Moorish Zaragoza

Zaragozas Aljaferia palace

Moorish Zaragoza is centered around two principal monuments. The Palace of Aljaferia and the Mudejar belltower of the church of Saint Giles. Both of which are easily accesible on foot although only the palace is signposted for tourists in Zaragoza

One final leftover from Moorish occupation is the Catedral del Salvador, Cathedral of the saviour, although the Moorish part of this building has been built over and covered up by the subsequent Catholic regime. Even in Moorish Zaragoza the Cathedral wasn't truly built by the Moors as it rests on top of the earlier Roman temple.

Zaragoza Moorish history

The moorish occupation of Zaragoza lasted just over four centuries (714 - 1118) and like the rest of Moorish Spain it became difficult to discern an Aragones from a Moor. During its occupation Zaragoza retained its previous importance and even gained extra importance being responsible for the administration of the Modern day Communitat Valenciana, community of Valencia.

Whilst the later re conquering of Zaragoza by the Christian armies of Aragon, and subsequent destruction or obliteration of Moorish buildings, destroyed much of the rich heritage built up over four centuries there are still some remarkably well preserved buildings. Today these form the principal Morrish attractions in Zaragoza.

Visiting the Moorish monuments

Zaragozas Mudejar belltower

The visitor to Zaragoza can't help but pass by the Palace of Aljaferia, easily mistaken for a later style of fort, as its located in between the city center and the main Rail / Bus station. So well preserved is the palace that it is still in active use today by the regional parliment of Aragon.

Be aware that on its own a visit to the palace will occupy the best part of half a day.

Access Palace of Aljaferia
Walking to the palace is by no means out of the question if you are staying in the city center and, following the signposts, won't take you more than 15 minutes. If you wish to use the Bus then lines 21, 31, 32, 33 and 36 all stop outside the main entrance.

For opening hours and costs as well as an excellent 3D rendition of the Aljaferia Palace the government of Aragon maintain the following visitor information site: in English... >

Access Mujedar belltower
The downtown part of the city plays host to Moorish Zaragozas Iglesia de San Gil, Chuch of Saint Giles. Which, despite being in use as a Christian church retains its original Mudejar belltower showing the ornate engraving and lattice work famous in Moorish architecture.

Getting to the Mudejar belltower means little more than a short walk from any city center location. You will however have to usa a map of Zaragoza, an online map or simply ask for directions to:

  • Calle Jaime I, number 15 The tower cannot, unfortunately, be climbed by the public however it is possible to enter the church and see what is a typical Spanish church.


    • Palace: 3€
    • Church: FREE
    Disabled access
    The Aljaferia palace is equipped for disabled access with no advance notice required however the Church of Saint Giles is not equipped for disabled access internally. One can however admire the tower from outside which is as close as any abled body person is allowed to get.

    Interested in the Moorish influence in Spain? This site covers the Moorish occupation in spectacular detail and is perhaps the "go-to" reference regarding Moorish Spain.

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