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Baeza

Santa Maria Church. © Michelle Chaplow
Santa Maria Church.

Baeza

Take me to: Baeza Hotels

Baeza is compact and provincial town with a kind of perpetual Sunday air about it. At its heart is the combined Plaza Mayor and the paseo which is flanked by pavement cafes but delightfully low key and atmospheric. The Plaza de Leones is a particularly attractive cobbled square enclosed by Renaissance buildings and stands slightly back at the far end. Here on a rounded balcony the first mass of the Reconquest is reputed to have been celebrated, the impressive mansion beneath it houses the tourist office. It has about 15,770 inhabitants.

Full of history, culture and monumental attractions, the small town of Baeza attracts an overwhelming number of tourists throughout the year. It is no wonder, then, that it also has a wide variety… More →

The urban morphology of the two small cities of Úbeda and Baeza in southern Spain dates back to the Moorish ninth century and to the Reconquista in the 13th century. An important development took… More →

Museo Ciudad de Baeza features a selection of artefacts on display that show different periods of human occupation in Baeza.

Jabalquinto Palace. © Michelle Chaplow

Jabalquinto Palace

The finest palace is the Marquessa de Jabalquinto, now a seminary with an elaborate Isabelline front (showing marked Moorish influence in its stalactite decoration). Just above it is the C16th cathedral which, like many of Baeza's churches, has brilliant painted rejas (iron screens) done by a local 16th century craftsman. However, the cathedral's real novelty is a huge silver custodia cunningly hidden behind a painting of St Peter which whirls aside for a small donation.

There are several special events in Baeza that are well worth marking down in your diary. Firstly there is the intrinsically Andaluz pilgrimage which is held on the 7th September in honour of the Santisimo Cristo de la Yedra and the Virgin del Rossel. A few days before the event, the image of the Virgin is carried from the shrine of La Yedra to Baeza and on the appointed day it is taken in procession from the San Pablo Church, among orchards and olive groves, to a spot near La Yedra where contests and dances are held.

When you return to Baeza, be sure to linger on a few days to discover its impressive monuments, visit the porticoed Plaza Porticada del Mercado Viejo, the Arco del Barbudo and the historic university where the poet Antonio Machado once taught. Carry on to see the paintings in the Church of Santa Cruz and don't miss the Palacio del Jabalquinto.

Famous poet and author Antonio Machado lived and taught in Baeza for many years up the civil war.

History

Although archaeological samples do not suggest the presence of many human settlements in the area prior to the Copper Age (middle of the III Millennium BC), there is evidence dating back to the fifth Millennium BC documenting the life habits of the hunters and gatherers of epipalaeolithic groups. A thousand years later, communities from further south arrived, specifically from the caves and shelters of Sierra Mágina, bringing with them Neolithic forms based on agricultural activity and certain technical advances such as the polishing of stone and ceramics. This has been documented in sites such as Los Horneros, Los Morales and Toya. More>

Things to see

Antiguas Carnicerías
Originally located outside the walls, past Puerta de Jaén, the butcher shop was relocated in the 1960s by the General Directorate of Fine Arts to its new location to finish configuring the square. The building could not be rebuilt maintaining the same configuration, since the available area in the square was less than its original location. (Location)

Casa del Pópulo (Antigua Audiencia Civil y Escribanías)
The house was built around 1535 consisting of two floors, corresponding to the Notary on the ground floor and old Audiencia Civil y Escribanías on the first floor, decorated with the city’s coat of arms, columns and lions. (Location)

Ayuntamiento y Antigua Casa de la Justicia
In 1502, Carlos I was made aware of the need to build a prison due to the poor conditions of the existing one. It was built in 1520, under the surveillance of the additional Casa del Corregidor from 1559, as shown by the cartouche at the entrance. Since 1867, this building has housed the Town Hall. (Location)

El Pósito
What used to be the sixteenth century municipal granary is now the Centro de Interpretación del Renace (Renaissance Interpretation Centre). (Location)

