Logroño

The cheerful capital of La Rioja

Logroño is a thriving and dynamic city that maintains a beautiful urban center marked by the Santiago Way and its production of wine. These factors make it a tourist and patrimonial attraction. It is a great place for wine lovers and those who are looking to participate in some active tourism.

Plan your stay in Logroño

Logroño is a pleasant city to take a walk in or to explore its famous tapas scene. It may be one of the best places to get tapas in Spain! Out of the many places to visit, we would like to highlight the Concatedral de Santa María la Redonda, where you can see a unique painting by Michelangelo. There are also numerous palaces with interesting facades and churches that we mention in the “What to see in Logroño” section. If you are a contemporary art lover, you shouldn’t miss the Würth Museum. For those who are looking to spend some time outside, Logroño is a great place to go on excursions. From the city you can take day trips to the Parque Natural de la Demanda y Urbión or the Espacio Natural de Peñas de Iregua, Leza y Jubera; both parks offer a large variety of active tourism. If you are interested in the medieval times and legends, you can take a trip to the nearby town of Nájera. There are tons of places to go out for tapas in Logroño and eat exceptional meals. We will mention a few in the “Where to eat in Logroño” section.

Do you want to visit this place?

The origin of the city of Logroño seems to be associated as much with the roman Vareia as the Celiberian Cantabria, destroyed by Leovigildo in 575. However, it wasn’t until the 5th century that Sancho Abarca took over the city and incorporated it into the Navarran kingdom, which began to acquire more importance. In 1095, it was destroyed by Rodrigo Díaz de Vivar, the “Cid Campeador”. Soon after, Alfonso VI of León awarded Logroño an important regional code of laws that promoted its repopulation, which is where the name Logronio comes from. Since then, it was converted into the main stop for the pilgrims on their way to Santiago de Compostela. Its strategic position, between Castile and Navarre, made it an ideal location for both kingdoms. Much later on in the Middle Ages, Juan II of Castile gave Logroño the title of city in 1431.

In 1521, during the war between the Autonomous Communities, Francisco I’s French army arrived at the city walls. After a short but intense siege, the people of Logroño defeated the French on the 11th of June through a small night brush.

n 1570, the Tribunal de la Santa Inquisition was installed in Logroño. Among the most known acts of faith, it is important to highlight the “Logroño’s Process,” which happened in 1610 and was burned by the witches of Zugarramurdi.

In 1833, the newly created province of Logroño began to take lead. In those years, during the First Carlist War, General Espartero chose Logroño as the center of operations of the liberals. He liked the city so much that he decided to choose it as his place of residence until his death in 1879.

In 1854, a colera epidemic devastated the city. The exemplary behavior of the citizens during this time resulted in praise from the government, and to recognize them, Queen Isabel II awarded the city with a title of “Excellence.”

The city of Logroño, linked to the Santiago Way and the vineyards of La Rioja, is a town with wide streets that are pleasant to walk down. The Ebro river crosses through it and features four bridges, which are some of the most prominent features of the city. Among other features of the city, we would like to highlight Puente de Piedra or the Puente de San Juan de Ortega (built in 1884, taking the place of the other one, which collapsed in 1881) and the Puente de Hierro or Puente de Sagasta of 1882.

The historical area in Logroño is surrounded by the Plaza del Mercado. In one of its highest points, you will find the Concatedral de Santa María de la Redonda (15th-18th century), declared Heritage of Cultural Interest. It was but during the 15th century on top of an old Roman temple. Its carefully sculpted front door stands out along with the two baroque towers. In its interior, you can observe many pieces by Castilian sculptor Gregorio Fernández and a painting called The Crucifixion by Michelangelo.

Inside of the historical center of Logroño, you will find three important temples. The first one if the San Bartolomé Church, which has also been awarded the Heritage of Cultural Interest. It was constructed first in the 18th century attached to one of the walls of the medieval city and then was later reconstructed in the 15th century. It features a beautiful gothic front door in which many sculptures can be found. You will also notice a Mudejar tower. Construction on the Iglesia de Santa María del Palacio began in the 12th century, although it continued to be remodeled until the 18th century. Its gothic character is so strong that the writer Dionisio Ridruejo said that it was the “sharpest, most original, and boldest [construction] of gothic Spain in its beginning stages in the 13th century.” It has been declared a Heritage of Cultural Interest. Lastly, the Iglesia de Santiago el Real is a monumental building that was constructed in the 16th century on top of a gothic temple. The facade, which was built in the 17th century, is thought to be a sort of “arc de triomf” and is decorated with two sculptures of the the apostle Santiago. Inside, you will find the meeting place of city council, which is why government documents are saved. It also houses the Virgin of Hope, patron saint of Logroño. This last temple is next to the Plaza de Santiago, in which a singural game of the goose is recreated, as it relates to the Santiago Way.

Amongst the civil architecture, Logroño has many must-see sights such as the Marqués del Monasterio Palace, a renaissance building from the 16th century, remodeled in the 18th century. The Palacio de Espartero from the 18th century also stands out, which was the old residence of the General along with being used as the episcopal headquarters during the time. Since 1963, this building has housed the La Rioja Museum, which presents a wide collection of history and art from the region.

Another emblematic space in this city is the Paseo del Príncipe de Vergara o del Espolón, which began to be built in the early year of 1757 as a public route on the outside of the walls that protected the city. On the path, you can see the Espartero Monument (1872), a statue of the chief architect of the project, Luis and Tomás, and of the sculptor Pablo Gilbert.

The Teatro Bretón de los Herreros, created by Félix Navarro at the end of the 19th century, is another one of the most representative buildings of the city. Currently, it is categorized as a Heritage of Cultural Interest.

Santa María la Redonda Cathedral
Santa María la Redonda Cathedral

Logroño is a city with a strong cultural scene, which includes its great museums, such as the Casa de las Ciencias, an interesting interactive center that is located in the old slaughterhouse of the municipality on the Puente de Piedra. The Museo Würth de la Rioja offers its visitors a good collection of contemporary art. In the Cubo de Revellín, an old defense building that formed part of the walls of the city, you can find archeological findings that were found in near archeological sites.

As the capital of La Rioja, Logroño features a wide variety of vineyards in its streets and stands out for its high quality wine.

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Practical data

Coordinates

42° 27′ 55″ N, 2° 27′ 0″ W

Distances

Pamplona 85 km, Burgos 150 km,Madrid 389 km

Altitude

391 m

Inhabitants

153 066 (2013)

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