Basílica de Santa María de la Asunción

Arcos de la Frontera, Spain

Santa María de la Asunción Basilica was built in the 15th-16th century. History of this church site dates back to the 8th and 9th centuries. It was built on the remains of a former Moorish mosque. The main facade is in Gothic-Plateresque architectural style with the neoclassical tower being the newest addition.


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Founded: 15th century
Category: Religious sites in Spain

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4.5/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Juan Antonio Romero (5 months ago)
Worth a visit if you are walking through the center of Arcos. The climb to the bell tower is quite an exercise and the views from the top are spectacular. The entry to 4 euros has seemed a bit-quite excessive.
Steven (6 months ago)
This largely Gothic styled church was built around the 15th century. It sits atop the limestone cliffs of Arcos on Plaza del Cabildo - a square which is essentially a carpark and also the location of the Parador de Turismo. You'll be rewarded with some great views overlooking the countryside from the mirador or visit the bar in the Parador for an even better view and a refreshing drink after the steep climb to get here. If you're mobility restricted there is a small car park here and also taxis (probably the best option as the street are very narrow in places).
José Francisco Pereira da Silva de Pádua (10 months ago)
Vale a vista do campanário. Tem que pagar para entrar como toda igreja histórica na Espanha
Bernd Bruening (12 months ago)
St. Mary's Basilica is built on the foundations of the old mosque in the 15th century and stands high above the city with a wonderful view from the tower. Part of the tower, probably the foundation, is to be built on the old minaret of the mosque above Also interesting are the pebbles in the ground in front of the church Well worth seeing and the steep climb is worth it
Helmut Wille (20 months ago)
It is a church with a floor plan with three naves of equal height and a monumental head, designed by the architect Diego de Riaño in collaboration with Juan Gil de Hontañón and Alonso Rodríguez in the work of Martín de Gaínza. The interior is entirely Gothic, while the Renaissance style is mostly present in its magnificent Plateresque main facade. The unfinished tower and the buttresses date from the Baroque period (17th-18th centuries).
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The Broch of Gurness is an Iron Age broch village. Settlement here began sometime between 500 and 200 BC. At the centre of the settlement is a stone tower or broch, which once probably reached a height of around 10 metres. Its interior is divided into sections by upright slabs. The tower features two skins of drystone walls, with stone-floored galleries in between. These are accessed by steps. Stone ledges suggest that there was once an upper storey with a timber floor. The roof would have been thatched, surrounded by a wall walk linked by stairs to the ground floor. The broch features two hearths and a subterranean stone cistern with steps leading down into it. It is thought to have some religious significance, relating to an Iron Age cult of the underground.

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In the 9th century, a Norse woman was buried at the site in a stone-lined grave with two bronze brooches and a sickle and knife made from iron. Other finds suggest that Norse men were buried here too.