Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Sleeping in a Vaubam Fortification: Fuerte de la Concepción (Salamanca)

Patio de Armas with the chapel remnants

This is a quite belated blog entry which I was initially planning to publish in late October 2017. I spent several days touring the Portugal/Spain border fortresses of Ciudad Rodrigo and Almeida, as well as the battlefield of Fuentes de Oñoro.
But how would you feel if in addition to visiting all these historic places,  you had the opportunity to sleep in truly original Vauban fortification now refurbished as an upper scale (4 stars) hotel?

This is actually the case of the Fuerte Concepción located at Aldea del Obispo, now called Domus Real Hotel. I don't think it is  well known specially among British tourists, a shame because it is the perfect base-camp for touring all the places mentioned plus the battlefields of El Bodón and Tamames in the Spanish side and the River Coa area in the Portuguese side.

A little bit of background and context: until very recently, the only good communication routes between Spain and Portugal passed through Salamanca and Badajoz. To exert control on those two routes, twin fortifications were erected, Ciudad Rodrigo-Almeida and Badajoz-Elvas on both sides of the border respectively.   
Aerial view from a tourist leaflet