Apr 2. Day 7. Today is a rest day. We chose Estella as it was after 6 days of walking and Estella has quite a bit of historical and cultural history to soak in.
We woke up about 30-45 mins later than usual. I guess our bodies didn’t know we had a rest day. Since most sights won’t open till 10am, we had a leisurely morning. Breakfast is provided at this B&B. Quite an ample spread with various choices (we had bought yogurt at a nearby super mercado, but caretaker had provided too in the early morning). We took the opportunity to plan to do our laundry around lunch time as there was a washing machine and it was a sunny day.
We read up on the cultural history of Estella on our Kindle (The Pilgrimage Road to Santiago). Fascinating read especially given the castles, fortresses and fortified churches in this town. The cross on a knoll above Estella marked the location of Estella’s largest castle.
The three churches of Santo Sepulco, Santo Domingo and San Pedro de la Rua had thick walls and towers, defensive features.
We spent time at the Church of San Pedro de la Rua and Basilica Del Puy.
The entrance of San Pedro de la Rua has a hand with three fingers raised, signifying the Trinity. Local volunteers staff a desk where there’s information and a stamp (for the Camino passport). There’s soft chanting playing in the background, and thus, it was perfect for deep (and silent) prayers. A staff later pointed out the cloisters to us.
Stained windows in San Pedro
A Rose Window with a dove in the center
A statue of St James
The cloisters outside San Pedro de la Rua
One of the columns is twisted, which is also found in the cloisters of Santo Domingo de Silos and Cathedral of Burgo de Osma.
Each column had intricate carvings
Another column carving
The Basilica Del Puy is a 1951 construction as the older Church at this site decayed beyond repairs. There was soft chanting in the background too.
The impact of the windows around the altar was striking.
The Virgin del Puy with baby Jesus.
Lighting in the Basilica
We visited the Church of St. Michael and Church of St. John the Baptist. Neither were open.
The rest of the day was in silent contemplation and rest. And some planning for later stages.
Tomorrow has some major uphill stretches, but there’s free wine from a tap, courtesy of a winery (Bodegas Irache). But it will be morning when we pass by, and it’s really a sip/gulp from one’s scallop shell.