In 1998 he launched the project of making the replica of the cave of Altamira Neocave the. Directed the National Geographic Institute topography of a high precision, which reached up to 40,000 dots per square meter on the roof of the polychrome. We could thus recreate the morphology of the Paleolithic cave in your state. An automated machine reproduced the profile of the cave in blocks of polystyrene. Blocks are coated with a thin layer of wax which reproduces the texture of natural rock from silicone imprints and all this was altered according to specific pictures. By casting the new roof was artificial rock which is composed of 80% limestone powder. The reproduction of the Paleolithic paintings and engravings was made with the same procedures and materials used by artists of Altamira: water, charcoal and ocher. A giant puzzle was finally joined by steel turnbuckles.

The Neocave

Before entering the cave, we know through the story of a film of Altamira, which was inhabited since prehistory, its discovery in the late nineteenth century and its opening to tourism in the twentieth century.

Palaeolithic camp

At the entrance of the cave, a place illuminated by daylight, witnessed a moment in the daily lives of a group of Magdalenian hunter-gatherers.

The archaeological excavation

The archaeological excavation began the research that allows the reconstruction of scientific Neocave as a Paleolithic site, and learn the ways of life of these hunter-gatherers.


When the cave was not inhabited by humans, was the bear of the caves for hibernation.

They left traces of his footsteps on the clay and vigorous zarpazos on the walls. At times, failed to pass the winter, leaving their bones in oval beds to dig in the soil of the cavern.

Workshop of the painter

How film evokes a painted bison of Altamira.

Altamira artist used various instruments to perform their works: burins of flint to burn the pictures, lamps for lighting marrow, charcoal pencils to mark the black and gray colors of ocher which provided an intense red color, for muñequillas application, etc.

Room paint

The tour culminates with the Neocave room visit paintings. Altamira a great artist in the Paleolithic painted the masterpiece of prehistoric rock art.

Bison, horses, deer, goats, and signs of antropormorfos enigmatic meaning, are the expression of an art of hunters, their expression of spirituality that is its way of understanding the world.

“Cola de Caballo”

Also in other galleries of the cave are preserved cave demonstrations interesting and less known.

The last one is called “Cola de Caballo.” Throughout its seventy meters for houses over forty plays rock. A sample of them can be included in the final stretch of the Neocave.

The permanent exhibition

The best of the Upper Palaeolithic archaeological collection, with more than 400 original objects from the Museum’s funds, as well as other national and international collections:

* Museum of Archeology and Prehistory of Cantabria
* Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales (Madrid)
* National Archaeological Museum (Madrid)
* Museum of Investigation of Prehistoric Valencia
* Museo de América (Madrid)
* Museo Nacional de Antropología (Madrid)
* Museo Municipal de Bellas Artes de Santander
* Archaeological Museum of Oviedo
* Museum of Caves Isturitz

Recreation, movies, cartoons and sets us Paleolithic tools in its original context, to better understand the people who they thought were manufactured and used.

Altamira, the discovery of art

This space is dedicated to the figure of D. Marcelino Sanz de Sautuola, discoverer of the Palaeolithic rock art. It contains the publication released to the scientific discovery of the Altamira Cave, and the remains collected by this researcher in his visits to the cave.

Besides the initial research on the art of Altamira, is the technology currently applied to conservation of Altamira.

Prehistoric archeology
Image shows a visitor looking through a microscope

Scientific knowledge about the times of Altamira, called the Upper Paleolithic period, is obtained from the Prehistoric Archeology.

This science studies the remains from archaeological sites, which allow then to reconstruct the past.

The work of archaeologists is illustrated by a laboratory recreation of the instruments used by the sciences that contribute to the reconstruction of the past.

Before Altamira
Overview with the reconstruction of several hominids

The route of this sector shows the spaces and environments in which other humans inhabited the planet before us during the Pleistocene, and the cultures that developed.