La Alhóndiga
The Alhóndiga is a municipal foundation building. Its location in the market square was chosen to enhance the commercial, public and civil sense of the square, since this sixteenth-century building responded to the social and economic needs of the time. It was originally intended for the sale and purchase of grain, but centuries later became an inn; in 1956, the second floor extension was added. (Location)

Puerta de Úbeda
Undoubtedly the best fortified gate in the entire walled city, originally that which led to the Úbeda road. It had three arches, next to the Albarrana Tower from where the stretches of the wall started up to the following towers. Currently only one arch remains; the tower and walls were destroyed by order of Queen Isabel la Católica in 1476 to put an end to disputes between the local nobility. (Location)

Puerta de Jaén
This gateway is one of the most important and best defended entrances to the medieval walled area. Isabel la Católica ordered its demolition in 1476 but it was rebuilt in 1526 by Corregidor Álvaro de Lugo in commemoration of the Emperor’s visit to Baeza after his betrothal in Seville. (Location)

Palacio de los Salcedo
The palace was built by Juan Rubio de Salcedo at the beginning of the sixteenth century in the Renaissance style with Gothic influences. It has preserved its original typology: the courtyard with galleries on three levels, semicircular arches and a flat upper gallery. (Location)

Arco de Villalar
The arch was erected by the Council of Baeza in 1522 to commemorate the victory of Emperor Charles V’s army over the Comuneros in the Battle of Villalar, which took place in 1521. Although some sectors of the Baeza nobility, led by the Benavides family. (Location)

Balcón del Concejo Consistoriales Bajas
Construction of the Royal Box was ordered in 1684 by the Corregidor Fernando Ladrón de Guevara, created by Juan Guerrero and Mateo de Molina, due to the importance that the Plaza del Mercado was acquiring as a place of commerce and leisure. The balcony was inaugurated in 1701, on the occasion of the wedding of Felipe V with Maria Gabriela de Saboya. In 1835, the royal box became the seat of the City Council until 1867. (Location)

Antigua Universidad e Iglesia de San Juan Evangelista
This piece of civil architecture is a great representative of the city’s mannerism, carried out by order of the Administrator and Priest Pedro Fernandez de Córdoba on the site of the Franciscan Convento de San León, ceded in 1571. The works were completed in 1593, except for the façade and Capilla Mayor, which were completed in the seventeenth century. The definitive transfer of the University to this building took place in 1595. (Location)

Antiguo Hospital de San Antonio Abad
This building was founded in the early sixteenth century as a hospital. In 1791, by order of Pope Pius VI, the Order of San Antonio disappeared, incorporating its assets in Baeza, including the hospital, into those of La Concepción. The hospital was transformed into a home for orphaned newborns and a hostel for pilgrims. In 1976, the building was restored and conditioned as the Youth House and Headquarters of the Red Cross. (Location)

Arco del Barbudo
The arch was an integral part of the former Puerta de Baeza and constituted one of the entrances to the walled enclosure. It is named in honour of Martin Yanez de la Barbuda, Master of Al-cantara, who in 1394 left through it to fight against the Moors of Granada. In 1447, the Benavides family, including his relative the poet Jorge Manrique, whose daughter was married to a Bevanides, entered the enclosure through this door in order to expel the Carvajales family from the Alcazar. (Location)

Palacio de Jabalquinto
Building of the palace was commissioned by Juan Alfonso de Benavides, second cousin of Fernando el Católico, at the end of the fifteenth century. The façade is Elizabethan Gothic, and the entrance has up to 8 shields arranged in Flemish style. The patio is Renaissance, dating from the end of the sixteenth century, formed by double semicircular arches with marble columns. Today it is the International Headquarters of the University of Antonio Machado. (Location)

Palacio de los Condes de Mejorada
Built in the sixteenth century as a private residence for the Counts of Mejorada, this palace was later divided and became the property of the Robles family. The heraldry of the Acuña family appears on the interior staircase. Over time it has undergone numerous transformations, the last of which took place in 1920-30 with the construction of an interior patio in the neo-Mudejar style. (Location)

