The heritage of the War of Independence: Napoleon's route along the Duero River

Keywords: War of Independence, heritage, tourism, Duero Valley, Napoleonic wars


This work aims to identify, record and analyze different heritage values associated with the presence of Napoleon Bonaparte in the Douro Valley during the War of Independence, between November 1808 and January 1809. We develop a cultural route as a framework that will bring full meaning to these traces and vestiges, and strengthen the identity of the cultural and tourist heritage of the route. It also provides an account of various highlights that took place during those days and refers to representative historical monuments - some of them still in use - related to Napoleon's visit. This itinerary, of great historical value, has not been widespread enough, so our main interest is to enhance its emblematic milestones, which have witnessed Napoleon's passage during his campaign.


Archivo Municipal de Valladolid. (1809). Libro de actas, 105: 5-6.

Arribas Arranz, F. (1946). La Cofradía Penitencial de Nuestro Padre Jesús Nazareno de Valladolid. Valladolid: Casa Martín.

Becerril Dimas, S. (1882). Páginas del alma. Segovia: Santiuste.

Bonaparte, N. (1856a). The confidential correspondence of Napoleon Bonaparte with his brother Joseph. Vol.1. New York: Appleton and Company.

Bonaparte, N. (1856b). The confidential correspondence of Napoleon Bonaparte with his brother Joseph. Vol.2. New York: Appleton and Company.

Brindle, R. (2011). Memorias de un estudiante inglés en la Guerra de la Independencia, (P. Garcés García, Trans.). Valladolid: Universidad de Valladolid.

Craufurd, A. H. (2011). General Craufurd and his light division. London: Pickle Part-ners.

Day, R. (2008). The life of Sir John Moore: Not a Drum Was Heard. Barnsley: Pen and Sword.

de Bausset, L. (1828). Private Memoirs of the Court of Napoleon. Philadelphia: Carey, Lea & Carey.

del Pozo, C. L. (2010). “La Carrera de Benavente”, in: González Rodriguez, R. (ed.) Be-navente en la Guerra de la Independencia. Benavente: Centro de Estudios Bena-ventanos `Ledo del Pozo’, p. 103-140.

Dodge, T. A. (1904). Napoleon. a history of the art of war, from the beginning of the French revolution to the end of the eighteenth century, with a detailed account of the wars of the French revolution. New York: Houghton, Mifflin, and Company.

Domínguez Casas, R. (2010). “Escudo del Rey Don José Napoleón I en el Monasterio de San Benito de Valladolid”, in: Hidalguía: la revista de genealogía, nobleza y ar-mas. 343: 743-764.

Ei, T. & Karamanis, K. (2017). “The evolution of alternative forms of Tourism: a theoreti-cal background”, in: Business & Entrepreneurship Journal, 6(1): 1-4.

Fernández Suárez, J. R. , Pérez Estévez, R. M., Pérez Ruiz, L., Sheerin P. & Vázquez de Prada Merino M. T. (2007). “Some notes on the Battle of Rioseco (1808): Opin-ions of English and Spanish historians”, in: ES. 28: 89-96.

Fondation Napoleon. (n. d.). Magazine. Retrieved February 23, 2018, from https://www.
Fragaki, E. (2003). “Alternative forms of tourism”, in: Trade with Greece, 45-47.

Galán Martín, M. (ed.) (1955). Historia de la Santísima Virgen de las Angustias de Aré-valo. Ávila: Senén Martín. Retrieved February 2, 2018, from http://bibliotecadigital.jcyl. es/i18n/consulta/registro.cmd?id=298
Gazeta de Madrid. 1809. 41(10 febrero).

Gerstein, M. (2011). “‘Nous avons des outrages à venger': Napoleonic Medals of the War in Spain”, in: Napoleonica. La Revue, 1, 49-65.

Gilbert, G. (2016). “Castile y Leon, Spain’s little-known historic heartland”, in: The Inde-pendent. Retrieved February 21, 2018, from holiday-in-spain-castile-y-leon-madrid-salamanca-valladolid-spanish-civil-war-a7137186.html

Gorton, J. (1851). A general biographical dictionary. Vol. 1. London: HG Bohn.

Hall, H. F. (1901). Napoleon's Letters to Josephine, 1796-1812. London: J. M. Dent.

