Tortosa Spain

Guide to Tortosa, a town located on the Costa Dorada, Spain.

Costa Dorada Towns - Tortosa

Tortosa Spain - Capital of the Baix Ebre district of southern Catalonia's Tarragona province, the town of Tortosa is situated beside the River Ebro and has a population of 34,832 (2007) and a large municipal area of 218.45 square kilometres. Tortosa's ruined castle and ancient town walls, reveal something of the town's past strategic importance and its history goes back to the times of the Iberians (early Spanish peoples).

Founded by the Iberians as Dertosa, the town was later rebuilt by the Romans under the general Scipius Africanus, and given colonial privileges by the Emperor Augustus. The Moors held the town from the 8th to 12th centuries, and for them Tortosa was an important frontier town as they began to lose control of much of Catalonia. The Moors built a mosque in Tortosa, this was later destroyed and replaced with a Gothic cathedral, begun in 1347, it took over 200 years to complete.

Tortosa's castle (La Suda) which looks down on the town from its lofty position, dates from the 10th century but incorporates part of a much earlier Roman acropolis. The castle has now been restored and turned into a 'parador' with the most stunning views of the town and the River Ebro.

Tortosa suffered badly during the Spanish Civil War (1936-39), when the River Ebro formed the front line between the opposing forces, the town eventually fell to the Nationalist forces in April 1938 after a bloody battle which cost some 35,000 lives. Much of the old town was destroyed during this conflict though some old sections still survive around the cathedral area. Tortosa's Jewish Quarter still exists and this is very old, dating from the 6th century.

Tortosa cathedral which dates from 1347 was built on the site of a Moorish mosque built in AD 914, it is mostly of Gothic design but had a Baroque fa├žade added in the 18th century, the stalls in the choir were carved between 1588 and 1593 by Cristobal de Salamanca. Other places worth a look in Tortosa include the Palau Episcopal and the Jardins del Princep.

To the south of Tortosa lies the Ebro River Delta, the largest wetland area in Catalonia, it now forms the Parque Nacional del Delta de l'Ebre, a must visit location for nature lovers and birdwatchers.

Tortosa Hotels: Hotels in Tortosa town include the Hotel Tortosa Parc, the Hotel Berenguer IV, the Hotel Castillo de la Zuda and the Hotel Corona.

Tortosa Markets: The main weekly market in Tortosa is on Mondays.

Tortosa Fiestas: Fiestas and festivals in Tortosa include the Festa del Renaixement (July) and the Festes de la Cinta (September).

Tortosa Camping: There are some camping facilities around Tortosa, try the Camping Medtiterrani Blau, Platja de Eucaliptus , 43500 Tortosa (Tarragona) Tel: (0034) 977 479 046, or Camping La Tancada Partida Tancada S/N 43870 Amposta, Spain Tel: (0034) 977 261 047.

Tortosa can be reached via the C-42 from the AP-7 (E-15) motorway, it is around 90 kilometres from Tarragona and 150 kilometres from Barcelona.

Tortosa Links: Tortosa Map - Tortosa Weather

Costa Dorada Attractions: Port Aventura - River Ebro Fishing

Costa Dorada Golf: Golf Bonmont Terres Noves - Spain Golf Courses

Costa Dorada Places: Altafulla - Cambrils - La Mora - La Pineda - Miami Playa - Mora D'Ebre - Salou - Sitges - Tamarit - Torredembarra

Costa Dorada Cities: Tarragona - Reus - Barcelona

Related: Catalonia - Catalonia Map - Catalonia Weather - Builders