Zumaia is a small town in the north of Spain in the Basque Country. The town has two beaches, which are of interest to geologists because they are situated among the longest set of continuous rock strata in the world. Known locally as the "flysch" they date from the mid-cretaceous period to the present, a time period of over 100 million years; the K-T boundary is present at the Itzurun beach, fossils can be found, notably of ammonites. The strata stretches along a distance of about 8 km, between the towns/beaches of Deba and Getaria, with Zumaia lying in the middle; the town is the home/museum of the painter Ignacio Zuloaga. Exhibits include works by El Greco, Zurbarán and Goya. Across the street there is hand-crafted products of Laia. Within the city centre, the Basque-style Gothic church of San Pedro can be found, it has a temple with a magnificent reredos by Juan de Antxieta, the only work by this Basque sculptor found in Gipuzkoa. Zumaia is located at the point where the Narrondo rivers come together.
The origins of the town can be traced by its ancient monastery. In the Middle Ages, the people who lived in the Sehatz valley having to endure the continuous attacks of pirates and pillagers, fortified the city; the church today retains the relic of its defensive appearance. According to the toponym of Zumaia, the theory that the name comes from "zuma" or "zume", a Basque word used to designate to the wicker, plant, plentiful in the zone, is defended, and with regards to Villagrana, there is a theory that states the possibility to be related with "grana", meaning "seeding", that were produced by the abundant groves of evergreen oaks in that period. Despite the disagreements in certain aspects with regards to the origins of Zumaia, all historians agree that the villa emerged surrounding the Monastery of Santa Maria. According to the first preserved parchment in, mentioned the place "Zumaya", the Monastery of Santa Maria had been a donation by a privilege of Sancho VI of Navarre to the Roncesvalles's convent in 1292.
Despite the different conclusions about the emplacement of the monastery, the monks of the Monastery of Santa Maria the direct witnesses of the birth of this villa, after the inhabitants dispersed by the valley of Sehatz decided to put an end to the continuous assaults of piracy and plunder and raise a villa walled and strengthened from where they could defend in group against the enemy. Due to its extent, its strategic location and its direct contact with the sea, the chosen place was Zumaia; the villa was not constituted juridically until 1347, when Alfonso XI of Castile provided the municipal charter to its citizens of "Villagrana de Zumaya's Villa", to, granted the Jurisdiction of San Sebastián. In the 16th century, Zumaia relied on 136 houses, 70 of them distributed among six streets that existed inside the wall, the remaining ones dispersed by three neighborhoods that were staying out of the wall. In total there were 53 of them with the qualification of nobility. Nowadays there is no evidence of the fortification that only was interrupted at a height of solar houses and towers that could play the same function of defending as the wall.
The entrance halls included the Principal Entrance Hall of the villa and the great cross that presided over them. They were destroyed in the middle of the 18th century in order to clear the surroundings of the town; the only natural door was the one of the bar of the sea, the most dangerous for being the most accessible. From the 16th century, the metal of the bells of the parish have been fused countless times. In 1578 the mayor ordered to ring them three times consecutively so that citizens were well-informed and came more assiduously to the meetings of the regiment, retired long time ago. Moreover, on the eve of the General Meetings - that were celebrated in the villa every 18 years, to offer fuel-wood and coal to the secretary of the province - two oaks were cut. In one of these sessions, on December 27, 1620, the same day in which Ignatius of Loyola, Patron Saint of Gipuzkoa was chosen, the patron saint of the town was named as the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary. With the pass of centuries, has brought logically many changes not only in the former ordinances municipal written in 1584, but in the urban development as well as in the customs and way of living of citizens.
However, the best keys to notice the development of the villa from its foundation to the present day, is the economic predominant activity of every epoch. The majority of the first inhabitants of the villa were devoted to agriculture, though grouping in the same place accelerated the appearance of some professional and industrial activities. By the end of the 14th century, ships were constructed in the river. A high percentage of the population was devoted to navigation; the river was very rich and many species could be fished, among them salmon, trout and eels. Many were reconciling the coastal fishing with agriculture. By the manufacturing of cement had become a relevant activity, for which they were taking advantage of the matters of tertiary areas of the surroundings. From the port they were departing goods towards the Netherlands as well as manufactured products were imported; some historians claim that the passenger liner, joining the villa with the hermitage of Santiago - habitual accommodation of the pilgrims who were going towards Santiago de Compostela, were among the most prominent sources of Zumaia's revenue in the 16th century.
