In 1937, its buildings and streets witnessed one of the battles of the Spanish Civil War: the Battle of Belchite.
Located 49 kilometres away from Zaragoza, the municipality of Belchite is one of the most famous abandoned towns in Spain. Its buildings witnessed one of the battles of the Spanish Civil War, the Battle of Belchite, in 1937.
The abandoned part is known as the Old Town of Belchite. During Francisco Franco’s regime, instead of rebuilding the town, another one was created beside it, known as ‘New Belchite’, to house the population.
Located in the centre of the old town of Belchite is the Clock Tower. The clock at the top of the tower informed the residents of the time, a usual custom in Aragon since the 16th century. The tower has now been restored, along with aside wall.
San Rafael Convent
Since 1781, the convent has belonged to the religious order of the Dominicans of San Rafael. Since its opening in 1781, it has been a school for poor children. It suffered significant damage during the war, and another convent was reconstructed in the new town.
San Agustín Church and Convent
This belonged to the order of the Augustinian monks, who lived there until the mid-19th century. As a result of the Mendizábal Confiscation, the monks were forced to leave Belchite. However, the church continued open for worship. In spite of the damage suffered during the war, its monumentality can still be seen today
Arco de la Villa Arch
The Arco de la Villa Arch is considered the main gateway to Belchite, from which the Calle Mayor (Main Street) begins. Built in a Baroque-Mudejar style, it is not known exactly when it was constructed, but it is believed to be from the 18th century. It has been restored and is in good condition.
The regional ethnological museum of Belchite displays the ways of life and traditional farming production until well into the 20th century in the central region of Aragon. The day visit to the old town can be combined with a visit to the ethnological museum.
Currently, you can wander through the streets in ruins, learning about the history and legends hidden behind this ghost town. The only requirement is that you must purchase tickets to do a guided tour run by the Belchite town council. It can be visited by day or by night.
Times of guided tours to the old town of Belchite:
From 4 April to 17 June:
Every day: 12:00 noon and 4:00 p.m.
Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays at 6:00 p.m.
Fridays and Saturdays at 10:00 p.m.
After 18 June:
Every day at 12:00 noon, 5:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m.
Every day at 10:00 p.m. (from 1 July)
*From 9 to 14 June there will be no guided tours to the old town of Belchite. There will not be an afternoon or a night guided visit on 20 July, and there will not be a night guided visit on 24 August.
The price of the ticket is €6 for the day visit, €10 for the night visit and €12 if you want to do the day and night tour.
Hours of the ethnological museum
Saturdays: 10:00 a.m.– 1:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Sundays: 10:00 a.m.to 2:00 p.m.
Free admission for children under 14. Option of combining the day visit to the old town + ethnological museum for 9 euros, available at the Belchite tourist office.