After a million years of evolution of the human species, Homo sapiens, our own species, is responsible for the culture of the Upper Paleolithic, the era of Altamira.

In this room is a superb selection of Paleolithic tools made of stone and bone, and constitute a complete, diversified and specialized “tool box” of the inhabitants of Altamira Cave, a true technological revolution.

Life in the times of Altamira
Recreation of a group of hunter-gatherers working in the confection of her dress

The lives of hunter – gatherers of the Upper Paleolithic, the times of Altamira, shown from the known archaeological objects presented in its original context, showing its use and manufacturing process.

Hunter – gatherer meet your needs by selecting vital natural resources through hunting, fishing and gathering.

Developed part of their daily work inside the cave, around the home. Know your food, the preparation of hides to make clothing, and personal ornaments.

Social organization and its relationship to the environment, how to exploit economically the Cantabrian region, the seasonal movement in the area, and major archaeological sites in Cantabria.

The death and funeral expressions are illustrated in several burials known in Europe.

The first art

The ability to convey symbolic behavior by means of artistic expression is an innate cultural modern man. The Art of Prehistory is a phenomenon throughout the world, which takes place in parallel with the colonization of the planet from human groups.

Paleolithic Art consists of two main types of expression, rock art (developed in the walls of caves and rock outcrops) and art furniture (represented by objects such as notebook chips decorated stone, horn, bone, ivory, etc.)..

The themes of art, major shrines and even the music of that artistic expression just keep some basic but fun, musical instruments, are treated in specific ways. But the paragraph on the meaning of Paleolithic Art, his timeless interpretation, and his strength as an expression of human thought through the most unique an impressive audiovisual.

The end of an era
Six times spearsuns aziliense

With the end of the Pleistocene and the last glaciation there were climatic changes, ecological and environmental implications of enormous significance that affected communities Paleolithic, which responded to changing conditions, not only economic behavior, but also cultural. Is the end of the Paleolithic.

The Aziliense last Paleolithic culture, is the human response to changing conditions on the planet. During this time, 10,000 years ago, human groups have developed adaptations that led to the gradual disappearance of life forms and cultural expression of the Paleolithic, including the art of the caves.

Prehistory and others for more
A child consulting a database in one computer

Prehistory in general and the Paleolithic in particular have been an endless source of inspiration for the various arts of the twentieth century. Panels and databases provide information on the impact of Prehistory and the art of Altamira in the world of cinema, comics, literature and advertising.

We also offer information on other prehistoric sites to visit several European countries and a bibliography for more prehistory.

The park Paleolithic Altamira
Landscape seen from the Museo de Altamira

In the natural environment surrounding the building of the Museum of Altamira you can stroll freely, enjoying its magnificent landscape. To the north are the green praderías cantabrian, with gentle hills and the valley that houses the town of Santillana del Mar. Further south, on clear days, can see the majestic Picos de Europa and the fertile foothills of the Cantabrian Mountains.
Vegetation at the site of the Museo de Altamira

In this large hall has made a return to landscape plant species, through analysis of pollen deposits Altamira know that populated the area around the cavity. In the vicinity of the Neocave growing birch trees and a grove of hazelnut trees. Elsewhere, scattered patches of pines thrive, oak, ash and many grasses (heather, grasses, composites, etc). This vegetation forms a kind of open park, similar to that which accompanied the people of Altamira at the Upper Palaeolithic.

The building
The building which houses the Museo de Altamira work by Juan Navarro Baldeweg

The protection of the Altamira Cave has been the main constraint on the location, design and construction of the building that houses the new Museum of Altamira, which opened in 2001, designed by Juan Navarro Baldeweg.

The building is minimalist, as part of the landscape as a continuation of the essence of the Altamira Cave, designed to accommodate spaces in which the practical work of this museum: the permanent exhibition spaces, including the reproduction of the famous hall of polychromatic, laboratories, classrooms for activities, auditorium, library, cafeteria, shop, etc..

