Written by Dave: Our time was coming to an end in Spain, but there was still one town nearby that we had intended to visit. We hadn’t made it to Stonehenge, but I had read about the megalithic structures in Antequera, and they were said to be the largest ones of their kind in Europe.
Antequera is considered the heart of Andalucia. It is easy to reach Sevilla, Ronda, Granada, Cordoba, and Malaga for day trips if you are staying in Antequera. It is also a great place to walk around and explore, but we were going primarily for the megalithic structures.
Our first stop was at the smaller and younger Dolmen del Romeral, estimated to be built about 1800 BC. The construction was completed with a large number of smaller stones. It was fun to step back in time and walk into this ancient structure. It has been standing there for an incredibly long time.
Inside, you could see clearly how the stones were stacked to form a dome with a large capstone placed for the ceiling.
After the structure was completed, earth was mounded up over the top to create a hill. That was a lot of earth to move.
Next we moved on to Dolmen de Menga and Dolmen de Viera. Sadly the largest and most impressive megalith construction, Dolmen de Menga, was under maintenance. It was 25 meters in diameter and 4 meters high, and built with 32 megaliths. I was only able to snap a picture through the gate. But even an outside view was very impressive. The capstone was massive, and the largest slab in the structure weighs in at about 180 tons. The opening of the tomb looks straight to Peña de los Enamorados, which looks like a head in profile.
We then entered Dolmen de Viera. There was a long sloping entry leading to the inner chamber. The precision of the cuts and fitting of the stone was amazing. Clearly these were very skilled craftsmen. Both of these structures were dated at around 3000 BC, and have been around for thousands of years.
Antequera is very rich in history and multiple cultures. The Romans named it Antequera as they understood it was an ancient settlement long before they arrived. This was another great history lesson and experience for the whole family.