Discovering The Rock Of Gibraltar

WORLD HISTORY | August 4, 2019

The Rock of Gibraltar. Source: (Wikipedia)

An amazing piece of real estate such as this huge rock has had people fighting over it ever since the year 711. There are a lot of hidden wonders that draw visitors to tour it now.

The huge rock is called the Rock of Gibraltar and is 426 meters high and was first settled in the Middle Ages by the Moors. Later, Spain was in control of it and then eventually went to the British in 1713. Still today there are disputes over who really owns it.    

Map of The Rock of Gibraltar. Source: (mappery.com)

Located on the south coast of Spain, the Rock of Gibraltar is also referred to as the Pillars of Hercules. Remains still exist from the tunnels and caves that were formed from the 18th century as well as a 14th-century Moorish castle.  

Entrance to WWII Tunnels. Source: (commons.wikimedia.org)

There are many tunnels that were expanded in WWII. Thirty-four miles of tunnels were constructed by the British. These tunnels can hold about 16,000 men along with their supplies. The Government of Gibraltar now controls many of them which visitors are allowed to tour.

Great Siege Tunnels. Source: (Wikipedia)

The British Overseas Territory of Gibraltar consists of many tunnels that are located on the Northern part of the Rock. These were formed from the limestone during the Great Siege of Gibraltar. France and Spain were attempting to capture Gibraltar at the time of the American Revolution. It took 13 men a total of five weeks to dig one of these tunnels. They were 8 square feet wide with a length of 82 feet. When they finally finished the construction of these tunnels, they were able to bring in and mount guns to defend against enemy fire.  

St. Michael’s Cave. Source: (Wikipedia)

Many caves have been discovered inside the Rock of Gibraltar. A lot of these caves are underwater now which are believed to have been above sea level at one time and occupied by people then. It is believed that there are over 200 caves within the Rock. There is a long list of the ones that are above ground and have been named. St. Michael’s Cave is one of these. There are actually four sections to this one cave alone and each section has been named. New (or Lower) St. Michael’s Cave was accidentally discovered during World War II. Now there are guided tours that can take as long as three hours to go through it.

Monkeys on The Rock of Gibraltar. Source: (commons.wikimedia.org)

A bunch of wild monkeys (macaques) live on The Rock of Gibraltar. Visitors love to play with them and have pictures with them. Unfortunately, they have been known to attack some visitors. Some of these attacks have been so severe that they had to be hospitalized afterward.   

Moors Castle. Source: (Wikipedia)

The Moors Castle was used in many sieges during the years 711 and 1462. Besides the remains of the castle, there are several other buildings and structures still standing along with a bathhouse and subterranean reservoir.

The Rock of Gibraltar holds a lot of intrigue and beauty to be viewed as well as historical data to be enjoyed by a curious historian.

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Penny Chavers


Penny, besides writing, loves to spend her time with family and friends. In her spare time, she also enjoys playing the piano, board games, and taking online classes on topics that interest her.