Talleres de Prehistoria
Other activities
Temporary Exhibitions
Courses, Congresses and Conferences

For school groups
A museum to learn and experience

The Museum is a place to learn, to express themselves and share experiences. The Museum’s mission is to conserve and study a real “treasure”, the cave of Altamira and Paleolithic art preserved archaeological objects from the Upper Palaeolithic. The archaeological heritage is displayed in the Museum’s permanent exhibit, and prehistory workshops offer the possibility of manipulating and verify their effectiveness through recreations and reproductions.

How to book a school group visits

The Museum of Altamira recommended book your visit through the Department of reservations.
Reservations department for visiting groups (maximum 100 people) and Talleres de Prehistoria:

1. Submit completed application form at least 15 days before the requested visit.
Application Form (PDF)
2. Within a week, will receive a booking form visit the group with the date and time of your visit and the amount to be paid at the ticket office upon arrival to the museum.
3. A week before his visit, one of the teachers accompanying the group must confirm by phone, fax or email, your visit to the Museum in the days and hours in the reserve and the size of your group. From this moment no changes are allowed on your reservation.
4. If desired, the school will receive a visit plan that will detail the organization of his visit: the organization in small groups to visit the Neocave and participation in workshops prehistory, and the time allocated to each group for each activity.
5. You can contact the Reservations Department at:
Email: @ reserva.maltamira
Fax: (+34) 942 81 88 36
Phone: (+34) 942 81 81 02
Hours: Tuesday to Saturday from 18.00 has 9.30

# Rates

* Students under 18 years: free
* College Students: Free
* Teachers and accompanying adults: free

To prepare for the visit

The Museum of Altamira offers cooperation to educators, teachers and professors for the preparation of your visit: You can book your tickets through our reservations department, will guide the organization of his visit, and we offer various resources to develop activities in their classroom and the museum exhibition.

The host school groups (pdf).
THE EXHIBITION “The Times of Altamira”
Resources for teaching and learning in the exhibition.
Bibliography for Educators (pdf document)
The Paleolithic in Cantabria (pdf document)
Workshops for pre school
Didactic Itineraries
Themed Tours

Resources for learning
An exhibition with many meanings

Resources for learning in the exhibition (pdf document)

The Neocave: A Place in the Paleolithic

The Neocave gives us a tour of a place in the Paleolithic. Next to the entrance of the cave, a Paleolithic family develops their daily lives in a camp Magdalenian.
At home, the workshop of the artist shows us the tools and techniques used by the artist of Altamira.
The Neocave allows us to contemplate in detail the art of Altamira, which is not even accessible in the original.

The Times of Altamira in the halls of the exhibition

The permanent exhibition The Times of Altamira account through different languages and various media outlets accessible to children and youth.
The rooms of the museum are more than 400 original objects that comprise the finest collection of archaeological period Paleolithic of the Iberian Peninsula. The exhibition is
organized into sections that address specific issues around the time that was inhabited Altamira:

* The discovery of the cave of Altamira, and actions for their conservation.
* Before Altamira: The Evolution of Humanity
* The daily life in times of Altamira.
* The art of the Paleolithic, the first art of mankind.

To learn at the Museum
Archaeological objects
The original archaeological objects displayed in the showcases are the first contact for visitors to the era in the Altamira Museum. They are the testimony of the people of prehistory preserved for 15,000 years.
You can play
These objects are accessible to the touch through recreations and reproductions. The objects of flint, deer horn and bone are part of the comprehensive “tool box and tools” that people tried to Altamira.
The Museum of Altamira is the first museum incorporating the cartoons in order to prehistory. The evolution of humanity and ways of living in the Upper Palaeolithic, hunting, fishing and gathering are illustrated with cartoons, aimed at children and adults without prejudice.
Film exposure recreate scenes of everyday life in the cave Altamira.Muestran tools in the hands of those who thought were manufactured and used.

