null Itineario - Castrolandín
Approximate duration: 45 minutes
1. Ditches and parapet
Currently, access to the settlement is via a modern path that crosses the defensive system on its southern side, which can be seen from this point. It comprises a sequence of two ditches in a possible “V” section and an imposing parapet wall made of earth.
These elements are documented in almost all Iron Age settlements in the north-west of the peninsula, becoming more complex after the 4th century BCE, when it would appear Castrolandín was built.
2. Interior of the acropolis: circular and rectangular houses
The intensive human occupation of the site can be seen here. There are three circular structures and a rectangular one, which belong to different phases of the hillfort’s occupation.
The first of these is not visible, as it was a circular structure made of perishable material lying underneath the other circular structures visible today, built in the 2nd and 1st centuries BCE.
The final phase is represented by a rectangular structure dated to the 1st century. Unlike the circular structures, it is divided by a central partition wall, and is the only existing dwelling that corresponds to this phase built fully in accordance with the Roman style.
3. Interior of the acropolis: dwelling and patio
On a slightly raised part of the croa lies a more complex structure comprising circular buildings clustered around a patio. Its functional nature can be deduced from the archaeological remains documented there, and so we can safely say that these structures consisted of a dwelling defined by the existence of a hearth, or lareira, a central wooden post and a storage shed.
This “dwelling unit”, defined as such by archaeologists, helps us to understand the social differences that existed within the settlement, as not only did it have a different floor plan to the rest of the site, but it was also situated on the part most visible from the valley laid out at its feet.
4. Access gate
The settlement had a stepped, monumental entrance located on its western side and defended by two towers, later modified in various phases.
Not only is the entrance stepped, but also winding, making access to the settlement’s interior difficult, preventing the entry of wagons, while in turn reinforcing the defensive system. This both protected the hillfort’s inhabitants and was a demonstration of the socio-economic complexity the Gallaecian world was experiencing after the 4th century BCE.
5. Extra muros
The most recent archaeological excavations carried out document a large, circular hut. It is known to have been a dwelling on account of its central hearth, defined by a clay base encircled by a series of sunken stones. The other archaeological objects recovered here only serve to reinforce this interpretation.
This aspect is especially important not only with regard to the structure itself, which is very similar to those that were present on the croa, or acropolis, but because of where this dwelling was situated, that is, outside the settlement’s walls. This would indicate that Castrolandín was indeed larger than was first thought, maybe even twice as large.
¡Lo que no te puedes perder!
Fundación Terra Termarum Castrolandín (Cuntis)
The archaeological site of Castrolandín’s Interpretation Centre and Research and Recovery of castro pottery Workshop.
The Foundation’s aim is to spread knowledge of castro culture by highlighting Castrolandín’s archaeological site. Among its activities feature pottery workshops and the revival of the feast of St. John, which takes place in the hillfort itself on the night of the 23rd June.
Cuntis’ Thermal Springs (“Burgas”) (Cuntis)
No fewer than 19 hot springs flow beneath the spa town of Cuntis, although only two are open to the public:
Burga da Rúa Real, situated in Rúa do Balneario. The water temperature is approximately 53 ºC.
Burga Lume de Deus, situated in Praza de Galicia. The temperature is approximately 59 ºC.
Renowned for their therapeutic properties, these waters are also classed as “mineral medicinal thermal waters, rich in sulphur and sodium”, alleviating rheumatic, respiratory and even cutaneous ailments.
Carballeira de Vilameán (Cuntis)
Near the rectory and parish church of San Fins de Estacas, this huge, hundred-year-old oak wood, once known as the tomada do cura (the priest’s land), stretches out between traditional fencing and cobblestone paths. Nearby are to be found the stations of the cross, which lead from the church up the hillside, as well as the dovecote and the raised granary belonging to the rectory.
Monte Xesteiras (Cuntis)
This is a 716-metre-high peak that lies within the borough of Cuntis, bordering the boroughs of A Estrada and Valga and looking out over the Ulla-Umia and Tabeirós regions.
Monte Xesteiras boasts unique landscapes, among which feature the Alto das tres Laguiñas and other elements such as the curro de Xesteiras, in Couselo, the Pedra da Aguia, quarries and the Pedra dos Soldados.
The Rias Baixas can be seen from the peak, as can the mouth of the river Ulla, a part of Santiago de Compostela, the Pico Sacro to be exact, and other bordering regions.
Fervenza das Campaíñas (Cuntis)
The Fervenza das Campaíñas waterfall can be found near Castrolandín.
The streams that flow down the Cabalar, Sebil and Fental hills merge in A Patela River in the borough of Cuntis. The river nestles in a small valley and travels 200 metres downhill from Fuxaco, forming waterfalls as it goes, including the impressive Fervenza das Campaíñas.