castillo de los templarios

Castillo de los Templarios is a beautiful, grand 12th century Templar castle in Ponferrada. This national monument is filled with beautiful exhibits including a library of original Templar and religious texts. In 1178 King Fernando II declared the Templar Order as the protectorate of Ponferrada. As the king decreed, the Templar knights lived in the castle and they protected the city as well as pilgrims on the Camino de Santiago. However, the church, afraid of the power that the Templar Order was gaining within society, outlawed all of the knights of this Order in 1312. This grand building has many fantastic features including a drawbridge and a moat.
With a student ID, I paid only 4€ to tour the castle. Walking through the castle took less than two hours, but I could have stayed longer. The castle reminded me of those I once saw in fairytale stories and movies as a child, I could hardly believe my eyes as I walked through this architectural masterpiece. Looking out on the city from the castle towers gave me a sense of joy as I thought of the Templar knights who once stood in my place, looking out on the city with protective, courageous eyes.
The library exhibit was beautiful, I loved seeing the beautiful calligraphy and the original fairytale books that were displayed. I would love to visit the castle again someday. If any of you are ever traveling to the Castillo de los Temlarios, give yourself enough time to take in the rich historic value of the building. When touring the building, it would help if you are fluent in Spanish as all of the historic information and plaques throughout are in Spanish. I could not read any of the plaques but the experience was still one I will never forget.
The Castillo de los Templarios was one of my favorite stops along the Camino. If any of you are traveling to Ponferrada or walking the Camino de Santiago, I would highly recommend stopping to tour the castle. Yes, even if it means waiting two hours. I promise, it was well worth the wait. Stay true, live justly, and always travel on. Peace and love.

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