Other Archaeological Sites in the district
Almost 4 kilometres from Artajona, on a small mound where there was once a settlement in the Bronze Age, stand the dolmens ‘Portillo de Enériz’ and ‘Mina de Farangortea’, two of the most important examples of megalithic culture in Navarre which allow you to travel to Prehistory. They are both tombs built with large stones which prove that Artajona has been a place where people have settled for thousands of years. Well signposted, you can access them on a path which starts at the back of the Artajona cemetery although you can also reach ‘Portillo de Enériz’, which is about 800 metres from the ‘Mina de Farangortea’ dolmen, by car. The Artajona dolmens are unique examples of megalithic culture in Navarre because, whereas there are numerous and chiefly smaller ones in the mountainous area of the community, these are the southernmost dolmens you can find. They are located on a small hilltop where there was once a settlement in the Neolithic and Copper Ages. Due to their size, they share many similarities with those found in La Rioja, Araba/Álava and the north of the Meseta. They are two ‘corridor-style’ dolmens made of large stones (megaliths) which were found and excavated in the 1950s. They have a separation slab and double chamber, and are located on mounds 20 metres in diameter and 2.5 metres high. ‘Portillo de Enériz’ is a megalith in which two parts can be distinguished: the burial chamber where the dead were interred, consisting of 9 large upright slabs; and the corridor, made up of 6 smaller slabs. The dolmen ‘Mina de Farangortea’ has the same structure but is smaller, and the central slab at the rear is perforated to permit access. Neither of them had a roof and were usually covered with branches and mud. Necklace beads, arrowheads, copper punches, buttons, ceramics and axes now on display at the Museum of Navarra were found around them. To access them, you must take the path which starts at the back of Artajona cemetery, in the north of the town, although you can also take the regional road to Tafalla. A sign indicates that the Artajona dolmens are 3.6 km away by car. After parking in an area with information panels and wooden benches, and walking 40 metres, you will arrive at the ‘Portillo de Enériz’ dolmen, while the ‘Mina de Farangortea’ dolmen is 850 metres away along a well-marked path. Access is free and it is a good idea to take water with you because there is nowhere to get any in the area.
Roman city of Andelos
The ruins of the Roman city of Andelos have re-emerged from the ground. In silence lies a city which in the past housed part of the prosperity of the Roman Empire. Its streets and houses, shops, hot springs and fountains, its beliefs and traditions bring from the distant past the memory and history of a city which has bequeathed us an extraordinary feat of civil engineering in an outstanding state of preservation: the city's water supply system. The Roman city of Andelos is located in the municipality of Mendigorría, in the Central Zone of Navarre. It is located on a high Quaternary terrace on the right bank of the Arga river, south of Puente la Reina. The most remarkable discovery at this site was the city’s water supply system. To have found this hydraulic construction, which includes everything from collection to the distribution centre in the city, in such a condition is exceptional. In addition to this finding, the excavations have brought to light the layout of the streets and part of the wall. There was a human settlement at the site occupied by the Roman city of Andelos in the 4th-3rd century BC. First contact between the Vascones and the Roman world may have taken place in the 2nd century BC. The city reached its greatest splendour in the 1st and 2nd centuries AD. That was when it truly developed and the complex water system was installed. It was inhabited until late mediaeval times, preserving the chapel of Nuestra Señora de Andión as the only element that survives today.
Roman villa of Arellano
The villa of Arellano is a Roman archaeological site located 6.5 km south of Arellano, a few kilometres from the city of Estella-Lizarra. Its name, ‘Aurelianum’, gave rise to the name of the municipality. The site is also known as the ‘Villa of the Muses’ due to the spectacular Roman mosaic of ‘the Muses’ found there. The mosaic is now in the National Archaeological Museum, but it is possible to admire a meticulous reproduction at its original location. It received its name because it represents the nine goddesses and those they inspired. The archaeological remains found indicate that the villa was built between the 1st and 5th century AD. The excavations have made it possible to differentiate rooms from the 1st-3rd century AD associated with wine production and other later ones which made it a luxurious country residence related to the cult of Cybele and her son and lover Attis. One of the most curious finds was a ceramic wine cup, the icon of the museum.
Other tourist resources
Tourism in Navarre Website
Cerco de Artajona
Perfectly adapted to the outline of the hill on which it sits, the Cerco de Artajona offers you the opportunity to enjoy the most important inhabited mediaeval fortification in the Central Zone of Navarre.
Puente la Reina
Puente la Reina, the ‘crossroads’, the mediaeval town where the two main routes of the Way of St James join paths, is one of the places most strongly associated with the pilgrimage in Navarre.
Halfway between Pamplona and Logroño, in an area which joins the mountain and Ribera regions in Navarre, lies Estella, a monumental city which came into being thanks to the Way of St James. In the 15th century, it was known as ‘Estella la bella’ and still honours the adage today: a Romanesque city which is home to palaces, the residences of the nobility, churches, convents, bridges and beautiful buildings which have earned it the nickname of the ‘Toledo of the north’.
The slender, harmonious outline of its castle-palace dominates the Olite skyline, a small town located in the geographical centre of Navarre, 42 kilometres south of Pamplona. A royal seat during the Middle Ages, the thick walls and crenelated towers of the palace used to be the home of kings and princesses. Declared a national monument in 1925, it is the most important example of civil Gothic architecture in Navarre and one of the most notable in Europe.
One of the most important monuments in Marcilla is without doubt the castle built in the 15th century by Mosén Pierres de Peralta right in the centre of the town. In addition to a defensive role, the building served as a palatial mansion for the Marquises of Falces, descendants of Pierres de Peralta. It was defended in 1516 by Ana de Velasco, the wife of Marquis Alonso Carrillo, against the Guipuzcoan troops who, commanded by Captain Villalva, tried to demolish it following the orders of Cardinal Cisneros.
Museums, permanent museum collections and other exhibition centres in Navarre: the art, science and technology, folk and specialised centres, archaeological sites and monuments which can be visited in Navarre are detailed in this link: