Tag Archives: Castles

The castle of Hins-Canit in Cañete la Real

If you are in Ronda for a while then visits to other towns and villages are probably on your agenda… One town just 30 minutes from Ronda is often and easily overlooked but it really is well worth the effort to take a drive across to Cañete la Real to visit the castle of Hins-Canit. The views from this castle are stunning!

The castle of Hins-Canit in Cañete la Real is located at the top of an enormous limestone pavement that reaches to almost 800 metres above sea level. The fortress conserves an irregular plan of aproximately 120 metres long and 50 metres wide. The three sectors of the castle can be distinguished easily and defined by their function. 1. The entrance and adjacent area. 2 The intermediate residential level and 3. The nobles area where the tower is located.

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The thick exterior wall adapts itself to the terrain and cliffs and is built with limestone ashlars of different sizes. This enclosure was entered by a gate ending in a round arch orientated towards the east at the entrance the ground rises steeply so at one time a wooden ramp was used to gain access. The entrance is guarded by a battlement which is still well preserved today.

The second enclosure is also protected by a thick wall and battlement. It would have been very difficult for an attacker to gain access to this Fortress and it’s Keep

The Castle tower or keep “Alcazar” is located at the highest point. It is an impressive 18 metres tall and contained three stories as well as the rooftop lookout area.

The castle museum

The Castle now contains an excellent modern exhibition centre with many artefacts on display from Iberian, Moorish and Roman eras. The information signs are translated in very good and understandable English.

Vista Castillo Cañete la Real
The view from the castle at Cañete la Real

The Castle is open on Saturdays from 10 am to 2 pm and Sundays from 12pm to 2pm

(If you want to visit during the week or out of these hours you need to contact the town hall in Cañete la Real. Expect to speak Spanish! :) )

Telephone: 952183001
Web: http://www.canetelareal.es/6751/museo

There is also a direct number for reserving a visit. Mobile 637021253

Where to eat

Apart from the bars in the village there is a fantastic restaurant at the very top of the village not far from the Castle called La Piedra. (2 minute drive from the castle.) Well priced and good portions of local home cooked food.

Address: Ctra. de Almargen, 21 – 29340 Cañete la Real
Tel: 952183138
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Restaurante-La-Piedra-476049569196879/

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Fuengirola Sohail Castle

The first data that exists about the Fuengirola Sohail Castle refers to the Phoenicians, who arrived in Fuengirola to trade with the towns of the surrounding areas of Andaulucia.

It appears that Suel is the name of a star in the Constellation of Argos, which could be clearly seen from the hill where the castle now stands. In it’s beginning, Fuengirola as a town it was dedicated to fishing and agriculture. With the arrival of the Romans Fuengirola acquired great importance in Betica (the historic name of Andalucia), and was granted the status of city in 53AD, at the same time as Malaga, by Emperor Vespasian, which permitted it to set up its own institutions.

It was the Romans who built the Fuengirola Sohail’s first fortress atop the hill to protect the town from frequent pirate incursions. The Romans also left Fuengirola the thermal baths of Torreblanca, and traces of Cañada Real and Mijas Quarry.

The Visigoths seized Suel and held it until they were displaced by the Arabs in the 8th century (there is Visigoth necropolis next to the thermal baths at Torreblanca). The name the castle bears to this day is Sohail and it was the Arabs who changed this name. The Roman fortress was practically destroyed by a Viking assault in 858AD and was not reconstructed until 924.

The name Fuengirola first appears in a Catalan Atlas in 1375AD. At least eight different spellings were used! The name derives from the giratory spring at the foot of the castle. After being reconquered by the Catholic kings in 1485AD the coastal defences were reinforced and in 1730 the castle was reconstructed to counter the prevalent smuggling in the area.

At the end of the 18th century Fuengirola was an important center for then provisioning of boats going to Gibraltar. In particular the Genoese were devoted to skittles, from which derives the name Los Boliches (The Skittles).

In the War of Independence, which we know as the Peninsular War, Fuengirola was blockaded by the English General, Lord Blayney (of whom nothing else is known). French forces broke the siege under General Sebasitiani, who did have an illustriuos career. He was ambassador at Naples and London and was made Marshal of France in 1840. Napoleon’s army was thrown out of Fuengirola in 1812 by the Spanish General Francisco Ballesteros (Ballesteros means crossbow!)

In the modern era of the castle is a focus for social events, with a full calendar which last year included a medeival fair, concerts and the Tapas Festival.