The scenery
The scenes showing objects in their original environment, their use and manufacture. They may discover that the needle and thread are inventions of the Upper Palaeolithic.

Visiting the Exhibition

The exhibition “Times of Altamira” is a unique space that allows educators to apply various strategies to teach and learn with the cultural heritage.

From the Museo de Altamira offers several suggestions for exploring this area and our partnership in creating their own tours.

More exposure times ALTAMIRA

To design your educational visit to the exhibition, we propose:
Didactic Itineraries

Didactic Itineraries
Make your visit to the Altamira Museum in an educational experience

The Museum of Altamira suggests visiting the rooms of the exhibition with didactic itineraries. These activities designed by teachers and educators Cantabria propose different ways of learning in the museum.
DESTINATION ALTAMIRA Route To Early Childhood Education
ALTAMIRA itinerary, a place for primary education from the Paleolithic
Route A GIFT FROM WATER For Primary Education.
Itinerary times ALTAMIRA To E.S.O.
DIME itinerary that takes you to the grave, and I will tell you WHO YOU ARE For Adult Education

Each itinerary is an open learning, which every teacher can customize and adapt to the characteristics and needs of your student group.
The Department of Communication at the Museum of Altamira is available to assist in the preparation of its visit.

Guided tours for you

What kind of educational experience looking at the museum for their students? What theme deemed most appropriate for each of their groups?

The guided tours of the teacher to customize the tour of the exhibition and apply the most appropriate learning strategy from the various resources of the museum museum.

The Museum of Altamira offers some possible theme for the exhibition halls. Each of these tours focus the visitor’s attention on one aspect of the lifestyles of hunter-gatherers of the Upper Palaeolithic period, from a selection of archaeological exhibited and interpreted. In this way, the museum is moving the available information on exposure for each teacher to design the activity through its students access to cultural heritage and knowledge. More info ..

Workshops for Pre-school

Altamira Museum booklet for schools (pdf format)

Prehistoric Technology Workshops
Prehistoric Technology Workshops
E. For students Secondary and E. Adult

Visitors to the Museum of Altamira can practice some of the daily tasks carried out by the inhabitants of the cave of Altamira in the Upper Paleolithic.

Classroom workshops for children Prehistory
Workshops for children Prehistory
E. For students Kids and E. Primaria.

In a Paleolithic camp kids will learn the tools that the people of the Cave of Altamira used in their daily tasks. Learn how they were manufactured and used, and their utility through games and creative activities.

Restorer working in the lab

Research is one of the essential functions entrusted to the Museum. Around it articulates the other functions of it: you can not disseminate, preserve or protect if you have not done an exhaustive study of museum collections which each have assigned.

Altamira Museum is a research specialist in Paleolithic art, seeks to serve the research a number of technical resources, such as preventive maintenance shop / restaurant, laboratory, warehouse specialist archaeological, archival documentary and specialized library in Prehistory and Rock Art, to carrying out this activity.

Museum collections

In modern warehouses in Altamira, acclimatized and adapted to the highest standards of conservation, guarding important archaeological collections from various sources Cantabrian. Out, of course, funds from various excavations within the cave of Altamira, but other sources are represented equally unique as Chufín, Rascaño, Salitre, Juyo, the battery or Castillo.
Exterior Interior Castle Cave of Altamira Cave Outside Cave Rascano Foreign Cave Juyo
Cueva de Altamira (Santillana del Mar, Cantabria)

The first excavations in the cave of Altamira carried out their scientific discoverer, Marcelino Sanz de Sautuola. Subsequently, there were sporadic collected materials and several excavation campaigns have revealed the existence of two levels of occupation, Solutrean and Magdalenian Upper Lower, respectively. The collapse of the exterior of the cavity, some thirteen thousand years ago marked the entrance and allowed the excellent preservation of its paintings and engravings.
Environs de Altamira (Santillana del Mar, Cantabria)

