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San Miguel de Arretxinaga Chapel (Markina-Xemein)

The San Miguel de Arretxinaga chapel is situated next to the Camino de Santiago, where the two rivers Artibai and Urko join.

In the surrounding area, near the chapel, there's the ancient Town Hall of the municipality of Xemein, which has been the corroborating witness of the ox-pull competitions that take place there, and a small park where the patron saint's festival is celebrated on the 29 of September.

Etymologically Arretxinaga means a "place or site where two stones lay or are thrown." Arri, harria, stone; etxi, from etzin, etzan, to lie, throw, to lie down, and the locative suffix - aga, meaning place of. This interpretation describes the geological phenomenon that draws our attention so much.

It has to do with a building that is centrally located. It has the shape of a regular hexagon, with a six-sided pyramid roof and sole access on the west side.

In one of the rock formed hollows the patron saint, the archangel San Miguel, can be observed. The saint brandishes his sword against the demon that lies at his feet in the form of a dragon or another imaginary animal.



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