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A symbol of the city's defences from the 12th century.

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Alcazar

Almohad architecture.

The historic walled area of Jerez still has one of its defensive systems remaining: the Alcazar, built in the 12th century and one of the few remaining examples of Almohad architecture. This fort still retains its original horseshoe gateway arch flanked by the wall, its defence towers, the old 12th century mosque which Alfonso X of Castile later converted into a church, an oil mill, the courtyard where Christian troops were trained and even a hammam (Arab baths). The journey through the lush Alcazar gardens will also lead you to the Villavicencio Palace, which was built on the ruins of an ancient Islamic palace, where you will find the curious Camera Obscura: a high tower with an optical illusion of mirrors which reflect Jerez as a moving photograph from a bird's eye view.



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