Archeology museum of Catalonia

The Olèrdola mountain has been a strategic enclave with settlements of varying intensity since the Bronze Age (just under 4,000 years ago) until well into the 20th century.

From the first settlers we have found the findings of a tomb grave near the present entrance area. The first settlement protected by a wall dates back to the beginning of the Iron Age (8th century – beginning of the 6th century BC ) Between the 4th and 1st centuries BC, Olèrdola was occupied by the cessitans, one of the Iberian peoples that occupied the Catalan coastal zone. The oppidum (fortified settlement) iber was of considerable size (3.5 ha) and Its inhabitants settled in the lower part of the rocky platform, adapting the pre-urban structure to the terrain orography and taking advantage of the existing wall. To the right of the entrance door of the enclosure, several buildings were concentrated Craft workshops that operated between the 4th century and the end of the 3rd century BC, including a dry cleaner and / or tannery unique documented in the Iberian world.

At the beginning of the 1st century BC the Romans established a military camp in order to control the territory and especially the access road to Tàrraco, the capital of the Hispania Citerior Province, that crossed the Penedes countryside. On the Roman footprint there are three major works in Olèrdola: the wall, the cistern (360 m2 capacity) and the tower-vantage point on the top, as well as two quarries. It was abandoned when the territory was Romanized (around 25 BC).

Almost a thousand years later, in the Middle Ages, the fortified site was once again inhabited. According to the documentation, Olèrdola was “founded” in the year 929 by Sunyer, count of Barcelona, who built a perimeter wall, the churches of Sant Miquel (inside wall) and Santa Maria (outside wall) and the castle. Throughout the 10th century, within the framework of the territorial struggles between Christians and Muslims, the castrum of Olèrdola had an important role in the control and defense of the South Brand of the County of Barcelona. In the middle of the 11th century, in the midst of the feudal rebellion against the power of the counts, the self-proclaimed prince of Olèrdola, Mir Geribert, the main driving force of the uprising, took center stage.

At the beginning of the 12th century, the decay of Olèrdola began and the displacement of the population towards the plain. The urban structure of the medieval village shows two nuclei: in the fortified enclosure, the upper part was the military zone, with the castle and, further down, the sacred area, with the church and the necropolis. Occupying the middle part of the rocky platform there was an area of economic activity: press and wine cellar, the Roman cistern in use again, the Roman reed roof, a barn and others. The lower part of the mountain was occupied by the houses of wealthy peasants and workshops by craftsmen, including a blacksmith, which opened on the main street around the front door. The civitas stretched out of the walls, the best known place is the Pla dels Albats, with the church of Santa María and its necropolis of anthropomorphic or oblong tombs. The church of Sant Miquel was parochial until 1884, when the Bishop of Barcelona sold it together with the entire site and the site became an agricultural farm.

In 1963, the Diputació de Barcelona acquired the property. In November 1971, after some reforms to the church and the construction of a new building in the site occupied by an old farmhouse, the monumental complex of Olèrdola was opened to the public. In 1995 the monumental settlement of Olèrdola became one of the headquarters of the Archeology Museum of Catalonia, and since 2014 is managed by the Catalan Cultural Heritage Agency. Olèrdola was declared a Cultural Good of National Interest in 1931 and a Good Cultural Interest (BIC). “

Useful information

Schedule: December 16th to February 28th:
from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Easter (Holy Friday, Sat and Easter Sunday)
10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

March 1st to May 31st:
from 10:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

June 1 to September 30:
10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.

October 1 to December 15:
from 10:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.