The following centuries, 17th century and the 18th century, were not brilliant periods at all. The land continued being the principal econo
Zumarraga is a municipality in Gipuzkoa province of the Basque Country autonomous community of Spain. In 1446 a battle took place there during the War of the Bands, it is the birthplace of Miguel López de Legazpi, conquistador who explored the Pacific Islands and the East Indies, of Iñaki Urdangarín, the husband of Infanta Cristina of Spain
Gipuzkoa is a province of Spain and a historical territory of the autonomous community of the Basque Country. Its capital city is Donostia-San Sebastián. Gipuzkoa shares borders with the French department of Pyrénées-Atlantiques at the northeast, with the province and autonomous community of Navarre at east, Biscay at west, Álava at southwest and the Bay of Biscay to its north, it is located in the Bay of Biscay. It has 66 kilometres of coast land. With a total area of 1,980 square kilometres, Gipuzkoa is the smallest province of Spain; the province has 89 municipalities and a population of 720,592 inhabitants, from which more than half live in the Donostia-San Sebastián metropolitan area. Apart from the capital, other important cities are Irun, Zarautz, Mondragón, Hondarribia, Oñati, Tolosa and Pasaia; the oceanic climate gives the province an intense green colour with little thermic oscillation. Gipuzkoa is the province of the Basque Country where the Basque language is most extensively used: 49.1% of the population spoke Basque in 2006.
The first recorded name of the province was Ipuscoa in a document from the year 1025. During the following years, in various documents, several similar names appear, such as Ipuzcoa, Ipuçcha, among others; the full etymology the word Gipuzkoa has not been ascertained, but links have been made with the Basque word Giputz, containing the root ip-, related to the word ipar and ipuin. According to this, ipuzko might refer to something "to the north" or "in the north". Gipuzkoa is the Basque spelling recommended by the Royal Academy of the Basque language, it is used in official documents in that language; the Basque spelling is mandatory in official texts from the various Spanish public administrations in documents written in Spanish. It is the spelling most used by the Spanish-language media in the Basque Country, it is the spelling used in the Basque version of the Spanish constitution and in the Basque version of the Statute of Autonomy of the Basque Country. Gipuzkoa is the only official spelling approved for the historical territory by the Juntas Generales of the province.
Guipúzcoa is the spelling in Spanish, it has been determined by the Association of Spanish Language Academies as being the only correct use outside official Spanish documents, where the use of the Basque spelling is mandatory. It is the Spanish spelling used in the Spanish version of the Constitution and in the Spanish version of the Statute of Autonomy of the Basque Country. At 1,980 km2 Gipuzkoa is the smallest province in Spain; the province has 88 municipalities and 709,607 inhabitants, a quarter of whom live in the capital, San Sebastián. Other important towns are Irun, Zarautz, Arrasate, Oñati with an old university, Tolosa, the provincial capital for a short time, Pasaia, the main port and Hondarribia, an old fort town across from the French Atlantic coast. Gipuzkoa is hilly and green linking mountain and sea, populated with numerous urban nuclei that dot the whole territory; the conspicuous presence of hills and rugged terrain has added to a special leaning towards hiking and mountains on the part of Gipuzkoans.
Some mountains have an emblematic or iconic significance in the local tradition, their summits being topped with crosses and mountaineer postboxes. In addition, pilgrimages which have lost their former religious zeal and taken on a more secular slant are sometimes held to their summits; some renowned mountains are Aiako Harria, Txindoki and Izarraitz, amongst others. The Aralar Natural Park is a conservation area on the border of Gipuzkoa and Navarre in the Aralar Range; the rivers of Gipuzkoa are distinctly different from other Bay of Biscay rivers. They arise in the hilly Basque inland landscape, flow in a south- north direction, forming close, narrow valleys before joining the ocean; the rivers extend for a short length with only a small fluctuation in the volume of water thanks to the stable rainfall all year round, they show an abrupt drop between origin and mouth as far as the length of the river is concerned. From west to east the rivers are the Deba, Oria, Urumea and Bidasoa. Except for a narrow strip extending east from the hamlet Otzaurte and the tunnel of San Adrian, the province drains its waters to the Atlantic basin.
