Leaving the mediaeval quarter of Estella
, the route
passes in front of the church of Rocamador and passes a service station before taking a path that goes round the back of a hypermarket to reach Ayegui. From Ayegui
the route gives you the option of heading for Azqueta or passing by the nearby Monastery of Iratxe
(if you take the latter option you will be able to pick up the route to Azqueta
later on or take the diversion to Montejurra mentioned above, in the direction of Luquin. Once you have passed through Luquin take the path that runs from Azqueta to Los Arcos).
If you choose the path to Azqueta, you cross Ayegui along its highest street and then head down towards some open farmland. The path passes a fountain and is then surrounded by vineyards, soon after entering the residential complex of Iratxe with its bungalows, houses and hotel. Once again back in open land, it crosses a diversion to Igúzquiza via an underground passageway and heads into a kermes oak wood. It crosses a local road and, once out of the wood, follows a track until it reaches Azqueta. Once out of the village, the route heads downwards and passes in front of a dairy; the track becomes a path for a short while, takes us to the gothic fountain of Villamayor de Monjardín
(also called the "Moor's fountain"), built by the Muslims in the 4th century when the Castle and the village belonged to them.
Once the route has passed by the church, it heads along a concrete path that soon becomes a track once again, heading downwards until it reaches a wide track. It crosses the local Urbiola-Olejua road and continues on a gravel path, meeting soon after the diversion that it left behind in Villatuerta (that would have avoided having to pass through the town of Estella). Along flat land, between vineyards, cereal fields, small pinewoods, lone almond trees and tiny streams, you reach Kapanaldia.
As you leave a livestock shed behind, the route abandons the main track for a short while and continues on a dirt track, which is not exactly in the best condition. This track skirts a hill on which the so-called Corral Santo (Holy Enclosure) is found before it rejoins the main track. A little further on the route makes a right angle turn and crosses the fields until it reaches the other side of the watercourse, approaching a small hill range repopulated with pine trees (La Raicilla), where you reach a rest area with trees.
The valley becomes narrower and the route enters an area of tamarisks that cross the Gardiel ravine, between bull rushes and reeds. The wide track returns and, walking through cereal fields and olive groves, you arrive at Los Arcos
Starting point: Estella-Lizarra (c/ De la Rúa)
End point: Los Arcos
Path classification: Others
Type of route: Cement, Earth, Gravel, Road
What is there to do and see at the end of the stage?
- Guided tour of the Church of Santa Maria and the monument ensemble of Los Arcos. Meeting point at the Church (+34 649909514).
- Tour of the Carmen Thyssen culture centre.
- Enjoy an ice-cream or a drink on the terraces of the Plaza del Coso, or in the Church Square.
- Blessing of pilgrims in different languages at the end of Evening Mass in the church of Santa María (Mass times: 19.00 in winter and 20.00 in summer)
- Go for a swim in the municipal swimming pool +34 948 640711
- Visit and wine tasting in a winery at Los Arcos:
- Fernández Arcaya (en el propio casco urbano)
- Valcarlos or Alzania (on the outskirts, a 20-minute walk or a short taxi ride - 948640764/650965250)
You may also be interested in...
- For more information: Tourism Office of Los Arcos
- To stamp your credential: Pilgrims' hostels / Tourism Office / Church of Santa María and hotels or hostels