Horne, R. H., Raffet, D. A. M. & Vernet, H. (1841). The history of Napoleon. Vol. 2. London: R. Tyas.

Hosteltur. (n. d.). “La ruta histórica de Napoleón levanta ampollas en Castilla y León” Re-trieved in February 28, 2018, from

Huerga Miñambres, O. (2010). “La Guerra de la Independencia (1808-1814): De un he-cho histórico a un factor social, turístico y cultural”, in: González Rodríguez, R. (ed.) Benavente en la Guerra de la Independencia. V Jornadas de Estudios Histó-ricos. Centro de Estudios Benaventanos “Ledo del Pozo”., p. 155-168.

Junot, L. (1901). Memoirs of the Emperor Napoleon. Vol. 3. Washington: Walter Dunne.

Martín Benito, J. I. (2010). “La villa de Benavente y el incendio de su Castillo durante la Guerra de la Independencia. La memoria de los viajeros”, in: González Rodríguez, R. (ed.) Benavente en la Guerra de la Independencia. Benavente: Centro de Estu-dios Benaventanos `Ledo del Pozo’, p. 141-154.

Nagy, K. (2012). “Heritage tourism, thematic routes and possibilities for innovation”, in Theory, Methodology, Practice, 8(1), 46.

Ormsby, J. W. (1809). An Account of the Operations of the British Army and of the State and Sentiments of the People of Portugal and Spain: During the Campaigns of the Years 1808 & 1809: in a Series of Letters, Vol. 2. London: James Carpenter.

Pérez Ruiz, L., Fernández Suárez, J. R., Pérez Estévez, R. M., Sheerin P. & Vázquez de Prada Merino M. T. (2007). “The march of the British troops through Portugal during the Peninsular War: impressions of Sir John Moore”, in: Macedo, A.G., Louro, F., Rayner, F., Ermida, I., Paisana, J., Esteves, M. & Harwood, R. (eds.) Intertextual Dialogues Travels & Routes. Braga (Portugal): Barbosa & Xavier, p. 441-452.

Pipollet, C. (1913). “Napoléon a Valladolid en 1809”, in: Revista de Archivos, Bibliotecas y Museos. XXIX: 328-352.

Richards, G. (2003). “What is Cultural Tourism?”, in: A. Van Maaren (Ed.) Erfgoed voor Toerisme. Nationaal Contact Monumenten. Retrieved February 21, 2018, from www.docstoc .com/docs/2554594/What-is-cultural-tourism

Sánchez Fernández, J. (2000). Valladolid durante la Guerra de la Independencia Espa-ñola (1808-1814). ProQuest Information and Learning Company.

Sancho, H., Gallardo F. & Martinez, D. (1989). Valladolid, Diarios Curiosos (1807-1841). Re-edited by Grupo Pinciano, Valladolid: Grupo Pinciano.

Schmidt, E. H. (1995). “Troops from Baden fighting in the confederation of the Rhine forces in the Peninsular War, 1808-1809” in: MILITARIA. Revista de Cultura Mil-itar. 7, 359-389

Schofield, H. (2012). “Napoleon… the theme park”. Retrieved February 21, 2018, from http://

Scott, W. (1858). The Life of Napoleon Bonaparte, Emperor of the French. V. 2. Phila-delphia: Leavitt & Allen.

Smith, V. & Eadington, W. (1992). Tourism alternatives: Potentials and problems in the development of tourism. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania.

Thiers, A. (1855). History of the Consulate and the Empire of France Under Napoleon. Vol. 3. Lippincott: Grambo & Company.

Toreno, C. D. (1837). Historia del levantamiento, guerra y revolución de España. Vol. 2. Madrid: Oficina de D. Tomás Jordán.

Turismo Castilla y León. (n. d.). Grandes rutas. Retrieved February 23, 2018, from http://

Wairy, L. C. (1904). Recollections of the private life of Napoleon. Vol. 2. New York: The Merriam.

Young, P. (1971). Chasseurs of the Guard. Vol. 2. Reading: Osprey.
How to Cite
Perez-Ruiz, L. (2020, October 1). The heritage of the War of Independence: Napoleon’s route along the Duero River. Journal of Tourism and Heritage Research, 3(4), 183-198. Retrieved from