Aledo is a hilltop town, perched high in the Sierra Espuña, a strategic defensive location which see-sawed between the Moors who occupied Southern Spain between the 7th and 13th centuries and the Catholic Knights of the Christian Reconquist who regained much of this area, war dominating it's history.
It´s well preserved Torre de Homenaje gives panoramic views of the surrounding countryside, a strategic advantage which enabled it's occupiers to control trade routes and communications networks, as well as offering shelter for the farming communities who worked the terraces surrounding the castle.
It has an atmospheric Old Quarter, the original walls of the fortress still intact, although the modern town has spilled out of the defensive structure and down the hillside, and offers an enjoyable morning out, with the Castle Tower to visit, the Picota, the only surviving pillory left in the Region, and the Geological walk which takes participants through 20 million years worth of geological history to the valley floor below.
Torre de Homenaje
Built by the Military Order of Santiago, this 19 metre high tower contains impressive vaulted ceilings , an interpretation centre and stunning views of the surrounding countryside.
It houses the tourist information centre and is open Monday-Friday and on alternate weekends.
Contact details to confirm opening and to book group guided visits are:
Tel: 696 962 116 / 968 484 422
Fax: 968 484 423
Click for more information about the Torre de Homenaje
The Geological walk.
Aledo has been declared an area of geological interest ( LIG)and visitors can walk down from the castle to the rocky valley below through 20 million years of history.
Click A walk back in time.
Mediaeval Spain operated a feudal system and capital punishment was an essential element of the control exercised over the lower classes by the powerful fighting nobility of the era. This is the only remaining example of a pillory in the Region of Murcia, a chilling reminder of the reason these fortified walls were built in the first place.
Click for the Picota
Iglesia de Santa María Real.
This unassuming church contains 4 sculptures of note, amongst them two by Murcia´s most famous Baroque sculptor, Francisco Salzillo.
Click for Iglesia de Santa María real
The Sierra Espuña.
From Aledo it is just a short drive into the forests of the Sierra Espuña, with a wealth of forest walks, picnic areas and wildlife. The Pozos de Nieve, the snowhouses which provided ice for Murcia Capital are close to Aledo, making it possible to combine a visit to both in the same day.
Click for introduction to the Sierra Espuña.
Aledo is a Mediaeval hilltop town, and in these type of locations there is only one way to go, and that´s uphill. This makes sensible, flat footwear the only practical option, and if you are intending to follow the geological route, strong shoes, preferably walking boots are advisable. There is an enjoyable senderismo walking route which wends through the orchard areas at the foot of the hill which can also be undertaken by walkers. If intending to climb the tower, again, think of footwear, flip flops are really not a good idea on this quantity of steps.
The main entrance to town is via the modern end, past a friendly and popular bar which serves tapas and drinks, and the Town hall. From here it´s about a 10 minute walk straight uphill to the castle, and those concerned about driving in narrow streets should park in this area and walk. There is parking nearer to the castle, but not a lot, and particularly on Sundays this can be a bit crowded, so be warned, parking and walking is the most sensible option.
There are excellent views from the Castle Plaza, and Aledo is a good place to stop off for a coffee if intending to head into the Sierra Espuña.
Click for map, Aledo Town hall ( Ayuntamiento.)
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