Ayllón is a medieval town Historical-Artistic Set of national character from 1973. Of great architectural and cultural wealth, is located northeast of the province of Segovia.
The municipality borders Soria and Guadalajara, and is very close to the province of Burgos. It is located 135 km from Madrid, the same from Burgos and 95 km from Soria and the provincial capital, Segovia. It is 120 km from Guadalajara. Only 30 km separate it from the Madrid-Burgos (AI) highway. The Villa is located in the foothills of the Central System, in the so-called Sierra de Ayllón.
The Celtiberians are the first aylloneses of those who have news, as they show the abundant remains appeared on the hill where today stands the tower of La Martina. Then came the Goths, the Visigoths and the Muslims.
Alfonso VI, Alfonso VII, Ferdinand III, Ferdinand IV, Maria de Molina and El Cid Campeador, saints like Saint Francis of Assisi, who is credited with the founding of the convent of San Francisco, San Vicente Ferrer or Santa Teresa. of Jesus.
Juan II granted the dominion of the town of Ayllón to Don Álvaro de Luna, who in 1423 would be named Constable of Castile, a fact that is celebrated in the town with the Medieval Ayllón party on the last Saturday of the month of July.
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What to see
The Bridge and the Arch
After passing the bridge that saves the river Aguisejo arc rises, one of the three doors that had the Villa and main entrance on which four shields belonging to four of the most illustrious families of Ayllón.
When crossing the medieval door to enter the town, we find, on the right, the majestic presence of the Contreras Palace, commissioned by Juan de Contreras in 1497. Its exquisite facade is framed by a Franciscan cord and three coats of arms inclined, something very unusual. The coffered ceiling found inside indicates that some parts of the building are prior to that date.
Once you pass the palace of the Contreras, we find in front of us the majestic Plaza Mayor porticoed, which projects its sides onto the Town Hall, the first palace of the Marquis of Villena, located to the right of the magical Romanesque church of San Miguel.
From the square you can see the tower of La Martina, on top of the hill that presides over the town, and the steeple of the church of Santa María la Mayor. In the center of the square stands the fountain of Cuatro Caños, which has witnessed the history and progress of a town and its customs. It was built to commemorate the 4th centenary of the discovery of America, in 1892.
Church of San Miguel
The oldest remains of this space date from the s. XII, although there are additions and modifications until the s. XVIII. The architectural mix of different centuries throughout its history is balanced, giving this space a special charm. It housed the parish priest's house until 1993, the year in which its main restoration was carried out, which gave the building its current appearance. Precisely in this unique enclave the tourist office is located during the summer months, in order to provide the visitor with information about the municipality and its surroundings. This space is also used for exhibitions, concerts, theatrical performances, and multiple cultural and artistic activities. The cover, semi-hidden, sports an arch with rosettes, zis-zas and chess.
The apse, circular, has some foliate capitals and corbels that support a braided cornice. The church of San Miguel houses the burial of D. Pedro Gutiérrez de César, treasurer and secretary of D. Diego I López Pacheco and his second wife, Mrs. Juana Enríquez, Marquis of Villena. This burial was originally located in the church of San Juan, in a magnificent gothic chapel dedicated to San Sebastian and that had the purpose of housing the aforementioned family.
In Gothic letters, around the cover of the sepulcher, it can be read: "Here lie buried the very noble lords the treasurer Pedro Gutiérrez and María Álvarez de Vallejo, his wife, who was a native of Escalona, founders and endowers of this chapel. The year treasurer of 1531 passed away ... "
Santa María la Mayor
In the place where this church is located, there was an old parish whose ruinous nave sank at dawn on March 4, 1697. On October 20, 1701, the master builder delivered the work of the new Neoclassical style church, all made of ashlar, with a Latin cross plan and a dome in the transept, decorated with plaster bulges, a choir and a rectangular tower in the frontispiece. The altarpiece of the main altar belonged to the convent of San Francisco, from where it was transferred once the Confiscation was decreed in 1840. In the area of the choir the baptismal font is located, which shows a stone carving of great relevance.
