In the northern centre of Vizcaya - Bizkaia, in the region of Uribe-Butroe, Castle of Butrón stands on a small hillock, in the municipality of Gatika, and immersed in a compact oak forest, its origin dates back to the 11th century. Castle of Butrón, in Euskera Butroe or Butroeko gaztelua, was built as a typically medieval tower on the site occupied by the old house of the Butrón, founded by Captain Gamíniz in the eighth century in the Gatika antechlesia.
This tower house, residence of the Butron family, was transformed into an impregnable castle by the V Lord of Butron in the 14th century. With the Catholic Monarchs, these constructions became the habitual residences of the nobles. When the bloody fights between two noble families, the Gamboinos and the Oñacinos, ended at the beginning of the 16th century, Butrón Castle was abandoned and gradually deteriorated. After three centuries of absolute abandonment and a ruinous appearance, the Marquis of Torrecillas acquired it at the end of the 19th century and had it rebuilt, a commission that fell on the architect Francisco de Cubas, Marquis of Cubas, who gave it the romantic touch that can be contemplated today.
Surrounded by a rich natural heritage with beautiful landscapes and steep cliffs, and surrounded by a leafy park populated by trees of different species that imprint a unique beauty, stands the Castle of Butron. Recognised as Historical Heritage, from the medieval castle of the 14th century, only the ashlars are preserved in the lower part of one of the towers. The current walled construction, made of carved and worked stone, whose colour helps to differentiate the oldest part of the castle, is inspired by Gothic and Nordic forms where battlements proliferate, solid walls, circular cubes of great thickness and with a multitude of openings in which in some of them you can still see remains of what were stained glass windows, and in the middle of the homage tower rising above the whole building.
Although it is only possible to admire the exterior of the castle and its surroundings, it is more than advisable that the visitor takes the camera because when one arrives at the place gives the sensation of being to the doors of a magical place where the fairies and princesses can appear at any moment and so that they believe us that better than to be able to show the beautiful graphical report that the place offers to us.
Tradition has it that, back in the fifteenth century, everyone, muleteer, merchant ... all those who passed through the boundaries of the fortress had to pay a toll to the Lord of Butron.
Butrón Castle, which was built with the purpose of being a residential tower, was remodelled in the 19th century by the Marquis of Cubas, who together with Gaudí is a clear representative of Neo-Gothic architecture. It is not surprising that it served as inspiration to Walt Disney to make the palace of Sleeping Beauty because it is one of the castles that give off magic, illusion and a halo of fantasy and when you look at it you almost expect that in one of the windows of its towers appears the silhouette of a beautiful princess.
The fights between sides that for more than three hundred years took place in the Castle of Butron and its surroundings, and by protagonists to the noble families of the Gamboinos and the Oñacinos, gave rise to reality and history derived in epic legends that involved the Lords of Butrón, giving them the reputation of being the most powerful, cruel, strong and quarrelsome of the region in addition to possessing an invincible sword.
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The access to the Castle of Butrón is on the road between Mungia and Sopelana.
In the section between the towns of Gatika and Dobaran, we will find the asphalted and signposted road that between trees will bring us closer to a small car park where we can leave our vehicle and approach the castle, because in the surroundings of Castle of Butrón is forbidden to park.
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