'The Ages of Man' comes to Aranda de Duero in a year packed with activities
Church of Santa María. Aranda de Duero. Miguel Ángel Muñoz Romero
Typical winery in Aranda de Duero. Miguel Ángel Muñoz Romero
Typical gastronomy of Aranda de Duero. Miguel Ángel Muñoz Romero
The venue is the charming town of Aranda de Duero in Burgos (Castile-León), and this is the perfect time to arrange a visit there. In the first place, because it is hosting one of the most important exhibitions of religious art in Spain: 'The Ages of Man'. And second, because you'll find it impossible to resist sampling a feast of its famous roast milk-fed lamb accompanied by Ribera del Duero wine, among the best in the world.
What's special this year about the 'Ages of Man' exhibition?
The title of the exhibition this year is 'Eucharistia'. For five months starting in May, visitors will have a chance to see almost 130 pieces representing the religious and artistic wealth of Castile-León. The venues are the churches of Santa María and San Juan, two architectural treasures in themselves.
The 'Edades' Card is available at tourist offices in Castile-León, and enables visitors to obtain discounts in establishments throughout the area.
There will also be a free app for mobile devices.
Special activities. How to combine wine and culture
Did you know that Aranda de Duero has seven kilometres of underground passages that conceal almost 135 wineries? A network of tunnels that looks like something out of a book, but which in fact is the result of a wine-producing tradition that goes back centuries. This year a special programme has been organised to enable visitors to see a large number of these underground wineries, as well as various monuments not normally open to the public.
Some of these wineries still contain old barrels and wineskins, and the oil lamps that made it easier to see. There are also a wide variety of activities on offer, including theatre performances inside the wineries, and a wine culture route around several of the sites in the area.
You can't leave Aranda without trying its most famous dish: milk-fed lamb roasted in a wood-burning oven. And the best month to do it is in June, the date of the 'Roast Spring Lamb Festival'. Make a note too on your gourmet wishlist to try the sweet black pudding and the traditional olive oil wafer, both from Aranda.
Sightseeing train for the Ages of Man
This is due to be launched on 26 July 2014. It has six carriages –including a small museum exploring the world of the railways and stamp collecting– and makes stops in several places throughout the area. There is also a promotional package featuring a journey the train, a visit to the exhibition and to an underground winery, plus lunch in a traditional 'asador' or roast meat restaurant.
Things to remember
The Rey Juan Carlos University in Madrid has compiled an interactive digital inventory of all the wineries in Aranda de Duero. Very interesting.
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