Palacio de Villa Real
This eighteenth-century construction was used as the residence of the Marquises of Villareal. It was acquired by the Junta de Andalucía in the 1980s, although it is now in a ruined, abandoned state. (Location)

Plaza de Toros
The city’s bullring was built in 1892 with a capacity for 7,500 people, paid for by Cristóbal Acuña Solís. For its construction, materials from other demolished buildings were used, such as the convents of La Victoria and San Francisco and the remains of the old square. It was inaugurated on May 18, 1892, and a century later it was rehabilitated. (Location)

Palacio Rubin Ceballos
This palace, built in 1804 by José Cayetano Rubín de Ceballos, was owned by the family until 1973, the year in which it became the property of Opus Dei for Christian formation and a spiritual retreat house. The interior has been enlarged by the acquisition of adjoining buildings. It has a central patio and a recently built chapel. (Location)

Deposito de Caballos
Above the door we find a shield, the text of which translates to “Deposit for stallion horses”. The building originally housed various stallions available for the stud season. Today it is the Multiple Use Enclosure, which was inaugurated in March 2013. (Location)

Palacio de los Sánchez de Valenzuela
The Sánchez Valenzuela family commissioned the construction of this palace at the end of the fifteenth century. Years later, they ceded the palace to the religious order of the Mínimos de San Francisco de Paula. After the disentailment of Mendizábal, it became the city’s Casino. The building maintains its original typology of house around the patio. (Location)

Primera Fundación Universitaria
This house belonged to the Acuña family until it was seized by Emperor Carlos V for having been a meeting place for community members. From 1595 to 1814, the building was used as a teaching centre. Later it was used as a private house until 1992, when it was acquired by the Town Hall and transformed into the Museo de Baeza museum. In the entablature there is a mutilated inscription where the dedication of the University of the Santísima Trinidad can be read. (Location)

Lienzo de Muralla
These are the remains of the Moorish wall, rebuilt in the sixteenth century. In 1476, Queen Isabel la Católica ordered the demolition of walls, towers and doors. (Location)

Mirador de las Murallas
A privileged viewpoint where we can enjoy wonderful views of the Guadalquivir Valley and nearby towns. (Location)

Antigua Prisión (Hospederia)
This historicist and eclectic style building was built between 1940 and 1950. Three years after its foundation, it was vacated and repurposed for various functions such as a prison, until 1994 when it was restored and opened to the public as the Fuentenueva Hostel. (Location)

Mercado de Abastos
The covered market dates to the 1950s and is built in a historically eclectic style. (Location)

Antigua Universidad
The University of Baeza was created by Dr. Rodrigo López, a native of Baeza, chaplain and relative of Pope Paul III from whom he obtained the founding bull in 1538. The structure of the building responds to the typical typology of Renaissance palaces. It maintained its functions as a university until 1824; later, it was a College of Humanities and State School, where Antonio Machado taught, until it became a Secondary Education Institute. (Location)

Palacio de los Obispos
This palace was the bishopric residence from medieval times. It has undergone several modifications: the first at the beginning of the sixteenth century, at the time of Bishop Don Alonso Suarez de la Fuente del Sauce, the second in the mid-nineteenth century to be transformed into the Army Cavalry Barracks, and the third in 1910 by the State and Town Hall. (Location)

Torre de los Aliatares
Another important twelfth-century tower from the Muslim era. Its strategic position meant that it was purposed for controlling the barbican and the demolished Puerta del Cañuelo. It is also one of the few examples of the walled enclosure demolished by Isabel la Católica in 1476 that has remained. The tower measures 25m, and has been restored on numerous occasions, with the clock added in the nineteenth century and the crowning battlements in the twentieth. (Location)

Religious Monuments

Iglesia de San Juan
The church was erected on October 18, 1595, 26 years after the death of the Holy Doctor San Juan de Ávila, whose portrait hangs on the wall of the Epistle, inside the church. Work on this chapel was completed at the beginning of the seventeenth century. (Location)

