Roncesvalles Travel Guide

  • Roland's monument and museum behind it.
    Roland's monument and museum behind it.
    by Oleg_D.
  • Things to Do
    by Oleg_D.
  • Things to Do
    by Oleg_D.

Roncesvalles Things to Do

  • The new Hospital.

    The new hospital or Albergue de Peregrinos was built between 1802-1807. Unfortunately, previous hospital built in XII century hasn’t survived. We can see only some remains of al medieval hospital. That Albergue was opened in 2011 and is funded by the government of Navarre. There are four floors with bunk beds in cubicles of four and all necessary...

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  • The Chapel of Holly Spirit. Part II.

    The Chapel of Holly spirit is also known as the Espirito Santo, Capila Sancti Spiritus or Silo de Carlomagno is the XII century chapel with ossuary. Some legends state that the Frankish warriors killed in the battle of Roncesvalles in 778 were buried here and that fact was the reason to built that chapel. Some scientists and researchers say that is...

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  • The Chapel of Holly Spirit.

    The Chapel of Holly spirit is also known as the Espirito Santo, Capila Sancti Spiritus or Silo de Carlomagno is the XII century chapel with ossuary. Some legends state that the Frankish warriors killed in the battle of Roncesvalles in 778 were buried here and that fact was the reason to built that chapel. Some scientists and researchers say that is...

    more
  • The Saint James Chapel.

    The Santiago (Saint James) Chapel. This is the small early gothic chapel built in XIII century. If you bought the ticket to museum then guided tour to that chapel is included in the price. There is nothing special inside the chapel except the statue of Santiago (Saint James) and windows where you can see grinded stone instead the glass. It was used...

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  • Collegiata Real de Santa Maria. Museum.

    Museum.There is small museum in the Collegiate Church. Well, small doesn’t mean bad or inferior. Of course this is no Metropolitan or State Hermitage this is just different and possesses its own rarities. You can see the emerald captured by King Sancho VII from Almohad Sultan in the battle of Las Navas de Tolosa. At least legends say so. Modern...

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  • Collegiata Real de Santa Maria. The St....

    The St. Augustine Chapel. In the centre of the chapel stands the sepulcher of Sancho VII "The Strong" which was installed in 1912, the date when the chapel was renovated to commemorate the anniversary of the Battle of Las Navas de Tolosa. Only the upper slab with the effigy of Sancho is the parts of original tomb of the King, who died in Tudela in...

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  • Collegiata Real de Santa Maria,...

    The Royal Collegiate Church of Saint Mary was built at the behest of Sancho VII the King of Navarre known as El Fuerte (The Strong). Church was built at the beginning of XIII century but was consecrated in 1219 only after the death of King Sancho.You can attend the pilgrim’s mass every day at 20:00 hours.The interiors of the church are built in the...

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  • Collegiata Real de Santa Maria. The...

    The ground floor of the cloisters was built in XIII century and survived nowadays. It is austere and beautiful. Upper floor was rebuilt between 1615 and 1661 because its roof and upper floor itself partially were collapsed under weight of snow in 1600. Several burial niches with pointed arches have been discovered embedded in the walls of the...

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  • Collegiata Real de Santa Maria

    Collegiata Real de Santa Maria or The Royal Collegiate Church of Saint Mary was built at the behest of Sancho VII the King of Navarre known as El Fuerte (The Strong). Church was built at the beginning of XIII century but was consecrated in 1219 only after the death of King Sancho. You can attend the pilgrim’s mass every day at 20:00 hours....

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Roncesvalles Restaurants

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    by Oleg_D. Written Feb 18, 2013

    This is the very good restaurant where you can get delicious food and beverages. To get the "Plato del peregrino" or “Pilgrim dinner” you should book before 18:00 in the bar. That pilgrims diner consists of soup, main course, bread, salad, coffee or tea and desert of yours choice. Mineral water and local Navarrese wine. The price was only eight euros. You can check current prices at their site. It is easy to find because Casa Sabina adjoin to medieval mill or “Molino antiguo” where the tourist office is situated.

    Favorite Dish: Beefsteak and onion soup.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Religious Travel
    • Museum Visits

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Roncesvalles Off The Beaten Path

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    Ibaneta hill with the monument and chapel 4 more images

    by Oleg_D. Written Feb 18, 2013

    From the early days of our childhood we know the Song of Roland. And from that song we know about the battle at the Roncesvalles Pass fought on August 15, 778. But the song of Roland where the author tells us a story of self-sacrifice and heroic death of Count Roland was written four or even five hundred years after the battle! I will no retell the story about the Roland, Charles the Great and defeat of his rearguard I would like to show you the place where the real events took place! The battle took place in the Roncesvalles Pass between the slope of the mountain and Ibaneta hill. At the center you can see the column where Roland allegedly tried to break his sword Durendal and where he has blown his horn Oliphant. You can reach the column monument walking through the tunnel. There is also modern Chapel which replaced old one.
    What has happened in reality nobody knows definitely.
    There exists only one historical mention of a Frankish Roland, found in the section of Vita Karoli Magni on the Battle of Roncevaux Pass, written probably by Charlemagne's courtier and biographer Einhard. The passage, which appears in Chapter 9, mentions that Hroudlandus (a Latinization of the Frankish Hruodland) was among those killed in the battle: He was returning [to France] with his army safe and intact, but high in the Pyrenees on that return trip he briefly experienced the Basques. That place is so thoroughly covered with thick forest that it is the perfect spot for an ambush. [Charles's] army was forced by the narrow terrain to proceed in a long line and [it was at that spot], high on the mountain, that the Basques set their ambush. [...]Eggihard, the overseer of the king's table, Anselm, the count of the palace, and Roland, the lord of the Breton March, along with many others died in that skirmish. But this deed could not be avenged at that time, because the enemy had so dispersed after the attack that there was no indication as to where they could be found. Alas! Roland died in ambush and probably he even had no any smallest chance to unsheathe his Durendal or blow his Oliphant.

    Ibaneta Hill and Chapel are situated 1,5 kilometers on the highway toward Valcarlos and France. It will take approximately twenty minutes to get the place from Roncesvalles by walk.

    Related to:
    • Eco-Tourism
    • Historical Travel
    • Religious Travel

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