Elgoibar and its surroundings

The town of Elgoibar borders Deba and Mutriku to the north, Soraluze to the south, Azkoitia to the east and Markina and Eibar to the west. The river Deba runs through the town: the streams Saturio, Bizkaia, Santa Clara and Plaza flow into it on the left, and San Lorenzo, San Antolín and Kilimón on the right. The town has two parishes: Alzola and Mendaro. It is 14 km from Deba, 6 km from Eibar, 13 km from Azkoitia, 15 km from Bergara and approximately 50 km from San Sebastian, Bilbao and Vitoria.

Elgoibar has always been, and continues to be an industrial town, the manufacture of machine tools being the main activity. Years ago, there were many weapon manufacturers and ironworks in this town, but nowadays metal working industries are predominant.


Elgoibar was formerly located in the land known as Marquina de Yuso. In 1346, Alfonso XI signed the Town Charter with which Elgoibar was founded under the name of Villamayor de Marquina. It was in 1472 when the Councils of Gipuzkoa and the Catholic Monarchs authorised it to be called Elgoibar, as the land around the present- day parish of San Bartolomé, where the walled town was built, was called Elgoibar. The town of Elgoibar has suffered several fires in the past. But the people of Elgoibar always knew how to overcome adversity and made of Elgoibar a flourishing place. In 1883, the fountain in the square with drinking water came into operation; and in 1893, electric street lighting was inaugurated. Little by little, Elgoibar gradually expanded towards the mountains until it became the town we know today.

Old town centre

In 1459 Martín Sancho built the church of the monastery of San Bartolomé de Olaso. The monastery and the church have disappeared, but in their place is the entrance to the church, which is also the entrance to the cemetery of Olaso, of great beauty and historical and artistic importance. The shrine of La Magdalena, dating from around 1346, was located outside the wall surrounding the town, at a crossroads at which many
stopped on their way to Castile. The Tower House of the Altzola family is located on the Nafarroa square. The first documents on this building date back to 1484, although
its origins go back even further. In times of emergency the building served as the seat of the town councils.

For example in 1560, when a fire destroyed part of the village, the Tower House hosted meetings between neighbours and the Town Council for its reconstruction. The old Padre Aguirre School is located on the Aita Agirre square, also known as the Txikixa square. The main hub of life in Elgoibar is on the Foruen square, better known as the Handixa square.

A perfect and harmonious baroque square where the Town Hall is located, built by the Ibero brothers in 1737. The coat of arms of the town, granted by the Catholic Monarchs in 1498, dominates the building. The church of San Bartolomé (patron saint of Elgoibar), the work of Longa, Larraza and the Ibero family, is also located on the Foruen Square. It was inaugurated in 1716, after twenty-five years of work. The church is built in the Escorial style, and has a baroque tower and an altar with a clear classical projection. This beautiful complex is completed by a building of old porticoed houses and the oldest pelota court in the Basque Country, built in 1751.

Here are some interesting tourist links to places to visit in the area: