A visit to a fortified castle in Almería

Exploring Almería

Almeria has many defensive forts and castles, but one town has more than most. Let's take a trip to the Costa Almería. Exploring with a family in tow is always more fun when there's a castle to climb - and with far reaching views across the calm and sunny Mediterranean sea, it's a pleasurable trip for all the family.

almeria coast

Well defended

Aside from the fantastic 10th century castle in the city centre, there are many towers, forts and castles dotted all along the coastline. So ignore the plastic poly-tunnels and tomato growers, and head for battle instead! We took a trip down to El Ejido, and Los Baños to be precise, to see what the Castillo de Guardias Viejas was like, come and see...

fort almeria

Season's goodwill

A winter's day up in the mountains soon morphed into hot sunshine and a sea that glimmered and shone like a polished mirror - Almería is very aptly named  'The Mirror of the Sea' in Arabic. Layers of jumpers and winter woollies thrown aside, we set out to explore the fort, bathed in warm sunshine.


Getting to the fort

Follow the brown signs for Castillo de Guardias Viejas through this town, reminiscent of north Africa more so than Spain, squat, flat houses in pastel colours and many more signs in Arabic rather than Spanish, Halal meat markets and colourful bazaars taking up most of the commercial space. You'll find the castle as you turn on a one track road towards the sea, tucked away behind a private housing estate.

castillo de guardias viejas

Cultural interest

Constructed in 1764 during the reign of Carlos III, the castle has since seen much action and destruction, and was reconstructed in 1980. In 1985 it was declared as a site of Cultural Interest, and today houses an extensive exhibition of military clothes and weapons from the Napoleonic era. 

Music events are also sometimes held here, as the acoustics are fantastic. Catch one if you can.


Around and about

Other defensive buildings in the area are:

The Tower of Balerma

The Tower of the Netherlands

The Square Tower

The Moorish Tower and Hill

All of these are in the immediate area, so make a point of seeing them all.

Picture this

The pillboxes (from the Spanish Civil War) around the edge of the castle are worth a scramble to get to, and make good photo opportunities! The views from these are also stunning, so remember to charge up the camera batteries before you come. It all makes a nice change from the bustling city of Almería, and reminds us that the coastline is not just for lazing about on the beach, although that's nice too!

pillbox castle almeria

Castillo de Guardias Viejas

Los Banos de Guardias Viejas

El Ejido


Opening hours: 10am - 2pm, 5pm  - 8pm. FREE entry.