Plaza Mayor and Castillo de los Condes, Chinchon!

So keeping up with the rides… heck I am taking you back to my beloved Spain, everything under the sun! And my favorites areas since childhood, Comunidad de Madrid or old Castile, of which Madrid is part and also Chinchon.

I have written before over the years in my blog on Chinchon of course. However, there are two spots I love the most ,and would like to tell you a bit more on them. These are the Plaza Mayor (main square) or Castillo de los Condes (Counts’ Castle). Hope you enjoy it.

First a bit of Spanish geography and directions.  Chinchón is a town located in the southeast of the Comunidad de Madrid , in the region of Las Vegas, 44 km from the capital. From Madrid you can reach Chinchón by the highway A-3 taking the detour of the M-307, shortly before reaching Arganda. From there take the roads M-311 and then the M-313 to Chinchón. It can also be reached by the A-4, taking the turnoff of the M-404, shortly after Valdemoro, which takes us through Ciempozuelos and Titulcia to Chinchón. From Conde de Casal (next to metro station same name) bus stop in Madrid you can take bus line 337, to Chinchon terminus Valdelaguna.

The Plaza Mayor of Chinchón is an example of popular architecture. The first houses with arcades and balconies were built in the 15C, and was completely closed in the 17C. It has a circular shape ,covered with sand, and a simple structure, clear, tidy and hierarchical. The buildings are of three floors, with white houses on arcades, wooden balconies painted in green and red-tiled roofs, it’s like the Middle Ages! And 234 wooden balconies called Claros or clear, supported by standing with shoes type columns offering a breathtaking view of the bullfights and other regularly-held shows on the square. Bars, restaurants and other taverns hide behind the arcades. Since its construction, the Plaza Mayor has hosted numerous activities such as Royal celebrations, proclamations, corral of comedies, games of canes, bullfights, executions, sacramental rites, religious, political and military acts, as well as serving as a set for the  Cinema such as the bullfighting scene of the film Around the World in 80 Days, circus show in The Fabulous World of the Circus.

Tourist office of Comunidad de Madrid on the Plaza Mayor of Chinchon

Chinchon

Chinchon

Chinchon

The Castillo de los Condes or Counts’ Castle or Castle of Chinchon. In Chinchón there were two fortresses; The first, apparently, of the 15C and now disappeared. The current castle was built in the second half of the 16C by order of Diego Fernandez de Cabrera and Bobadilla, third count of Chinchón after being the first destroyed during the communal riots.

A bit of history I like tells us that the Manor of Chinchón, held by the Cabrera family since the time of King Henri IV of Castile. The original castle suffered damages of consideration in the attack made by the communal troops in the year 1520. The square was delivered with all its artillery in 1521. The third count of Chinchón, Diego Fernandez de Cabrera and Bobadilla, decided to demolish the remains of it. On its plot, it ordered to raise a new castle, taking advantage of the materials of the old. It is known that its construction lasted from 1590 to 1598. The Castle of Chinchon was well preserved until 1705, year in which it suffered the consequences of the War of Spanish Succession. At that time it was occupied by the troops of the Austrian Archduke’s army, led by the Marquis of Mines. Its dependencies were used for the installation of abundant artillery. Later, it suffered a fire in its northwest part, as a result of the storage of hemp.  A century later, in 1808, during the three days of siege to Chinchón, it was plundered and burned to the hands of the Polish Brigade of the French Marshal Claude Perrin Victor, in the context of the War of the Independence of Spain.

The castle of Chinchón is built in concerted limestone masonry, filled with mortar and stones. The spans and moldings are made in ashlars, except the access door, partially lifted in masonry. It exhibits the blazon of the Counts of Chinchón, framed by padded ashlars. The building is of two bodies, which overlap each other forming a large rectangular plant. It is topped in cylindrical towers, which are located in the corners of each of the bodies. Its appearance responds to the characteristics of Renaissance architecture. Rugged and very horizontal, he sought to avoid enemy artillery fire. The walls on the slopes are intended to hinder the access of sappers .It is surrounded by a moat, which is partially conserved. The castle was abandoned in the 18C after being the residence of the Counts of Chinchón for two hundred years.  Access to the interior of the castle is not allowed.

Tourist office of Madrid on the Castle of Chinchon

Chinchon

Chinchon

Chinchon

You have a nice day in Chinchon a typical Madrileno town not far from the capital and yet in the country. Some webpages to help further plan your trip here are

City of Chinchon on heritage things to see in Spanish

Tourist office of city of Madrid on Chinchon

And to add, it is good to get lost in the labyrinth of cobbled streets that go up to the Church of Nuestra Senora de la Asuncion (Our Lady of the Assumption), which contains a painting by Goya, the Assumption of the Virgin, painted in 1812. Just next door is the superb theater of Lope de Vega, built in the 19C, which sometimes serves as a cinema. The village has thus inspired two great names of the arts: Lope de Vega and Francisco de Goya. A little further is the Torre del Reloj or tower of the clock, which watches over the village. Surrounded of a rampart, the esplanade flanked by its three monuments overlooks the Plaza Mayor and offers a splendid panorama on Chinchon. The village also houses a charming Parador de Turismo (lodging hotel), in the Convent of San Agustin, erected in the 17C.

There you go come on over, nice weather is coming and Chinchon is waiting for you. And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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2 Comments to “Plaza Mayor and Castillo de los Condes, Chinchon!”

  1. I like the look of the castle: it reminds me of Coucy-le-Château-Auffrique in northern France we visited on New Year’s Eve.

    Liked by 1 person

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