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Spain's most spectacular castles
14 July 2020 @ 18:24

BEACHES may be abundant in Spain – and blue-flagged beaches more numerous than in any other country in the world – but, clearly, not every town has one. Yet one thing almost every town does seem to have, irrespective of its size, is a castle.

When thinking of castles, you'll probably picture a long list of other countries before Spain even enters your head – despite its having so many of them that a significant proportion have practically no information about them in circulation beyond the year, or decade, they were built, who built them, and who owned them.

For many residents in Spain, a view of a castle on a mountain from their window, or the image of one in the background on their walk to the local supermarket, is rather like wallpaper; they're so blasé about it that they probably fail to notice it 99% of the time.

Imagine having a castle-on-a-mountain view as you stroll around town on boring errands, and not even registering it. It's enough to make history-lovers, scenery-lovers and fairytale-lovers cry out in horror.

Fortresses were constructed all over the country during the Moorish era, when Spain's population was predominantly Arab, over around 700 years until about the time of the Catholic Reconquest in the late 15th century; mostly, they were defence or look-out points, but sometimes the whole town was based inside it – houses built into the inner walls – or the castle started as a central point with the town sprouting up around it, spreading outwards in a sort of circle over the next few centuries.



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