A FULL VALLEY OF
Pre-history men, mythological beings, kings and princes, malefactors and traders, travelers and pilgrims have crossed Goierri through History. Its strategic location connecting Europe to Castile make Goierri a really good place to catch a whiff of history and culture.
THE VARIETY OF OUR FOLKLORE
Meeting our characters, both real and fictitious, will help you understand the particular charm of our region and the true foundations of those who live here.
A medieval village build under the mandate of Alfonso X of Castile to protect the San Adrián’s Royal Path. Segura is a beauty! Admire their palaces and other buildings. Ordizia has been holding a local products market for the past 500 years. Back in 1512, the Queen Juana of Castile wanted to help the town after a terrible fire, and awarded Ordizia the right to have its own free market, every Wednesday all year round.
Nowadays, you can go up to the tunnel easily, but it wasn’t always like that. It used to be a mythic place where nature overcame the human being. San Adrián’s path used to be the main communication route between Europe and the Kingdom of Castile. In the Middle Ages, a fortress was built and guarded by 100 soldiers. San Adrián was a royal path and also the reference to those pilgrims that chose this route to get to Santiago de Compostela.
Tartalo, a one-eyed giant, is a shepherd who takes good care of sheep but hates people. Goierri’s nature is loaded with magical connotations and special creatures. The Goddess Mari, her children Atarrabi and Mikelats (the first being a good son; the latter, not so much), witches shaped as hens and bears, oxen’s skin filled with gold…the Barandiaran Museum of Basque Mythology, in Ataun, is the place to be to get to know all this in detail. Enjoy!
Did you know that Carlist General Tomás Zumalacárregui introduced beret -today, a symbol to Basque people- and made it fashionable? It got so popular that during the Second Carlist War more than 75,000 were sold. The great anthropologist and priest José Miguel de Barandiaran, who lived for more than 100 years, knew everything about Basque mythology. He was also very attached to his beret -txapela in Euskera-. Both of them were born in Goierri. We recommend visiting Zumalacárregui Museum and Larruntza windmill, where you will find Barandiaran Museum. José Miguel de Barandiaran dedicated his whole life to study Basque folklore and ancient religious myths. You will learn lots of stuff without even realising!
Iron has shaped the land and history of the Basque Country, and especially in Zerain. You can visit the old mines of Aizpea, known as the Mountain of Iron, and know how iron was extracted in the old days, as well as visiting one of the galleries. This mines have been declared Monumental Complex by the Basque Government’s Ministry of Culture. Every weekend from 12PM on, you can join a guided visit from Zerain Tourist Office.
The Igartza family was really powerful in the Middle Ages, building their own palace out of wood and stone, next to Oria river in Beasain. The site, full of architectural and historical value, displays a forge, a wooden dam, a windmill and a bridge. The workers at the forge would end up building what today is CAF, the company responsible for manufacturing high-speed trains, trams, and undergrounds all around the world.