The bell tower has 40 m high. In the upper body, six arches open for as many bells: four in front and one on each side. On this and between pyramids, a bulrush of three bays divided into two orders.
Hermitage of San Nicolás
Today the only remains of this church is the well-preserved Romanesque portal that houses the old cemetery. This cover is one of the most interesting pieces of Romanesque Ayllón. The cemetery treasures a great attraction for visitors who come to the Villa. Its interior, where funerals are no longer held, preserves a mystery that makes us feel how time is paralyzed when it is contemplated. The walls of this enclave are from the era of romanticism. Located outside the walls of the town, invites to walk to the convent of San Francisco.
Church of San Martín del Castillo
At present, only the majestic tower of La Martina and its stone foundations remain, which testify that it was the temple of a single La Martina nave and a circular apse.
It is accessed by the stone steps located southeast of the plateau of Cerro del Castillo. Until the year 1085, the town was based on this hill, where you can still see the remains of the buildings, as well as the castle of the s. IX that, according to the data we have, was almost destroyed in 1295, in the struggles between kings and nobility.
It is known that until the s. XVI the old tower of the castle denominated the Martina, provided with a belfry with two bays and adornment of balls, served as bell tower to the church. It also served as watchtower functions.
Ayllón was in the power of the Arabs, proof of it are the remains of walls of tapial called Los Paredones, which still remain, despite the centuries that have passed, on the hill where the castle of Ayllón was located.
As the land used in its construction was caught on site, there are remains of vessels and other materials corresponding to the first settlements that were made here. Studies are being carried out to value the whole enclave of the hill and that can be visited properly.
Church of San Juan
Romanesque church of the s. XIII, of which the apse remains standing with three arches of three points of three archivolts. In the S. XVI was built a Gothic chapel by the house of the Marquis of Villena. In its interior a Gothic style tomb, belonging to D. Álvaro Núñez de Daza, is preserved. The apses and gardens have been restored. The building passed into private hands in the 1960s. XX. Currently, a part of the church is dedicated to a museum, highlighting the Arte Brut exhibition.
Church of San Juan.
Romanesque, Gothic and Renaissance. Brut Art Collection. Piarist Temple Tel. 686 508 482
Convent of San Francisco
The ruins of this majestic convent, founded in 1214 by San Francisco de Asís, rise up a kilometer from the village. The building was burned and was raised again between 1733 and 1738. It is possible to emphasize its facade of ashlar masonry with bulrush and three arcs of means point. Although it is privately owned and you can not visit its interior, it is worth the walk to the place to enjoy the great work of stonework that took place in the bulrush, whose stone is preserved to perfection.
At present, Los Claustros de Ayllón is a hotel complex that is dedicated to the celebration of conventions and events, being a privileged place for its beauty.
Convent of the Conceptionist Mothers
The church is of Greco-Roman (rectangular), Romanesque style and vault of four sections. It has two choirs and on it stands the modest bulwark Franciscan.
It happened to private hands in the year 2007, being at present a hostería whose rooms are the same ones that the nuns occupied during more than five centuries.
Palace of Bishop Vellosillo
It was built in the middle of the s. XVI by Fernando de Vellosillo, outstanding son of this Villa, who became Bishop and Lord of Lugo.
However, the building was never occupied by the bishop, but by a nephew of the same name. The building, of sober elegance, happened to private hands, until in the decade of the seventies of the past s. XX the City Council acquired it as a public good. At present, the building houses the library and the Museum of Contemporary Art of Ayllón, of great artistic and cultural wealth, where you can enjoy works by such relevant authors as Barjola, Lucio Muñoz, Genovés, etc ...
