Wander the halls and towers at Bellver Castle; you are walking in the footsteps of some of the island’s most influential historical leaders. Learn about their lives within these stone walls when you visit the excellent museum. Gaze over their kingdom from the top of the tower.
Sitting high atop a hill overlooking the city of Palma, Bellver Castle dates back to the early 14th century. The first thing you’ll notice about the castle is its round design. Architect Pere Salva entered new ground when he designed it, as the building was, and remains, the only circular castle in Spain.
If you’ve walked the hill to get here, you may want to rest and admire the turrets, battlements and high tower of the castle’s exterior. Enjoy sweeping views across the harbor and the city.
Walk the castle’s corridors and rooms to learn about the lives of the royals who lived here. King Jaume II, who commissioned the castle, was the first royal resident in 1310. After this, however, it served as a long-term residence for only two other monarchs: King Sanc in 1314 and Joan I in 1395. Explore their royal chambers and the servants’ quarters. Don’t miss the area of the castle that later became a prison. The most notable residents here were the widow and the two children of King Jaume III. Look for marks etched into the stone by prisoners.
Learn about the city’s rich past at the City History Museum on the ground floor. Panels will guide you through the events that shaped the island over a period of hundreds of years. See a display of pottery with pieces dating to the Roman, Arabic and Spanish periods. Stroll around the two-tiered courtyard to view superbly preserved Gothic arches and pillars.
Bellver Castle is several miles outside the city. Public buses will drop you at the foot of the hill. Alternatively, take the open-top sightseeing bus to arrive at the castle entrance. The castle is open every day and has a small admission fee. Note that on Sundays the upstairs rooms may be closed.