Culture

The parish church is dedicated to Sant Martí. It was built between 1701 and 1705 in neoclassical style using a Latin cross floor plan with three naves and a transept. On the façade there is an image of St. Martin of Tours. The church has a square bell tower which is unfinished. Although it was severely damaged during the Spanish Civil War, a baroque altarpiece from 1745 has survived. Altafulla celebrates its public holiday on 11 November, the saint’s day of St. Martin.

The castle of Altafulla is in an excellent state of repair due to the fact that it was rebuilt based on plans dating back to the 15th century. The building is shaped like an irregular polygon and looks like a fortress. Although the interior has gone through various changes, the original courtyard still exists as does a Renaissance gallery. To this day the medieval urban layout of the town can be traced throughout the old quarter which is known as the Vila Closa, a name that refers to a walled enclosure.

This area is characterized by its steep streets and noteworthy features such as the passageway of Sant Teresa and the Sant Martí parish church. The whole of this medieval complex, with its squares and the façades of its 18th century mansions, is imbued with a sense of tranquillity and elegance, well deserving its nomination as a cultural asset of national interest and subsequent declaration as a Historic and Artistic site by the Catalan government in 1998.

On the outskirts of town stands the chapel of Sant Antoni. It was built in 1717, funded by donations which were mainly made by Baltasar Rabassa, a local fisherman. As there wasn’t enough money to finish the work, the fishermen undertook to donate a seventh part of their catch until the chapel could be completed.

The remains of a Roman villa can be found in the area, known as Els Munts. Excavations began in 1967 and numerous items were found, including various marble statues, which are now kept in the National Archaeological Museum of Tarragona.