It is located between the Soria highlands and the Duero river bank shortly before the confluence of its tributaries, the Ucero and Abión rivers, in the western half of the province of Soria. The origins of El Burgo de Osma go back to the primitive Arevacan settlement of Uxama, a settlement that centuries later would be rebuilt by the Romans. During the Visigothic period, the name was changed to Oxoma or Osoma and its importance was recognized; its prosperity continued with the arrival of the Muslims, of whom an Arab watchtower was kept on the hill of Uxama. In the Middle Ages, during the tenth century, the population of Osoma moves to the lower part, on the left bank of the river Ucero, creating the city of Osma under the protection of the castle that then stands on the hill. Osma became the focus of attention of both Arabs and Christians, suffering on their land battles such as the Battle of Osma or the Barranco in 939, in which the Christian troops of King Ramiro II of Leon and the Count of Castilla Fernan Gonzalez completely defeated the Caliph Abderraman III.
After the Reconquest, what was a suburb of the town gradually became the origins of the town of El Burgo de Osma when Pedro de Bourges, San Pedro de Osma, at the beginning of the 12th century began the construction of the primitive Romanesque cathedral next to the remains of an old monastery or temple, perhaps Visigothic, dedicated to San Miguel. This new settlement, independent from Osma, was constituted in the town of El Burgo de Osma by privilege of Alfonso VIII and it was growing and gaining in importance during centuries. In the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries, at the same time as its cathedral underwent important reforms and extensions, El Burgo de Osma saw its urban development completed with magnificent buildings, all thanks to the actions of the bishops, and even had a university in the Renaissance period. In 1993, El Burgo de Osma was declared an Asset of Cultural Interest with the category of Historic-Artistic Site.
El Burgo de Osma, officially El Burgo de Osma-Ciudad de Osma, has one of the best preserved medieval enclosures in the province of Soria, as well as offering a rich cultural, artistic and architectural legacy. The Baroque Main Square, dating from the 18th century, is the nerve centre of the social and cultural life of the town. Here, visitors can find out about the tourist attractions that El Burgo de Osma has to offer at the Tourist Office, which today houses the magnificent building of the San Agustín Hospital, dating from the early 18th century; this square is also home to the Town Hall, a neo-Mudejar construction dating from 1771. Walking along the beautiful and porticoed Main Street that joins the baroque Main Square with the medieval Cathedral Square, we arrive at the Cathedral, dedicated to la Asunción de la Virgen, from whose Romanesque origins the chapter house and some canvases remain. The building that we see today is Gothic, as the main entrance, baroque, in its grandiose tower, and neoclassical. Between the cathedral and the Episcopal Palace there is a very popular alley known as the Caracol.
The Burgo de Osma is proud of its plateresque façade and Renaissance cloister, from the 16th century building that was home to the University of Santa Catalina. From the 17th century is the Convent of Carmen. The Diocesan Seminary of Santo Domingo de Guzmán, of neoclassical style was begun to construct in 1785. The Real Hospicio that was constructed at the cost of king Carlos III. Walk to the Gate of San Miguel, the only remaining part of the town's walled enclosure, although some of its paintings have been reconstructed in the surroundings of the old medieval town. On a rocky hill, watching as an impassive guardian in time, the Osma Castle, from the 10th century, invites you to visit it. By the river Ucero the Water Tower belonged to the outer walls. The Roman bridge, reconstructed in the Middle Ages, which over the Ucero connects the Osma castle with the church of Santa Cristina, which is located in the Ciudad de Osma, and which houses a Romanesque font and the relics of the saint that were brought from Rome, are among others, the attractions that El Burgo de Osma offers to the visitor who can also enjoy nature, which with a splendid landscape surrounds the town, walking through its parks or along the Lagüera walk, a peaceful hiking route, as well as that of The Gorge of the River Abión and then return to the town and taste the rich gastronomy.
The Burgo de Osma celebrates its patron saint's festivities in honour of the Virgen del Espino and San Roque from 14 to 19 August. Its Holy Week has been declared of Regional Tourist Interest. The Virgen del Carmen is celebrated on 16 July. On August 2 El Burgo de Osma pays homage to its founder San Pedro de Osma.
If there is something that identifies El Burgo de Osma, it is its traditional and famous dance of the Rueda, whose origin is so remote that some say it goes back in time to Uxama, where its inhabitants, the Arevacos, already enjoyed this dance.
The cathedral of El Burgo de Osma holds many treasures, among them the one considered one of the most precious codices of the 11th century, a blessed written by the clergyman Pedro where a world map reflects the spiritual geography of the time and that seems to have been painted in the year 1086, when Alfonso VI reigned.
It used to be that one was a bishop who sold church charges for his own benefit and, as was normal, when he died he was buried in the cathedral of El Burgo de Osma, and legend has it that the spirits of the other bishops buried there turned around, refusing to share a grave and a church for the rest of time with the soul of such a perverse person and rising from their graves they beat him out of the temple.
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El Burgo de Osma can be reached by the N-122 and A-11 road that connects it with Soria, San Esteban de Gormaz and Aranda de Duero, as well as the various towns along the route. There are also several local roads that communicate it with the neighbouring towns, such as Ucero in the Canyon of the River Lobos or Caracena and Almazán on the opposite side.
The bus station of El Burgo de Osma, located in Juan Carlos I Avenue, is served by regular services that not only connect it with the different neighbouring towns but also with capitals such as Madrid, Burgos, Valladolid, Zaragoza and Soria.
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