The region's communication layout is in step with its geographical features, with the main lines of infrastructure along a north -south axis up to recent times along the rivers heading to the ocean. Accordingly, the inland Way of St. James, i.e. the Tunnel Route penetrated the province via Irun and turned south-west along the Oria River towards the provincial limits at the tunnel of San Adrian. This stretch was in operation up to 1765. A minor St. James route crossed Gipuzkoa east to west along the coast; the main road cutting through Gipuzkoa follows that layout, i.e. the N-1 E-5 from Irun to Donostia and on to Altsasu all along the Oria River for the most part. The major Irun-Madrid railway runs close to the river up to its origin on the slopes of Aizkorri at train stop Otzaurte in Zegama. By 1973 engineering works for the Bilbao-Behobia A-8 E-70 motorway had been completed, with the new road cutting across the valleys east to west and turning into the main axis between Donostia and Bilbao, beside
Basque Country (autonomous community)
The Basque Country the Basque Autonomous Community is an autonomous community in northern Spain. It includes the Basque provinces of Álava and Gipuzkoa; the Basque Country or Basque Autonomous Community was granted the status of nationality within Spain, attributed by the Spanish Constitution of 1978. The autonomous community is based on the Statute of Autonomy of the Basque Country, a foundational legal document providing the framework for the development of the Basque people on Spanish soil. Navarre, which had narrowly rejected a joint statue of autonomy with Gipuzkoa, Álava and Biscay in 1932, was granted a separate statute in 1982. There is no official capital in the autonomous community, but the city of Vitoria-Gasteiz, in the province of Álava, is the de facto capital as the location of the Basque Parliament, the headquarters of the Basque Government, the residence of the President of the Basque Autonomous Community; the High Court of Justice of the Basque Country has its headquarters in the city of Bilbao.
Whilst Vitoria-Gasteiz is the largest municipality in area, with 277 km2, Bilbao is the largest in population, with 353,187 people, located in the province of Biscay within a conurbation of 875,552 people. The term Basque Country may refer to the larger cultural region, the home of the Basque people, which includes the autonomous community; the following provinces make up the autonomous community: Álava, capital Vitoria-Gasteiz Biscay, capital Bilbao-Bilbo Gipuzkoa, capital Donostia-San Sebastián The Basque Country borders Cantabria and the Burgos province to the west, the Bay of Biscay to the north and Navarre to the east and La Rioja to the south. The territory has three distinct areas, which are defined by the two parallel ranges of the Basque Mountains; the main range of mountains forms the watershed between the Mediterranean basins. The highest point of the range is in the Aizkorri massif; the three areas are: Formed by many valleys with short rivers that flow from the mountains to the Bay of Biscay, like the Nervión, Urola or Oria.
The coast is rough, with small inlets. The main features of the coast are the Bilbao Abra Bay and the Estuary of Bilbao, the Urdaibai estuary and the Bidasoa-Txingudi Bay that forms the border with France. Between the two mountain ranges, the area is occupied by a high plateau called Llanada Alavesa, where the capital Vitoria-Gasteiz is located; the rivers flow south from the mountains to the Ebro River. The main rivers are the Zadorra Bayas River. From the southern mountains to the Ebro is the so-called Rioja Alavesa, which shares the Mediterranean characteristics of other Ebro Valley zones; some of Spain's production of Rioja wine takes place here. The Basque Mountains form the watershed and mark the distinct climatic areas of the Basque Country: The northern valleys, in Biscay and Gipuzkoa and the valley of Ayala in Álava, are part of Green Spain, where the oceanic climate is predominant, with its wet weather all year round and moderate temperatures. Precipitation average is about 1200 mm; the middle section is influenced more by the continental climate, but with a varying degree of the northern oceanic climate.
