The military architecture in Andalusia is deeply rooted in pre-Roman times. Ruins or well-preserved castles are commonplace with the foundations of the walls lying on top of Cyclopean ashlars laid by the Iberians. In the same way, many of the castles of Andalusia were also ancient Roman forts and fortifications.
Beyond this epoch, there is no doubt that the majority of Andalusian castles and fortresses came from the lengthy Moorish dominance, especially during the period of heightened Christian threat to the frontiers of Al-Andalus, between 12th and 15th centuries. The main Andalusian citadels and fortresses date back to that time as well as the Emiral and Caliphate period and were later reused and modified by the new Christian noblemen who even converted them into residential palaces. The castle is a building that responds to the need for defence during a period marked by war, conquests, raids and pillaging. Therefore, they began to have a practical use and their architecture did not inspire beauty but was functional.
The Lecrin valley has a series of castles, forts, palaces, seigneurial houses, farmhouse towers and watch towers.
The castle was located to the south of the village, opposite the Lower Quarter, on an outcrop between the river Las Albuñuelas and the rambla de las Cabezuelas. There are large numbers of Medieval caves excavated in the hillside on the same right-hand side of the river. The remains there today may have belonged to a farmhouse tower that formed part of a castle or larger building giving the place its name Llano del Castillo.
What remains of this building were two cob walls 1.35 meters thick, forming an angle with exterior measurements and orientation of 5.85 meters south-east and 2.65 meters north-east. Their maximum preserved height was 3.00 meters. These cob walls were built on other masonry walls, which acted as foundations, to level the ground and guard against rising damp.
In the village we find the Torre de Bayo, a Medieval defence tower, rectangular in shape, built in the ancient district Barrio de Naxo. It measures 7.75 by 6.45 metres. This masonry structure has keystones at the corners and is typical of a farmhouse tower from the 14th century Nazrid period. Inside it is divided into three floors, surpassing 8 meters in height and with vaulted ceilings. It was built with large stones forming rows bound by lime mortar and sand, and its corners are pointed ashlars up to a height of 6 m. From here a stone and sand cob wall is built, in some places preserving a reddish finish that gave it a flat and uniform appearance.
The Palace of the Archbishop Perea y Porras stood in the ancient quarter of la Iglesia, next to a house that carries a coat of arms on the façade. The palace was pulled down some years ago and the church was destroyed in the earthquake of 1884.
The Castillejo located on the Catastro de Ensenada the Rock of the Moors, is located towards the west of Durcal, 2 km from the town. The river Grande, Guadalquivir de los apeos runs westwards. The castle occupies the top of hill and its silhouette is an irregular polygon, as can be observed by the distribution of what remains.
On approaching the ruins of this fortress, the first thing we see are its outlines. You can only make out what must have been the castle keep, that now looks like a mushroom-shaped prehistoric monolith. Sadly, the fortress is in a poor state of conservation these days. Only scant remains of the building are left, such as the water tank and the aforementioned keep which must have been reinforced around its base to stop it from crumbling. The water tank is the best preserved structure, accessed from the north face through an arch-shaped breach. Its floor is rectangular and measures 5 m x 2.10 m, and its height unknown since it has been partly filled in. From the bottom upwards its brickwork is covered with stucco, which has come away in some areas to reveal the red oxide clay which was used to coat the walls of water tanks; the barrel vault which covers it is constructed from wedged stone slabs. The water tank is mounted on vaulted structures, giving it a rectangular floor at some height. The materials used would have been masonry on the ground coated with stucco, a mixture of lime and marble powder.
We can find the remains of a small wall near the keep towards the south, constructed from packed earth. On the north side of the construction there are quite a few remains, but of masonry pointed with lime and sand mortar, some of the remains are quite tall and might have formed the base of a packed earth wall. It is possible that what is half-buried in the centre of this north face might have been a strong packed earth wall with the remains of plaster skimming on its masonry, which would have defended the access to the enclosure and the water tank area. There are signs that there was a bent entrance door which can be distinguished in its exterior rendering. There are the remains of a fortified wall in the west and south-eastern areas, and the remains of towers can also be made out on the north-west and south-west corners. At the south eastern edge of the platform are the remains of a poorly preserved structure which would have been an underground passageway leading from the fortress to the River Dúrcal, until a few years ago this was useable but its current deterioration and being overgrown by vegetation and scrub make it invisible to the observer in parts and easily mistaken for a water tank.
