Spanish ghost village of Salto de Castro is for sale in its entirety

Have you ever dreamed of emigrating, living in the middle of the country or even buying an entire village? Salto de Castro...

Then your dream could come true in Salto de Castro in north-west Spain. The entire town is for sale. / Spanish ghost village of Salto de Castro is for sale in its entirety

44 houses, a hotel, a church, a school, a municipal swimming pool and even an old barracks building: all this awaits the new owner of Salto de Castro. The place is right on the border with Portugal, in the province of Zamora, about a three-hour drive from Madrid. Here, in the protected Arribes del Duero Natural Park and in the deepest part of the homonymous depression, lies the Castro reservoir, whose banks line the buildings of Salto de Castro. But despite the fantastic location, the village has been deserted for more than three decades, which is why the asking price for the purchase of the whole of Salto de Castro is “only” 260,000 euros according to the BBC. For comparison: This Statista analysis shows the typical prices for a detached existing single-family house in selected cities in Germany at the beginning of 2022 – at the time of the survey, people in Erfurt paid around 380,000 euros.

Salto de Castro: From workers’ village to ghost village

The village of Salto de Castro was originally built to house the families of the workers who built the reservoir there in the early 1950s. However, after completion, the residents moved away and in the late 1980s the site was finally abandoned. The area surrounding the village, while scenic, is also known as ’empty Spain’. The sparsely populated areas lack numerous urban amenities and services.

From abandoned village to tourist spot?

In the early 2000s, Salto de Castro was already sold and the village was to become a tourist resort. “The owner dreamed of building a hotel here, but the project was shelved,” Romuald Rodríguez of Royal Invest, the company handling the sale for the owner, told the BBC. Speaking to Idealista’s website, where the property is listed, the 80-year-old owner explains, “I’m selling because I’m a city person and can’t take care of the maintenance of the village.”

The offer has met with great interest and has already been visited more than 50,000 times since it was published a week ago. People from Russia, France, Belgium and the UK have already expressed their interest in buying, and one potential buyer has even reserved the village of Salto de Castro with a deposit, Rodríguez explained.

Las Arribes del Duero Natural Park

In the west of the province of Salamanca, the Duero river meanders through the plateau in gorges up to 200 m deep. Bare areas covered with scrub alternate with green, Mediterranean vegetation. The climate is mild, but relatively rainy – frosts are extremely rare in winter. The people in the scattered localities around the village of Salto de Castro live from agriculture, livestock and forestry and mainly grow rye, olives, almonds and wine.

The gorges in the Las Arribes des Duero Natural Park, with their rock walls, are also an ideal retreat for birds: vultures, eagles, falcons and other birds of prey nest in the sheltered rock caves. The forests and rivers, on the other hand, appreciate the shy black stork, martens, genets, wild boar and foxes.

Worst drought in 1200 years in Spain and Portugal


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