Holiday Images
The Way of Saint James - continued
Our tour of Pamplona takes us to the highest point of the city where there are views over a section the 5-kilometre wall that surrounds the city. The nearby Saint Nicholas church incorporates a fortified tower.
Our exploration of Pamplona follows streets used daily by pilgrims and annually in the bull run festival.
We also visit the market (Mercado del Ensanche) where there is a filleting demonstration of a very large fish.
The doorway to the Museum of Navarre - the museum is located in a former 16th-Century hospital and is situated close to where the bulls are corralled prior to the fiesta runs.
Monument to the Charter of Navarre
While they wait for the tour bus to take us from Pamplona to the next destination, Janet and Jeanette chat to two other members of the tour group.
The 'Way of St James' continues from Pamplona to Estella by way of Puente La Reina; this small town is the first after the junction of two main pilgrim routes:  the French Way and the Aragonese Way. The town is named after the five-arched bridge over the River Arga built for the use of pilgrims. We walk through the town and then cross the 11th-Century bridge. On the way we pass the monumental doorway of the Church of Santiago el Mayor with its Moorish influence, and the Church of the Crucifix.
The Bridge of the Queen (Puente La Reina) was named after Queen Muniadona, wife of King Sancho III
Estella is twenty kilometres west of Puente La Reine, and we spend about 1½-hours exploring the Barrio San Martin area of the town. We start at the Palacio de los Reyes de Navarra (above left) which is now an art gallery.
Opposite is the fortified pilgrimage church of San Pedro de la Ra (left), the largest church in the town whose 12th-century cloister is considered to be one of the most valuable in terms of sculptural richness in Navarre. Unfortunately, the church is closed, but we do get to see another superb door with Moorish influence (right).
After crossing the River Ega (above right), we do find a church that is open. San Miguel (left and right) is another fortress church with an impressive doorway, and an altarpiece featuring Saint Michael the Archangel slaying the dragon.
Bob, our tour manager, has recommended a local drink called Kalimotxo ín the Basque or Navarre dialect (Calimocho in Spanish). This is a fifty-fifty mixture of red wine and Coca-Cola. We decide to try this before our evening meal and are impressed not only with its refreshing taste as an aperitif, but with the barman's ability in creating the drink - he measures out the red wine by eye, then tops up the wine glass with a whole bottle of coke, and it exactly fills the glass. We then enjoy a meal of asparagus; pork medallions; and a curd dessert.