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Azkoitia's central square, with Paroquia Santa Maria La Real
Azkoitia's central square, with Paroquia Santa Maria La Real
Coat of arms of Azkoitia
Coat of arms
Azkoitia is located in Basque Country
Location of Azkoitia within the Basque Autonomous Community
Coordinates: 43°10′45″N 2°18′38″W / 43.17917°N 2.31056°W / 43.17917; -2.31056Coordinates: 43°10′45″N 2°18′38″W / 43.17917°N 2.31056°W / 43.17917; -2.31056
Country Spain
Autonomous community Basque Country
Province Gipuzkoa
Comarca Urola Kosta
Founded 1331 (1331)
 • Mayor Javier Zubizarreta (Basque Nationalist Party)
 • Total 54.71 km2 (21.12 sq mi)
Elevation 113 m (371 ft)
Population (2014)
 • Total 11,480
 • Density 210/km2 (540/sq mi)
Demonym(s) Spanish: azcoitano
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 20720
Website Official website

Azkoitia (Spanish: Azcoitia) is a town located in the province of Gipuzkoa, in the Autonomous Community of Basque Country, in northern Spain. It is also the seat of the municipality of the same name.

Geographical setting[edit]

Azkoitia and the municipality of the same name, are located on and around the upper Urola river valley, centered on a small alluvial plain surrounded by the Basque mountains. Except for the valley itself, the terrain is rather rugged, with elevations ranging to little less than 950 meters.


A boulevard across the river from Azkoitia's old central square

As of 2004[1], the municipality numbers 10,946 inhabitants, of which 5,324 (49.867%) are men and 5,262 (50.133%) are women. Age is distributed among the sexes rather evenly with children and adolescents (0 to 17 years of age) forming 16.235% of the population, adults(18 to 54 years of age) making up 53.744%, and senior citizens forming the remaining 30.021%.

Historical relevance[edit]

Azkoitia was the birthplace of the mother of Saint Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the Jesuit religious order. Ignatius' maternal grandfather, Don Martin Garcia de Licona, had purchased Balda Tower in the mid-15th century. Recurring bloody encounters in the region persuaded the king, Henry IV of Castile, to reduce the tower from a fortress to a courthouse. On 13 July 1467 Don Martin's daughter, Dona Marina Saenz de Licona Balda married Don Beltran Ibanez de Onaz y Loyola from neighbouring Azpeitia in the Licona family home in Azkoitia. The original wedding contract still exists.

Loyola's birth house is still preserved as a museum a part of a large Jesuit compound. It is located a few kilometers east of Azkoitia's city center, at the small community of Azpeitia, and is a major tourist attraction.

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Demographics for all Basque municipalities