La Peña de Martos
Is a big rocky hill that can be seen from just about anywhere in the town. There are ruins up there. I was curious.
It took me a while to get to the top, I had to wait a couple of weeks for a day that wasn’t scorching. Ideally I would have gone at dusk or dawn, when it’s cooler and the light is beautiful, but apparently wolves still roam the hills. Eventually there was an overcast day, some kind of summer storm passed by and I made the most of it.
On the way up I was lucky enough to meet a history teacher, a Frenchman who was actually born in Martos. He was taking his sons to explore his old stomping ground and was in the mood to reminisce. He explained to me that the ruins we can see are just the towers of an old Moorish castle. The rest of the castle, including a network of tunnels, is buried within the hillside. Many people have met untimely ends trying to investigate them, and the peña is said to be a bit of an unlucky place. During the time of the inquisition, a couple of Spanish knights were sentenced to death up there too.
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