After our stay near Cartagena we headed towards Bateria de Castillitos at Cabo Tinoso. The battery is located 218 metres above the sea on a rocky cliff top overlooking the Golfo de Mazzaron.
Castillitos is one of a ring of batteries encircling Cartagena as part of the Plan de Defensa of 1926. The battery emplacements were constructed between 1926 and 1933 as part of the sophisticated defence network which aimed to protect Cartagena and its important military arsenal.
The guns were only fired once in action against Nationalist forces in April 1937 but, it was enough to demonstrate the havoc they could wreak and thus served as an effective deterrent. The enormous Vickers 381 mm guns are still in place and are seriously impressive.
The road up the mountain was narrow with some passing places and twisted its way to the top. It was very scenic for most of the way but, the driver was unable to enjoy the views lest we plunge off the edge. The navigator managed to tear her eyes off the road occasionally in order to report on the unfolding scene, and attempt to take photographs through the windscreen without obscuring the view of the road!
I had read a review of the camping opportunity at the top, and we had an idea that it would be a stunning location for a night. However, the parking availability was limited at the top and we decided that it would feel too isolated once the handful of other visitors had gone home.
The walk up to the guns was very attractive and definitely more ornate than our local equivalent (Fort Nelson) on Portsdown Hill, Portsmouth.
The journey back down the hill was equally exciting, and we made for a German run aire at Calnegre for the night. Next stop – Mojacar