Project Appraisal, intervention and dissemination of the Castillo de Portilla (Zambrana)

Line of research, action

Dissemination and socialisation of Heritage

Project summary

The state of progressive ruin in which the Castillo de Portilla complex finds itself, its long and complex history and its potential recreational and landscape value, are variables that justify undertaking a project to restore and disseminate this location.

The entire complex finds itself in a dreadful state of conservation and progressive ruin that calls for urgent action to undertake an architectural intervention project. There is graphical documentation that reveals the gradual loss of elements over recent years, mainly in the castle and the church of Santa Maria.


Imagen de la antigua iglesia y murallas de la Villavieja

Image of the ancient church and walls of Villavieja

The data compiled to date also highlights that the area is of great value from a heritage viewpoint, in its overall natural and cultural sense. The complex boasts a number of spectacular geological formations of vertical limestone strata (a part of which has been used to construct the walls of the mediaeval settlement), a characteristic habitat for the fauna and flora (representative of a transition between the Atlantic ecosystem and the Mediterranean and continental ecosystem), of great value from the landscape viewpoint. The castle is located on a vantage point that affords an almost 360º view of the surrounding area. During its long history, the castle has seen four major periods of occupation (end of Bronze Age-Roman-mediaeval-post mediaeval).

Even so, the “Portilla Castle” is largely unknown from the viewpoint of its historical significance. This is, nonetheless, an advantage due to the impact that an innovating interpretation space within a scenario of such historical and landscape importance might have on an unprejudiced public. Discovering and understanding the Portilla site, adequately restored according to respectful criteria and with a minimum number of points of access and services, and telling the story of its heritage value, represents another argument of great importance in favour of making a start with the recovery process and an undeniable incentive for a recreational visit of great quality.



In progress