Château de Castelnou

Castelnou, France

From 990 AD, Château de Castelnou served as the administrative and military capital of the Viscount of Vallespir. Its irregular pentagonal plan follows the rocky outcrop on which it was built, this elevated position providing defence against enemy attacks.

The castle was taken by the troops of James II of Majorca en 1286, and again in 1483. Largely demolished in 1559, it was no longer restored or inhabited and deteriorated throughout the 17th and 18th centuries. At the time of the French Revolution it became the property of the commune. It was sold to Viscount Satgé in 1875 and, by 1900, had become again an elegant and habitable fortress. It was acquired in 1946 by Charles-Emmanuel Brousse who was married to Amy Elizabeth Thorpe, a famed American spy. Having been ravaged by a terrible fire, in 1987 it was sold and has since been restored.



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Castelnou, France
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Founded: 990 AD
Category: Castles and fortifications in France
Historical period: Birth of Capetian dynasty (France)


4.4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Katherine Donaghy (10 months ago)
Beautiful Castle and medieval city. The castle is at the top of the hill so does require so. E uphill walking to get to. Parking is €3 for as long as you want. There are a number of restaurants and some shops selling art etc. There are so a couple of drinks/ice cream shops.
Liviu Bocu (10 months ago)
Not big, but has a lot to offer! Superb views, interesting castle, old houses with narrow streets at the base. It also offers audio guide on your smartphone if you have Internet. And all for just 5 euro per adult. Very happy we visited!
Aurelia Ghenuche (12 months ago)
A journey back in time. Around 30' by car from Perpignan. An amazingly preserved medieval village in a stunning area. It's a magical place, full of small shops that sell handmade art pieces. The castle is majestic and has an interesting history. Everything opens at 10AM. Well worth a visit!
Simon Hawkes (2 years ago)
Whilst I didn't gain access to the Castle, the surrounding area & winding narrow streets (some steep) leading up to the castle were very interesting with many gallery's & local craft/gift shops very tastefully integrated into the original buildings. Plenty of places for refreshment & something to eat. A good area for parking is available at the base of the village, with EV ? charging facilities ?
anthony smith (2 years ago)
Another 'Beautiful villages of France' these are so well named . Easy access parking, market on Tuesday (cracking jazz trio entertained the small crowd perusing the local wine, beer and provisions makers whares). The village is cosy and has a number of local artists selling interesting artwork. The castle is well worth the climb and €5 entrance, with spectacular views, refreshing cool breeze and also a very clean WC
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Mingarry Castle was considered a strategically important site in terms of communication with overseas areas and as an entranceway to the Sound of Mull. Originally built in the 13th century for the Clan MacDonald of Ardnamurchan, the castle has had many different occupants. King James IV of Scotland used it as a stronghold for fighting off Clan Donald in the late 15th century. In 1515 the castle was besieged by the Clan MacDonald of Lochalsh and again two years later when they finally took the castle.

In 1588 the chief of the Clan MacLean of Duart resided there after capturing the chief of the Clan MacIan of Ardnamurchan. In 1588, one of the ships of the Spanish Armada, named the San Juan de Sicilia, landed on Mull and MacLean of Duart used troops from the ship to aid him in his warring against the MacDonalds of Clanranald and the MacIans of Ardnamurchan.