Alcázar de Jerez de la Frontera
Monumental Landmark of El Alcazar de Jerez and Cámara Oscura
Classified as a Monument of Historical, Artistic and Cultural Interest, this is the oldest and most important historical monument in the city of Jerez de la Frontera.
It dates from the 12th Century but was reformed in the 15th Century, only to be modified again in the 18th Century and 20th Century, currently conserving a great part of its primitive construction.
It is made up of the Mosque, Olive Oil Mill, Moorish Baths and the Octagonal, Homage and Ponce de Leon Towers, the Courtyard, the Gates protecting the two entrances and part of the Wall which surrounded it.
In the 18th Century the Villavicencio Palace was built upon the ruins of the primitive Moorish palace, and which now houses the Camera Obscure from where moving birds-eye images of the city and the surrounding countryside are captured by a simple optical mechanism.
Alcázar Puerta del Campo
The so-called Country Gateway was built during Almohade times and is therefore contemporary with the creation of the Alcázar itself.
Following the defensive criteria which govern the whole of the Alcázar fortress the gateway incorporates a dogleg design in order to hinder access to the interior of the compound.
The Octogonal Tower is one of the most emblematic architectural elements to be found within the Jerez Alcázar fortress compound.
Its construction dates back to the 12 Century and curiously it used to be known as the Golden Tower.
Its height and shape tell us that the function of the watchtower was purely a defensive one, given that it stands in one of the highest places in the city.