La Antigua Hermitage - Santa María de Zumarraga

La Antigua Hermitage - Santa María de Zumarraga

Art & Culture

Cultural Heritage

The hermitage of Santa María (La Antigua) is considered the cathedral among Basque hermitages.

It is thought it was built over a defensive fortress dating back to the 12th century. The first document of the church appears in 1366 and it was Zumarraga's parish church untill 1576.

In contrast with its austere outer appearance, its interior surprises with an extraordinary oak-wood coffered ceiling, a complex structure of beam, strut, parapet and stiffenings.

Legends of the hermitage of La Antigua

Many legends embellish the story of the hermitage of La Antigua. One of them says that when Gentiles saw the Christians building the hermitage, knowing that fact would put an end to their existence, they threw big stones from Aizkorri Mountain trying to destroy it. They didn't reach their goal and humans used those stones to finish the building.

This monument belongs, together with Loiola and Arantzazu sanctuaries, to the Ruta de los Tres Templos de Tierra Ignaciana (Three Temples Route).

On July 2nd, a day consecrated to Santa Isabel, the well-known dance Ezpatadantza de Zumarraga is danced in the High Mass.

Information of interest

Type of resources
Religious buildings
Monument type


Beloki Hiribidea, s/n - 20700 Zumarraga
Artistic style
Basque Romanesque
Middle Ages (15th century)

Antigua Music Festival (on Sunday) in September


  • Recreational area
  • Parking
  • Park
  • Shops
  • Guided visit