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Home / Virtual tour / Alcazaba

Watch Tower

The ground plan of the Watch Tower (Torre de la Vela) is of 16 meters x 16 meters and its elevation is of 26,80 meters. It has a solid base and four floors with arches supported by pillars. During some time this tower was used as a dwelling, so it was modified. On the second floor there were merlons until the 16th century. In 1840 the current bell was put on the western façade and it had to be rebuilt in 1882 because a bolt of lightning damaged it. 

The bell is an important element of this tower. Its chime used to indicate the farmers of the Vega, the meadow of the valley, the hours when they had to water the fields at night. The bell started striking at 8 or 9.30 p. m. and it kept doing so at different intervals with different chimes until 3 or 4 a. m., depending on the season. This bell was also used to call the inhabitants of Granada in case of danger. Nowadays, it is only on January 2nd that the Watch Tower and its bell are in the minds of all the inhabitants of the city. That was the date when the Catholic Monarchs took the city and the tradition says that every young woman who is still single and who strikes the bell, will get married before the end of the year. 

The view from the top of the tower is marvellous, as it is possible to enjoy at the same time, the city of Granada, the Sierra Nevada, the Vega and the villages of the surroundings.

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