The water-encircled Schoten castle started as a farm in the 13th century. The first record of farm dates from 1232. In the 15th and 16th centuries it was owned by the family Van Brecht from Breda. They began the construction of the present castle in 1548 and in 1611 the building got its present form. The building was acquired in 1950 by the city of Schoten and in 1955 it was converted into a cultural center.References:
The city walls of Avila were built in the 11th century to protect the citizens from the Moors. They have been well maintained throughout the centuries and are now a major tourist attraction as well as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visitors can walk around about half of the length of the walls.
The layout of the city is an even quadrilateral with a perimeter of 2,516 m. Its walls, which consist in part of stones already used in earlier constructions, have an average thickness of 3 m. Access to the city is afforded by nine gates of different periods; twin 20 m high towers, linked by a semi-circular arch, flank the oldest ones, Puerta de San Vicente and Puerta del Alcázar.