Belmez Castle

Belmez, Spain

Castillo de Belmez is a small fortress located in Bélmez, northwest of Córdoba. It is visible from any angle, as it sits on top of a high limestone rocky outcrop. It seems to have been around at least since 1245, although the main tower and the wall were built later on, in the 15th century. It belonged to the Order of Calatrava after belonging to the Cordoba Council. In the 15th century it became an important area of control during the Reconquest.

From 1810 to 1812, during the Peninsular War, the French troops took over the castle for a long time. It was so important for them that they even rebuilt part of the site. The French domination affected the people of Belmez so much that they decided to get rid of that bastion, which was so attractive to their enemies, so they tried to destroy it.

To get to the fortress visitors must walk up winding stairs starting on Calle Rafael Canalejo Canteroy, through an arched doorway, situated on one of the turrets.

The floor plan is elongated and adapts to the terrain on which it is built – an enormous rock which is impossible to get to from the northwestern side because there is a steep cliff. Six semi-cylindrical towers are built along a wall which is thicker in some parts. In the bailey inside there is a well, known in the town as the 'horse's hoofprint', which is always is full of water thanks to the features of the terrain.

The keep is pentagonal and 11 metres high. It has two floors with brick vaults above them. It used to have parapets and battlements – clear defence elements which have disappeared over time.



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Founded: 13th century
Category: Castles and fortifications in Spain


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User Reviews

Joana Ferreira (11 months ago)
Traveling from Córdoba to Portugal, we saw the castle in the distance and decided to stop and visit. We looked for the access stairs / patio and it surprised us that it was so flowery and so well taken care of. But the local population did not want to let us pass or take pictures because it had not yet been opened by the authorities.... :(... We are leaving, disappointed, when they called us and let us pass to go up to the castle but without taking pictures. The castle has a beautiful view, is open to the public but very uncharacteristic, rebuilt with cement in some parts, without any historical information, and dirty... Conclusion: it's beautiful from afar, it's beautiful if you manage to pass by and admire it through the stairs/ patio.Other than that, it's not very interesting.
Eduardo Gonzalez (2 years ago)
Castle in the town that gives it its name. It is easily seen from afar as it is on a fairly steep promontory. The climb is important since there is quite a slope but without a doubt it is worth it. You have to be careful since everything is accessible and there is no surveillance, so with small children you have to be very close to them.
John Lim (2 years ago)
athenaonearthh (2 years ago)
Really beautiful view!
Mark Auchincloss (2 years ago)
13th Century, rebuilt in 15th Century,occupied by French in 1810-12. You can walk to top from Hermitage via a viewpoint. It's free open access. You can even go up to top of tower. 360° views are incredible. The variety of birds observed was incredible : falcon, alpine swift,chough, craig martin, strork...
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