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Ruta do Viño Monterrei > Historic Heritage

Historic Heritage

A journey across Monterrei shows different types of architectural examples from a past full of history and romanticism. Lots of remains certify Roman presence in these lands. Proof of this are the remains of the XVII and XVIII roads which formed part of the Antonino itinerary.

The way seems to be a parallel road to the road called “Via do Támega” (Chaves-Ourense-Lugo), which would have gone from Chaves to Xinzo de Limia, just a bit more to the west. It may be considered as a branch of the famous “Via da Prata” which from reaches Córdoba to Compostela.

Vía de la Plata

Cathedral of Santiago de CompostelaIt is the longest Galician pilgrim’s route to Santiago de Compostela. It passes through Ourense, Pontevedra and A Coruña, crossing beautiful natural landscapes, with a very rich cultural and ecological heritage. Originating in Andalucía and Extremadura, it enters Galicia through the passes of O Padornelo and A Canda, crosses the northern side of the  Monterrei and Limia valley until ist reaches  Ourense. Here this road and some of the interior Portuguese routes coming to Galicia through the Limia and Támega valleys join together. On its final stage, this route is known as the “Ourense route”.

As well as Roman traces  traces the Ruta de la Plata has other historical value . It was used by the American silver commerce coming to the port of Sevilla, it was also  a very important migratory route, and was the way to expand the Galicia-León medieval kingdom to the south in the second half of the XII cen tury and the first half of the XIII century. From a Jacobus point of view, the route has become more important in recent years, above all since it has been signposted.

Monterrei´s CastleMonterrei´s Castle

After the romans came the German invaders, and the local population used the “Castro” to defend themselves. After the Arab invasion and the Reconquista was a time of upheaval. The importance of this area was due to its border characteristics. Therefore, from the XII century Monterrei grew.

Monterrei fortress is located in Santa Maria about 72 kilometers from Ourense. This monumental fortified place where the Ulloa, Zúñiga, Viedma, Fonseca, Acebedo and Alba dukes lineage settled down, has been a strategic enclave on the Portuguese border since the Middle Ages. The castle was built in the XII century by Afonso Henríquez, Afonso’s VI grandson and gained more importance in the XIV century under Pedro I “the cruel”.

The fortress has been adapted to the different styles along its history. The most outstanding without a doubt is the Homenaxe Tower which was built in the XV century, in the time of the Catholic kings by sir Sancho Sánchez de Ulloa the first Count of Monterrei.

Right now the castle is in a very good state. Inside the castle there are still the different ornaments which were added duringthe different artistic styles. Due to its beauty and great value, Monterrei castle has become a national monument.

Monterrei´s Castle