Márgena was one of the hamlets in this area, acquired by Nicolás Bonel y Orbe when he was made marquis. During the time of the Moorish rebellion against Felipe II there must have been a fortress in Márgena, as can be gathered from the war chronicles of the time. The remains conjure up the image of a lookout tower from which the roads, river and Marchena plains could be observed, crossed by the Alpujarras road. Some of the structure remains, its southern and eastern facades joined at a right angle and reinforcing its edges. Its floor is rectangular, not far off square, measuring 5.30 m x 4.30 m on the inside and 5.70 m x 7.20 m on the outside, with a wall thickness of approximately 1.5 m which narrows as it goes upwards. The height of the remains is around 6.55 m.
In the village next to the square was the palace and garden of the marquises of Márgena, descendents of the Bonel y Orbe family. Sadly, nothing now remains of this 19th century construction belonging to the nobility. It was here that King Alfonso XII stayed when he visited the area following the earthquake in 1884.
In his book “Guerra de Granada” (The War of Granada), which tells of the Moorish rebellion against Felipe II, Diego Hurtado de Mendoza writes about one of the many clashes between two inhabitants of Niguelas, Nacox and Vilches, in the three crags around Acequias, called Calat el Hhajar by the Moors, where supposedly there was a lookout tower. This lookout tower seems to have been situated on Cerro Alto (1216 m), a hill that had three adjoining elevations. In the area we can find pottery remains, but no remains of construction on the top of the hill which indicate where the tower would have been. From here you can see the Castle of Mondújar, the site of the Castle of Nigüelas, the Pleito and Torrente ravines, the highway and the Guards’ Road. The roads leading up into Sierra Nevada can be monitored from here.
The old document which records the extent and ownership of lands in the area notes the existence of two neighbourhoods and of a citadel on the banks of the River Torrente which was used as a garrison by the Duke of Sesa during the transfer from Tablate. The duke stayed in Acequias for quite some time whilst suffering from an attack of gout. There is a Mudejar country house where tradition has it that Fernando Fernández de Córdoba, grandson of the Gran Capitán of the same name, stayed.
There is a house in the Javita neighbourhood that has traditionally been called the Palace. It is said that the Valori clan met here to proclaim Fernando de Válor king of the Moors, naming him Abén Humeya. It is said that John of Austria, brother of Felipe II, stayed in this house when he visited the village and learned of the exploits of the Musketeers of the Holy Sacrament.
There was a Moorish house in the square, of which remains a passageway used as a corral, a covered balcony and a coat-of-arms which used to be on the facade of the building. In the same square on the other side of the road is the 19th century Casa Grande brick house. It used to belong to Mr Fábregas, engineer of the Motril road.
The small Chite castle is located on the Mojinar plot of land, on top of a hill at the confluence of the River Grande with Arrendate ravine, some 600 metres south-west of Béznar and at an altitude of 535 metres. The floor layout is rectangular with rounded corners, and it is on a north-south axis. Access to it is via the old Pinos path which descends from Chite to the Mojinar River. It is a very strategic location since it looks out over the River Grande area, an ancient communications route around the Valley. The remains of the castle wall on the western side can be distinguished, constructed from packed earth and some 80 metres long, one metre high and 70 cms thick. This wall is constructed on stepped stone slab foundations which served to level the terrain for the placement of the formwork and also to prevent capillary moisture from getting into the walls. The remains of other packed earth walls can be distinguished on the southern and eastern sides, but they are smaller and in a poorer state of conservation than the first wall mentioned, since they were constructed with a lower lime content. The door for the building would appear to have been situated in the north-west corner. No remains of any water tank have been found, but a large amount of ceramics from medieval and prehistoric periods have. However, a little further up there is a water tank and a mine which channelled waters from the Arrendate gulley.
In Upper Chite we find the street of the Fort which looked out over the village and surrounding cultivated areas. In the same neighbourhood we find the entrance gateway to the Mill of the Inquisition and next to it a Moorish country mansion (13) which still has fantastic coffering and its grain silo. In Lower Chite there are three houses and their gardens which combine in an interesting fashion. The oldest belong to the Aguilar and Fernández-Píña families, the newest to the Castillo family.
We know that this fortress, its gardens and orchards were built by Muley Hacen for Soraya and for his captive Christian lover Isabel de Solís. It was here that he took refuge when his son Boabdil rebelled against him, and it is also said that he took up residence here when his brother El Zagal wrested the throne from him in 1485. This king, who sought the most inaccessible location for his last resting place, ended his days here.
