One of the problems in Spain and in particular for little villages like Amaya, that are very out of the way is that they can be dying villages. Typically the houses will be lived in by old people. The younger ones go off to the big city (e.g Madrid or Valladolid or Burgos) to get work and then when their parents die, nobody wants the house and it...more
This is another example of the sort of decay you can see in villages like Amaya. Some houses are left to rot, others are refurbished. I'm guessing that buying a house here is very very cheap, so there is some attraction to buying in a village like this. The down side of course is that you will be miles from anywhere. This is a good example of old...more
Spring/Easter time is a nice time to visit as there are quite a few flowers and blossom out. This looks like a fruit tree and was in one of the gardens. Some gardens seem to be orchards, not large ones, but orchards all the same. There are numerous ploughed fields around Amaya during the spring time. Not sure what they were growing as nothing had...more
It's quite hard to date the town of Amaya. The church was built in the 15th to 16th centuries, and some of the houses are either quite new or have been radically refurbished. This house looked refurbished, but had left some of the more interesting original parts still exposed. If you enlarge the picture, you will see that this house dates from...more
This has got to be the world's most pointless Stop sign. A dirt track leading on to an almost unused road. What would happen if you failed to Stop? I hate to ask. Probably swarms of Guarda Civil (Spanish Traffic Police) that were hiding behind blades of grass would swoop out and arrest you. More likely however, you would just have to live with a...more
Amaya is incredibly rural and absolutely off the beaten path.I'm guessing that most people live off agriculture, certainly a good number of them do. It is not uncommon to see ploughs like this one by the sides of roads, and they are not there just for decoration! I suspect they are tractor pulled though rather than by horse... This one is a bit...more
This church is in "La Parroquia de Amaya" It is the "Iglesia de San Juan Bautista" which translates into the Church of Saint John the Baptist. It was built between the 15th - 16th Centuries and has 3 naves, and I know nothing else about it except that the back of it is used as a storage area. It still is in active use as it had posters detailing...more
Watch out for the Car Guzzling Space Aliens. I parked my car bext to one, and seconds later it was gone! Seriously there doesn't appear to be much to be careful of in Amaya. Probably the biggest danger is a lack of shops and being caught short with no food/drink/toilets/place to stay. Unless you are really serious or want to go rock climbing or...more
Amaya nestles under a huge slab of rock which coincidentally is also called the Amaya Rock. Probably a chicken and egg situation as to which of them was called Amaya first, the other in all likelihood just adopted the name too. It does make for quite an impressive backdrop and for good hiking and climbing experiences though. The latter two points...more
Amaya is so far off the beaten path that I think the only way to get there is by car. Forget airplanes, trains and buses. It is in the Burgos Province, but just on the border with Palencia. This puts it in Castilla y Lean (Castle and Lion). The roads aren't the best. A very narrow 2 track in most places, but adequate for a car. You aren't likely to pass much going down them.
Once you are there, the best way around is just to stroll about - it won't take long!
Spanish Roads at their best win few awards, motorways with a hard shoulder just about big enough for half a cars width (where are you supposed to put the other half if you have a puncture???), roads with more twists and turns than a Hitchcock film and then you get Burgos. Even if you miss the Province sign, you know you have entered Burgos because the roads get really bad. Last time they were resurfaced, Franco was probably personally there to see it.
This picture just about sums it up, look how the road deteriorates as you enter the province. On the motorway you will think you have got a flat tyre, and heaven help ou if you have a sports car with a stiffened suspension. If you ask the locals, they will point to central government passing fat cheques in the direction of Barcelona, and a couple of Euro cents towards Burgos. If this is true, then Señor Zapatero, isn't it time you passed a bit more this way?