Walls of Ávila

Historic wall surrounding the city of Ávila, Spain

The Walls of Ávila in central Spain were completed between the 11th and 12th centuries. They are the city's principal historic feature.

Walls of Ávila


The work was started in 1090 by Raymond of Burgundy.[1] Most of the walls appear to have been rebuilt in the 12th century. The enclosed area is a rectangle of 31 hectares (77 acres) with a perimeter of some 2,516 metres (8,255 ft), including 90 semicircular crenellated towers.[1] The walls have an average width of 3 metres (9.8 ft). They have an average height of 12 metres (39 ft). The wall has nine fortified gates.[1] The Puerta de San Vicente (Gate of St Vincent) and Puerta del Alcazar (Gate of the Fortress) are flanked by twin towers, 20 metres (66 ft) high, linked by a semicircular arch. The apse of the cathedral also forms one of the towers. The fortifications are the most complete in Spain.[2]

It is possible to walk on the walls for about half their circumference. Some of the walls will never be able to be walked on because they are connected to other buildings. There is a large section of the walls that have not been made safe for people.

The site was registered as a National Monument in 1884.[3] In 1985, the old city of Ávila and its extramural churches were declared a World Heritage site by UNESCO.[4]

The walls were one of finalists for the 12 Treasures of Spain in 2007.[5]


Walls by night


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 International Dictionary of Historic Places: Southern Europe, Vol. 3 Southern Europe, eds. Trudy Ring; Robert M. Salkin; Sharon La Boda (Chicago: Fitzroy Dearborn Publishers, 1995), p. 69
  2. Brad Olsen, Sacred Places Europe: 108 Destinations (San Francisco, CA: Consortium of Collective Consciousness, 2007), p. 280
  3. Database of protected buildings (movable and non-movable) of the Ministry of Culture of Spain. (in Spanish)
  4. "Old Town of Ávila with its Extra-Muros Churches", UNESCO. Retrieved 15 April 2012
  5. "Lista de 100 finalistas de Nuestros 12 Tesoros de España". Sobreturismo.es. Retrieved 2014-10-06.


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Coordinates: 40°39′23.22″N 4°42′0.432″W / 40.6564500°N 4.70012000°W / 40.6564500; -4.70012000