The castle of Magaña is considered to be one of the most important castles from the 15th century in the province of Soria. This castle is in better condition than what we are used to seeing in the area and the best way to contemplate its majestic silhouette is from the road on the way towards Fuentes de Magaña or from the highest parts of the town. You will be able to see all the plants that have reclaimed its walls contrasting with the ochre tones of the landscape where the tall keep sticks out from its hiding place in the middle of the castle’s courtyard.
It is located on a steep hill near the town and it dominates the valley of the Alhama River over which a medieval bridge crosses. On the hillside, there is a chapel with a rectangular apse which some authors believe to be pre-Romanesque.
The castle is built of stone and is organised into two walled enclosures around the 9th or 11th-century Berber keep, much older than the rest of the ensemble and belonging to a group of Berber towers that were erected all throughout the valley of the Rituerto River, such as the Masegoso, Trévago, Noviercas, Castellanos, La Pica or Aldealpozo towers. This tower still maintains the original battlement hexes and some windows framed with ashlar stonework.
The inner enclosure has very tall walls and has a quadrangular floor plan with the keep at one of its corners and cube-shaped structures on the other two. The outer one is much lower and its floor plan is quite irregular with seven cube-shaped structures scattered throughout the hill’s perimeter.References:
Varberg Fortress was built in 1287-1300 by count Jacob Nielsen as protection against his Danish king, who had declared him an outlaw after the murder of King Eric V of Denmark. Jacob had close connections with king Eric II of Norway and as a result got substantial Norwegian assistance with the construction. The fortress, as well as half the county, became Norwegian in 1305.
King Eric's grand daughter, Ingeborg Håkansdotter, inherited the area from her father, King Haakon V of Norway. She and her husband, Eric, Duke of Södermanland, established a semi-independent state out of their Norwegian, Swedish and Danish counties until the death of Erik. They spent considerable time at the fortress. Their son, King Magnus IV of Sweden (Magnus VII of Norway), spent much time at the fortress as well.
The fortress was augmented during the late 16th and early 17th century on order by King Christian IV of Denmark. However, after the Treaty of Brömsebro in 1645 the fortress became Swedish. It was used as a military installation until 1830 and as a prison from the end of the 17th Century until 1931.
It is currently used as a museum and bed and breakfast as well as private accommodation. The moat of the fortress is said to be inhabited by a small lake monster. In August 2006, a couple of witnesses claimed to have seen the monster emerge from the dark water and devour a duck. The creature is described as brown, hairless and with a 40 cm long tail.