompanied by a nice glass of wine from the Ribera de Duero.

 

The Cathedral, aside from its monumental size, there are two aspects that impress us all the first time we lay eyes on it: its spectacular main façade with the best and purest Classical Gothic style and its majestic Baroque tower. Inside you can take your time to discover artistic treasures ranging from the purest Romanesque to the most recent Neoclassical styles that the Cathedral of Nuestra Señora de la Asunción keeps safe. Though there aren’t many, the sculptural Romanesque remains that can be found in the ancient cloister are quite exquisite. It has a 13th-century Gothic floor plan with a central nave, two lateral naves, a transept and a sanctuary that originally had five apses. In the 18th century, a Neoclassical ambulatory was added as well as many other areas. Its flamboyant Gothic cloister from the 16th century casts serene beauty and leads to the museum exhibits where we can find, among other relics, the Beatus of Osma from the 11th century.

 

The Convent of Carmen (Convento del Carmen) is a building from the 17th century that fits perfectly with the architectonic canons of the Order of Carmelo (Orden del Carmelo). What stands out from its façada is the brick and the carving of the Virgen del Carmen, also from the 17th century. Inside there are vaults with lunettes, arris vaults and domes over pendentives and squinches.

 

The Diocesan Seminar of Santo Domingo de Guzmán has a sober and balanced façade with decorations only found around the door. This door is decorated with a moulded arch and a semi-circular pediment framed by pilasters and decorated with triglyphs and droplets, next to the coat of arms of Bishop Eleta.

 

The University of Santa Catalina is currently used as a spa-hotel. This building dates back to the 16th century and its construction was sponsored by Bishop Acosta. Both its floor plan and its façade show a Renaissance style, and the feeling of symmetry is well present among all the architectonical features and works of art on the frontispiece. The arched doorway is decorated by carved columns, coats of arms of the sponsors, chiselled panels and a sculpture of the Patron Saint.

 

The Royal Hospice (Hospicio Real) was built under King Charles the III’s demand. It is an excellent piece of work organized around two courtyards and it has a very large façade of 85 metres. The solid stone walls seem to be interrupted systematically, though at the same time harmoniously, by lintelled openings and a stonework doorway above which there is a balcony with a spacious niche and a curved eave that protects the Monarch’s coat of arms.

 

The bullfighting ring (Plaza de Toros) was built over a century ago with a Neomudejar style right outside the historic centre. It is polygonal and has 24 sides, and on one of them there is a brick doorway with horseshoe arches.

 

The Castle of Osma (Castillo de Osma) is a medieval castle from the 10th century which adapts perfectly to the rocky hill it is on. Some of the walls of the main enclosure are still standing and you can still see its Keep. There are also remains of the other two enclosures that improved the castle’s protection. The Water Tower (Torre del Agua) that is located near the river used to be part of the exterior walls.

 

The Roman bridge (puente romano) crosses the Ucero River and currently connects the Church of Santa Cristina with the medieval castle of Osma. The bridge is made of ashlar and has three openings and cutwaters.

 

The Church of Santa Cristina (Iglesia de Santa Cristina) stands out for its interesting Renaissance main façade, and inside for its Romanesque baptismal font and the relics of the Patron Saint brought from Rome.

 

In El Burgo de Osma, one can relish in the exquisite gastronomy related to the traditional practice of pig slaughtering. If you want to try the best of the best, try coming to the Ritual-Gastronimic Pig Slaughtering Days (jornadas rito-gastronómicas de la matanza), that are celebrated each year at the Hotel Virrey Palafox and are declared with a Touristic Interest status. They are normally celebrated each weekend of February and March.

Tourist Map

View Tourist Map
View Tourist Map
Tourist Map
Plaza Mayor
Plaza Mayor
Cathedral
Cathedral
Roman bridge and Castle of Osma
Roman bridge and Castle of Osma
Tomb (cathedral of El Burgo de Osma)
Tomb (cathedral El Burgo de Osma)
Castle walls
Castle walls
University of Santa Catalina (detail on the façade)
University of Santa Catalina (detail on the façade)
University of Santa Catalina (cloister)
University of Santa Catalina (cloister)
Bishop's palace
Bishop's palace
Town Hall
Town Hall

Diputación de Soria (Desarrollo Económico y Turismo)

C/ Caballeros, 17 - 42002 Soria

Tfno. 975 220 511 Fax 975 231 635

turismo@dipsoria.es