Iglesia de San Pablo
The church was built at the end of the fifteenth century and finished in 1665 by the architect Eufrasio López de Rojas. The original cover was replaced by the current one, in Baroque style. Inside are the remains of Pablo de Olavide. (Location)

Iglesia de San Andrés
This church dates from the beginning of the sixteenth century and held the title of Collegiate Church from 1764 to 1852. In the seventeenth century, the altarpiece was placed, in which the dressing room stands out where the Gothic carving of the Virgen del Alcázar, patron saint of the city, is located. (Location)

Iglesia de los Trinitarios Descalzos
The first Friars settled in Baeza in 1607. In 1615, they were given permission to build on a new settlement that was completed in the eighteenth century. After the confiscation of Mendizábal, the convent was destroyed but the church was saved thanks to citizen collaboration. (Location)

Iglesia de San Ignacio
This complex was part of a seminary, Seminario de la Compañía de Jesús, built at the beginning of the seventeenth century and finished in 1648. After the confiscation, the entire complex was demolished, with only the church itself saved. Today, it is a nursing home. (Location)

Iglesia de San Francisco
In 1538, the construction of a new building dedicated to San Francisco was agreed. This work could have been one of the most transcendent of the Andalusian Renaissance but unfortunately it was never completed. Of the funerary chapel, only the left side remains, consisting of a stone altarpiece with two reliefs belonging to Vandelvira; the rest was continued by his disciples. (Location)

Iglesia del Salvador
The church entrance is from the thirteenth century, in a late-Romanesque style and it is likely that it belonged to another church due to its current configuration. The construction that gives unity to the building dates from the fifteenth century, at which point some remodeling began. In the sixteenth century, an attempt was made to expand it but this was never completed. (Location)

Convento de la Encarnación
The convent was founded in 1599 on the site of the old Hospital de la Encarnación. At present it is still a convent of Carmelitas Descalzas. (Location)

Convento de la Magdalena
The complex was founded in 1568 by the priest Don Núñez Marcelo as a convent of the Order of San Agustín. The church has a single nave from the mid-seventeenth century. Inside, we find the processional carving of the Cristo de la Caída, from the seventeenth century and attributed to José de Mora, and the tomb of Sor Mónica de Jesús. (Location)

Seminario San Felipe Neri
The seminary was founded in 1660 by Bishop Fernando de Andrade y Castro, under the direction of the fathers of the San Felipe Neri Oratory. In 1921, the major seminary was moved to Jaén; in 1969 the minor was closed and in 1990 it opened its doors as the seat of the Antonio Machado University. (Location)

Ermita de San Cristóbal
The chapel was built in 1991 by the Baeza Workshop School to house the image of the Saint. (Location)

Ábside de la Iglesia de San Pedro
The church was built between the late-eighteenth and early-nineteenth centuries. It is late Romanesque in style, cataloging itself as one of the oldest in the city. It was open for worship until 1848, but has been a private home since. Remains of the apse are the only remaining vestige of the original construction. (Location)

Colegio Santiago de la Compañía de Jesús
Founded by Elvira de Ávila, it dates from the late-sixteenth century. It was a Convento de la Orden de los Jesuitas until its expulsion in 1767, the year in which the works were stopped. Due to subsequent renovations, it lost much of its monumental wealth. Today, it houses municipal offices, a day centre, employment departments and private housing. (Location)

Convento de San Antonio
This Gothic-style building was founded in the fourteenth century by the Franciscan monks of the Convento de San León. It was later abandoned and renovated as a residence for the nuns of Santa Clara, a use that it still maintains. The Plateresque-style façade was built at the beginning of the sixteenth century and survived the disentailment measures of the 1830-40s. (Location)