The City Council has created a Virtual Museum where you can enjoy all his works. www.ayllon.es/museo-virtual
Museum of Contemporary Art Bishop Vellosillo
- Obispo Vellosillo Square, 1
- . Tel 921 553 916 - 680 717 278
House-Palace of María Eugenia de Montijo
The first documentary reference about this property is found in 1693, when it belonged to the Vellosillo family. After several successions, it was owned by Da. María de Sales Portocarrero Palafox, married to the Duke of Alba and older sister of the Empress Eugenia. It is a fact that this palace served as a mansion for the rest of this illustrious lady in the trips she made from Paris to Madrid.
It is another manor house, with ashlar masonry, it is so named because on its façade rests a spectacular shield in the shape of an eagle of San Juan.
Hospital of the Santi Spirit
Old hospital founded at the end of the s. XVI by the Brotherhood of the Sancti Spíritus, in which children were raised and fed foundlings and assisted the sick. It served as a hospital and as a school, and today houses the town's nursing home.
Located next to the entrance bridge to the Villa.
The House of the Tower
It has a complete history documented from the beginning of the s. XVI, and belonged, indistinctly, to the ecclesiastical Chapter, the Téllez and Girón families, the Colegio de Lugo and the counts of Puebla, among others. It is the oldest civil building in Ayllón.
Once used as a jail, it was also a barracks for the Civil Guard and was later acquired by Caja Segovia (now Bankia). Located opposite the church of San Miguel.
Town Hall House
This palace, built in the s. XVI and reformed in depth in 1804, it was devastated by a fire in 1945, of which only the facade was saved. On its front wall, both on the right and on the left, you can see the shields of the Marquis of Villena. Apparently, this was the first palace that the Marquis had in the Villa, before they decided to cede it to the Ayllón Council in 1620.
What to do
The town of Ayllón is committed to a different and dynamic way of showing its charms and its long history. The dramatized guided tours in Ayllón show historical moments that have occurred in the town since the s. XIII to the present. Characters such as King Juan II of Castile, Fray Vicente Ferrer or Catalina de Lancáster star in historical situations that were forged in the municipality. On the other hand, different scenes of daily life from past eras are also presented, from the point of view of the common people. In short, it is a route of approximately one hour and forty-five minutes, directed by a guide, with a total of six theatrical scenes.
Guided tours dramatized in Ayllón
- Booking phone 680 717 278
Francos is known for its vegetable gardens on the fertile plain of Aguisejo. It should be noted its church and the stone staircase in the shape of a snail that ascends its tower.
Located on the border of the provinces of Soria and Guadalajara, it has a beautiful Romanesque parish church, with cover of s. XII. The tower is square, which indicates the era of splendor that must have lived Grade not long ago.
The river Aguisejo takes its water in the source or herd that bears his name: manadero de Grado. During the War of Independence, the town was occupied by both sides on different occasions.
Route along the Aquisejo river. to download here
In Estebanvela, watered by the waters of the Aguisejo, its fruits are famous, especially the pippin apple and the walnut. Estebanvela belongs to the Hermitage of the Eternal Father, located in a beautiful spot next to the Villacortilla river, of great veneration in the region.
The Deposit of the Peña de Estebanvela It is located at 800 m of the town of the same name. Discovered in the year 1992, it is the only known site of the Upper Paleolithic in Segovia and one of the few places on the Castilian-Leonese plateau with a complete sequence of this period.
Our ancestors of the Magdalenian culture inhabited one of the caves about 14.000 ago. They came to her at the end of summer and stayed there until the beginning of winter. During their stay, they took advantage of the natural and mineral resources of the Aguisejo Valley. To this day an important collection of stone and bone tools, ornaments, etc ... has been preserved, although the most outstanding feature is the set of art-furniture (pieces of slate decorated), unique in the Iberian Peninsula.
The visit can be complemented with:
- Hiking trail at the foot of the mountain of the Sierra de Ayllón (area proposed by Geopark)
Expand information on this figure of protection in (www.geologiadesegovia.info).
