Information about stage 9: Stage from Najera to Sto. Causeway Sunday
- Km 0. Nájera (All Services)
The location of the municipal shelter, at the western end of the city, and the urban walk the day before allow us to leave Nájera quickly. Calle del Mercado ends next to the Monastery of Santa María la Real , artistic insignia of the old capital of the Kingdom of Navarre. Founded in 1052, it was rebuilt in the 15th century in the Gothic style. Of the ensemble, the plateresque cloister of the Knights stands out . On the side of the monument we take Costanilla street and leave Nájera along a clay track. Shortly we leave aside an agricultural shed and cross over the Pozuelos or Valdecañas stream (Km 1.8) . On tar and, again, dirt, we finally arrive at a paved track (Km 3.8) that leads directly to Azofra , an agricultural town settled in the fertile plain of the Tuerto river . The best proof of its Jacobean past is the foundation, already in the year 1168, of a hospital and a cemetery for pilgrims.
- km 5.7. Azofra (Hostel. Shop. Bars. Pharmacy)
The Camino crosses Azofra through its main street, where the services are located. It is worth knowing that until Cirueña, the next town with some service, there are 9.3 kilometers to go. We say goodbye to the town next to the Real Casona de las Amas , the former residence of an illustrious family that has been rehabilitated for tourism. At the exit we take a short section of the LR-206 and, when we arrive next to the Romeros fountain , we turn left to resume our journey along tracks. After more than a kilometer we come across a pillory from the mid-16th century , a symbol of justice (Km 7.2) . In the next few kilometres, the route of the stage approaches that of the N-120 for some stretch and crosses the Alesanco highway (Km 8.9) . As for the landscape, the cereal fields are progressively scratching the ground with the vines, a sign that Castilla is close, although we will not say goodbye to La Rioja until tomorrow. After a one-kilometer steep slope we arrive at a picnic area (Km 13) , a good place to have lunch. Barely ten minutes away we find a golf club and a residential complex that have been built on the outskirts of Cirueña , a town that we arrived at later.
- Km 15. Cirueña (Shelters. Bar)
The Camino passes Cirueña glancingly along Barrio Bajero street. At the exit we find a short stretch of road that leads to another agricultural track. After a gentle undulation, Santo Domingo de la Calzada is discovered , where the baroque tower of the cathedral stands out like a watchtower. The prologue to Santo Domingo are several warehouses and warehouses (Km 19.5) . Then we continue along the access road that leads to 12 de Mayo and Mayor streets, where the ambitious pilgrims’ hostel is located.
- Km 21. Santo Domingo de la Calzada (All Services)
- Devoid of difficulties: Neither the mileage nor the orography of the stage present any difficulty. The almost 9.5 kilometers that separate Azofra from Cirueña only present a positive difference of 190 meters, which gives an idea of the smoothness of the day.
Easy stage with almost no difficulty. For those who want to extend it, they can do it to Grañón where there is one of the pilgrim hostels that will not leave anyone indifferent, the San Juan Bautista parish hostel, in addition to other accommodation. All the towns through which the stage passes have services for the pilgrim. For lovers of culture and monuments near the route of this stage is the monastery of San Millán de la Cogolla, Suso and Yuso. It is well worth a visit, although the route is about 15 kilometers longer. A good possibility is to go in a taxi shared by several. In Santo Domingo de la Calzada you can visit the Cathedral that has a crypt and mausoleum of the so famous Saint who dedicated his life to pilgrims, as well as a rooster and a hen that according to tradition if the pilgrim who enters the cathedral hears them singing means you will have a good path. Santo Domingo de la Calzada is also famous for the medieval legend about what happened to some German pilgrims. A German couple and their young son, Hugonell, go on a pilgrimage to Compostela. Upon arrival in Santo Domingo they stay in an inn. The innkeeper’s daughter falls in love with the young man, but when she is unrequited she decides to take revenge by hiding a silver cup in the young man’s luggage. When he leaves the city, the girl denounces the robbery. Upon being captured, he finds the cup among his belongings for which he is accused of theft and sentenced to hang.The next day, his parents, before embarking on the trip, go to see the body of their son, who surprisingly was alive and tells them: “The blessed Santo Domingo de la Calzada has preserved my life against the rigorous rope… give account of this prodigy.” The parents go to tell the event to the mayor of the city, but the latter, skeptical, comments that the young man is as alive as the roasted rooster and hen that he is about to eat. Instantly the birds regain their feathers and life, attesting to the prodigious miracle. Hence the saying: “Santo Domingo de la Calzadawhere the chicken sang after being roasted”
What to see, what to do
- AZOFRA : Small town, very hospitable to pilgrims, located in the valley of the Río Tuerto. Its houses with nobility packaging and noble shields are aligned along its main street. In the parish church from the 17th and 18th centuries, dedicated to Nuestra Señora de los Ángeles, you can see a carving of Santiago Pilgrim. A few kilometers from Azofra are the monasteries of Suso and Yuso de San Millán de la Cogolla (a detour at the exit of Azofra allows visitors to visit them, especially cyclists, taking a good detour). They are a World Heritage Site and the cradle of the Spanish language with its Emilian Glosses, handwritten annotations written in Latin, Romance and Basque.
- SANTO DOMINGO DE LA CALZADA : This city is the genuine daughter of the Camino de Santiago. Founded by Santo Domingo in 1044, who built a bridge over the Oja River to facilitate the passage of pilgrims, as well as a road between Nájera and Redecilla and an inn. The cathedral, the most emblematic building of the town, was erected on the tomb of the Saint. The plant is Romanesque but its style is Gothic and Renaissance. Inside, in front of the Saint’s tomb, there is a niche where a rooster and a hen live together in memory of the legend of the hen that crowed after being roasted. You can go up to the tower – free-standing bell tower after paying the corresponding entrance, but it is a good option since the view from above is worth it. Opposite, the Parador de Turismo preserves in its interior several elements of the old Pilgrims Hospital. Santo Domingo de la Calzada is the capital of the region and has numerous shops, bars and restaurants.