Convento de Santa Catalina
Founded in 1583 by the Bishop of Jaén, Don Francisco Sarmiento de Mendoza. The community settled in the place that was the once the Jewish synagogue, next to the walls and Caba del Alcázar. The building has greatly diminished, due to the fact that in the Glorious Revolution of 1868 it was used as a public jail, leaving only the cloister and the façade with some portals, although the remains have been rehabilitated after a recovery intervention carried out in recent years. (Location)

Catedral de la Natividad de Nuestra Señora
The cathedral is the most emblematic building in the main square. In this enclave it is believed that there could have been a Roman temple, transformed into a Visigothic one until the arrival of the Muslims who built the Aljama. In 1227, it became, under the Marian dedication of “La Natividad”, the Cathedral Headquarters. In 1529, work began on a Gothic cathedral that collapsed in 1567. Vandelvira designed a new temple that was inaugurated in 1593, preserving some elements of the previous building. (Location)

Iglesia de Santa Cruz
The church dates from the thirteenth century and is the only one that preserves its old Roman factory. For a long time, this temple had a neoclassical aesthetic, but after a series of restorations it was stripped of this covering in the walls and columns. In 1990, wall paintings from the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries were restored. In the same restoration, a Visigoth-style horseshoe arch appeared on the side of the epistle, which suggests that an ancient Christian temple existed on this same site, on which the current one was built. (Location)

Colegio de las Madres Filipenses
This building has undergone an intense transformation due to its diverse uses over time. It has been the Palacio de los Ponce de León, Palacio de los Marqueses de Villarreal and nursing home before finally, in 1940, passing into the hands of the Order of the Filipenses, who conditioned it as a school. (Location)

Manor Houses

Casa Solariega de los Galeote
The Mannerist style house dates to the second half of the sixteenth century, built around 1575 by Francisco de Galeote and his wife Luisa de Guzman y Quesada, who used it as a private residence. In the middle of the twentieth century, the building was divided and its interior reformed. (Location)

Casa de los Cabrera
Commissioned at the beginning of the sixteenth century, since the Cabrera family ceded its previous location, the Casas Consistoriales Altas, to the Council. (Location)

Casa del Vicario
In June 1579, it was acquired for the Carmelo Descalzo Convent<7B> by San Juan de la Cruz. In 1610 a vicar, Don Miguel Navarro, resided here. (Location)

Casa de Don Pedro Nuño
This seventeenth-century building was commissioned by Pedro Nuño de Salazar and his wife, Luisa de Velasco, for private use. (Location)

Casa de los Escalante
The home of Don Antonio Escalante, Councilor and Lord, also the old Union Headquarters. Only the facade is preserved today. The site it occupied has been used as a landscaped public space. (Location)

Casas Consistoriales Altas
The late fifteenth-century building was owned by Gil Bayle de Cabrera, who gave it to the Council in order for it to be used as the Town Hall. Between 1511 and 1526, the building was reformed and enlarged, which is why two parts can be distinguished in the building. It has had multiple uses, including a municipal archive and a music conservatory. (Location)

Casa Antonio Machado
Poet Antonio Machado lived here during his stay in the city of Baeza. As a result of the illness and death of his wife, he moved from Soria to Baeza to teach French grammar. (Location)

Casa de los Acuña
Built at the end of the sixteenth century for Don Fernando de Acuña y Valenzuela and his wife, Doña Juana de León Navarrete. (Location)

Casa de los León
A typical seventeenth-century Mannerist manor house made up of a ground floor, first floor, chambers and semi-basement canteen. (Location)

Casa de los Perea
A manor house dating from the seventeenth century, in the Baroque style, consisting of two floors and preserving a masonry portal and central patio between buildings. (Location)

Casa de los Fontecilla
This eighteenth-century Baroque house was initially used as an inn at the beginning of the twentieth century. With the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War, the inn temporarily reopening its doors once the war ended. (Location)

Casa de los Vela de Almazán
One of the best examples of eclectic architecture in Baeza, built in 1875 for the Vela de Almazán family. (Location)

Casa de los Aguilar
Construction of this house dates back to the seventeenth century. The most remarkable feature is the portal, flanked by two shields with helmets and lambrequins, one of them with the crowned eagle of the Aguilars. (Location)

