Perhaps not at the same time
For those a little unsure, Logroño is in northern Spain and is the capital of the province of La Rioja, yep the wine – Surely you don’t need any other reason to visit?
This ancient city which sits on the banks of the River Ebro, has history dating back centuries.
In the early 1600s, Logroño became the main seat of the Spanish Inquisition's Basque witch trials - sounds like something from Monty Python.
However, today as a tourist location it appears to have kept itself quietly under the radar.
As a city, Logroño feels fairly small, but has a very welcoming touch about it. Along with its selection of churches, it has some lovely parks and plazas to sit and watch the world go by.
Also, the pintxo, or tapas, here is fantastic - different styles & varieties from one bar to the next make exploring fun.
Another lasting memory is the amazing street art.
Camino de Santiago
If you are not already walking the Camino de Santiago route, you will probably notice quite a few folk in hiking boots, with walking sticks and the synonymous the shell hanging off of their backpacks.
This is because Logroño forms part of the Camino de Santiago trail, this is a huge pilgrimage that passes from France across northern Spain to Santiago de Compostela, in Galicia on the west coast.
All along this northern part of Spain you will see signs guiding you along.
The Co-Cathedral of Santa María de la Redonda, built in the 15th century, stands along Calle Portales.
With its two Baroque style towers, known as “las gemelas” (The Twins), peering down below on Plaza del Mercado. The cathedral contains Michelangelo's ‘The Crucifixion’.
The Church of San Bartholomé is the oldest church in Logroño, and includes Romanesque style architecture along with Gothic from the 13th Century.
This church is located at the ‘Landmark No. 9’, in the Way of St. James (Camino de Santiago).
Church of Santiago El Real
This church is one of the oldest in Logroño and sits within Plaza de Santiago.
The current church was rebuilt between 1513 and 1527, with the tower being constructed in 1573.
The original Romanesque style church was destroyed in a fire in 1500.
Near the Church of Santiago El Rea, in Plaza de Santiago you will see unusual paintings on the pavement. This is for a game called 'Game of the Goose' similar to our own 'Snakes and Ladders.'
Whilst waiting your turn to play you can take a rest on the giant dice.
Logroño is a very easy city to wander around and discover, spend a day strolling around and you’ll come across lovely locations.
Puente de Piedra, the stone bridge which spans the River Ebro was rebuilt in 1884, due to the previous bridge, Puente de San Juan de Ortega, being destroyed when the river broke its banks. It is 197 metres long and has 7 arches.
Logroño’s old tobacco factory is now home to Parlamento de La Rioja. The original chimney stands alongside.
The Logroño San Blas market, which was opened in December 1930 has a fantastic Art Deco façade and was entrusted to the architect Fermin Alamo to complete.
There are some lovely plazas & parks in Logroño and within fairly short distance of the old town.
One is Parque del Ebro which runs along the river bank and another is Espolón square, which is a bustling plaza. A great place to meet family and friends, with its pavilion and book stalls.
Here you'll find these interesting little chaps - both have two different points of view.
One of my lasting memories of Logroño, (other than the wine), was the abundance of street art. Here are a few of our favourites.
Calle del Laurel
If you have decided to go to Logroño, then you may have already heard of Calle del Laurel and the few streets surrounding it.
It is infamous for its taperías, of which there are believed to be over 50 in this small area.
The competition means there's a fine selection of tapas, or pintxo (We're on the edge of the Basque region after all).
You'll find bars offering differing selections, some with a seafood bias, some with a more contemporary feel. You can watch the bars ebb & flow with patrons as the night progresses, and people move between the different taperías.
The quality of the tapas that we grazed upon was really good and a quite a reasonably priced. Washed down with a delightful glass of Rioja who could want more. Although Gary moved between Spanish beer, Rioja & vermouth - He is a trier 🙂
Tour to Logroño
On our journey to Logroño we enjoyed a wonderful scenic drive from Cuenca.
We toured through some fantastic Spanish country side of ever changing scenery, sunflowers, vineyards, fruit trees, mountains, plains & pine trees. Often with birds of prey circling overhead. Around Soria we drove through row after row of sunflowers, which must look stunning in summer the months.
All part of the fun of our Spanish Road Trip.
We had a brief stop in the lovely town of Molinas de Aragon, with its stunning fortress (I’m sure we will be back to this region sometime in the future).
Our accommodation for the 2 nights we were in Logroño, was at the Calle Mayor Hotel. It is in a really central location in the town and easy to find. The secure hotel garage was only about 100 metres away and had good size parking spaces, you were also given your own key for the garage. Parking €10.80 per day