The remains of the palace fortress are located at an altitude of 900 metres on top of the Mazmorra (dungeon) or Castillejo (small castle) Hill, one kilometre to the east of the village. Access to the site is on foot across extensive groves of olive, orange and lemon trees and there is no one visible path taking us to the summit, but rather innumerable small paths, so the best way is to follow the edge of the gulley. There is an iron cross on the summit which replaced the original wooden cross erected at the beginning of the 20th century at the behest of Fernando Escavias de Carvajal and his wife María Luisa Campos.
The construction was almost entirely of masonry and the floor layout is of an irregular polygon shape to adapt to the precipitous terrain. Access is via a bent entrance and ramp, and on the inside is a trapezium-shaped tower in the north-east corner of the enclosure, entrance and exit looking westwards. The tower had two storeys and a terrace, and walls of irregular thickness. At the top are the remains of a parapet which was perhaps crenellated. Inside are the remains of up to five splayed arrow slits and a further two in the wall that closed the fortress to the east. Outside the castle are the remains of a large rectangular water tank built of lime concrete walls which might have had a red coloured skim finish. It was covered by a stonework vault of which there are some remains, mostly on its north-east corner where it connects to another small pointed vault covering the passageway for access to the tank from within the fortress.
The defensive wall, 1.60 metres thick, begins at the entrance gateway and runs westwards for 11.40 metres, then another wall begins, tucked in behind the first one and not as well constructed, lower and on top of which the back-filling begins. A little further on it changes direction again, this time heading north until reaching a spur of rock where the remains of a tower can be seen, then the wall continues westwards.
The remaining stretch of defensive walls is built in a stepped fashion and a narrow path can be made out between them, possibly a walkway. It measures 6.30 metres at its highest point and 4.30 metres at its lowest.
Local residents say that there are underground passages linking the castle with the church and the Nasrid Royal Garden, the cemetery of the Nasrid rulers of Granada. Rich history and tradition have given rise to legends about treasures hidden in the village and surrounding areas, some of which have been recovered and are on display in the National Archaeological Museum.
Lojuela castle is some way from the village, 2 kms west of it on a strategic lookout point over a large part providing views of the River Grande basin and Lecrin Valley. It can be reached from Murchas along a pretty track winding through groves of lemon, orange, olive and almond trees. It is the only example that we have of a caliphate period castle in Lecrin Valley. The name ‘Lojuela castle’ refers to a centre of population that no longer exists, but that would have been located in the area now called "Eras de Lojuela", Lojuela threshing floors. Here have been found the remains of the foundations of some houses, a Moorish cemetery and grain silos cut into the rock that gives the place its name. A good part of the castle-fortress construction is conserved. Its defensive walls are of packed earth and rich lime, and inside them we can see a good number of Roman ceramics and tegulae remains. The lower part of the defensive wall is of brickwork.
It has a fortified rectangular tower sited on the edge of a ravine which looks out over the wide valley of the River Grande. The lower part of the tower is of bricks and mortar, since packed earth could not be used on this kind of site, but from halfway up the construction is of packed earth of mostly fine materials (2 mm) mixed with some larger stone chips. The outside of the tower walls are skimmed with a reddish coating giving a smooth finish.
The tower is surrounded by a stretch of defensive walls in stepped formation to take the ground relief into account, and the northern wall is almost entirely intact and measures 44 metres. It is of packed earth, the top part covered with a flat waterproof ‘roof’ to protect the construction underneath. Scattered across the terraced enclosure within are the remains of low walls which could have been garrison buildings or temporary shelters for the inhabitants of the neighbouring village.
Fernando Escavias de Carvajal and his wife María Luisa Campos, the Marquises of Casa Tavares, built a beautiful country mansion with lovely gardens where the Marquis of Mondéjar’s mill used to be. It is a very harmonious group of buildings, the main one consisting of a central part with two lateral extensions and a wall enclosing an elegant cobbled patio.
In the area are other buildings of interest such as the Collantes’ house, built in the style of a typical Moorish country mansion. More modern but nonetheless interesting are some of the houses near the square and the house opposite the town hall, which used to belong to Miguel Fernández Burgos.
