Nestled between the two hills that saw it grow, bathed by the calm waters of the here still young Duero River, at the foot of the unmistakable mountains that draw the silhouette of the Urbión and Cebollera ranges, Soria awaits quietly. Its strategic location, border and gateway between the extensive Castilian plateau and the northern mountains has marked its character. Beautiful corners and true architectural jewels that maintain all their medieval essence and historical importance join the natural landscapes that surround the town, making Soria an almost enchanted place that bewitches its visitors.
Through this Walk through the history of Soria we will be able to discover the corners that were a source of inspiration for illustrious writers. We will be able to travel back in time and history through its rich monumental heritage, getting to know real jewels of the Romanesque, luxurious Renaissance palaces or slender Gothic buildings that dot its noble streets, surprising us at every step. Buildings that in some cases merge and mimic the poetry of Bécquer or Machado among others. Architecture that in other cases is integrated with the natural places that surround it until forming part of the same and beautiful landscape, as it is the case of the hermitage of San Saturio. These values, together with its rich and remarkable gastronomy, its unbeatable location and the character of its people, make Soria a unique and unforgettable experience.
This Romanesque church is located on the banks of the old route of the National 234 road as it passes through Soria. Its monumental façade is considered one of the best in the Spanish Romanesque period. Of uncertain origin, of the primitive temple only the tower is conserved since the present building has undergone several remodelling. Around the primitive church different congregations settled down and enlarged this temple until it reached its current state. Today, after a long and busy history, the monastery to which it belongs is occupied by a congregation of Poor Clares. Declared a cultural asset in the year 2000, in addition to its façade it is an open book with which to illustrate the village, hence its name, the Stone Bible, it has a tower that seems to date from the early 12th century and the temple that was begun to be built at the end of the same century and was completed after successive extensions and reforms there in the 16th century. This temple was first erected in honour of Santo Tomé, although its name was later changed to that of Santo Domingo due to the order of Dominicans that was established alongside it.
We start the walk through the streets of Soria leaving the church of Santo Domingo behind us to go down to the nearby Antonio Machado Institute following the street Aduana Vieja. This street is also home to a succession of illustrious palaces, an unbeatable example of the historical importance of this noble town. Noble palaces such as those of San Clemente, Los Castejones or Don Diego de Solier, make up an inexhaustible succession of noble buildings that will take us to the Palace of the Salcedo River, a beautiful Renaissance construction built next to the church of San Clemente and owned for years by one of the most influential families in Soria. But our tour does not stop and this noble street ends up inviting us to leave the historical centre of the city for a moment and, turning right, set off towards the nearby Alameda of Cervantes park, a real botanical garden that hides authentic treasures. The Tree of Music or Fat Tree, the hermitage of the Solitude, its fountains, walks and corners invite you to take a quiet walk.
No doubt we will have a hard time saying goodbye to this park so linked to the history of the city, and in doing so we will be heading for the next jewel we will visit. To do so, we will return on our way to the Ramón y Cajal square and we will go up the street, leaving on our left the one we used to take to the boulevard from the palaces. Declared a national monument and of cultural interest, this is a Romanesque style building that has undergone several modifications throughout its history that have almost destroyed its original appearance. In fact, even today we can appreciate some of the scars that these reforms caused in it. In its interior also are conserved works of great importance like a plateresque altarpiece. Next to the church, we are sure to be struck by the list of illustrious characters that mark the palace of the council. Alfonso VIII, Sister Maria de Ágreda, San Martín de Finojosa or Francisco López de Gómara are some of those represented in these sculptures.
