The fortress of Old Castellar is erected on a hill of steep hillsides in the centre of the Natural Park Los Alcornocales, among the rivers Guadarranque and Hozgarganta, distinguishing the Guadarranque dam and the forests of its hillsides, as well as Gibraltar and the Strait, at the outskirts of the current location of Castellar de la Frontera township, province of Cádiz.


As its name indicates, this Arabic fortress was built in the 13th Century at the border, defending the Taifas Kingdom from Algeciras. It was the former residence of the Castellar’s Counts


Its floor is irregular, and it has a walled enclosure with barbicans, cubes and towers of square and circle angles, some of them crowned with crenels. It is remarkable the towers of the hall, with defensive elements like the barbicans that defend the access to the castle, drilled with loopholes and a bended door open under a beautiful canted arch and delimited by a horseshoe arch.

From the small parade ground it is accessed to the interior worker’s house, with white houses, narrow streets and sinuous flowerpots. Between the buildings it is remarkable the palace of the Counts of Castellar, with the Homenaje Tower, the City Hall, and the Divino Salvador Church, of baroque style. It looks more like a citadel, in which the castle would be the military area detached from the administrative and civic area.

State of preservation

It is in a good state of preservation the hall, with horseshoe arches, which lead to the interior that shelters the village protected by the castle. It was partially restored in 1979.


It was declared a Property of Cultural Interest in the category of Monument (code: 110130001). It is below the protection of the Generic Declaration of the Decree from the 22th April 1949, and the Law 16/1985 on Spanish Historical Heritage.