It is located to the north of the Esteribar Valley, in the town of Eugi, in the place called Olaberri, on the banks of the river Arga and hidden among the beeches of the Quinto Real forest, there the ruins of the Royal Eugi Ammunition Factory await quietly in order to show the curious and avid visitor their monumental set. The Royal Eugi Ammunition Factory was one of the royal foundries built in the 18th century in Spain. Eugi's was built in 1766, by a Royal Order and within the new concept of industrial production and chain, hence the factory, which originated the reforms of Charles III. These foundries were built and directed by military engineers and members of the Royal Artillery Corps and their purpose was to supply the Spanish armies with ammunition and necessary armament. In Eugi, the iron and steel tradition dates back to the Middle Ages, although it is not ruled out that it was earlier and has always been linked to the river, as the operation of the furnaces and heavy hammers required the hydraulic force it provided. It is known that the blacksmiths and arms factories that existed here came to have three different locations due to the need for the necessary natural resources to be as close at hand as possible.
The Olaondo factory, which is the first known, was a kilometre from Eugi, today its location is covered by the waters of the reservoir. Between the 16th and 17th centuries the factory moved to the place known as Olazar and it is in this new location that it already receives the name of Herrería Real or Royal Blacksmith or Weapons Factory. Finally, it was in the 18th century when it was moved to Olaberri, in Quinto Real, and this monumental industrial complex such as the Royal Eugi Ammunition Factory was definitively built, a worthy heir to such a long trajectory and history as well as in its short years of existence, as it was destroyed by the French troops on 17 October 1.794, became a reference and example of Royal Foundry, industrial architecture located in an area where all its raw materials, mines, rivers and wood from the forests were given, as well as a model of factory-population, as it had all the facilities and services necessary for the more than 500 people who came to live here.
To visit the ruins of the Royal Eugi Ammunition Factory is to enter a peaceful forest where beeches and vegetation have spread their mantle over the walls and arches of this large industrial complex, which want to resist the passage of time. Each corner wants to be an echo of its history and the descriptive and informative panels that the visitor finds, serve to help them in their mute attempt. The first panel makes a general composition of the place indicating where each building was located, the situation of the two access gates to the complex, the Pamplona portal and on the opposite side, as the factory-population stretched around the river Arga, the portal of France.
Once inside the environment, the imagination, and the panel that is strategically placed to help her, finds the palace building, the workshops that were located around the building of ovens, one of the workshops had large windows facing the river and retains a channel through which passed the water necessary to get the necessary motive force to perform the relevant work. The factory had two smelting furnaces in the same building, that of Santa Bárbara, which was inaugurated in 1766 and had the shape of a truncated pyramid and the circular Santiago furnace. Next to the smelting furnaces was the smaller coal bunker...A whole compendium of stones, which in the form of arches over the river, create and recreate a mysterious landscape. On the other side of the road, which leads to France, and following the course of the river, the ruins of the installations continue to give their master class in history, there is the main coal bunker or San Lorenzo, of this building that hold up to 27,000 loads of coal, you can see eight arches that were part of where the ground of the building built above the Arga. A short walk through the mountain leaves behind this place of reverie, hidden or not, awaits the next curious visitor to tell him about his glorious past.
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In the Royal Eugi Ammunition Factory, cannonballs, also known as balls, were made. It is known that the people of the place used them, formerly when they found them in the river, to heat the milk mainly at the time of making the curd and for it they placed these balls directly in the fire and when they were rusientes they introduced them inside the milk so that this one warmed up more quickly.
It is known that the factory that was located in the place of Olazar was acquired by Philip II and that in it and working important gunsmiths of Milan, many weapons and utensils of war and defense were made, among all this, the children's armor of Philip III and Philip IV stand out, considered among the best in the world and are exhibited in the Armory Museum of Madrid.
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The NA-138 crosses both the town and the Royal Eugi Ammunition Factory, this road connects Eugi with Zubiri, on the N-135 between Pamplona and Roncesvalles. At the same time, in the other direction, it joins Eugi with France and with the junction with the NA-1740 road that comes from Elizondo on the N-121 between Pamplona-Dantxarinea, Irún-Pamplona. Eugi also has a bus service that covers the Pamplona-Eugi line from Monday to Friday. There is no service on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays. For further information, the telephone number is 948 300 287.
If we have reached Eugi from Zubiri we will have to follow the road a few more kilometres, leaving on our left the junction with the NA-1740, where we can also access. From this junction, continue up the NA-138 until you come across the signs and the first remains of the Royal Eugi Ammunition Factory, where you will have a small space where you can leave your vehicle.
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8:05 h.24.8 km.
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