Once we have enjoyed this stop, we will continue bordering the church until we reach San Juan street, where we will get off to go back into the heart of Soria, crossed by El Collado street. When we reach it we will only have to turn aside a few meters to our left to continue towards the nearby palace. This enormous building of the 16th century and of imposing stamp leaves very clear the power that the Rio and Salcedo came to reach, power that they wanted to stamp in their new palace. According to the legend or the bad tongues, it was Felipe II himself who prevented the complete development of this magnificent work. Its large windows, its columns and its strong, upright tower house a typically Castilian interior that is at the same time luxurious. Today, in addition to being a cultural asset, it is also the seat of the Palace of Justice and an icon of the ancient splendour that Soria and its nobles enjoyed at the end of the 16th century.
From here we will continue the march either returning to El Collado street to approach the next Main Square of Soria or going further into the streets of the heart of Soria to access the square by the so-called Arch of the Horn and that allows us to enter fully into this typical Castilian square. The Fountain of the Lions, the Palace of Doña Urraca, the House of the Twelve Lineages or the church of Our Lady La Mayor from the 12th century, known in antiquity as the church of San Gil, are some of the regal buildings that await us in this beautiful square. But also this representative square to showing off several names throughout its history, Plaza del Trigo or Plaza del Collado have been the denominations with which it has been known, without forgetting either that besides the various markets have also been held in it, crowded bullfights. It is also worth spending some extra time on the church of Our Lady of La Mayor, whose Romanesque origins are mixed with the different architectural styles that successive reforms have shaped in its character.
We return to our course next to the sculpture that presides over the well-known Rincón of Leonor where we will follow the alley that descends parallel to the main street. A little further on, the alley turns sharply to take us to Calle Real, where we continue to descend until we reach the remains of the Church of San Nicolás. An old Romanesque temple of which the vestiges of its past splendour have hardly been preserved. From here we will continue the course of the street that will leave us as if we were at the doors of the Concathedral of San Pedro from which only the route of the old national 234 will separate us. Without a doubt there are many architectural and cultural values that this building treasures although we would dare to say that among them all its cloister stands out, built in the middle of the 12th century and declared national monument. As for the rest, this is a building constructed in a strategic place under the protection of the hills around which Soria expanded. There are many chapels, especially beautiful altarpieces and several of its seven bells of singular historical importance.
The next part of the route will take us to see beautiful spots of great historical importance, starting with the difficult ascent of the hill under which the cathedral stands. To do this we will only have to follow the street that borders it up the slope of the hill taking us to the same entrance walk to the chapel that marks it out. The chapel of El Mirón is located in an unbeatable location from which you can contemplate a wide panoramic view of Soria. We are in front of a baroque style building in whose exterior the three body obelisk in front of its door stands out. The same Walk of the Mirón will bring us closer to another unavoidable landmark of this hill, the Viewpoint of the Four Winds from which we will be able to admire the calm course of the Duero River as it passes through the city. A viewpoint and a walk that also keeps its important history linked to the city and the illustrious characters who walked through it.
From the viewpoint we will borrow the marked itinerary of the Route of the Wall, which runs through the main remains of the defensive network that Soria had in ancient times, to go down to the very bank of the Duero River and leave the walled enclosure to follow its downstream course. The river will be our companion and one of the protagonists in this part of the route. We will quickly come across the old Main Bridge, which will allow us to cross the mighty Duero riverbed as it has done since the Middle Ages. As soon as we cross it, we will go up the riverbed a few metres to get close to the beautiful cloister of San Juan de Duero. This national monument encompasses a wide variety of architectural styles that are perfectly reflected in its cloister. Styles that denote the cultural melting pot held by the members of the Order of the Hospitallers of San Juan de Duero, precursors of this construction. The simple Romanesque temple that marks this unique work also treasures uniqueness in every corner.
