Rioseco Abbey (Monasterio cisterciense de Santa María de Rioseco) is a former Cistercian abbey in Rioseco, Burgos. The monastery was dispossessed in the 1820s, during the first Spanish Civil War. Most of the community’s goods were sold, but the monastery itself however found no buyer, and was left abandoned. In the 1850s the surviving buildings were stripped and reduced to ruins. There is now a campaign to save what is left of the the abbey and convert the site into a Romantic (with a capital R) botanical garden. Sounds a lovely idea to me. Continue reading
A bear’s claw is nailed to a church in the village of Navacepeda de Tormes in the Sierra de Gredos. The old people say a man had been attacked by a bear and had defended himself with scythe. Bears became extinct in Gredos at some point in the 16th century.
This video poetically tells the story. Kindly sent to me by Claire of Gredosvivo, bird watching tours in central-western Spain.The video was researched and made by Enrique Sacristán. Also available in Spanish.
The monastery of Sant Pere de Rodes is one of the most important of all Catalan Romanesque sites. Perched high on a hillside overlooking the Gulf of Léon, the setting is as impressive as the ruined walls and towers themselves. The first written record of the monastery dates back to 879 AD, when it was one of the many religious institutions founded in this area after the departure of the Moors. The magnificent Bendictines edifice was constructed between 979 and 1022, and was sacked and abandoned in the eighteenth century. Best preserved is the church at its centre with three wide naves and capitals of delicately carved acanthus leaves and animal heads. The 27-meter high bell-tower has fine arcades. The ruins are at their most atmospheric when shrouded in swirling mist, which is not uncommon in autumn and winter. On the hilltop above Sant Pere are the remains of a medieval castle, and fantastic 360º views that sweep from Cerbère in France to Cap de Creus to the east, to Montgrí and Begur in the south, to the high Pyranees in the west. There is an interesting Romanesque church above the main parking lot. On the hillside just below the monastery there is a pretty grotto with a fountain. This is a good spot from which to look up in awe at the mighty edifice above.
The true origin of the monastery is not known, which has given rise to speculation and legend; such as its foundation by monks who disembarked in the area with the remains of Saint Peter and other saints, to save them from the Barbarian hordes that had fallen on Rome. Once the danger had passed the Pope Boniface IV commanded them to construct a monastery. Read on Wikipedia
Stork settlement on granary, Los Monegros. Aragon Ghost road layout for urbanisation outside small village in Los Monegros, Aragon, February 2011. A beautiful monument to local greed and corruption. […]
Lisa over at picosdeeuropa.com has an interesting account of how at least one pair of Cantabrian bears has bred later in the year, in late August, instead of May-June, presumably because of climate change. More here […]
Tucked up a side street around the corner from the theatre, Bellver is about as far away from Palma’s gleaming 21st- century tapas bars as it’s possible to imagine. Dark and shadowy, with shelves lined with dusty bottles and wine barrels, and rickety wooden tables scattered around the small space, it is steeped in history, atmosphere and the smell of spicy pork frying on the tiny grill beside the bar. Order up icy beers and pinchos and settle into a slice of unchanged Mallorquin life.
Trekking in the Sierra Nevada in June
I enjoyed this post on the iberianatureforum by Maria:
Outside the tapas bars of Lanjaron temperatures reached 30 degrees. 2500m above we donned our duvet jackets as an icy wind tore across the white snow filled plateau. Such are the contrasts this year in southern Spain’s Sierra Nevada, a legacy of the worst winter weather in living memory.
Read the original story here:
Pork and its by-products may be the most emblematic food of the county, but Osona has much else to offer gastronomes. The truffle (trufa), a black mushroom that grows underground and is highly prized, and a wide range of bolets (Catalan mushrooms) including pinetell, rovelló, rossinyol, cep and fredolic are found locally, as are the white beans (mongetes) of the Collsacabra Mountains, characterised by their small size. For dessert, the pa de pessic de Vic (sponge cake) is worth trying as are the regional cheeses, curds, honey and jam.
High in the Parque Natural Sierra María-Los Vélez in northern Almería a new and cultural weapon has been unveiled to combat the hearts and minds of those not convinced that urgent action needs to be taken to preserve our landscape, flora and fauna. More...
Detail of modernist forge of the Staircase of the Paseo del Óvalo. The monumental staircase was built in 1921 to link the new railway station with the old part of the city. The work has modernist and neomudejar details. By SantiMB on Flickr
Here are a few words and expressions in Castilian Spanish that don’t exist in English, and perhaps could be borrowed. Foreigners speakers of Spanish in Spain certainly use so of them with alarming frequency with other English speakers in Spain, as do our Spanish friends and spouses. The list does not include food terms (covered […]
I picked up this interesting list of facts about bullfighting from The Guardian here. Bullfighting was at first seen as an exclusively aristocratic pursuit for Spanish noblemen who remained seated on horseback. In 1726, the matador Francisco Romero was the first to challenge the bull on foot. He also introduced the famous red cape (muleta) […]
The Old Woman Cooking Eggs was painted by Diego Velázquez during his Seville period possibly in 1618, and like in much of his work early poor and working class characters are portrayed. Like other early works by the artist, it shows the influence of chiaroscuro, with a strong light source coming in from the left, […]
Yesterday I went for a wander around the market in Anton Martin, Madrid. Unlike other old barrio markets in Madrid, this one is still doing pretty well, with plenty of customers milling about and buying from the stalls. The final photo of the man with the pipe is in the Plaza Mayor. […]