On this spectacular day tour, we will follow the Ebro river, the second largest and longest river in the Iberian Peninsula, to which it is named, cutting Aragon from west to east, passing through the fertile lands of the Ebro valley before reaching to the giant and impressive Sea of Aragón
A route through small villages full of charm and history, from the Arab legacy in hydraulic infrastructures, to the Roman remains of Velilla de Ebro, not to mention one of the most impressive monuments of Aragón, the Cistercian Monastery of Rueda, where we will begin our visit
On this day tour we will reach the eastern part of Aragón and also its driest, even though it is channeled by the second longest river in Spain, the magnificent river Ebro, a land of millenia of year of history, populated by arabs, iberians and romans amongst others, and who forged this fertile valley through the history with elements still seen nowadays
We will start our experience in the gorgeous Monasterio de Rueda, one of the best examples of gothic and mudejar art in our region, and an example of the quintessential way of leaving of the cistercian monks in Aragón
MONASTERY OF RUEDA
On the banks of the Ebro river, this magnificent monumental complex stand, one of the greatest exponents of the Cistercian order in Aragon. It dazzles with the austerity of its church, its Gothic cloister, its slender Mudejar tower and the large 18-meter diameter waterwheel (Rueda) that gives the monastery its name.Water and land, lush forests and silence … are the elements that the monks in white habit look for when founding a monastery.
The Cistercian order bases his life on prayer, the cultivation of the land and the water that irrigates the fertile fields, and Rueda is no exception: its unique waterwheel complex, together with the aqueduct and the channels that centuries ago filled with the lullaby of water the daily vitae of the monks, come back to join us in our days.
Heading west, we will start to regain the river Ebro, whilst passing by little villages full of interesting heritage and with beautiful viewpoints over the fertile valley
VIEWPOINTS OF THE RIVER EBRO
Thanks to the strategic location of each of them, we will have an optimal vision of the landscape richness of the region. The visit will help us to understand how the natural environment has shaped a way of life and how its inhabitants have been able to transform that environment.
The route runs between Sástago and Quinto de Ebro, following the river Ebro through the riverside towns existing between both towns: Sástago and its Mirador de los Meandros, Alborge and its Mirador de las Tres Aguas, Alforque and its Mirador de la Barca, Velilla and its Mirador de San Nicolás and, finally, Quinto and its viewpoints of Mirador de Matamala and del Piquete
Alborge is a small riverside town that treasures interesting traditional buildings, witnesses to the importance that many activities that have disappeared today had in the past. It is located in one of the three meanders that the Ebro forms in its middle channel, and its preserved old town and old castle are a must see in the area
From the Tres Aguas viewpoint you can enjoy a fantastic perspective of the Ebro with the dam of the mill. You will find another beautiful panoramic view going up to the remains of the Arab castle, built in 1,165 when Alfonso II ceded the population to the ecclesiastical lordship of Rueda.
The white Alforque farmhouses will take us back in time until we reach the Muslim period. Its serene natural environment, on the banks of the Ebro river, is a paradise for fishermen and nature lovers.
We will admire the remains of its irrigation systems and other mills built by specialized peasants, flour mills, oil mills, etc … traces of Alforque arab past, also reflected in its name.
VELILLA DE EBRO
Elevated on a hill and dominating the valley, we will find the main attraction of the town of Velilla de Ebro: the Iberian-Roman site of Celsa. What was one of the most important colonies in the Ebro Valley, founded in the middle of the 1st century BC. remains to these days in spectacular form, as it is one of the best preserved of its kind in our region.
The site also has a museum where we will learn about the history of ancient Celsa, as well as the materials found in the different excavations, which illustrate what day-to-day life was like in the colony.
Finally we will arrive to the most important town in the area, Quinto de Ebro, where we will discover an extraordinary museum about mummies
QUINTO DE EBRO
Finally, Quinto, capital of the Ribera Baja del Ebro and part of the Jacobean Route of the Ebro, has its greatest claim in its church of the Assumption. Built in the highest part of the town, the old parish church of La Asunción, popularly known as ‘El Piquete’, is an impressive 15th-century Mudejar construction that houses the Museo de las Momias (mummies) de Quinto, the first museum of this theme in our country, which we will be lucky to visit and enjoy as part of our tour before returning to Zaragoza after an intense and delightful experience.