The Town Community of Lea Ibarra - Munitibar - Aulesti - Gizaburuaga - Amoroto - Mendexa

River Lea

Amoroto - Places of Historical and Cultural Interest

Elexalde neighbourhood

Elexalde neighbourhood.

The spirit of renewal brought by the Enlightenment also reached Amoroto. Amoroto was built in the Middle Ages, but it changed completely around the middle of the XVIIIth century, as far as private and public buildings are concerned. The typical wooden structure of the farms was abandoned and they started to be built with firm load-bearing walls and arches at the entrance. The town hall dates from that period, and has a wide balcony facing the main square.

The beauty and balance of this small area is astonishing. Most farmhouses have a high architectural value, and the whole area is well looked after. In this excellent group of buildings, the typology of the farmhouses of the region and the different chronologies in their construction can be seen.

Some ancient farms have columns, and some baroque ones have one or two arches at the entrance. In the second group we can mention Aldekoa and Iturraran Bekoa as the most outstanding. Many houses have inscriptions dating from the XVIIIth and XIXth centuries (a few of them in Basque, although this is unusual). In the last farm mentioned, for instance, there is an inscription above the arch: "Eguiten badoc bierra jango doc ogia" ("If you work you will earn your daily bread"). Its location is very unusual. Surprising as it may seem, the inscription is not on the facade, but at the back of the building.

The main square

The main square of Amoroto.

It is in front of the town hall, with the church beside it. The Herriko Taberna (the “Popular Bar”, there is one in almost every town of the Basque Country) is situated here.

The square was completely remodeled in 1999, when benches and a fountain were installed in it. The houses surrounding it are also very neat (the previously mentioned Iturraran Bekoa, for example).

The cross

The cross.

The cross dating from 1835.

Idarreta farm

Idarreta farm.

It is in the Urrutia neighbourhood. It was built in 1754, and it is baroque in style. It has a rectangular ground plan.

The building is embellished by a beautiful main door, double arches on the entrance, a thick column in the middle and a group of sculptures.

The parish of San Martin

The parish of San Martin.

It is in the Elexalde neighbourhood, at the heart of the town.

It was originally of gothic-renaissance style, but it was redesigned in the XVIIIth century along with the whole neighbourhood. It is since then a neoclassical temple full of columns.

Its facade has a watch dating from 1900.

The chapel of San Migel

The chapel of San Migel.

It is located to the entrance of the neighborhood Elexalde, to the right side of the highway Lekeitio-Amoroto, is the first building that we will see when arriving at the town.

It has a hall door in the center and two rectangular windows of figured stone to each side. The baptismal pile is made of stone and it has a cross worked in reliebe. Above the main door one can see an inscription that it mentions to the Archangel San Michael and a cross in reliebe worked in gray stone.

The altar, also of stone, it sustains it a roller and after this the Archangel's figure.

This chapel of popular style belongs to San Martin's parish.

Santa Barbara´s chapel

Santa Barbara´s chapel.

It is located in San Barbara hill, near the dam. To visit it, we can take the path of Odiaga.

The stone altar leans on in a cylindrical support. Behind, the image of Santa Barbara. About the construction, the popular style is not very defined.


Caves map.

Abitaga cave
It is located in the Oleta neighbourhood, on the south side of Bista Alegre hill, 400 meters above the sea level. It has a 1,50 m. wide entrance.

In 1964 Joxe Migel Barandiaran found human remains and handcrafts inside the cave. The site dates from the Magdalenian period.

The cave of Abita
It is in the Oleta neighbourhood, just before reaching the Gizaburuaga-Lekeitio road. It was discovered in 1929 by the archaeologists Aranzadi, Eguren and Barandiaran. The entrance is 1,50 meters high and 3 meters wide.
It is a very important site; it has a great archaeological, historical, biological and speleological value.
The cave became a significant place in the second Carlist war. Lots of bats live in it, a species on the verge of extinction amongst them.
As far as speleology is concerned, new galleries were found in 1999.
The main gallery is 15 meters high at its highest point.

Pepetxo cave
In the Atxurra neighbourhood, near an affluent of the River Lea, there is a group of six caves. Pepetxo is one of them.
It is on the south-east side of Atxamonte hill, on one of the banks of the Armiño brook. The entrance is 2,2 meters wide. The cave is 27 meters long, and has two branches.

Cave Pepetxo III
It is also in Atxamonte hill, a few meters below Pepetxo. Part of this cave was destroyed when a road was built in the wood. Today only a meter of the cave remains, and so almost all of its archaelogical value has been smashed to pieces.
Although there are many caves in Amoroto, not all of them contain human vestiges. Apart from the caves mentioned so far, human vestiges were also found inside Pepetxo II, Pepetxo IV, Armiña, Goiogana I, the Cave of Atxurralde and the Cave of Asubita.

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