Parador de Olite - Medieval castle-palace (3*)
On first walking into the Parador de Olite, you can be forgiven for thinking that you have been transported back in time to the 14th century and it is no wonder it has been declared a national monument. The castle was originally built in the early 14th century as a summer residence by King Charles III of Navarre, who was known as 'Charles the Noble'.
Attention to detail to preserve this castle-palace surpasses all expectations, not just from the architecture but also the décor. So much thought has gone into the furniture of the rooms and communal areas that it is easy for anyone to picture how the castle looked all those years ago; long before it became a Parador. From the suits of armour, wall hangings, portraits, wrought iron chandeliers to the cupboards, beds, tables and designs on the dining room chairs, everything appears to tastefully be from a previous era.
This sentiment is also extended to the building with bricked columns, stained glass, and archways. The Parador de Olite, which occupies just a wing of this magnificent extensive building, showcases both Gothic and Roman influences in its architecture. It is thought of as the most profound example of Gothic non-ecclesiastical architecture in Navarre and also rates highly in Europe as a whole.
The Parador features a newer part of the building and a “noble” part of the palace. For an extra special stay with a medieval feel, why not book a superior room which is situated in the original building? These rooms are all different, some have a four poster bed, another a sitting room and another an authentic medieval fireplace.