Valle de Mena, de todo... naturalmente

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Fortified architecture

As already mentioned in the section dedicated to the medieval era, the majority of the towers built at this time were raised in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries as symbols of the power wielded by different local noble families over the villages and hamlets of the valley. From a practical point of view these buildings would have served as residences, whilst also having a defensive function, manifested by the thick, robust walls and lack of frivolity. They served as a defensive base against the turbulence of these centuries when there were frequent violent skirmishes, known as gang/clan wars, between the distinct noble lineages motivated by economic reasons and social pre-eminence.

The best preserved towers are:

  • The Tower of Lezana: The Tower of Lezana
    Torre Lezana
  • The Tower of Villasana: Its origins can be traced back to the second half of the thirteenth century, during which time, probably by order of Sancho Sanchez de Velasco -a member of the Velasco family- a wall was built encircling the medieval village of Villasana. The tower has clearly been lowered given that the finishing touches, which are generally typical of these structures, are missing from the top storey. The walls are the same thickness – 1.40m – from bottom to top, characterising the primitive construction techniques prior to the fourteenth century. It boasted its own enclosure, of which nothing remains except the beginnings of the south stretch of wall. The tower was a material symbol for the lord, who established his power over the village of Villasana in the second half of the thirteenth century and prevailed until the first half of the nineteenth.Torre Los Velasco
  • The Tower of Maltranilla: According to the property register of the Marquis de la Ensenada (1753) the tower belonged to the Coloma family in the mid-eighteenth century. It has clearly been lowered given once again the finishing touches, which are typical of these structures, are missing from the top storey. It has two entrances, found in the southeast and northeast facades respectively, some pointed arrow slits and, on the top floor, like a gallery formed of contingent windows protected by a cornice, is the dovecote.
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