Having already examined every detail, every column of the cloister, we return to the riverbank to let ourselves be carried away by its tireless flow towards our next stop. We go through a pleasant and conditioned walk that after leaving behind the medieval bridge, will bring us closer to the Monastery of San Polo without any possible loss. Without a doubt, the landscaped walk that leads to this monastery, whose origins date back to the beginning of the 12th century, will surprise us with its impeccable appearance. The exterior area is only the area that can be visited. After that we will continue our walk sharing the route with the asphalted track that leads to the striking and curious hermitage towards which we are heading. San Saturio offers us the possibility of accessing it either through the interior of the mountain where it sits, going through the passages that communicate the different rooms, or directly to the church, making the tour inside on the contrary. In addition to the incalculable cultural and architectural values that this temple has, there is the special sensation that it creates in those who visit it and enter it through the cave that communicates with its interior.
Surprised by the visit to this chapel we return to the route looking for the passage that on the last ramp of the road that goes up to the temple allows us to descend to the river to cross it thanks to the bridge that is found here. This bridge offers us unbeatable panoramic views of the chapel we have just visited. On the other side of the Duero River, we will start to go upstream in search of the road that goes up to the hill of the castle, whose beginning we will find next to the Sotoplaya. To overcome this remarkable difference in level, in addition to the aforementioned zigzagging road, we will have a conditioned and dizzying walk equipped with several viewpoints. At the top of the hill, not only the remains of the battered Soria castle await us, but also a pleasant and well cared for green area with different attractions that add to the historical importance of this place, such as viewpoints or walks. The park invites you to take it easy and enjoy its corners and panoramic views while we recover the breath lost in the ascent. From here, at the opposite end of our arrival in the park, we will come across an old acquaintance, the route of the Wall, which will take us back to the centre of Soria without missing any other points of interest, such as the Viewpoint of the Sacred Heart or the church of Our Lady of the Espino, from where we have the option of following this route or going directly to the heart of Soria and putting an end to our itinerary.
Map of the route
This map is a sketch made as an example of the route, in no case represents the best or the only itinerary to follow. Its development has not taken into account the current rules of circulation or the state of the places through which it passes and that could affect its layout.
The route can vary greatly depending on the time of year, weather conditions and terrain, as well as the actions of third parties, traffic rules and the evolution suffered by the natural environment where it is located. SENDITUR is not responsible for any misuse or improper use of the comprehensive guides of its routes and/or publications, and/or the operation of its electronic guides, nor for the variations for the aforementioned reasons in their descriptions and recommends that everyone be responsible and prudent in carrying out the activity, complying with traffic regulations. Likewise, we invite you to document yourself with books and specialized guides to complement the information described. All times are approximate and take an indicative character. All the information related to the route, texts, images, videos, maps, diagrams, tracks, towns and places of tourist interest are published as a guide and may not coincide with the current state of each place. Before carrying out any activity, value your technical knowledge, your physical form, inform yourself about the meteorology and the variations that the route could have suffered, equípate correctly, be prudent and responsible at all times, not surpassing your capacities. 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, as well as the traffic rules wherever you go. All opinions, advice and/or assessments made by SENDITUR in its descriptions are for guidance only.
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¿Did you know that...
Soria is also known as the city of poets in part because figures such as Gustavo Adolfo Bécquer, Antonio Machado and Gerardo Diego Cendoya have walked its streets and written some of their verses there. There is even the so-called House of Poets, an exhibition and interactive museum dedicated to these great lyrics.
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The torreznos or torreznillos, are a typical product of Soria as well as being one of the symbols of its gastronomy. They are strips of bacon, cut, marinated and fried in a traditional way to achieve their characteristic crunchy crust and unmistakable flavour.
Distance of the route
9,2 Km. This figure may vary depending on the route we follow
Duration of the route
2h 55min This is the approximate time it will take us to make the tour between the different visits. To this time we must add the employee for the visits to each place
Time of year
All year round, but especially the autumn will bring us a splendid landscape
Historical, cultural and landscape. This route shows us a great part of the history, culture and landscapes of Soria
HOW TO GET TO
PLACES TO DISCOVER
DON'T BE IN DOUBT
You will also be able to discover what surrounds you, the localities, the places of interest or the fountains, the rest areas and much more.
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