Yacimiento outdoors in the immediate vicinity of the cave of Altamira. The pieces have been classified in the Acheulian Typologically Superior. The most useful characteristic is hendedores type 0, bifaces, carved stones, both unifacial and bifacial and the simple scrapers. The materials used are the sandstone and quartzite from nearby rivers and river terraces.
Yacimiento of Cuchi (Cuchí, Miengo, Cantabria)

Huge outdoor site near the cave of the stack. Has suffered the same as the consequences of this exploitation of a quarry, which is currently very poor condition. Has provided a huge number of parts of the Upper Acheulian, some of which are deposited at the Museo de Altamira, where they arrived with the materials of the stack.
Cueva del Castillo (Puente Viesgo, Cantabria)

Discovered by Alcalde del Río in 1903, contains numerous examples of rock art as well as a site of special significance, with levels ranging from archaeological to Eneolítico Acheulian. This sequence provides crucial data for better understanding of the moments of transition from Lower Palaeolithic to Middle Palaeolithic and from there to Superior, their chronologies and processes that come as a replacement rate of human and cultural horizons.
Cueva Morin (Villanueva de Villaescusa, Cantabria)

Morín cave contains an important archaeological site consists of 22 levels of middle and upper Paleolithic. At level 17, Mousterian period, appeared a wall off a curved enclosure inside which were found large quantities of stone tools and bones worked. Also at level 8, Aurignacian period, was also separated by a partition structure of the occupied area of skin such as cemeteries, where they have distinguished the tracks left in the clay by the burial of four individuals.
Cave Rascaño (Mirones, Miera, Cantabria)

The cave opens in a mountain on the left bank of the River Miera. Contains levels of periods Aurignacian, and Magdalenian Aziliense. The small reservoir should be inhabited by a small group of people dedicated to fishing for salmon and trout and intensive hunting of ibex, whose remains represent 85% of all fauna identified. Most are adults, especially males, have been killed mainly during the summer.
Cueva del Salitre (Ajanedo, Miera, Cantabria)

The location of this cave is very similar to the Rascaño, in the same valley Miera, a steep slope, from which dominates the valley and river. It was discovered in 1903 by Lorenzo Sierra who identified the existence of an important archaeological site and paintings inside the cave. The stratigraphic sequence is doubtful due to a lack of systematic excavations, although they have identified levels of the Upper Palaeolithic and Aziliense.
Cave Chufín (Riclones, Cantabria)

The cave is situated in the ravine Lamasón River, a tributary of the Nansa at low altitude from the current level of water in the swamp of Palombera. Contains an important set of Paleolithic rock art and archaeological Solutrean period. This level has provided tips for Solutrean concave base notch and other objects made of quartzite, quartz and to a lesser extent, in flint.
Cave Juyo (Igollo de Camargo, Cantabria)

It was discovered in 1953 by Dn. Alfredo Garcia Lorenzo. The Juyo opens at the bottom of a dolina, in a landscape dominated by soft karst formations. About 5 km far from the coastline today. Contains an important stratigraphy of Lower Magdalenian Cantabrian who has interesting collections of objects in stone, bone and horn as well as an important economic and paleoenvironmental information. Its people practiced intensive hunting deer, gathering shellfish and normal plant resources. At level 4, have discovered a series of structures interpreted as a shrine, which have revealed the existence of a complex world of belief.
Cueva de La Pila (Cuchí, Miengo, Cantabria)

The cave of La Pila, threatened by the advance of a quarry was excavated emergency, and soon after disappeared altogether. Was known by local people who had used it to extract the land to pay the fields. This activity destroyed the remnants of high-medieval era, as well as several tombs of the Bronze Age. The site consisted of Palaeolithic levels Aziliense and Superior-Final Magdalenian. Has provided important information on the transition from Pleistocene to Holocene, and a magnificent collection of harpoons, assegai, chisels, and pendants, some decorated.
The Stalactites Cave (Santillana del Mar, Cantabria)