The Town Hall building is the former summer palace of the Zayas family, built in the 16th century and restored in the 1990s. Stepping over the threshold we enter the first patio with its beautiful Renaissance door, elaborate balcony and coat-of-arms on the façade. Then we enter the palace itself through a hallway where there are two ornamental ceramic jars sunk into the floor, bearing the signatures of the craftsmen who fashioned them. Next is the central patio with its Doric columns of Sierra Elvira marble and Albuñuelas pine shoes supporting the beams and coffering of the upper landing. There is a sumptuous stairway in Mudejar style, decorated with small antique hand-painted tiles. This patio gives onto a French garden with magnificent boxwood borders, splendid magnolias, and hundred-year-old mock acacias, conifers and Jupiter trees, all watered by the elegant fountains. There is a fine example of a strawberry tree and, in the adjoining garden, a hundred-year-old Holm oak.
The adjoining garden is the Muller Garden, the most beautiful garden in Lecrin valley, originally belonging to a 19th century bourgeoisie family. It is a good example of the houses with ornamental gardens that we have in the province, such as the Mártires Gardens in Granada or the former palace of the Marquises of Márgena in Dúrcal (now no more), or the residence of the Countess of Lajarosa in Talará. The house burnt down in 1975 and has not been lived in since then. It belonged to the family of José Blanes Zavala, but was bought by the Muller family in 1955 and still belongs to them.
In the old part of the village, there is a watchtower or minaret on calle Purgatorio. Its base is rectangular and measures 4.40m x 3.25 m. The only façade visible from the outside is the north-west facing one, measuring 3.30 m. It is constructed of medium size brickwork courses and with layers of bricks that form rough stone panels of different heights. This wall is built on a levelling platform of lime concrete and stone 1.40 m high. There is a small window 5 m up. This is a Nasrid construction dating from the mid 14th century.
There are records of a 9th century citadel in Nigüelas. The meagre remains that are found on an elevation above the River Torrente could well be of this citadel. This elevation, at 1200 m height near the Niguelas Sierra, is called the ‘Terrain of the Castillejo’ in the old land ownership records. The remains on this site really are meagre, on the western slope there is a wall measuring 50 cm high and 3 m long, built from bricks and mortar and following the orography of the site. This may have been the base of a packed earth wall.
The ‘Casa Grande’ is a 16th century residential palace with some defensive fortifications. Today, it is surrounded by other buildings and almost in the centre of El Padul. Antonio de Aróstegui had this palace-castle built in memory of his father. Almost nothing remains of it, having been built on in later years, but a stretch of the old defensive wall can be distinguished bearing the coat-of-arms and the largest tower, now significantly altered. The castle is surrounded by a high wall that prevents it from being seen, but on the other side of this wall there is a large open area.
Its main door is of impressive proportions. It has a lintel and is decorated with padded ashlars. On its pediment is the description of the defence carried out by Martín Pérez de Aróstegui against the attack by a group of Moorish rebels in 1569.
Above it is the Aróstegui family coat-of-arms, a quartered heraldic shield in dark blue, gold, green, red and silver. At the top of the shield is a helmet, there are motifs relating to the family and around them, the heads of eight Moors. The architecture is very Baroque, there is no ornamentation and the attraction of the work lies in its elegant proportions and balance, its simple size on different levels and the grace and elegance of the pointed flanges in the El Escorial style.
One of the most interesting things to point out about this construction is that it belongs to the class of ‘Chair Palaces’, i.e. with chairs placed in its entrance or hallway signifying that the poor could ask for food and shelter here. The palace-castle was built on the site of an old tower fort that is represented in the stalls of Toledo cathedral. It was used as a barracks during the War of Independence and as a concentration camp for republican prisoners after the Civil War. In September 1810, Juan Fernández de Cañas, born in Gabia and mayor of Otívar, attacked the Casa Grande and captured it from the French. In October, he was victorious over French troops commanded by General Horacio Sebastiani, sustaining a wound and having to take refuge in a nearby cave. Apart from its historical and artistic value, this building is one of the few remaining, and rare, Baroque palaces in the province of Granada.
Near the church there is a Nasrid lookout tower, which might be where the village gets it name from. Its base measuring 4 x 2.5 metres and its placement could have formed part of a defensive wall extending along the terrain. It is constructed of small stone masonry. Initially it must have been surrounded by a walled enclosure where the inhabitants and livestock could take refuge, called an ‘albacara’. It has tuff ashlars at its corners, which reinforce the structure. Adjoining it is a wall which could have been part of the defensive structure.