This gives cold, snowy winters. The Ebro valley has a pure continental climate: winters are cold and dry and summers warm and dry, with precipitation peaking in spring and autumn. Precipitation is irregular, as low as 300 mm. Half of the 2,155,546 inhabitants of the Basque Autonomous Community live in Greater Bilbao, Bilbao's metropolitan area. Of the ten most populous cities, six form part of Bilbao's conurbation, known as Greater Bilbao. With 28.2% of the Basque population born outside this region, immigration is crucial to Basque demographics. Over the 20th century most of this immigration came from other parts of Spain from Galicia or Castile and León. Over recent years, sizeable numbers of this population have returned to their birthplaces and most immigration to the Basque country now comes from abroad, chiefly from South America. Roman Catholicism is, by far, the largest religion in the Basque Country. In 2012, the proportion of Basques that identified themselves as Roman Catholic was 58.6%, while it is one of the most secularised communities of Spain: 24.6% were non-religious and 12.3% of Basques were atheist.
Bilbao-Bilbo Vitoria-Gasteiz San Sebastián-Donostia Barakaldo Getxo Irun Portugalete Santurtzi Basauri Errenteria Spanish and Basque are co-official in all territories of the autonomous community. The Basque-speaking areas in the modern-day autonomous community are set against the wider context of the Basque language, spoken to the east in Navarre and the French Basque Country; the whole Basque speaking territory has experienced both expansion in its history. The Basque language experienced a gradual territorial contraction throughout the last nine centuries, severe deterioration of its sociolinguistic status for much of the 20th century due to heavy immigration from other parts of Spain, the virtual nonexistence of Basque language schooling, national policies implemented by the different Spanish régimes. After the advent of the Statute of Autonomy of the Basque Countr
Bay of Biscay
The Bay of Biscay is a gulf of the northeast Atlantic Ocean located south of the Celtic Sea. It lies along the western coast of France from Point Penmarc'h to the Spanish border, the northern coast of Spain west to Cape Ortegal; the south area of the Bay of Biscay washes over the northern coast of Spain and is known as the Cantabrian Sea. The average depth is 1,744 metres and the greatest depth is 4,735 metres; the Bay of Biscay is named after Biscay on the northern Spanish coast standing for the western Basque districts. Its name in other languages is: Asturian: golfu de Biscaya Basque: Bizkaiko golkoa Breton: pleg-mor Gwaskogn French: golfe de Gascogne Galician: golfo de Biscaia Gascon and Occitan: golf de Gasconha Latin: Sinus Biscaiensis Spanish: Golfo de Vizcaya Parts of the continental shelf extend far into the bay, resulting in shallow waters in many areas and thus the rough seas for which the region is known. Large storms occur in the bay during the winter months; the Bay of Biscay is home to some of the Atlantic Ocean's fiercest weather.
Up until recent years it was a regular occurrence for merchant vessels to founder in Biscay storms. The International Hydrographic Organization defines the limits of the Bay of Biscay as "a line joining Cap Ortegal to Penmarch Point"; the southernmost portion is the Cantabrian Sea. The main rivers that empty into the Bay of Biscay are Loire, Garonne, Adour, Bidasoa, Urumea, Urola, Artibai, Oka, Nervión, Agüera, Asón, Pas, Nansa, Sella, Nalón, Esva, Eo, Landro and Sor. In late spring and early summer a large fog triangle fills the southwestern half of the bay, covering just a few kilometers inland; as winter begins, weather becomes severe. Depressions enter from the west frequently and they either bounce north to the British Isles or they enter the Ebro Valley, dry out, are reborn in the form of powerful thunderstorms as they reach the Mediterranean Sea; these depressions cause severe weather at sea and bring light though constant rain to its shores. Sometimes powerful windstorms form if the pressure falls traveling along the Gulf Stream at great speed, resembling a hurricane, crashing in this bay with their maximum power, such as the Klaus storm.
The Gulf Stream enters the bay following the continental shelf's border anti-clockwise, keeping temperatures moderate all year long. The main cities on the shores of the Bay of Biscay are Bordeaux, Biarritz, Nantes, La Rochelle, Donostia-San Sebastián, Santander, Gijón and Avilés; the southern end of the gulf is called in Spanish "Mar Cantábrico", from the Estaca de Bares, as far as the mouth of Adour river, but this name is not used in English. It was named by Romans in the 1st century BC as Sinus Cantabrorum and Mare Gallaecum. On some medieval maps, the Bay of Biscay is marked as El Mar del los Vascos; the Bay of Biscay has been the site of many famous naval engagements over the centuries. In 1592 the Spanish defeated an English fleet during the eponymous Battle of the Bay of Biscay; the Biscay campaign of June 1795 consisted of a series of manoeuvres and two battles fought between the British Channel Fleet and the French Atlantic Fleet off the southern coast of Brittany during the second year of the French Revolutionary Wars.
