Las Medulas

Las Medulas is the old Roman gold mine in northwestern Spain. Gold was mined here in a hydraulic way for almost 300 years, starting the first century BC. Pliny the Elder wrote about this mine: "What happens in Las Medulas is much harder than the work of the titans".

Las Medulas

Ancient engineers came up with a unique way to mine gold ore using water force. This is the condition of the relief of Las Medulas. The Romans called this method "Ruina Montium", translated as "crushing the mountains". The bottom line was that water channels were drawn to the mountains, the length of which reached hundreds of kilometers. Then they formed a reservoir at an altitude of at least seven hundred meters and dug through tunnels in the mountain that they wanted to destroy. When the reservoir was filled, water was lowered through the canal. Moving at a tremendous speed through the tunnels, water tore the mountain apart and the resulting mixture with gold ore fell into a special stepped channel with dart bushes. Gold was delayed in the bushes, and subsequently they were burned, and ash and gold was washed.

Pliny the Elder wrote that 20,000 pounds of gold should be mined in Las Medulas, and given that gold was mined here for about 250 years, a total of 1,635 tons were mined. These data are confirmed by modern archaeologists. In total, from 10,000 to 60,000 people worked in the mines in Las Medulas, who performed extremely difficult and dangerous work.

Las Medulas

In the 3rd century, the gold deposit was left, and nature again restored its rights to Las Medulas. Chestnuts with oaks grow around, among which you can find many roe deer and wild boars. And destroyed rocks only adds uniqueness.

Nowadays, Las Medulas has the status of a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is open to all visitors. Before visiting, it is better to call in an archaeological center in the village of the same name, in it you can learn more about ancient methods of gold mining, as well as take a map of paths. On the territory you can find the ruins of Roman fortresses and settlements, see with your own eyes traces of gold mining. To explore the surroundings, you need to climb the Orellian observation deck ( 943 m ), which offers an amazing panorama of Las Medulas.

Las Medulas Las Medulas Las Medulas Las Medulas Las Medulas Las Medulas
Las Medulas - geographical coordinates
Latitude: 42.460556
Longitude: -6.768056


Письмо отправлено

Мы отправили письмо для подтверждения

Password recovery

Enter the email address to send the new password to


Ваш город