16 Mar, 2024 @ 10:23
2 mins read

What is La Garganta? The Duke of Westminster’s hunting estate in southern Spain that’s been visited by the British Royal Family for decades

Finca La Garganta B

SINCE news emerged that Queen Camilla was taking a vacation last week — which may or may not have been related to her husband’s recent health troubles — speculation as to what she might be doing during her trip and where has proliferated. 

Fortunately for those concerned with the activities of the Royal Family, a Spanish journalist claims to have the answers: Queen Camilla was hunting partridges, of course!

On a Spanish TV program called TardeAR, journalist Marisa Martín Blázquez told presenter Ana Rosa Quintana that Queen Camilla spent her leave at a farm whose description matched that of La Garganta, an enormous hunting estate tucked into the rugged Sierra Morena mountains in the Ciudad Real province, near the border between Andalucia and Castilla-La Mancha.

What is La Garganta? 

Finca La Garganta A
The entrance to La Garganta in Ciudad Real. The property is heavily guarded and reportedly employs dozens of staff members.

Blázquez claimed she had been to the estate in question, and described it as exclusive, with “numerous lounges” and “suite-like” rooms. 

La Garganta is among the largest estates in Spain and the largest private hunting estate in Europe.  

At 15,000 hectares, or 1.5 times the size of the entire city of Barcelona, the property reportedly has its own helipad, train station, petrol station, and maintains dozens of staff members, including an army of private security guards. 

Finca La Garganta B
La Garganta is the largest private hunting estate in Europe. At 15,000 hectares, it’s bigger than the city of Barcelona.

La Garganta has for decades been a private retreat for British royals. 

The property was bought on lease by the 6th Duke of Westminster, the late Gerald Cavendish Grosvenor in the early 2000s, passing to his son, Hugh, after his death. 

duke of westminster e
The 6th Duke of Westminster, Gerald Grosvenor. who leased La Garganta until his death in 2016. Now the property is in the hands of his son, Hugh.

Until the Duke of Westminster began leasing the property, it had been owned by the Duke of Bavaria, Franz von Bayern. 

Since acquired by the British Royal Family, La Garganta has garnered a reputation, hosting some of the family’s wildest parties. 

Around New Years in 2005, brothers Prince William and Harry, then in their early twenties, hosted a hunting excursion with their close friends, killing deer, boar, and partridges, before throwing a rowdy, whiskey-fueled party.  

And located just beyond the boundaries of the Valle de Alcudia Natural Park, La Garganta is somewhat of a natural paradise. 

The hilly and heavily forested terrain is stocked with many of the great Iberian herbivores, including ibex, red deer, boar, and Mouflons, and is reported to harbour the occasional iberian lynx or imperial eagle as well. 

An archival photo of the estate. La Garganta is stocked with game like deer, mouflon, and ibex.


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