USS Californian sank here after striking a naval mine on 22 June 1918. In 1920 SS Afrique sank after losing power and drifting into a reef in a storm with the loss of 575 lives. On 28 December 1943, the Battle of the Bay of Biscay was fought between HMS Glasgow and HMS Enterprise and a group of German destroyers as part of Operation Stonewall during World War II. U-667 sank on 25 August 1944 in position 46 ° 00 ′ N 01 ° 30 ′ W. All hands were lost. On 12 April 1970, Soviet submarine K-8 sank in the Bay of Biscay due to a fire that crippled the submarine's nuclear reactors. An attempt to save the sub failed, resulting in the death of forty sailors and the loss of four nuclear torpedoes. Due to the great depth, no salvage operation was attempted; the car ferries from Gijón to Nantes/Saint-Nazaire, Portsmouth to Bilbao and from Plymouth and Poole to Santander provide one of the most convenient ways to see cetaceans in European waters. Specialist groups take the ferries to hear more information. Volunteers and employees of ORCA observe and monitor cetacean activity from the bridge of the ships on Brittany Ferries' Portsmouth to Santander route.
Many species of whales and dolphins can be seen in this area. Most it is one of the few places in the world where the beaked whales, such as the Cuvier's beaked whale, have been observed frequently. Biscay Dolphin Research monitored cetacean activity from the P&O Ferries cruiseferry Pride of Bilbao, on voyages from Portsmouth to Bilbao. North Atlantic Right Whales, one of the most endangered whales, once came to the bay for feeding and for calving as well, but whaling activities by Basque people wiped them out sometime prior to 1850s; the eastern population of this species are considered to be extinct, a
Azpeitia is a town and municipality within the province of Gipuzkoa, in the Basque Country of Spain, located on the Urola river a few kilometres east of Azkoitia. Its population is 14,580, it is located 41 kilometres southwest of Donostia/San Sebastián. Azpeitia is the birthplace of Ignatius of Loyola; the house of his birth is now preserved as a part of large Jesuit compound, the Sanctuary of Loyola, a major attraction of tourists and pilgrims alike. It is the birthplace of Renaissance composer Juan de Anchieta. Azpeitia lies at the foot of the massive Izarraitz towering over the town and much visited by the townspeople. Azpeitia Railway Museum is located in the town. Azpeitia was incorporated in 1310 by a royal decree of King Fernando IV, its original name was “Garmendia de Iraurgi” and a year it was renamed “Salvatierra de Iraurgi”. The name “Azpeitia” is first found in 1397. During the 13th and 14th centuries there were many battles and wars among prominent families in the town between the Oñatz and Gamboa families.
In 1766, there was revolt in the town against King Carlos V’s policy of liberalizing the selling and buying of wheat and a rebellious town council was established. However, the revolt was suppressed by troops sent from San Sebastian; the steel and wood industries have been the main industries in Azpeitia. The Sanctuary of Loyola is its major local tourist attraction, together with the Basque Railway Museum, he was born in Loyola, Azpeitia, in 1491 and died in Rome in 1556. His family was part of the aristocracy of Biscay; as a young man he worked in the service of the viceroy of Navarre. He was injured in both legs during the defence of Pamplona in 1521. Afterwards, during his convalescence, he started reading religious books; this had a big impact on his life. He travelled to Catalonia, first to the monastery of Montserrat in 1522 and to Manresa, where he retired to a cave to meditate for a year. Afterwards he wrote The Book of Spiritual Exercises. After various journeys to Rome, Alcalá de Henares and Salamanca, he went to Paris in 1528, where he studied philosophy and theology.
