San Servando Castle
San Servando Castle, locally known as Castillo de San Servando, lies on a hill opposite the city of Toledo, in the province of Toledo in Spain.
The first building at this site was not a castle but a Visigothic monastery, possibly founded in the 7th century. In the early 8th century Toledo was conquered by the Umayyads and the monastery was turned into an Arab castle.
In 1085 Toledo was conquered by the Christian army of King Alfonso VI of Castile. He rebuilt the structure into a fortified monastery and, in 1088, donated it to the French Abbey of St. Victor in Marseille. In 1110 this monastery was destroyed during an attack by the Almoravids. Later that century the ruined complex was donated to the Knights Templar by King Alfonso VIII of Castile. They rebuilt the complex into a fortress designed to protect the Puente de Alcántara bridge, spanning the gorge of the Tagus river.
In the following centuries the Muslim threat disappeared and in 1312 the Knights Templar themselves were dissolved. This led San Servando Castle to lose its importance and to fall into neglect.
In the 19th century San Servando Castle was nothing more than a picturesque ruin. In the 1950's the castle was restored to its present appearance.
At present San Servando Castle is being used as a youth hostel. It can only be visited as a guest of the hostel. A beautiful castle in a fantastic city. Recommended!