Saint Dominic of Guzmán way
The bond between Santo Domingo de Guzmán and Ribera del Duero is as narrow as the fact that he was born in Caleruega. But... which other riverside places influenced the life of this historical figure?
We invite you to join us in retracing the steps of this Burgos cleric who played a leading role in our route.
- Tubilla del Lago
- Villalbilla de Gumiel
- Gumiel de Izán
- La Vid
Santo Domingo de Guzmán was born in Caleruega around the year 1170. His parents, Don Félix de Guzmán and Doña Juana de Aza, were relatives of Castilian, Leonese, Aragonese, Navarrese, and Portuguese kings, descended from the founding counts of Castilla. He had two brothers, Antonio and Manés.
Domingo lived in Caleruega until he was 7 years old. He then studied the basics with one of his uncles, a cleric, in Gumiel de Izán, and later continued his theological studies in Palencia. He was ordained a priest and became a canon of Osma.
It is said that Domingo, as a child, followed the route that starts from Caleruega, passes through Valdeande, Tubilla del Lago, Villalbilla de Gumiel, and ends in Gumiel de Izán. You can follow this route, which is signposted, by following the directions you will find in Tras los pasos de Santo Domingo de Guzmán,
a unique environment that still preserves the essence of that time.
Santo Domingo, the founder of the Order of Preachers, first established a monastery of Dominican nuns, and later, in 1216, the order of male preachers was approved. When Santo Domingo died on August 6, 1221, the Dominican Order already had eight provinces and sixty convents scattered throughout Europe.
Caleruega, one of the most beautiful towns in Spain, is also part of the Caminos del Cid route, as El Cid passed through here on his way into exile. It is a place of Dominican pilgrimage, where people from all over the world come to visit the birthplace of Santo Domingo de Guzmán, the founder of the Order of Preachers. Its streets form a magnificent monumental ensemble, with the Tower of the Guzmán from the 10th century standing out.
Santo Domingo de Guzmán was baptized in the Romanesque church of San Sebastián, dating from the 12th century, in Caleruega. The baptismal font was transferred by Alfonso X to the nuns' monastery for safekeeping until 1605, and it is currently located in the Monastery of the Dominican Mothers of Santo Domingo el Real in Madrid, where members of the Spanish Royal Family continue to be baptized. Additionally, this church was the place of the first burial of the Blessed Juana de Aza, the mother of Santo Domingo de Guzmán.
The Royal Monastery of Santo Domingo de Guzmán is one of the emblematic places of this route. King Alfonso X the Wise, who was related to the Guzmán family, had a church built in 1266 on the site where the Blessed Manés had built a chapel, as it was the birthplace of his brother Domingo. Years later, the ancestral home was transformed into a convent, with a community of nuns from San Esteban de Gormaz (Soria) being moved there and receiving the privilege of Lordship of the place. The monastery houses the Tomb of Infanta Leonor, daughter of Alfonso X, whose history dates to two years after the death of Saint Dominic (1221). The Convent of Santo Domingo was built in the mid-20th century and contains pieces of high artistic value.
In Valdeande, you can visit the Roman site of Ciella, the Church of San Pedro Apóstol, the hermitage of the Virgin of Juncal, or the Old Fountain. In Tubilla del Lago, you will be surprised by its Murals. Additionally, you can visit the Church of Nuestra Señora de la Asunción, from the 16th century, or the hermitages of San Marcos and San Miguel.
Gumiel de Izán is one of the six Historical-Artistic Ensembles of the Ribera del Duero Wine Route. In the Main Square of Gumiel de Izán, the imposing building of the Church of Nuestra Señora de la Asunción, stands out. To its left, is the house where Santo Domingo de Guzmán lived as a child while being educated by his maternal uncle, Don Gonzalo de Aza, archpriest in Gumiel de Izán from 1180-1185. The blazoned shields of Calle Real are a faithful testimony to the glorious past of Gumiel de Izán, which still preserves remains of its wall and one of its 5 access gates, the Arco de los Mesones. Also noteworthy for their interest are the hermitages of the Virgen del Río, San Roque, and the hermitage of the Christ of Reveche, an interesting example of Romanesque art.
The Monastery of Santa Maria de la Vid, a Premonstratensian monastery and now of Augustinians, was founded in the 12th century and expanded in the 13th century on the site where, according to tradition, the image of the Virgin of the Vine was found. It already existed in the time of Santo Domingo, and he visited here several times.
This magnificent monastic architectural complex, located on the banks of the Duero River, has a museum that includes numerous first-rate pieces of painting, sculpture, goldsmithing, and numismatics, as well as an impressive library. The visit to the monastery is an artistic journey through the Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque, and Neoclassical styles; all harmoniously combined.
We continue our route towards two very significant points for our protagonist:
Guzman, the birthplace of Santo Domingo's father.
Haza, the medieval town where Doña Juana, Santo Domingo's mother, was born.
And we end our tour in Peñafiel, where we can visit the Convent of San Pablo, where the remains of his mother, Doña Juana de Aza, are located.