This route through the Romanesque art of Ribera del Duero will allow you to enjoy this artistic style in its various manifestations, starting in San Esteban de Gormaz with the Romanesque art of Soria, and ending in San Bernardo with the Monastery of Santa María de Valbuena, an itinerary to transport us to the Middle Ages from an artistic point of view.
- Church of Nuestra Señora del Rivero (San Esteban de Gormaz) - Cultural Property of Interest (BIC)
- Church of San Miguel (San Esteban de Gormaz) - Cultural Property of Interest (BIC)
- Church of Santa María La Mayor (Peñalba de San Esteban)
- Church of San Ginés (Rejas de San Esteban)
- Church of San Martín (Rejas de San Esteban) - Cultural Property of Interest (BIC)
- Church of San Juan Bautista (Matanza de Soria)
- Church of San Nicolás de Bari (Sinovas) - Cultural Property of Interest (BIC)
- Church of San Sebastián (Caleruega)
- Church of la Asunción (Pinillos de Esgueva)
- Clock Tower of the former Church of San Esteban (Peñafiel) - Cultural Property of Interest (BIC)
- Monastery of Santa María de Valbuena (San Bernardo) - Cultural Property of Interest (BIC)
ROMANICO SORIANO Y RIBEREÑO
We begin in the land of Soria with the Church of Nuestra Señora del Rivero in San Esteban de Gormaz, a Romanesque church from the 12th century with a single nave, a semicircular apse facing east, and a porticoed gallery to the south. The church retains the original five arches on the southern front and the two on the eastern side, with decorative capitals featuring characters dressed in Islamic fashion, animal themes, and vegetal decorations.
Also, in San Esteban de Gormaz, we can visit the Church of San Miguel, which not only boasts the oldest surviving porticoed gallery in Castile but is also one of the oldest Romanesque temples in the southern area of the Duero River. Inside, there are late Gothic paintings, hundreds of graffiti dating from the 12th and 13th centuries, rare characters, funerary inscriptions, and a medieval tomb.
In Peñalba de San Esteban, we find the Church of Santa María La Mayor, known for its Renaissance-style porticoed gallery, one of the finest examples of its kind.
We now move on to Rejas de San Esteban, where there are two points of interest in this Romanesque route: the Church of San Ginés, whose main nave is covered with elements such as the porticoed gallery, the entrance, and the cornice of the southern wall that remain from the original Romanesque construction. And the Church of San Martín, from the mid-12th century, which has a single nave with a semicircular apse and features the characteristic porticoed gallery to the south.
We conclude this selection of Romanesque architecture in Soria with the Church of San Juan Bautista in Matanza de Soria, which dates to the 12th century and only retains the Romanesque apse. The curiosity of this church lies in the pairs of blind arches on both sides of the presbytery.
ROMÁNICO BURGALÉS Y RIBEREÑO
In Sinovas, just 3 km from Aranda de Duero, we find the Church of San Nicolás de Bari, whose origins date back to the 13th century. From this period, the Romanesque entrance, and some walls, including the original bell tower, have been preserved. In the 15th century, the original walls were raised and the coffered ceiling, painted in the Burgalese Mudejar style, was constructed, making it a true gem.
The Church of San Sebastián in Caleruega, from the early 12th century, retains from its original structure the tower, part of the entrance arch, a biforium window, and an apsidal presbytery inside. Saint Dominic was baptized in the small baptistery of this church. The baptismal font is currently located in the Monastery of the Dominican Nuns of Santo Domingo el Real in Madrid, where members of the Spanish Royal Family are still baptized.
In Pinillos de Esgueva, we encounter the Church of the Assumption, from the second half of the 12th century, which represents a beautiful example of the Romanesque architecture of Esgueva, with a single nave and harmonious construction. The apse stands out, with Lombardic arches, which are very rare in Castile. The interior, with ribbed arches and a barrel vault, is awe-inspiring for its architectural perfection and aesthetic harmony.
ROMÁNICO VALLISOLETANO Y RIBEREÑO
In Peñafiel, we cannot miss the Clock Tower, the only remaining structure of the Romanesque Church of San Esteban, founded in 1086 to commemorate the Castilian victory over the Almoravid Ali. The tower dates to the 13th century, and the clock was added in the 19th century. The Church of San Esteban was one of the first religious sites in Peñafiel and one of the most important churches in the region until the 15th and 16th centuries.
We conclude this itinerary at the majestic Monastery of Santa María de Valbuena, a gem of Romanesque religious architecture from the 12th century, corresponding to the late Romanesque period. Located on the banks of the Duero River, in the hamlet of San Bernardo, belonging to Valbuena de Duero, this temple was a place of retreat, prayer, and, wine production. The stone ensemble perfectly showcases the Cistercian typology of self-sufficiency and austerity established in the reform of San Bernardo.