Applications are now open for our 2024 season!
The Castelo Archaeological Project is investigating the fortified upland settlement of Castelo Velho da Serra d'Ossa, located in the Alentejo region of Portugal. The site, approximately 14 ha in size, dates to the Late Bronze Age [LBA] and Iron Age of southwest Iberia.
The LBA of the southwest has long been characterized by the apparent emergence of a new culture associated with defensiveness and warriorship, as represented by:
Unfortunately, there has been a distinct lack of site-level investigations and data, thus leading to insufficient and generalizing interpretations of the LBA. Our project aims to contribute toward a more comprehensive understanding of this understudied period.
The site underwent a brief investigation in the early 2000s to safeguard surface artifacts in danger of being destroyed. Our 2018 season was the site’s first comprehensive excavation and uncovered the largest known Bronze Age hut (cabana) in the southwest of Iberia. Work on the hut and additional areas of the site continued during the 2019, 2022, and 2023 seasons. This work has revealed several structures, including huts, platforms, and a surrounding wall.
Prior experience in archaeology is not required - students of all backgrounds are encouraged to apply. This field project will train students in archaeological methods, such as excavation techniques, recording, illustration, and the handling and processing of artifacts. Those interested are always encouraged to apply early as admission is on a rolling basis.
Tuition for the 3 week session (including room, board, and transportation within Portugal) is $1500 USD.
Tuition for the 4 week session (including room, board, and transportation within Portugal) is $1850 USD.
Our field season was cancelled in 2020 and 2021 due to the global pandemic. We resumed fieldwork in 2022 and 2023. We are excited to continue in 2024!