In conjunction with Chris Pollard’s weekend Course ‘The Story of the Duero’, Christopher Pollard Tours is delighted to offer a four-night Study Tour: ‘On the Banks of the Duero’. The group will leave Dillington early on 8th April and drive up to Heathrow Airport‚ flying to Madrid. From there we make our way to the Province of Soria.
Soria is one of the forgotten Provinces of Spain. It is severely underpopulated and dramatically under-valued. It has some of the most spectacular scenery in inland Spain, dominated by the great river Duero‚ lovely villages, stunning Romanesque churches and monasteries, three or four of the finest castles in Europe. We shall walk with vultures in the Rio Lobo Gorge, climb (in the minibus) to 6000 feet to the Lake of Urbion, explore the banks of the River Duero …
Flying to Madrid we drive up to our home for the tour: the lovely Hotel Las Nieves in the attractive riverside village of Salduero del Duero. This is a wonderful hotel. It is very simple, family-run and comfortable – and the owner’s father is the village butcher. Need I say more?
The environs of the hotel are very enticing. On Day 2 we spend the morning in Viruela and then drive up through the pine-forests to one of Spain’s most famous beauty-spots, the Lake of Urbión‚ from there we drive into the tiny capital, Soria, an attractive, lively town. Again, the river is a central feature and the exquisite Romanesque ruins of San Juan and the Sanctuary of Soria’s Patrón Saint are on its banks. The city has some of the most beautiful Romanesque architecture in Spain, in particular, the façade of San Domingo.
The vast expanses of the plain of the Duero have inspired many landscape poets. On Day 3, we travel to the biggest Moorish castle in Europe at Gormaz, walk in the Gorge of the River Lobo and take lunch in the cathedral city (and culinary hot-spot) of El Burgo de Osma.
On Day 4 we take a lovely excursion into the Province of Burgos. More gorges, more ruined monasteries (San Pedro de Arlanza), another wonderful medieval village (Covarrubias) and the finest Romanesque cloisters in Spain (Santo Domingo de Silos).