Casa del Licenciado Pedraza
A sixteenth-century building that belonged to Juan de Pedraza and his wife Doña María de Quesada. At the end of the century, Leonor and Catalina de Pedraza lived in this house for a short time. (Location)

Casa de los Arévalo
The house was built around 1850, reusing materials from other buildings. (Location)

Casa de los Avilés
This house’s construction dates from the middle of the sixteenth century. To celebrate the academic success of one of its occupants in 1704, a cheer was painted on the voussoirs on its lintel. (Location)

Casa de los Avila
The house belonged to Dr. Melchor de Ávila and his wife Doña María de Herrera. It is attached to the walls of the ruins of the old Iglesia de San Juan Bautista. (Location)

Museums

Centro de Interpretación Torreón Puerta de Úbeda
The tower that defended the Puerta de Úbeda houses this interpretation centre. Inside, visitors can discover everything related to the complex defensive system of the city of Baeza and its medieval history. (Location)

Museo de Baeza
The museum is aimed at disseminating the city’s heritage, articulating its contents in eleven milestones and cultural episodes that review the past of the town. Located within the Primera Fundación Universitaria. (Location)

Centro de Interpretación Renace
An Interpretation Centre where the Renaissance is studied in all its cultural forms. (Location)

Museo Catedralicio
Located inside the Catedral de la Natividad de Nuestra Señora, the museum houses several paintings and artefacts. It contains a valuable collection of robes, religious costumes and other liturgical objects several centuries old. (Location)

Things to see outside the town

Museo de la Cultura del Olivo
Situated in a prestigious estate dating back to the seventeenth century, the museum allows you to learn about the traditional way of making oil in its three stages: grinding, pressing and decantation. The museum offers various workshops related to oil tasting and activities. (Location)

Fountains

Baeza has a series of intricate fountains scattered around the town. Look out for Fuente de la Estrella, del Triunfo, del Fraile, de los Leones, del Moro, Puerta de Córdoba, Puerta de Úbeda, Puerta de Toledo, de San Andrés and del Arca del Agua.

Bus service

There are various bus services from Baeza. More>

Gastronomy

Baeza offers authentic and high quality gastronomy and, like many Andalusian provinces, is famous for its good tapas. Try dishes such as carilalcachofas con panecillos (deep fried artichokes), bacalao al estilo de Baeza (Baeza style cod), cocido mareado (chickpea stew), cazuelas (bean or chickpea stew), purusalda (cod and leek stew) and pollo en pepitoria (moroccan flavoured chicken stew). Sweet treats include tarta de queso (cheescake), arroz con leche (rice pudding), torrijas (sugared eggy-bread), empanadas de cabello de ángel o el paté de frutas (sweet pasties filled with pumpkin or mixed fruit jam), flan de huevo (egg custard) and nubes (meringues).

Festivals

Popular festivals in Baeza are Semana Santa, Feria de Agosto, Fiestas del Concejo en Honor a San Andrés and Romería de la Yedra. More >

Tourist office

The tourist office of Baeza is located in the Puerta de Jaén. More >

Neighbouring Places

The neighbouring villages to Baeza are Úbeda, Linaresand Jaén.

Úbeda and Baeza tour guided

Úbeda and Baeza tour guided
Úbeda and Baeza tour guided

The best way to get to know Unesco World Heritage cities with a specialist guide in a pleasant way. In addition the tour includes the entrance of the most important payment buildings of the two cities

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Art Galleries

Museo Nacional del Aceite.

Ancient agricultural systems relating to the cultivation of olives and production of olive oil, some dating back thousands of years, are exhibited in the Museo Nacional del Aceite.
Puente del Obispo. Tel. 953 765 142
Open every day 10.30 to 13.30 and 16.00 to 18.30 hrs (in winter), 17.30 to 20.00 (in summer) 16.30 to 19.00 hrs(in spring and autumn).

 

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Areas of Jaén province
Areas of Jaén province

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