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Route of the castles in Cuenca

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  • Garcimuñoz Castle © Turespaña

    Garcimuñoz Castle © Turespaña


A land of warriors and unspoilt nature

The route starts in the city of Cuenca –whose old quarter has been declared a World Heritage site– and tours the province in search of its historic castles and walled cities. The journey is divided into three itineraries, all of which pass through the beautiful landscapes of the Serranía de Cuenca mountains and the gorges of the Cabriel river.

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The city of Cuenca, perched atop the gorges of the Júcar and Húecar rivers and known for the famous image of the Hanging Houses, still conserves parts of its medieval walled enclosure such as the Bezudo arch and the Mangana tower. One of its most important monuments is the cathedral of Nuestra Señora de Gracia, in the Gothic-Norman style (12th-13th centuries), which stands in the Plaza Mayor square beside the buildings of the Episcopal palace and the town hall.

Other interesting monuments include the churches of San Pedro, in the Baroque style, and San Miguel, dating from the 13th century; the seminary of San Julián; the convent and church of San Pablo, and the Renaissance ensemble formed by the church of San Nicolás de Bari and the convent of Las Angélicas. In Easter week, some of these places also serve as a unique setting for the concerts in Cuenca's Religious Music Festival.

The first itinerary will take us towards the north of the province, to discover the military architecture of the medieval towns of Cañete and Moya, in the heart of the mountains of the Serranía de Cuenca. We'll pass through natural scenery of outstanding beauty: hills, forests, river canyons, lakes and more. Cañete is just 69 kilometres from Cuenca, and is presided by the castle of Don Álvaro de Luna, with Arab origins and dating from the 9th century. Then, 38 kilometres further on we reach Moya, with its outstanding castle of Los Bobadilla –also with Arab origins– and a double wall.

The second itinerary takes us to the southeast of the province, to the region of La Manchuela. The destination is Enguídanos, 85 kilometres from Cuenca, which is located near the Hoces del Río Cabriel nature reserve. The village's most distinctive feature is its castle-fortress (14th-15th centuries) with Arab origins (10th-11th centuries).

We then continue on for 45 kilometres to Alarcón. This medieval site stands on a promontory surrounded by the Júcar river, and contains interesting monuments such as the medieval castle, built in the 12th century but reformed in the 15th century. Our next stop is 28 kilometres away in the village of Castillo de Garcimuñoz. Its fortress was built by the Infante and writer Don Juan Manuel, the author of “The Count Lucanor”, and enlarged in the 15th century.

The third itinerary takes us to the west of the province, to the region known as La Mancha. Huete stands 47 kilometres outside Cuenca, and still conserves remains of its old castle and Muslim walls, such as the Medina gateway. It is well worth visiting this village of noble homes and exploring churches and convents such as the monastery of La Merced.

23 kilometres further on we come to Uclés, whose main monuments include the priory convent of Santiago. Its monastery is known as “the Escorial of La Mancha” due to its Herrerran style. As we happen to be in the area, it is well worth visiting the Segóbriga Archaeological Park, an old Celtiberian-Roman city, located a short distance away in Saelices.

The two last destinations on the route are 40 kilometres on in Belmonte and Villaescusa de Haro. Key sights in Belmonte include its castle in the Gothic, Plateresque and Mudéjar style. The village is surrounded by gateways and fragments of wall and is home to various other monuments such as the 15th-century church of San Bartolomé. In Villaescusa de Haro we can visit Haro castle and the church of San Pedro Apóstol, both dating from the 16th century.



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La Grande Chapelle durante la Semana de Música Religiosa de Cuenca © Semana de Música Religiosa. Santiago Torralba

Apr 1, 2023 to Apr 9, 2023

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Procession of the Camino del Calvario. Easter week in Cuenca © Turespaña

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Festivity of International Tourist Interest

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Sep 18, 2023 to Sep 21, 2023

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