Torre d'en Galmés Talayotic Settlement

Alaior, Spain

Torre d’en Galmés is the largest settlement in Menorca. Its hilltop location made it the ideal spot for keeping watch over the land on most of the island's south coast. In chronological terms, it was occupied from the Naviforme period (1700-1400 BCE), and you can still see an underground chamber from this period near the area where water was collected, right through until the late Roman era, although some remains have been found from the Islamic era (12th century AD). 

The site consists of a public area, with three talaiots (1000-700 BCE) standing on top of the hill, plus the taula enclosure next to the middle talaiot, dating from the post-Talayotic period (650-123 BCE). The capital of this taula was re-used as a tombstone in the late Roman or medieval period. An archaeological dig carried out in 1974 unearthed a bronze Egyptian figure of the god Imhotep, now displayed in the Museum of Menorca together with other ritual objects found on the site. The figure was most likely acquired between the 4th and 3rd centuries BCE.

On the south side of the hill are circular houses from the same period, with rooms separated by radial walls that converge on a central patio area with a water tank. On the side of each house are outbuildings that were used as storerooms or larders, and that still preserve the stone roofing slabs supported by pillars. The largest house is the one known as the “Círculo Cartailhac”, dating from the 2nd century B.C. and excavated in 2008. There is also a rainwater catchment system formed by cisterns or tanks of different sizes carved out of the rock. The whole settlement was probably enclosed by a perimeter wall that connected the houses to each other following an irregular layout.

References:

Comments

Your name



Details

Founded: 1700 BCE
Category: Prehistoric and archaeological sites in Spain

More Information

www.menorca.es

Rating

4.5/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Sergey L. (2 years ago)
Really interesting place!
Michael S (2 years ago)
Well worth the visit, just trying to imagine the lives people had here thousands of years ago. Pleasant surroundings as well, take a small picnic, plenty of places to sit and enjoy . I wouldn't recommend the site for someone with limited mobility, but there are good well maintained pathways around the site to enable access, but with steepish inclines.
Emily Kington (2 years ago)
Great little architectural site. Good information.
Andrew Taylor (2 years ago)
Excellent place takes a good while to go around reading and going into the burial chambers
Sarah Henderson (3 years ago)
Excellent archaeological site, lots to see and well curated to allow visitors to understand more of what is on the site. Some areas are less excavated than other parts but where work has been done it is truly unique and great to be able to get up close. Inexpensive fee to access the site during the summer (except Mondays).
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Beckov Castle

The Beckov castle stands on a steep 50 m tall rock in the village Beckov. The dominance of the rock and impression of invincibility it gaves, challenged our ancestors to make use of these assets. The result is a remarkable harmony between the natural setting and architecture.

The castle first mentioned in 1200 was originally owned by the King and later, at the end of the 13th century it fell in hands of Matúš Èák. Its owners alternated - at the end of the 14th century the family of Stibor of Stiborice bought it.

The next owners, the Bánffys who adapted the Gothic castle to the Renaissance residence, improved its fortifications preventing the Turks from conquering it at the end of the 16th century. When Bánffys died out, the castle was owned by several noble families. It fell in decay after fire in 1729.

The history of the castle is the subject of different legends. One of them narrates the origin of the name of castle derived from that of jester Becko for whom the Duke Stibor had the castle built.

Another legend has it that the lord of the castle had his servant thrown down from the rock because he protected his child from the lords favourite dog. Before his death, the servant pronounced a curse saying that they would meet in a year and days time, and indeed precisely after that time the lord was bitten by a snake and fell down to the same abyss.

The well-conserved ruins of the castle, now the National Cultural Monument, are frequently visited by tourists, above all in July when the castle festival takes place. The former Ambro curia situated below the castle now shelters the exhibition of the local history.