Together with some other students he founded the core of the Society of Jesus, which received Papal approval in 1540 and chose St. Ignatius as its superior general. Afterwards, the Jesuits spread all over the world, starting in Europe and to the Americas; when he died, St Ignatius was canonised by the Roman Catholic Church. The museum is situated in the old Urola railway station, on a line which connected Zumaia and Zumárraga; the Basque Railway Museum has one of the best railway collections in Europe, with vehicles of all types: steam locomotives and electric. In addition, the museum offers one of the most complete sets of machine tools in the Basque Country from the old Urola Railway garage; this installation is preserved just as it was inaugurated in 1925, with an old electric motor that drives its 16 machines through a complex system of pulleys and belts. The line is no longer operative. However, the train between Azpeitia and Lasao is an important tourist attraction; the amazing facilities of the old electrical transformer plant with its original equipment rectification, mercury vapor, reflect the most modern technology of a century ago.
On the first floor of the central building of the old station at Azpeitia, there is an exceptional sample of the uniforms used in the railroads since the late nineteenth century to the AVE. On the second floor is a great collection of railway clocks. Nowadays, the train museum is operated by Eusko Tren, a public railway company run by the Basque government; this line is no longer operated as a service. A recent study supported by the Basque government, "Azpeitia 1936-1945" examines daily life in the period and an index of Azpeitians of the time with a summary of their political activities during and after the Civil War, it contains reproductions of many of the historical documents of the time. In Azpeitia, the main opposing sides were the Carlists, who supported the Nationalists, the Basque Nationalists from EAJ-PNV. There were falangists and left-wing militants and some anarchists. Nationalist troops entered Azpeitia in September, 1936. Shortly afterwards, a new council was created dominated by traditionalists.
Azpeita has always been characterized by a wide use of the Basque language, but its use diminished after Franco´s victory. Franco himself visited Azpeitia in 1939 and in 1945, its building process started in 1320. It was the property of one of the most powerful Basque families of the Oñatz family. In 1456, the upper part of the tower was destroyed by order of Henry IV, it was repaired in 1535. In 1750, numerous baroque elements typical of the time were added and the tower, now a palace, acquired its current appearance. Nowadays, the palace is Azpeitia´s local public library, it is situated halfway between Loyola. It was built in early 14th centuries, it contains a polychrome Gothic carving of Our Lady of Olatz, for whom it is said that San Ignatius felt a special devotion. The private boards of Gipuzkoa held their meetings here until the beginning of the 18th century. In 1535, after completing his studies in Paris, when Íñigo de Loyola arrived in Azpeitia, he was ill. However, instead of residing in the family tower house, he chose to stay in this hospital and leprosarium, together with the poorest patients.
He used to preach there. He is said to have walked the streets begging for food and help for th
Azkoitia is a town located in the province of Gipuzkoa, in the Autonomous Community of Basque Country, in northern Spain. It is the seat of the municipality of the same name. Azkoitia and the municipality of the same name, are located on and around the upper Urola river valley, centered on a small alluvial plain surrounded by the Basque mountains. Except for the valley itself, the terrain is rather rugged, with elevations ranging to little less than 950 meters; as of 2004, the municipality numbers 10,946 inhabitants, of which 5,324 are men and 5,262 are women. Age is distributed among the sexes rather evenly with children and adolescents forming 16.235% of the population, adults making up 53.744%, senior citizens forming the remaining 30.021%. Azkoitia was the birthplace of the mother of Saint Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the Jesuit religious order. Ignatius' maternal grandfather, Don Martin Garcia de Licona, had purchased Balda Tower in the mid-15th century. Recurring bloody encounters in the region persuaded the king, Henry IV of Castile, to reduce the tower from a fortress to a courthouse.
On 13 July 1467 Don Martin's daughter, Dona Marina Saenz de Licona Balda married Don Beltran Ibanez de Onaz y Loyola from neighbouring Azpeitia in the Licona family home in Azkoitia. The original wedding contract still exists. Loyola's birth house is still preserved as a museum a part of a large Jesuit compound, it is located a few kilometers east of Azkoitia's city center, at the small community of Azpeitia, is a major tourist attraction. Official Website Information Basque. AZKOITIA in the Bernardo Estornés Lasa - Auñamendi Encyclopedia Information available in Spanish ^ Demographics for all Basque municipalities