Calatravo de Alcaudete Castle

Plaza de Santa Maria s/n, 23660, Alcaudete (Jaén)

This place is not registered in any route yet.

Cultural Visit

          We are located in the municipality of Alcaudete, which is in the Comarca of the Sierra Sur of Jaén. Alcaudete is a prosperous land in olive groves, fruits and water. It was a strategic passing zone during the Middle Ages and the Arab domain, as it was on the road that went from Cordoba to Granada and border place for more than a hundred years, once conquered by Christians.

          This make us to think about one thing: why is there a Castle in Alcaudete? It was the year 711 when the Muslims entered the Peninsula and began the conquest of what was called Al-Andalus, reaching the Duero’s and Ebro’s valleys. However, by the year 1030, their power got weaker and, because of that, Christian kings began an offensive to recover the conquered lands and protect the territory and its inhabitants. In that way they created a powerful defensive system to prevent the lands recovery by Muslims, based on a wide variety of large castles, watchtowers and fortresses, such as the Castillo of Alcaudete. Alcaudete was known in the ninth century as al-Qabdaq or al-Qibdaq, being a place of refuge for peasant populations in the area. To this aim, a fortress was built at the top of the hill, taking advantage of the steep slopes, rocky complexes and natural gorges for its defence. Thus, during the Almohad domain, a great wall was built around the urban core, as well as a fortress on the summit. All of that to protect in case of attack the inhabitants and soldiers of Alcaudete. Inside the fortress there was a tank that collected rainwater to survive and tents used as home, in order to live there and sleep.

          Afterwards, the Castle of Alcaudete was part of the defence belt that King Ferdinand III The Holy entrusted for the protection of the western border of the kingdom of Jaen against the Nasrid kingdom of Granada. It was built between the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. This Castle has had several stages throughout its life, which have impregnated its walls with legends and stories, memories and adventures, which have left their mark on its structure and which make the monumental complex possess a unique beauty that leaves no one indifferent to their visitors.

          Fernando III and his son Alfonso X granted manors in the Kingdom of Jaén as payment for their help in the conquest of the Upper Guadalquivir Valley, and with the clear objective of serving as a protective belt against the Nasrid Kingdom of Granada. For this reason, Alcaudete was handed over to the Order of Calatrava in 1245. Hence, the castle was renamed Castillo Calatravo of Alcaudete.

          The Castle of Alcaudete has had several stages throughout its history. When the Calatrava Order leaved, this land and the village became a manor zone, and the Castle was transformed into a private Palace, where the lords of Alcaudete who inhabited it placed the shields of the Cordoba and Montemayor family on the door. Currently these shields are so deteriorated that they hardly distinguish.


Visit with Audioguide  to Alcaudete Castle and CIOMC

Summer schedule (June 1st to September 30)

  • Monday, Closed.
  • Tuesday to Sunday: 10:00 a.m. to 13:15.

Winter schedule (October 1st to May 31st)

  • Monday, Closed.
  • Tuesday to Sunday: 10:00 to 13:15 hs.
  • Tuesday to Friday:  16 to 17:15 hs.


Guided visits to the Castle of Alcaudete and CIOMC

Summer schedule (June 1st to September 30)

  • Monday, Closed
  • Tuesday to Saturday: at 10:30

Winter schedule (October 1st to May 31st)

  • Monday, Closed.
  • Tuesday to Friday: at 11: 00h and 16: 00h.
  • Saturday and Sunday: 11: 00h (Saturday afternoon is necessary to make a previous reservation; the visit will be made as long as the group has a minimum of 5 people).

Night Guided Visit, book 5 days in advance, maximum 20 persons.

  • Friday and Saturday at 21:30 hs.

Closed: January 1.  Holy Friday. August 15. December 24, 25 and 31



Plaza de Santa Maria s/n, 23660, Alcaudete (Jaén)

How to get there:
  • Head from the Olivar Motorway / A-316 and turn towards J-2240, until Castillo of Alcaudete, Plaza de Santa María s / n, 23660 Alcaudete, Jaén.
  • From Córdoba or Granada, following the N-432A.