Travel to the Middle Ages and its castles and fortifications, it is possible without leaving the Region of Madrid! Castles played a fundamental role in the defense of areas and regions and in Madrid we have notable examples of well-preserved castles that can be visited today.
In total, nine are the castles that make up this route through the Middle Ages and are a good example of medieval defensive architecture. We begin the route at the Castillo de la Coracera, in San Martín de Valdeiglesias, a fortification from the early 15th century with excellent views of the Sierra de Gredos. It was also the residence of Isabella the Catholic, before being proclaimed Queen of Castile.
We continue the route through the Castle of Villaviciosa de Odón which is currently home to the Historical Archive of the Air Force and has the peculiarity that it is built in granite and was once a palace where part of the court lived. Then we know the peculiar Castle of Gonzalo Chacón, located in the town of Arroyomolinos, named after the steward of Isabel the Catholic and lord of Arroyomolinos and Casarrubios (Toledo) and is built in brick instead of stone.
In Batres is the Castle of Laso de Vega, one of the most original of the Community of Madrid. It was built in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries and is perfectly preserved. In addition, it belonged, hence its name, to the family of the poet Garcilaso de la Vega.
On the other hand, the Castle of the Counts of Chinchón, located in the town of Chinchón, is known for its impressive views. In the 18th century, after being used in the War of Succession (1708) and the War of Independence, it was abandoned and is now privately owned.
Our next stop is the Castle of Villarejo de Salvanés which belonged to the Order of Santiago. Today only the original fortress, the keep and archaeological excavations remain. In the Middle Ages it had three towers, a moat, chambers, stables, kitchens, warehouses, etc.
We continue the route in the Castle of the Count of Barajas, in Alameda, currently an open-air museum and throughout its history has been used as a prison and royal lodging.
The penultimate stop is Manzanares El Real, where, in its castle was signed the Statute of Autonomy of the Community of Madrid. And we finish the route in the Castle of Buitrago del Lozoya, is a true reflection of the life and strength of the Middle Ages. Its castle or fortress next to the church of Santa Maria del Castillo, the Clock Tower and the wall give a medieval air to this municipality.
More information: Castles of the Region of Madrid
Image: Buitrago de Lozoya