Jaca: Monasterio de Santa Cruz!

And here I am back in my beloved Spain! I have been coming here for years , initially as a stopping point between my trips from France to Spain over  Somport and Portalet; then we visit the city and even spent vacation time around the area. This is Jaca right facing the Pyrénées mountains! As you might know Spain is the No 2 most visited country in the world according to official tallies of the UN-WTO.

I have written several posts on it  ,but feel some is missing and I am trying to remedy this ommission of this wonderful quant city of Aragon. Let me tell you a bit more of Jaca on the Monasterio de Santa Cruz or the Holy Cross Monastery.

The Monasterio de Santa Cruz, where the daughter of a king of Aragon Ramiro I, Sancha was brough over from Santa Cruz de los Seros in 1622, been the best preserve romanesque tomb in Spain; the monastery itself was built from 1555.  The order of Benitas of sisters were in charge of the place before the reformation of 1730; the ceilings were painted al fresco in 1862.


In 1555 the nuns of the Monasterio de Santa Cruz de la Serós (Sorores) moved to Jaca, at the behest of king Felipe II, building the monastery commonly called “de las Benitas”. The monastic complex has been extensively renovated, and the double ecclesial complex monopolizes its interest such as the original crypt and the temple of San Ginés. The underground Church of Santa María was known as that of San Salvador and is a room covered with a vault and which was decorated with Romanesque paintings.

The Church of San Ginés, or high church, was ceded to the nuns by the brotherhood of San Ginés in 1579. Only the Romanesque door remains of its origins, the whole Inside it has remained, for 450 years, the best full Romanesque tomb that has been preserved in the Iberian Peninsula. The famous sarcophagus of the Countess Doña Sancha, daughter of King Ramiro I of Aragon, brought to Jaca from Santa Cruz de los Serós in 1622.


Currently the sarcophagus has been moved to one of the rooms of the Colegio de las Benedictinas, suitable to create a small museum in which in addition to being able to admire the tomb in all its splendor, it will be accompanied by eight panels of the Romanesque paintings of the Church of San Ginés, which until now were in the monastery’s private oratory and photos of the Renaissance cloister, closed to the public.The tomb is made of stone and on its sides it presents respectively a chrisom and a pair of opposite taps. On the back, chivalrous scenes are represented that look different. On the front is an allegory of the Countess’s soul represented by a naked girl carried by two angels to heaven. Two scenes of the deceased are presented on the sides as seated abbess and in a pontifical ceremony.

The Monasterio de Santa Cruz is located at the eastern end of the old town, attached to the only section of the old city wall, demolished at the beginning of the 20C. More on the monastery of the Holy Cross from the city of Jaca in Spanish which the above was translated: City of Jaca on the Monasterio de Santa Cruz

You have as usual by me some webpages for references on planning your trip here which is worth the detour.

The city of Jaca tourist office:

The Huesca Province tourist office on Jaca:

The Aragon region tourist office on Jaca:

Again, a wonderful monument in a nice old town area of beautiful Jaca, worth the detour to see the Monasterio of Santa Cruz or the Holy Cross Monastery. Hope you enjoy the tour

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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