During the 16th century, as a result of raids by Turkish pirates, the coastal towns took measures to defend themselves. Thus began the construction of watchtowers. The following can still be found: Torre Verda, the tower of Can Busquets and Torre dels Encantats, in the town of Arenys de Mar. All three of them are circular.
Torre Verda (the Green Tower), also known as “Torre de les Heures” (“Ivy Tower”, due to the colour given to it by this protective plant), is located on the left at the end of Carrer de l’Església street. There are records of this watchtower as far back as 1549, in a document addressed by the town mayor to the town councillors of Barcelona asking for a licence to open a tavern and bakery in it, in order to generate revenue to meet the tower’s repair costs.
Can Busquets Tower is probably the most emblematic place of the town. The first historical record dates back to 25 February 1586, when the councillor of Barcelona with responsibility for Caldes authorised Joan Busquets to build a “round tower in order to provide protection from the Moors and other enemies.” On the crenellated top of the tower is an olive tree which is easily visible from anywhere in Caldes. For this reason, it is also known as “Torre de l’Olivera de la Pau” (the “Tower of the Olive Tree of Peace”). It is interesting to note that, until a few years ago, it was common to see storks nesting on top of the tower.
One of the peculiarities of this tower is that, from the first floor, it is possible to access a house or farmhouse linked to it by means of a cantilever bridge. The farmhouse was built more recently than the tower. Until 1940, the land surrounding it was full of vineyards. The farmhouse and tower are currently in the middle of a large landscaped park and form one of the oldest parts of the town.
Torre dels Encantats (the Tower of the Enchanted) may date back to the mid-11th century. Some authors suggest that it may have been built from a fortress that was already in existence at that time. The circular wall that still characterises it was added in the 16th century. Much later, in the 19th century, it was used as an intermediate exchange on the optical telegraph network.
The name and story of this tower are closely linked to the legend of Fàtima and Busquets. This legend, which is very popular in Caldes, was divulged by Salarich in the late 19th century. To remember it, these characters are now depicted in the town’s giants.