The Cebada Inn castle, next to the old road from Granada to the coast, was important for keeping watch over the road. From records of the measurement requested by the Gazi Moors in 1563, we know that it existed at this time. “Andrés de Hanpuero, chief bailiff, gained information in the tower on the Hill of Çevada from Melchor de Panyagua, mayor of said tower and fortress, a person well versed in matters of the soil and who well knows the roads that go from the tower to the sea and which is the closest road to the sea from the tower”. In the Rebellion and Punishment of the Moors of the kingdom of Granada, Luís del Mármol refers to an inn on Cebada Hill.
There are two houses in this village which are in the colonial style, built by locals who had returned home having made their fortunes in America. One is the ‘casa de las Palmeras’ (house of the palm trees), whose light and simple symmetry make it a construction of great beauty. It is located by the side of the road which, at the beginning of the 20th century, was planned to connect Talará and Almuñécar. In Lower Pinos is the other house, known as ‘the colonel’s house’, a construction which sits solidly. In spite of its windows, its size makes it appear robust and heavy, this appearance added to by the large pine tree growing next to the house. This house with its ornamental gardens was built in such a way that its reflection can be seen in the fountain basin. Nearby in the church square there are two Moorish country mansions, designed by their architects to allow views of their patios with octagonal wooden columns and shoes supporting coffering and walkways.
The stature reached by the Bonel y Orbe family in the 19th century and by their relatives the Fernández Guerra and Delgado families, is reflected in the houses that they had built around St Sebastian church, some of which bear coats-of-arms. Along the highway which passed through the village there are several interesting houses, among them the one belonging to the Girón Caro family.
Scholars say that there is a tower fortress to the north of the church. It must have formed part of the defensive redoubt of the estate that housed the garrison controlling the strategic Tablate bridge. It is rectangular in shape, measuring 4.15 m x 3 m, and north-south facing. Its walls are of packed earth, it has small girders with protruding joints and its corners are reinforced with bricks. On the inside, its walls are of solid lime concrete and on the ground floor there is a small room whose roof is constructed using large wooden beams supported on brick walls. It resembles the tower of an Arabic beam press for olive oil. Inside the enclosure there appear to have been constructions built against the aforementioned walls, perhaps a small barracks for troops. Let us not forget that it was used as a garrison during the time of the Moorish rebellion against Felipe II.
Along calle Fuente, where the village fountain and washing troughs are located, are a series of houses bearing the coats-of-arms of the Miras y Calafar family. Respected lawyer José Ortega Sáez Diente was born at number 6 on calle Fuente in the mid 19th century. This family, long-established in the Valley, generated a dynasty of scribes, Notaries Public, secretaries and lawyers. Next to number 6 is number 10, also decorated with the Miras y Calafar heraldic shield. This was where Francisco Castro lived, known as “the engineer”, owner and manager of the Oil and Conserves Factory. He also owned the San Antonio ‘electricity factory’, built in the historic Horadada Mill. House number 7 bears the heraldic shield of the Miras y Calafar family. House number 5 has the coat-of-arms of an order of knights, the Order of Calatrava. House number 11 is perhaps the most interesting of all the houses in this street for its layout and structure, bearing the heraldic shield of the Pineda family and known as the ‘house of Aragon’.
Scattered across the village are houses decorated with heraldic shields and graced with Moorish patios. Of note is the Sáez Diente house opposite the village church in the Hondillo neighbourhood. It was built more recently than the other houses and has a grand covered terrace, its roof supported by arches. The clean and symmetrical lines of the house are to be admired.
Once we arrive in Restábal, we take the road that leads to the El Calvario neighbourhood, from where the site of the castle is accessed via a wide forest track which skirts the Las Arenas ravine and leads upwards to a platform at 728 m. Here we find the ruins of the castle, some one and a half kilometres from the village. It is situated on the top of a hill called ‘monte Corona’ or ‘Loma del Castillo’, between the Mizán and Las Arenas ravines. The features of the castle are similar to those of Lanjarón and Mondújar. It dates from the 14th century Nasrid period and formed part of the programme of military reinforcement structures carried out by the Nasrids under the sultan Yusuf I Abudl Hagig, who finished work on the Alhambra, and his son Muhammad V. The castle was destroyed by the Marquis of Villena in 1491. The hills around Restábal were where the Moors of El Valle took refuge in 1569, using the ruins of the castle as a defensive position against the troops commanded by Antonio de Luna.
