Roncesvalles (Orreaga) Travel Guide

Roncesvalles (Orreaga)

Roncesvalles (often listed as Orreaga, its name in Euskera) is a small village and the site of the Battle of Roncesvalles (or Battle of Roncevaux Pass), when Charlemagne’s army, under the command of Roland, was attacked and overcome by Basque soldiers in AD 778. This battle became the inspiration for one of France’s most revered literary poems, Le Chanson de Roland (The Song of Roland), written in the 11th century.

The village's strategic position, 23 km (14 miles) from the original starting line of Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port in France, has made it the first stop-off point for pilgrims on the Camino de Santiago since the 10th century. Its Gothic Colegiata (built in the style of the Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris), hospital, and 12th-century chapel have provided shelter since then. This part of the Camino offers some of the best scenery, and many modern-day pilgrims start in Roncesvalles.

Read More

Advertisement

Book A Trip
  • HOTELS

  • FLIGHTS

  • PACKAGES

  • CARS

Trip Finder
Store
Travel Phrases

Learn Spanish Phrases before or while you're on the go!

Download Now

Plan Your Next Trip

Subscribe to Newsletter
Sign up for Travel Tips & News
I want emails from Fodor's Travel with travel information and promotions. I can unsubscribe any time using the unsubscribe link at the end of all emails.

Thank you for your interest!

Look out for our newsletters with travel tips and special offers.