History

The Tower of Hercules is the only Roman lighthouse still functioning today that continues to exhibit the same functions as when it was founded, on the one hand as maritime sign and on the other hand assisting navigation for the ships that were and are crossing the Atlantic corridor.

In all likelihood it was constructed in the second half of the 1st century or the beginning of the 2nd century A.D. by the Roman Empire, in the finis terrae of the, until then, known world, to accompany the ships that were bordering at the end of the Empire furthest to the West.

It is located in the NW of the Iberian Peninsula, in the region of Galicia, in the province of A Coruña and in the city of A Coruña.

The place chosen for its emplacement was a rocky hill, named Punta Eiras, of almost 57 meters of height, which is located between Punta Herminia and Punta del Orzán, and dominates the north end of the peninsula in which the city of A Coruña lies.

When the Romans constructed the Tower, they chose a few areas that were part of a sacred place or an indigenous sanctuary. It was frequent that the Celts dedicated coastal promontories to divinities similar to Hercules. In addition, in the case of A Coruña there is a congruence between the three rocks placed in the sea, opposite the Punta Eiras, known as Ox, Cow and Calf, and the Kenmare's sanctuary, on the SW coast of Ireland, with the same names. There the traditions locate the island of Donn or of the Dead men. Hence, in the area surrounding the Tower, a sanctuary would have surely been linked to the beliefs of the other world in the pre-Roman epoch. This would have certainly corroborated the sacred character of the whole zone.

When the Tower was constructed, it was located far from the Roman city of Brigantium that gave origin to A Coruña. As time passed the distance grew smaller until it disappeared and at present the Tower is integrated in the city itslef, inside a great urban park that covers 123 acres, an area free of buildings, defined as rustic grownd of special protection and dedicated to green space.

Further information on the History of the Tower