This small cave was discovered in the summer of 1928 to extract stone for the construction of the access road to the cave of Altamira. His interest is purely geological as it is covered with beautiful formations estalacmíticas and has not been discovered rock art and archaeological site. However, it appeared the skeleton of an individual from the Bronze Age and the remains of a deer, whose presence inside the cave remains an enigma.
Institute Collection

The collection comprises a selection of objects of horn, bone and stone from various sources of France and Spain. It is not known at what time came to Altamira Museum, although its origin could well be the Institute for Media Education de Santander, Instituto Santa Clara today, where he could have educational purposes. We must not forget that this Institute was the place where other researchers Sautuola and archaeological materials deposited in the absence of a Provincial Museum of Prehistory.
Yacimientos inferopaleolíticos outdoors

There is a small batch of materials from the open fields with lithic materials assigned to the Lower Paleolithic. These lots, collected from the surface between 1979 and 1983, allow an approximation to the techno-typological characteristics of the outdoor stations of the Cantabrian coast of the phases prewürmienses.

Access Catalog

DOMUS is an integrated system of documentation and museum management developed by the Ministry of Culture (Branch of State Museums and Subdirectorate Technology and Information Systems). This is a catalog for application and management of cultural property held by museums.
The catalog information and digital images of the museum’s collections are displayed to the public through this website. In the near future become part of the Red Digital de Museos Españoles.

Textual information and images in this catalog are the property of the Ministry of Culture. This database is only for study and research, any other use must be consulted at the National Museum and Research Center of Altamira.

Research Projects

As the National Research Center, the Museum of Altamira develops own lines of inquiry, in addition to scientifically support and collaborate on projects outside the Paleolithic they have as an object of study.
The Times of Altamira
The Times of Altamira Cave Rock Art in the Linares

The Times of Altamira
Map indicating the sites under study in the Times of Altamira

Since 2003, the team of researchers at the National Museum and Research Center of Altamira develops scientific project “The Times of Altamira”. The project is dedicated to the time that Altamira was used as a room, and as a sanctuary for groups of hunter-gatherers of the Upper Palaeolithic advanced (Solutrean and Magdalenian cultures Lower / Middle). Pretending to know how the occupations were human, what conditions were and what the area around the cave of Altamira, ie the lower river Saja and central coastal region of Cantabria, during Tardiglacial. This territory is located, in addition to the Altamira Cave, caves with other important records geoarqueológicos-of-art and chronology similar to those of Altamira.

The work consisted of cleaning action cuts and limited pre-existing stratigraphic exploratory excavations, as well as the review and search for graphics parietal, in the caves of Cualventi The Linares and water (located at only 2.9, 5.8 and 6.3 km from Altamira, respectively). All investigated sites and stratigraphic levels have archaeological evidence and rock the stage under study, between 22,000 and 14,000 years before present.

Excavation work in the Cave of Cualventi

The results of this project will be published in 2008 in the Museum Monograph Series.

More information:
Lasheras, JA, Montes, R., Munoz, E.; Rasina, P., De las Heras, C and P. Fatás (2005): The scientific project “Times of Altamira”, first results. Munib No. 57, Tribute to Dr. Jesús Altuna. San Sebastián.

Lasheras, JA, Montes, R.; Rasina, P., Munoz, E.; Fatás, P. and De las Heras, C. (2005): Cave Cualventi (Oren, Alfoz of Lloreda, Cantabria): a new Palaeolithic art site in Cantabrian Spain. Inoren. Foix.

Montes, R., Munoz, E., Lasheras, JA, De las Heras, C.; Rasina P. and Fatás, P. (2004): The association stag / c-ibex in sets of Magdalenian cave Lower / Middle of the center of the Cantabrian region: some new findings and interpretations. Proceedings of the XXI Symposium Valcamonica.