More information and reservations in:
- . Tel 921 553 000 - 680 717 278
Saldaña de Ayllón
A semi-hidden population for its centuries-old oak forest, where, according to legend, the Cid's daughters were insulted by their husbands. Its church of San Pedro possesses an image of Byzantine style of Santo Christ.
Santibáñez de Ayllón
Located in a narrow and deep valley near the limit of Soria and Guadalajara, highlights its lush fertile plain, watered by the waters of the Aguisejo and other sources that are born in the term. This verdure breaks with the black of its hills, which makes it a picturesque town.
The church of the town is located in the upper part of the town and is dedicated to San Juan Bautista.
Judging by the treasures that its church possesses, especially its splendid main altarpiece of Castilian tables of excellent quality, it is possible to suppose that it was one of the richest towns of the region, given the fertility of its lands and, above all, the great cattle wealth of fine migratory sheep that treasured.
Scyces of the Riaza River
The Natural Park is located in the northeast of the province of Segovia. The Riaza River constitutes the longitudinal axis of the Space and, along its route, three large zones can be distinguished. The first, between the town of Maderuelo and the dam of Linares del Arroyo, with a relatively smooth relief, the river Riaza being dammed since the year 1951. Between the dam and the stream of El Casuar, with a length of 5,5 km the river has been embedded in the limestones forming a limestone canyon up to 150 m deep and between 200 and 300 m wide.
And finally, from this stream and up to the town of Montejo de la Vega, the river leaves the limestone forming a dissimétrico valley with a fertile plain in its bottom. In the vicinity of the urban center, there is a reserve of raptors and scavengers, founded in 1975 by Professor Félix Rodríguez de la Fuente.
In an incomparable place for the solitary, next to the Riaza river, the ruins of the hermitage of El Casuar, of Romanesque style and declared a Historic Artistic Monument are located.
House of the Park of the Sickles of the Riaza River
- C / De las Eras, 14 - Tel. 921 532 459
The Hayedo of the Black Tejera
Direction Atienza and Sigüenza, we are in the town of Cantalojas National Park from 1978, which belonged to the Community of Villa and Tierra de Ayllón as many other nearby places of the Sierra de Ayllón. This redoubt of beech, along with the Hayedo de la Pedrosa in Riofrío de Riaza, is the southernmost of those existing in Europe, hence its importance.
Roman Deposit of Tiermes
Just 20 km separate Ayllón from Tiermes, Villa Romana that reached the 8.000 inhabitants in the most splendid time. Renowned archaeologists called her "La Pompeya española" or "La Petra de Occidente".
The 5 of February is celebrated in all the localities of the region.
It is celebrated on the Thursday before Ash Wednesday, in the incomparable setting of the wineries of the hill, from whose walk a beautiful picture of the town is contemplated.
The May Cross
It is celebrated on the first Sunday of May in the esplanade of the convent of San Francisco.
The 15 of May is celebrated in all the localities.
The Eternal Father
It is a pilgrimage with two calls: the first, rogativa for a good harvest, in May or June (59 days after Holy Thursday); the second, in gratitude for what was harvested, takes place in September. The celebration takes place in the prairie of the hermitage of the Eternal Father, in the town of Estebanvela.
It takes place the last weekend of July. It is a medieval festival, organized by the Association Friends of the Middle Ages in Ayllón, which offers a multitude of activities: market, threshing, street theater, falconry, storytelling, challenges, dinners for nobles and commoners, Celtic music ...
Patron of the Villa, the 29 of September is celebrated.
The most noteworthy are the rich meats obtained from livestock (mainly sheep) that are raised in these Segovian lands. The most exquisite and most popular dish is the lamb roasted in a wood-burning oven offered by various establishments in the town. You can also taste a wide variety of sweets: donuts, cakes, shortcakes, muffins, etc.