Vivar del Cid (Burgos)

Here begins our trip. According to the  Poem of el Cid, Rodrigo left Vivar to the exile "with tears in his eyes" and the royal order to leave Castile in nine days. It is precisely at the beginning of the journey when a carrion crow crosses by the way of the warriors. The flight of the crow, depending on its direction, was taken as an omen: in this case el Cid understood it as a symbol of good omen on their journey. For this reason the carrion crow is the image of the Safe-conduct Letter, a symbol of good luck while walking. If you travel along the Way of el Cid you will watch  many crows crossing by!

Vivar is located in the valley of the Ubierna, a small but decisive river for the life of its medieval settlers. At the beginning of the 11th century these lands were under the protection of Diego Laínez, father of Rodrigo, since the border with the kingdom of Navarre was very close, next to Urbel del Castillo, less than 30 kilometers from Vivar. The valley was suitable for agriculture and was probably very populated. Its inhabitants scattered in numerous cores or small villages, most of them disappeared. Along the Ubierna's riverside were built some flour mills that are believed to belong to the family of Rodrigo.

Vivar is a village devoted to the figure of el Cid: from the names of the streets to various sculptural landmarks, everything evokes its legendary wake. Perhaps the most significant one are the Legua Cero (Zero League) -the symbolic beginning of the route, in front of an old flour mill- and the statue of El Cid, which reflects a more human Cid, away from the heroic clichés. In front of this sculpture there is a stone landmark with the paleographic version of the first verses of the Song: a good place to take a souvenir photograph, as well as the Zero League.

 Next to the square is the church of San Miguel Arcángel: although the current building dates from the 16th century, several excavations have discovered a necropolis dating from the 11th to the 13th centuries. In its interior a Romanesque pile of unknown origin is conserved.

 It is also possible to see in the Convento del Espino the chest where, according to tradition, the only existing manuscript of the Cantar was kept, today in the Spanish National Library: a good excuse to buy their handmade sweets and pastries, some with such "Cidian" names as "Lágrima de Doña Jimena" (Tears of Lady Ximena).

 Commemorating the death of el Cid in Valencia, on July 10, 1099, Vivar del Cid celebrates a festival to the honor of its heroe.

The last recommendation is not found in Vivar, but in the neighboring village, Sotopalacios, two kilometers away. There, you will find a 15th century castle, built on which some scholars, including Menéndez Pidal, located the manor house of El Cid.

 

How to get there ... and return
  • Vivar is 9 km far from Burgos, a city well connected by train or bus. To arrive and return from Vivar del Cid to Burgos, the ALSA bus company do the route from Monday to Sunday. It is very important to contact them to ensure timetable at the phone 902 422 242 (it 's an automatic switchboard) or its website www.alsa.es.
  • If you travel by bicycle, bear in mind that ALSA only allows you to transport a maximum of 4 bicycles and that it charges a surchage that you must add to the price of the ticket. You have to check the availability before travel and pack and dismantle the front wheel to put the bike in the luggage rack.

Warning. This text has been translated with the help of automated translation software. It will be replaced by a professional human translation as soon as possible. We are sorry for the inconvenience.

Useful information

  • Safe conduct Letter: at the beginning of the Camino del Cid, you can request your safe-conduct letter free of charge in any of the country houses lodges.

Rev. ALC: 23.07.1
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