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Did you know that... the Dolmen of Sorginetxe and the Dolmen of Aizkomendi

 

They are located in the eastern Alava Plain. The dolmens, in Breton, stone tables, are megalithic constructions from Prehistoric times in which funerary rites were carried out, and with which the deceased were remembered, sometimes to honour them and other times to protect the people from their tortuous spirits. Among the important number of dolmens found in Alava, 16 have been declared by the Basque Government as Cultural Property Qualified in the category of Monumental Ensemble, and among them Sorginetxe and Aizkomendi, the most known and visited, as well as the Chabola de la Hechicera, the Encinal, the Alto de la Huesera, the Llanos, San Martín, and the Sotillo, these located in La Rioja Alavesa in the Route of the Dolmens. The Alava dolmens, built with large stone slabs by Neolithic men, date from between 5000 and 2000 BC.

Dolmen of Sorginetxe

To discover What to see in the Dolmen of Sorginetxe?

 

The Dolmen of Sorginetxe, home of the witches, is located in the town of Arrizala in the Sierra de Entzia. It is the most famous and photographed of the Alava territory and possibly one of the best preserved in the Basque Country. Although it has been known in the area since ancient times, the date on which it was discovered is imprecise, but it can be said that its current appearance has changed little since it was first described in 1833. It is a chamber dolmen, with a polygonal structure formed by 6 vertical limestone stones and another one placed on top that covers it, it does not have a tumulus, the slab of the western wall is lower than the others forming a kind of window, the window of the spirits, which has traces of carved forming a gentle uplift, this hole was left to facilitate the spirit to leave the sepulchre. This funerary monument was excavated in 1890 by Julián de Apraiz and in it were found human remains and a flint arrowhead belonging to the Bronze Age. In 1913 it was acquired by the Provincial Council of Alava with the aim of ensuring its conservation.

Dolmen of Sorginetxe

To discover What to see in the Dolmen of Aizkomendi?

 

In the Alava town of Eguilaz, very close to Navarre, is the Dolmen​ of Aizkomendi, which is one of the largest in the Basque Country, the first discovered in Alava and the first identified in the Iberian Peninsula in 1831. This collective tomb is more than 5,000 years old. Since it was discovered, by chance, its structure has undergone several alterations. In the beginning it was covered by a large burial mound, a covered corridor led to the polygonal chamber formed by large slabs of which the upper slab of great size and with a thickness of more than one meter is striking. The corridor has now disappeared and the tumulus was partially dismantled in 1965 so that the dolmen could be seen from the road. Above the burial mound there were vestiges of several bonfires that perhaps had some connotation of ritual character, in addition numerous objects and human remains were found throughout the monument.

Dolmen of Aizkomendi

Traditions

 

According to tradition, the discovery of the Aizkomendi Dolmen occurred by chance when a farmer plowed the area with his oxen. Among the objects found, copper tips of spears and arrows, were also the imperial buttons of a jacket belonging to a Napoleon soldier, so it is speculated that he was the last person buried in the Dolmen of Aizkomendi.

 

Curiosities

 

In the Iberian Peninsula there are dolmens in the Basque Country, Galicia, Andalusia and Portugal.

 

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Useful information for visiting the Dolmen of Sorginetxe y the Dolmen of Aizkomendi

 

  • The Dolmen of Sorginetxe is located on the outskirts of the village of Arrizala.
  • The Dolmen of Aizkomendi is next to the village of Eguilaz.
  • The visit to both dolmens is free.
  • Both have nearby car parks and information boards.

Dolmen of Aizkomendi

The Legend

 

According to local people, it was the witches who built this dolmen whose large rocks were lowered from Atokolarri, in the Entzia mountain range, carrying them on the tip of their spinning wheels. In this House of Witches, Sorginetxe, the sorginak, "sorguinas", witches, at night celebrated their akelarres and the goat, seated on the horizontal slab of the roof, participated in them. In addition, the legend goes on that very close to the dolmen they buried a bull's skin full of gold.

 

 

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Get to the Dolmen of Sorginetxe

 

The Dolmen of Sorginetxe is located not far from the town of Salvatierra, more specifically in the municipality of the town of Arrizala. If we come by the A-1 we must take the Salvatierra exit and head towards the port of Opakua, another access road to the town of Arrizala. Once there, informative signs indicate the dirt track that we must follow and that will take us back to Salvatierra. But quickly we will arrive at the detour that brings us to the Dolmen of Sorginetxe, where we will have a large parking area.

 

 

 

Get to the Dolmen of Aizkomendi

 

The access to the Dolmen of Aizkomendi is much easier because it is located next to the old road. Follow the A-1 motorway and take exit 385 for Araia and San Román, the latter being the one to which we must go. At the moment we will find the signs that lead to the town of Egilatz, which must be crossed to reach the Dolmen of Aizkomendi where at the foot of the road we have a large parking area.

 

 

 


SENDITUR is not responsible for any variation in the information described, as well as for the misuse of its guides and recommends that everyone be responsible and prudent in carrying out the activity. Likewise, we invite you to document yourself with books and specialized guides to complement the information described. From the commitment of SENDITUR with Nature and the respect to the balance of the environment, SENDITUR urges you to travel in a responsible way, with low environmental impact and respecting at all times the Natural, Cultural and Social environment wherever you go. For any suggestion, SENDITUR invites you to send an email to

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List of Routes
  • Closeness
  • First name
  • Difficulty
  • Distance
  • Duration
  • Assessment
FLORA AND FAUNA PATHS
0
Difficulty-Medium

2:00 h.6.4 km.

Route of the Centenary Oaks
Difficulty-MediumCategory of difficulty green, level 3. Excursions of moderate distance and slope, not exceeding even great distances or slopes.
PATHS IN FAMILY
1
Difficulty-Low

1:35 h.4 km.

Path of the Source of the River Zirauntza
Difficulty-LowGreen difficulty category, level 2. Short walks, with little unevenness and without difficulties.
MOUNTAIN PATHS CULTURAL HERITAGE
1
Difficulty-Medium

3:00 h.7.8 km.

Mount Aratz by the San Adrián Tunnel
Difficulty-MediumCategory of difficulty green, level 3. Excursions of moderate distance and unevenness, not even over great distances or unevenness.
FLORA AND FAUNA IN FAMILY
1
Difficulty-Medium

3:40 h.12.8 km.

Circular route to the Ullíbarri-Gamboa reservoir
Difficulty-MediumCategory of difficulty green, level 3. Excursions of moderate distance and slope, not exceeding even great distances or slopes.
PATHS
0
Difficulty-Remarkable

9:20 h.34.8 km.

GR 38 Route of the wine and of the fish Section 4 Estíbaliz-Otxandio
Difficulty-RemarkableRed difficulty category, level 2. Routes with great slopes or important distances, which require good physical preparation.
PATHS IN FAMILY NATURAL HERITAGE
1
Difficulty-Medium

2:45 h.7 km.

Enchanted forest of Urbasa
Difficulty-MediumGreen difficulty category, level 3. Excursions of moderate distance and slope, not exceeding either great distances or slopes.
TOURISM
0
Difficulty-Low

72:00 h.340 km.

Route of the charming villages of Álava
Difficulty-LowGreen difficulty category, level 2. Short walks, with little slope and no difficulties.
PATHS
0
Difficulty-Moderate

6:45 h.23 km.

GR 38 Route of the wine and of the fish Section 3 Albaina-Estíbaliz
Difficulty-ModerateRed difficulty category, level 1. More demanding routes, either because they are longer, with greater slope or present some specific difficulty.
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