The origins of Xàtiva Castle date back to the Bronze Age and the Iberian era. It acquired its current appearance in the Moorish period, and has since undergone many alterations and architectural modifications. It actually consists of two sets of fortifications (denominated Menor and Mayor in Spanish); joined together by an extensive set of walls designed to guarantee both strong defence and mutual communication.
The War of the Spanish Succession, the earthquake of 1748 and the Napoleonic wars, coupled with the subsequent abandoning of the fortress, all led to its ruin. One outstanding feature that remains is the castle’s Socorro (“escape”) gate, which opens out onto the Valley of Bisquert and the neo-Gothic Chapel of Sant Jordi (St George). Three cannons from the original castle stand on the nearby stairway. Moving further uphill, we find the mediaeval water reservoir of Malanyat, the Chapel of Santa Maria (15th century) and the mediaeval dungeon that once housed the Count of Urgell.