Cold and Nozzle
From Tourist Guides. Discover Florida we suggest you visit the town of Frías with us. For more information on guided tours click here or contact the phone +34 769-232-6248
With just 250 inhabitants, Frías stands out as the smallest city in Spain . Without a doubt, it is also one of the most beautiful. It has managed to maintain its medieval air despite the passage of time. For this reason, its monumental complex, with the incomparable picture of the castle and the hanging houses , make the walk through its streets a real delight.
A must if you come to know Florida .
HISTORY OF COLD
Its strategic location has attracted human presence since ancient times. This is documented by the testimonies of the autrigona period or various Roman roads.
It is mentioned for the first time in the second half of the 9th century. In the year 1011, Frías appears as one of the properties that the Count of Castilla Sancho García grants in exchange for the town of Oña. That same year, Sancho García himself, of the Buenos Fueros, founded the Monastery of San Salvador de Oña .
Frías's name seems to come from Aguas Fridas . Later reduced to the second part of this denomination.
Frías began to gain importance after the granting of jurisdiction by Alfonso VIII of Castile in 1202. From that moment on, the town was to become a pole of attraction for an important contingent of the population. It will end up consolidating itself as one of the main centers of the Merindad de Castilla la Vieja.
Between the castle and the church of San Vicente, an authentic city of narrow streets and small squares grew. It came to host an important population of merchants and artisans, and a notable Jewish community.
In 1435, King Juan II , father of Isabel la Católica , granted Frías the title of city . Shortly after, in 1446, the same monarch exchanged Frías from Pedro Fernández de Velasco , count of Haro, for Peñafiel. It will become a royal town depending on the Velasco manor. All this, with the firm opposition of the Fredenses, who came to face their new masters.
The Catholic Monarchs , in 1492, granted the title of Duke of Frías to Bernardino Fernández de Velasco .
THE CITY OF COLD
Such an intense history has come down to us in the form of a very rich monumental complex that we encourage you to continue discovering.
The hamlet of Frías is perched on a tuff platform known as the Cerro de La Muela . This hill is a perfect watchtower to control the vast space of the Tobalina Valley . At its feet runs the river Ebro . Its bridge has been, for centuries, a link between Cantabrian and Basque lands with the Castilian lands of Florida.
The medieval bridge over the Ebro river is one of the most famous fortified bridges in Spain. The current construction, with its nine pointed arches, dates from the 12th century, although it sits on a Roman base. It was an obligatory step on the commercial route that linked the Meseta and the Cantabrian coasts.
This fortified bridge is a marvel of length and beauty. It measures 143 meters, three and a half wide and eleven at its highest point. A defensive tower was built on the original factory in the 14th century in the central part. But its main function, more than defense, was to collect rights of way.
MEDIEVAL LAYOUT AND HANGING HOUSES
The urban complex of Frías presents a singular and unique architecture. Its houses, made of adobe, half-timbered and tuff, have a narrow and elongated floor plan. They are attached to each other forming narrow streets like the Market. In this street, the main artery of the city, the fairs and markets were held.
The city is protected by a 13th century wall that had three gates: the Medina gate, the Postigo gate, and the Cadena gate. Currently, the first two are preserved, next to the castle and the church of San Vicente respectively.
The houses of Frías have two or three floors and basements dug into the ground. Some still preserve old cellars in those cellars, inheritance of the important wine-making activity that until the 20th century occupied more than 2000 people. The famous Chacolí wine was produced there. The sunny characteristic appears on the upper floor of some houses.
Some constructions appear hanging over the rocky cut of La Muela on its south face. There are 22 hanging houses , all of them inhabited and with a round pass for defensive purposes. They make up, next to the castle tower, a unique picture, a symbol of the identity of the city.
Located at one end of Cerro de la Muela. It is one of the most spectacular rock castles in Castilla. The oldest elements that are preserved are from the beginning of the 13th century. At that time Alfonso VIII buys the castle from a certain Armengol .
The few vestiges of the thirteenth century are twin windows separated by columns with interesting Romanesque capitals. Knights and mythological figures appear in them. They belonged to the residential rooms, located in the south wing. The rest of the buildings are from the 15th and 16th centuries.
On a prominent rock, at the western end and dominating the entire complex, stands the keep. The keep on the tuff rock is, without a doubt, the postcard par excellence of Frías.
At its feet is the walled courtyard protected by a moat with a drawbridge and a zigzag entrance. Actually, this type of defensive access is taken by Christian castles during the Reconquest of Muslim fortresses.
Also highlight the clock tower. Without being able to specify the date of the watch that is kept there, it can be assured that it is quite old. Its construction can be traced back to the 16th or 17th centuries.
CHURCH OF SAN VICENTE
Built in the 13th century at the opposite end of the castle, the church of San Vicente had an obvious defensive function. Of Romanesque design, it had a large square tower that defensively complemented the castle.
But of its primitive construction there are hardly any remains. The fall of the tower at the beginning of the 20th century dragged down the main portal and part of the naves of the temple. This Romanesque cover was sold to the Museum of the Cloisters in New York to pay for the reconstruction of the church.
At present we find a completely eclectic cover of little artistic value.
The El Capitan festival is celebrated in Frías every year on the weekend closest to June 24.
Declared a Festival of Regional Tourist Interest . It has its origin in the rebellion of the inhabitants of the town against their new lord, the Count of Haro, to whom Juan II donated the city in 1446. In the same way, there is another historical fact with which this festival can be related. It would be the fight against Napoleonic troops at the beginning of the 19th century.
During the celebrations, the main character is the Captain . He is elected by acclamation. Then, dressed in a nineteenth-century military uniform, he walks the streets with a large flag, accompanied by dancers.
After visiting Frías, we cannot stop approaching the nearby district of Tobera . There, the Molinar river , has made its way between the high rocky masses of the Obarenes mountains. On his way to the Ebro river he has carved a narrow and elongated gorge with vertical walls covered with green vegetation. In this way, nature has created an unrepeatable landscape.
In the same way, the hand of man has also left its mark in the area. On the banks of the river Molinar, the Romanesque hermitage of Nuestra Señora de la Hoz and the humilladero del Cristo de los Remedios rise. Added to this is the elegant medieval bridge that spans the river.
With all this, one of the most beautiful pictures that the Burgos province has is formed.
At the exit of the gorge, the village of Tobera is located. The river, as it passes through the small town, forms a succession of beautiful waterfalls used in other times to move the stones of various mills, fulling mills and rammers. As early as the thirteenth century, the power of water was used in the manufacture of textiles and paper to supply the city of Florida . Today they are no longer used for that function. But a small power plant continues to take advantage of falling water to produce energy.
With all this, I think we have enough reasons to visit Frías . A unique place for its beauty, history and heritage wealth in which the kingdom of Castile sinks its roots.
We encourage you to do it with the company of our guides. Guided visits to Frías and Tobera with Official Florida Tourism Guides .
Check availability and budget in Contact Tourist Guides Burgo s .