The oldest continually inhabited city in Europe, Cadiz traces its roots all the way back to 1100 BC when it was founded by Phoenician sailors. The city’s atmospheric old town, almost completely surrounded by water, is the perfect place to spend an afternoon of exploration. Discover Cadiz’s museums, theatres and churches and enjoy some authentic Andalusian culinary delights in one of the city’s many eateries. If you’re looking for culture, Cadiz’s festivals are big, bold and colourful, with the city’s carnival is one of the best in Europe.
Areas & Neighbourhoods in Cadiz
El Pópulo – Cadiz’s original centre and urban nucleus, El Pópulo is a labyrinth of winding streets, narrow alleyways and small squares. The perfect destination for an afternoon of exploration, the district is also home to a fantastic choice of restaurants, bars and cafes as well as the city’s impressive cathedral.
La Viña – The old fishing quarter of Cadiz, La Viña still retains its distinctive character and community feel. Fishing rods line many of the streets and the local restaurants are the ideal place to sample some fresh seafood.
Santa María – Santa María was once the gypsy quarter of Cadiz, and though it’s now a little run down, the district still boasts some beautiful buildings, good local cafes and historic sights.
La Caleta – Nestled between the city’s two castles, La Caleta is one of the prettiest beaches in Cadiz and a fantastic place to top up the tan and escape the heat of the city. As the beach is quite small and very convenient for the city centre, it can get busy during the summer months. However, with plenty of bars and restaurants lining the beach, there’s always somewhere to relax, unwind and enjoy fantastic views of the Atlantic.
Things to See in Cadiz
With a choice castles, an ornate cathedral, an atmospheric old town and 3,000 years of history on offer, it’s no surprise Cadiz punches well above its weight when it comes to attractions. The Castle of San Sebastian is one of the most prominent in Cadiz, located as it is on a small island off the coast of the main city. The Castle of Santa Catalina is another of the city’s important sights, as are the 18th century cathedral, the city’s Roman Theatre and the Torre de Tavira, an 18th century water tower that’s now home to a camera obscura.
Things to Do in Cadiz
Exploring the winding streets of Cadiz’s old town will take at least a day or two. Independent restaurants, bars and shops dot the area, ensuring there’s always somewhere to relax and refuel as you discover the city. A visit to La Caleta, the prettiest beach in Cadiz, is a must. Relax on the soft sand, swim in the clean waters and enjoy a drink in one of the many bars along the waterfront. The central market and the Torre de Tavira are both worth visiting during your time in the city, and if you’re in Cadiz in February, make sure you don’t miss the carnival (as if you could).