EXARC Members Archaeological (Open-Air) Museums

La Ciutadella Ibérica de Calafell (ES)

Member of EXARC since

The Iberian Citadel of Calafell is a centre of experimental archaeology, an archaeological open-air museum where visitors can see what life was like in the Iron Age 2,500 years ago. It is the first archaeological site in the Iberian Peninsula to have been reconstructed by using experimental archaeological techniques.

Open from

Under the direction of Dr. Joan Sanmartí and Dr. Joan Santacana, excavations started in 1983 at this Iberian period coastal site located in an area called Alorda Park (or Les Toixoneres) at Calafell (Tarragona, Catalonia). In 1992 a decision was taken in order to reconstruct the archaeological remains using experimental archaeology methodologies under a project led by the University of Barcelona. The site is in a well-known tourist area in El Penedès region, between Barcelona and Tarragona. It opened in 1994 and has only been closed for renovation since, in 2006-2007. The periods depicted are the antique, middle and final Iberian period, exactly until the beginning of the Romanization. 

La Ciutadella (The Citadel) is currently managed by the Historical Heritage Department of the Municipality of Calafell. The University of Barcelona and the Catalan Institute of Classic Archaeology (ICAC) are in charge of the research in agreement with the local government and there is a Scientific Committee with members of both institutions who have a role of consultancy regarding scientific issues. Nowadays, as an archaeological open-air museum, it is a must-see place in Calafell that carries out several educational and cultural activities and also develops experimental archaeology projects with the aim to make dissemination of the Iberian culture to a wide range of audiences. It is a key cultural tourism asset in the area.

La Ciutadella is member of the Ruta dels Ibers (Iberian Route) project, led by the Archaeological Museum of Catalonia (MAC). Since 2006, Calafell is awarded with a label of Family Holiday Destination by the Catalan Government and La Ciutadella is one of the certified equipments for family activities. As a member of EXARC (since 2007), the site has been involved in EU projects such as Didarchtik (2012-2014) or OpenArch (2011-2015).

The main event taking place at La Ciutadella is a yearly multi-day festival named Terra Ibèrica (Iberian Land) in late July. The festival, whose origins are in early 2000’s “Iberian Nights”, started in this current format since 2010 and has living history activities as the core of the programme.
Information for visitors is available in Catalan, Spanish, English, French, German and Russian languages.

Annual Number of Visitors

41.19051, 1.58099