Castel of Santa Bárbara

High up on the hill of Benacantil is the Castle of Santa Bárbara (Castillo de Santa Bárbara), rising 166 metres above sea level. From there you can see the bay of Alicante and all the surrounding land. It’s of no surprise that its strategic position once held high military value. The castle’s original structure dates back to the 9th century and was built by the Muslims.



Its name comes from the fact that on Saint Barbara’s day, 4 December 1248, the castle was taken from the Arabs by Prince Alfonso of Castile, who would later be crowned King Alfonso X ‘the Wise’.

The castle comprises three main sections: La Torreta or ‘the tower’ is the highest part and has the oldest remains of the fort and some foundations dating from the 11th to the 13th centuries. In this part of the complex we can find what is known as the Baluarte de los Ingleses or English Bastion, as well as other areas including the Parque de Ingenieros (Engineers’ Park), the Sala Noble, which was once a hospital, the Governor’s House, etc.

The second section includes some of the most important rooms completed in 1580. They include the Felipe II hall and the old Troops quarters in front of the parade ground, behind which are the ruins of the chapel of Santa Bárbara, the guard’s quarters, the Queen’s bastion, etc.

The third section includes the Revellín del Bon Repós area, which was constructed in the 18th century and today is a car park with limited spaces that has a monument to the illustrious Alicante-born naval officer and Viceroy of New Spain, Félix Berenguer de Marquina.

The castle is also home to the Museum of Alicante, an unmissable attraction housed in the castle’s dungeons. Another sight are the ruins of the chapel of Santa Bárbara.

If you wish, you can park your vehicle in one of the Saba car parks, either the one on Avenida Maisonnave or the one on Avenida Salamanca, and you need not worry about closing times because they are both open 24 hours a day.