The Cistern, with a capacity of almost one million litres, is the only structure on the site which is in a good state of conservation. It is rectangular in shape and divided into 4 compartments, each covered by half-barrel vaults, sub-divided and supported on horseshoe arches. Human skeletons have been found all around the perimeter of the castle area, along with various shards of ceramics and pottery. There are fragments of wall still standing which indicate an enclosed area, except perhaps on the north face where there were at least two towers. The main access must have been in the southern part of the site.
The large rectangular cistern, constructed of packed earth, is located just to the north of the entrance bastion. The dimensions of each compartment are, from south to north: 6.63 x 2.07m; 6.72 x 2.34 m; 6.92 x 2.27 m, and 7.10 x 2.22 m. The keystone of the highest vault is 3.20 m above ground. For their construction, they may have been extended along below the visible remains.
Some stone panels can be made out in the western area, but what stands out above all is a rectangular tower with concrete battlements. On the north-eastern edge there are two more walls of the same material and equal in height that today are used to form the boundaries of some cultivated land. In the eastern zone there are also the bases of some stretches of wall, less as they extend north-east and more numerous as they extend south-east, where we find an impressive arrangement of walls, the combination of the cistern enclosure walls and presumably the base of the defensive walls.
Restábal also has a set of very interesting seigneurial houses. An example is the ‘los Rosales’ house on calle San Cristóbal, on the old road connecting Restábal and Saleres, adorned with a very well preserved, brightly coloured heraldic shield. Its quarters display a Lion, a patriarchal Cross, a Sun with stars, Five towers and a Chequerboard with Three Keys, and the Cross of St James. Less ornate are the houses of the Espadas and Sáez-Diente families. However, of note is the house of the Marquis of Cotiella who created an entailed estate in the villages of the Lower Valley. Inside the house, one of the patio façades forms part of an old Moorish lookout tower. Although the house has subsequently been divided to adapt it for different uses, a series of columns that formed the old patio can still be seen. The house is not far from the old highway, and its base is constructed from very well proportioned ashlars which might have been salvaged from the old fort that used to stand next to the lookout tower.
The Marchal lookout tower is one more component of the network of defensive structures built around the Lecrin Valley during the Nasrid period. It occupied a central position in this extensive defence network, since it overlooked the entire Valley. It is a tower very similar to the Cónchar tower but in a poorer state of conservation, only reaching a height of 2.75 m today. It is an Arab lookout post, cylindrical in shape and with a circular base of 3.70 m diameter. It is constructed from medium-sized stones formed into courses and cased with gravel using a lime-rich mortar. There are no remains of skimming on the outside. Only the solid part of the tower remains. The interior is founded with rubble and sand from the tower itself. It affords views of the Cónchar tower and the Márgena Fort, which makes us think that there must have been some sort of communications system between them to warn of approaching danger.
The ‘casa grande’ formerly owned by the Counts of Villamena (17th century) bears witness to the rank of its aristocracy. It adjoins the church, to which the Counts had direct access for attending services. The parents of the current owners purchased the house from descendents of the Counts. It has now been divided into two houses. It was originally built in the 17th century. The Cadastre of the Marquis of Ensenada records the country mansion and its granaries, chambers, corrals and patios. It is worth visiting to admire the symmetry of the façade arranged to look out over the square. We can see the stud nail decoration of the main door which gives onto the hallway and patio, and above which is a covered balcony. In the patio, we can still see the wooden beams, coffering and shoes which support the first floor. It is curious to see the plaster half-round moulding between the wooden beams of the hallway ceiling.
The Cónchar lookout tower is located a few kilometres from the Cónchar road, close to the junction with the Albuñuelas road. It is at 800 m altitude and is very similar to lookout towers in other parts of the province. It is from the Moorish period, cylindrical and with a circular base of some 14.50 m diameter, standing 7 m tall. It is constructed using small and medium-sized stones, not laid in courses, and joined with mortar. It still has the remains of lime mortar rendering on the west, north and north-east facing external walls, since it was usual to render stone built structures both on the inside and out.
Its two lower thirds are solid, there is a door-window entry with brick jambs on the south-east face some 5 m above ground, which opened onto an upper room. In the south-south-west part we can make out the base of the vault that would have covered the room and which would have been constructed of masonry. It also has two arrow slits, one facing south-west and the other north-west. It affords views over a large part of the River Dúrcal valley and also to the Márgena tower, Dúrcal castle and the Marchal lookout tower.
Autores: Maribel Sánchez Ortega y Francisco Manuel Martín Padial