SANTA BARBARA – THE FORTIFIED CASTLE OF ALICANTE

Possibly the main attraction of city is its fortification – the castle in the centre of Alicante. It stands on Mount Benacantil(166 m).

On the slopes of the mountain have been found Bronze Age, Iberian, and Roman artifacts, but the origins of the castle date to the 9th century at the time of Muslim control of the Iberian Peninsula. The Arab medieval geographer Al-Idrisi calls this mountain Banu-lQatil, and the toponym may derive from the words pinna (Arabic for “peak”) and laqanti, adjectival form of Laqant, the Arabic name for Alicante.

From the 18th century the military role of the castle has declined and it was used sometimes as a prison.The castle remained abandoned until 1963, when it was opened to the public. Lifts have been installed inside the mountain (there is a small charge for the lift but not to enter the castle), and there are refreshments and other amenities at and near the summit. Reasonably fit visitors may also appreciate the exercise of a walk to the top.

Before our visit to Santa Barbara we visited also the Archaeological museum of Alicante, which was quite rich, but not surprising after me having been at the museums of history in Riga and London. Although this museum was devoted to local findings.

santa barbara 002

santa barbara 003

santa barbara 004

 

santa barbara 006

santa barbara 007

santa barbara 008

santa barbara 009

santa barbara 010

Although it was possible to test our stamina, we all opted for escalator. No wonder –  after classes, museum and walking around the city.

santa barbara 023

santa barbara 024

santa barbara 025

santa barbara 026

santa barbara 027

santa barbara 029

santa barbara 037

santa barbara 038

santa barbara 039

santa barbara 040

santa barbara 042

santa barbara 043

santa barbara 044

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s