Altamira Cave
The Altamira Cave, inside the Gallery Final

Altamira Cave
Photograph of the cut in the stratigraphic Altamira Cave

In the past two years, the team of researchers at the Museum has conducted archaeological activities at the site of Cueva de Altamira that have improved the understanding of this important stratigraphic record.

The work consisted of cleaning the existing stratigraphic court (the result of excavations old), his drawings and documentation geoarqueológica, sampling Palynological and sedimentological analysis, as well as conducting carbon 14 dating by AMS.

The study pointed out that knowledge on the archaeological stratigraphy of the cavity providing the various scholars and researchers, from 1875 to 1981, have been investigated in the cavity.

Moreover, at the end of 2006 saw the development of a comprehensive geophysical reconnaissance, electrical tomography and GPR, the area outside the door of access to the cavity (type dolina window located north of the mouth today, and zone location of paleo-hall collapsed under the visor) and the stretch of undisturbed soil with the first room of the cave. The work, conducted jointly by the Archaeological and SOT Propecció Group R & D Economic and Environmental Geology and Hydrology of the Central University of Barcelona, have provided interesting results that are possible to know, in some detail the evolution of the cave gemorfológica during the Upper Pleistocene.

Is planned throughout 2008, some polls begin in the area outside the cave (in the paleo-hall), with the aim of gaining an understanding of human occupation in the cavity.

The first results of this project án soon be available through an article on this website.

Conservation de la Cueva de Altamira
Conservation de la Cueva de Altamira

Altamira Cave was discovered after 1869 to remain closed more than 13,000 years by the collapse of the post. From this time altering the environmental conditions were kept intact pigments for millennia.

During the twentieth century, the fragile geological structure of the cavity, with work in the interior and the massive influx of visitors, were some of the factors that contributed to destabilizing the delicate microclimate underground. The cave had to be closed to the public in 1977 to discuss the situation in depth. This study was commissioned by the University of Cantabria in 1982 and the cave was reopened to the public with a limited regime of visits that lasted until September 2002 when it was closed again to assess their current state.
Current Situation

Since 1994, the Superior Council of Scientific Research under the Ministry of Education and Science, is the agency responsible for the study of the conservation status of the Altamira Cave. In 2007 renewed the cooperation agreement between the Ministry of Culture, Directorate General of Fine Arts and Cultural Property, and the CSIC, with a duration of thirty months and a cost of € 360,000.

From their findings may know the exact function of the dynamic behavior of groundwater and environmental factors. Their results allow for the establishment of a new regime for public access compatible with the strictest preservation of Palaeolithic art.
Measuring devices in the Cave of Altamira measurement system inside the room Pol stickers!

The investigation focuses on the following aspects:

* Study of the microclimate of the cave, by monitoring and high resolution monitoring of the most significant environmental parameters:
Barometer or
or outside temperature, cave atmosphere, soil and water
or relative humidity and total
Radon or inside the cave
or CO2 in the air inside and outside
or rate of water infiltration
or heat flux
or speed the flow of air inside the cave
* Geomicrobiology
* Characterization of karst geology
* Characterization hydrochemistry of water infiltration

One of the issues most relevant to the conservation of the paintings is the preservation of the environment of the cave as the exchange of matter between the subsurface and the atmosphere is continuous.

The development plan for Altamira Museum allowed between 1997 and 2001, to undertake a series of key actions to ensure this protection: The purchase of land in the vicinity of the cave, soil management through the removal of roads, homes and livestock facilities in their environment. These were, among others, some of the measures that have helped restore the landscape around the cave and monitor land use by avoiding harmful actions.

Currently, the Altamira Museum holds more than 160,000 m2 of land on the surface of the Altamira Cave.

Research news
The Museum explores the prehistory of America in Paraguay

During the month of April 2008 a team of archaeologists from the Museum of Altamira has done in Paraguay (department Amambay fieldwork of the project “Cultural Heritage Tavyterâ Pai village in Venda Jasuka,” funded by the Spanish Agency of International Cooperation for Development.

