Bentomiz Castle – Arenas
Bentomiz Castle is located on a mountain at 709 m altitude, about 10 minutes by car from the town of Arenas, in the province of Málaga.
Today (28-04-2018), the Bentomiz Castle is a good “almond farm”, with some olive trees and a place to enjoy wonderfull views of the Axarquia and the coast. Due to its location and access with a large ramp, we believe that the visit is not recomended, the castle is in total ruin. (if you are going to go up by car, extreme precautions).
Its privileged location allows it to cover at a glance most of the towns of the region, as well as a large area of the Mediterranean coast.
Apparently this strength was in principle populated Iberian, on which Phoenicians and Greeks established some factories, happening later to power of the Carthaginians and, after the Punic wars, to the romans. The fortress was rebuilt by the Arabs, aware of the impontance it could have for them as a llink between the Nazarite kingdom and North Africa, being from the Xi century the guiding center of a large administrative district that controlled many nuclei of population, and becoming one of the most important fortified centers of Eastern Andalusia, both for its strategic location and its size.
In its more tham 40.000 m2 of walled land there are two large areas: the citadel and an extensive area called albarcar, which was intended to protect the villagers and their livestock in times of danger. It also counted, at least, with three accesses, two from the albarcar and one flanked by two strong towers in the northern part for the main enclosure.
In the year 1.487 Bentomiz will play and important role in the conquest of Vélez-Málaga and its land, according to some chroniclers. The alcaide of the Castle of that time that was The Gibis “El Gibis”, contrary to the king of Granada The Zagal, gave the strength to the Christians without suffering siege. After the surrender, the Castle became a key piece to control and area of abundant Moorish population, which will demonstrate its military importance when there is the rebellion of the Moors of 1.570. From this date begings for Bentomiz Castle a period of abandonment that leads to the state of ruin in wich we currently find it, although it still conserves underground reservoirs, towers and remains of walls, as well as some great views that give honor to its name: Bentomiz, mount from where the sea can be seen.