El Cid in Castilla
This novel, exclusive self-guided one-week itinerary by bike takes us from the origin of El Cid's route of exile at Vivar del Cid through Castilla to the town of Atienza, using the famous Song of El Cid as a travel guide: a unique way to enjoy this cultural tourism route along the Path of Exile.
The first page of the manuscript of the Song is missing, and is supplemented with the following account taken from the Chronicle of the Twenty Kings:
"King Alfonso sent Ruy Diaz El Cid for the tributes the kings of Cordoba and Seville had to offer up each year. Almutamid, the king of Seville, and Almudafar, the king of Granada, were at that stage sworn enemies and were filled with deadly hatred for each other. And Almudafar, the king of Granada, had some rich men by his side: Count García Ordóñez and Fortún Sánchez, the son of King Don Garcia of Navarre, and Lope Sánchez, and each of these rich, powerful men supported Almudafar, and turned against Almutamiz, the king of Seville.
When Ruy Diaz El Cid learned that they had turned against the king of Seville, who was a vassal and subject of King Alfonso, his master, he took it very badly and it grieved him much; and he sent letters to all of them asking that they should not go against the king of Seville nor destroy his lands, because of the obligations they had towards King Alfonso (and telling them that if despite all this they went ahead, they should know that King Alfonso would not be king if he did not help his vassal, seeing as he was his subject). The king of Granada and the rich men did not even respond to El Cid's letters, and set off in full force and completely destroyed the king of Seville's lands all the way to Cabra Castle.
When Ruy Díaz saw this he pulled together all the forces he could, Christians and Moors, and marched against the king of Granada to drive him out of the land of the king of Seville. And when the king of Granada and the rich men who were with him heard what he was up to, they sent word that they would not leave on his orders. When Ruy Diaz heard this he decided it would be wrong not to attack them, and fought them on the battlefield. The battle lasted from the third hour after sunrise until noon, and a great number of Moors and Christians of the King of Granada were killed, and El Cid conquered them and made them flee the area. And in this battle El Cid took Count García Ordóñez prisoner and ripped out a tuft of his beard, doing the same with many other knights and countless footsoldiers. El Cid kept them prisoner for three days, and then released them all. After having taken them prisoner he sent his men to collect all the goods and treasures that they had left behind, and then returned with his whole army and all the treasures to Almutamiz, the king of Seville, and gave him and his Moors back all their riches, and beyond that he gave away other treasures to whomever wanted them. And from there onwards Moors and Christians called Ruy Diaz de Vivar, El Cid Campeador - meaning The Warrior.
Almutamid then gave him many valuable gifts as well as the tribute he had come to collect. And El Cid went with all these tributes to King Don Alfonso, his master. The king received him very well, he was very pleased and was satisfied with El Cid's actions. Because of this many were jealous of him, and they sought him harm and created quarrels between him and the king.
Because the king was vicious and cruel he believed what they said about El Cid and turned his wrath upon him, and sent word by letter that he should leave the kingdom. El Cid could not do anything after reading the royal letter, although it caused him great grief; because he had only nine days to leave the kingdom."
Interested in following in the footsteps of El Cid at this turning point in his life?
If you take on this challenge you won't be disappointed.
Day 1 - Sunday. Arrival in Vivar del Cid (own transport). Collect the first stamp in your pass. Dinner and overnight stay in Vivar del Cid.
Day 2 - Monday. Vivar del Cid - Burgos (10 km). Breakfast. Delivery of a picnic basket. The cycle route begins. Departure for Burgos (where you get another stamp). Overnight in Burgos.
Day 3 - Tuesday. Burgos - Santo Domingo de Silos (62 km). Breakfast. Departure for San Pedro de Cardeña, followed by a visit to Covarrubias (stamp point), and arrival at Santo Domingo de Silos (stamp point). Optional dinner. Accommodation in Santo Domingo de Silos.
Day 4 - Wednesday. Santo Domingo de Silos - Langa de Duero (62km). Breakfast. Departure for Huerta del Rey, through Alcubillas and Alcozar, to reach our destination Langa de Duero (stamp point). Optional dinner. Accommodation in Langa de Duero.
Day 5 - Thursday. Langa de Duero - Gormaz Quintanas (67 km). Breakfast. Departure for San Esteban de Gormaz. We pass by Burgo de Osma (stamp point). Do visit this town replete with history. Afterwards we reach the end of our stage today (stamp point). Optional dinner. Accommodation in Quintana de Gormaz.
Day 6 - Friday. Quintanas de Gormaz - Atienza (64 km). Breakfast. We head off towards the end of our route. Today we visit Berlanga de Duero (stamp point) and Miedes de Atienza Miedes (stamp point) before finally arriving at Atienza (stamp point). Bicycles are returned here. Optional dinner. Accommodation in Atienza.
Day 7 - Saturday. Breakfast in Atienza. Return at your own pace.
End of the journey
|Path of Exile (Self-guided)||Included||680€|
|6 Nights Accomdation (AD Hotels and Rural Houses)||Included|
|Well-equipped bicycle and helmet||Included|
|Luggage transfer between stages||Included|
|24-hour helpline assistance||Included|
|Transfers from / to Origin||Optional||Consult|
|Dinners and Picnic||Optional||Consult|
|Tour guide and Half Board||Optional||Consult|
1. It would be great if as pre-trip reading you looked at the Song of El Cid, or at the very least the first Song. This way your journey will be much more rewarding.
2. It is advisable to be a regular cyclist. There are not many hills on the route, but if you are not accustomed to riding a certain amount of distance your body may well protest!
3. Guaranteed departures with 2 participants.
4. Don't forget to stamp your pass at the indicated points.
The pass is a credential for travellers on the Camino del Cid, and must be stamped at various locations along the route. The pass is a copy of the document that was needed during the Middle Ages to ensure free transit of passengers and goods without fear of being arrested. As a modern traveler you can take it along and stamp it and thus obtain a document proving that you have completed the Camino del Cid.
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