Commonly regarded as the oldest continuously-inhabited city in western Europe, the coastal city of Cadiz combines historical significance with modern day beauty and charm!
Cadiz is an ancient port city, situated on the far western coast of Spain, and is almost halfway between Gibraltar and Portugal. It’s an inlet, only accessible by 3 bridges connecting the city to the Spanish mainland.
This coastal city has a population around 120,000. However, the demographics are ageing and job prospects are not overly abundant.
As mentioned above, Cadiz is hemmed-in by the sea, which prevents the city from land expansion. Furthermore, the city lies on a sandspit. This makes it difficult and costly to erect high-rise buildings, resulting in Cadiz looking much the same as it did way back in the 17th-century!
The above views are from the Tavira Tower, the tallest remaining tower in Cadiz. Initially used to monitor incoming ships, the city had 160 of these towers in the 18th-century. 126 of them still stand today.
Admission is 6 Euros which also includes a demonstration using a camera obscura – basically a set of lenses that allows visitors to monitor the real life events happening in Cadiz, from a dark room in the tower. Very cool to experience!
Just a short walk from the Tavira Tower, one can find the impressive Cadiz Cathedral, built over a period of 116 years and finished in the late 19th-century.
Around the corner lies the main market in Cadiz, where one can find just about anything in the different stalls.
A short 15-20 minute walk from the market and Cathedral, alongside a walled walkway, will bring visitors to the beautiful beach of Cadiz – which runs almost the entire length of the city!
And finally you can check out the Plaza de España and the huge Monument to the Constitution of 1812.
One of the sunniest cities in Europe, Cadiz is an awesome spot if you’re looking to relax and spend some time at the beach. Additionally, there is enough to keep you entertained for 2-3 days even if you’re not planning on being a beach bum.
Depending on how slow you want to go, I would suggest anywhere from 5 hours to 3-4 days in Cadiz. The city is super compact, so you really can see the main highlights within a few hours. However, it does have a certain level of charm and I think Cadiz is a city worth spending a few nights in!
And make sure to try the paella!
Buen provecho (bon appetite)