This year has documented rock art shelter Itaguy Guasú in Jasuka, including archaeological excavation, under the supervision of indigenous leaders Pai, owner of the hill, in collaboration with the NGO Indigenous Support Service. In addition, scientists Paraguayans, work is on file with the heritage and tradition of oral Tavyterâ Pai in Pai Guarani and Spanish, for publication in general and also for teaching among the Pai. Another objective is to review publications teaching materials and textbooks of Paraguay on the prehistory of the country to assess the current Paraguayan prehistory, archaeological heritage and its rock art.

At the end of 2008 will move the first results of archaeological research.
Details of the rock art Itaguy Guasu
Presented at scientific stratigraphy of the site of Cueva de Altamira.

During the 1st Round Table on the Upper Palaeolithic Cantabric San Román de Candamo held between 26 and 28 April 2007, he presented “The stratigraphy of the site of Cueva de Altamira.

This study is integrated into the archaeological being made within the research project “The Times of Altamira” that the National Museum and Research Center of Altamira has been developing since 2003 and has enabled a better understanding of the deposit geoarqueológico Altamira .
Two new volumes of the Series of Monographs of the Museum of Altamira

Continuing its program of publications, the Museum of Altamira has published the numbers 21 and 22 of his series of monographs. These are the doctoral thesis to know two of the most prominent national scene, in studies on the Paleolithic mainland: Tarrin Antonio Vinagre (University of Vitoria) and Miguel Cortés Sánchez (Universidad de Córdoba).


The library of the National Museum and Research Center of Altamira is a tool for researchers of the Museum, students and professionals related to the study of Prehistory, the management of Heritage and Museology.

The library is also a documentation center on the history of the museum and the cave of Altamira. As such, it contains documents, maps, audio and photos, funds currently being sorted and cataloged.

Access and timetables
Consultation in the Library

Access to the library will be conducted by appointment after appointment, indicating the nature of research to develop.

We could get the card reader to complete the application form available on the premises of the library, enclosing photocopy of the DNI.

The hours of the consultation room is open Monday to Friday from 9.30 to 14.30 h.

Email: @ biblioteca.maltamira

Rules of library use
User working in the library

Users with card reader may be on loan to a maximum of two books for a period of 15 days. If the selected material is video or cd-rom, the deadline is 5 days.

Materials returned in poor condition or lost must be replenished by an identical or similar characteristics.

The investigator may consult reference works necessary for its work and will be available on open access shelves.

The materials of the section of book and journals may be consulted only in the reading room or in the areas of research.

The old literary and documentary will be consulted under the supervision of staff, who provide the investigator and will return to place on your exact location

Home Sanz publishing home of prehistoric objects Sautuola publication Ages Prehistoriques

The library of the Museo de Altamira was founded in 1979, coinciding with the creation of the Museum. She specializes in Prehistory and prehistoric art, Museology and heritage management. It also contains sections on History, Art History, History of Cantabria and reference works.

It currently has more than 8000 monographs and 314 periodicals related to the theme of the library and research activities of the Center.

The recent creation of this library not have a particularly rich old background. However, some have been able to acquire works of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, fundamental for the investigation of the cave of Altamira and the knowledge of the onset of Science in Prehistorical Spain.

Library Services
Working area of the library staff

* Personal loan for cardholders reader.
* The museum maintains the exchange of publications with various organizations, museums and universities.
* The library offers the opportunity to suggest new acquisitions through desugerencias mailbox.
* Library staff will advise the investigator on the literature related to their specific field of study available in the library and documentation center of the Museum of Altamira.
* Interlibrary loan, the library staff may provide users with read access card works in other centers, Interlibrary loan, the investigator should pay the costs
* The completion of photocopying shall be governed as in September out in the Intellectual Property Law (Royal Decree 1 / 1996 of April 12), in Articles 31 and 37.
* Annually prepare a report on activities as outlined in those most important activities undertaken by the library.