Main cities of Cadiz | Towns of Cadiz


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Main cities

If you are interested in exploring the province of Cadiz then below is a collection of information on the main cities of Cadiz. Some are larger than others but each offers something unique and guaranteed to leave you with special memories.

Jerez

Jerez or Jerez de la Frontera, is one of the main cities of Cadiz and is the unofficial capital of the province. The city serves as the main hub of transport with regular train and bus services to cities across the country. There are also regular train and bus services to Jerez from Cadiz.

Jerez is known as the capital of sherry wine, horsemanship, and flamenco dancing. It is the home of the Royal Andalusian School of Equestrian Art, a riding school comparable to the world-famous Spanish Riding School in Vienna. Jerez, the city where flamenco singing began, is also proud of its Andalusian Centre of Flamenco.

The old quarter of Jerez, dating from medieval times, has been named an "Artistic Historic Complex". The Easter week celebrations in Jerez and its remarkable Horse Fair (Feria del Caballo)are of "National Touristic Interest".

In Jerez there also many religious monuments, musuems and palaces to see. The cathedral was built in the 17th century, it is a mix of Gothic, Baroque and Neoclassicist style. It was elevated to the rank of cathedral in 1980.
The interior houses a Virgin Mary by Francisco Zurbarán, and a late 15th century Gothic Crucifix (named Cristo de la Viga). Another remarkable sight is the The Palace of Bertemati. It is a Baroque building, founded by the family Sopranis-Davila in the 18th century. The larger portion would become property of Jose Bertemati, a retailer who would make fortune and political prestige in Jerez, transforming it towards the new neoclassic tastes. The other, that sits on the corner with the present street Jose Luis Diez, after several unfortunate purchases, was transformed into an eclectic house. The building was restored in 2006. The Museo Arqueológico Municipal de Jerez de la Frontera is an archaeological museum in the Del Mercado Square. It was established in 1873 as the Municipal Archaeological Collection, merging collections donated by wealthy individuals, and based at the Old City Hall of Jerez de la Frontera. The museum opened to the public in 1935.

San Fernando

San Fernando is the next city after leaving Cadiz. The city also uses the name "La Isla" (The Island), however, the city is no longer an island, but a peninsula, as it has been connected to the mainland. The people from San Fernando are locally known as "Cañaíllas" or "Isleños".

El Puerto De Santa Maria

The town of El Puerto de Santa María is 10 km north east of Cádiz across the bay of Cádiz and was made famous for having been the port from which Columbus sailed on his second voyage to the Americas.

People visit the town mainly because of the beaches, as well as the bullfights held at the arena during the summer. Bullfighting is still enjoyed during the Feria season during the month of August, and during the Feria de la Primavera (Spring Fair) in early May. There are several bodegas (wineries) in the town centre, all of which can be visited by the public. The town also hosts large groups of motorcyclists during the Jerez Motorcycle Grand Prix.

Chiclana

The town is located 20 kilometres from Cádiz, and borders the towns of San Fernando and Puerto Real to the north.

The most famous attraction in Chiclana is the Castle of Sancti Petri. Situated on the little island of Sancti Petri, the defensive fortification was once one of a series of forts that protected the inlet, Caño de Sancti Petri. Of irregular shape and in the Moorish style, it dates from the 13th century. The castle's watchtower is the oldest building, while the walls and the interior date from the 18th century. The castle was in an advanced state of deterioration, but the authorities of the municipalities of San Fernando and Chiclana de la Frontera funded a major rehabilitation programme. It was declared a Cultural Monument by Decree of April 22, 1949 and in 1993, the Andalusian authorities gave it special recognition amongst the castles of the Autonomous Community of Andalusia.

San Lucar

Sanlúcar de Barrameda is a city in the northwest of the province, 52 km from Cádiz.

Sanlúcar de Barrameda is famous as a sherry-producing town.
It is also home to the oldest horse races in Spain and some of the oldest in Europe, the riders wear unique colours and caps. San Lúcar also plays host to the annual Tapas Fair, a local cuisine competition; the Feria de la Manzanilla in May, classical music and jazz festivals; and the occasional concert by a major act.

A piece of useful information is that San Lúcar is a convenient home base for exploring the nearby Doñana National Park (Parque Nacional de Doñana) and its natural features. The Iberian lynx is the most significant animal to be found in the park and serves as a symbol of the park.

Vejer

Vejer de la Frontera, is a Spanish town in the province of Cádiz on the banks of the river Barbate. The town of Vejer de la Frontera sits on a low hill overlooking the Straits of Gibraltar and is surrounded by orchards and orange groves.

The city has a unique relationship with the Moroccan city of ChefChaueon. Tales tell of a Muslim princess who married a Spanish lord and demanded that a city in the province of Cadiz be built to replicate her home in Morocco. Moroccans claim the reverse.

The town has a large foreign population who choose to retire or move here due to its relaxed vibe and friendly atmosphere. Every Sunday there is a market which lines the streets of the small town and there are many strange items for sale.

Tarifa

Tarifa is a small town in the southernmost coast of Spain. It is situated on the Costa de la Luz and sits across from the Straits of Gibraltar looking onto Morocco.

It is the southernmost point of the European continent, located between the south of both the capital cities of Tunis and Algiers.

It is famous for its stretching beaches and is often a hot spot for windsurfers because of the strong gales. A unique point of the city is where the Atlantic ocean and the Mediterranean sea.

Arcos

Arcos de la Frontera is located on the eastern side of the Guadalete river, which travels into the Bay of Cadiz. There are fine views to be seen upon the sandstone ridge, from which the peak of San Cristobal and the Guadalete Valley are clearly visible. The was the frontier of Spain's 13th century battle with the Moors. The town was a stronghold of Christianity after Alfonso the Wise of Castile defeated the Moors. He built a Gothic cathedral which remains on the high ridge in the town. It is famous for its ten bells, which tolled throughout the war with the Moors. Several Moorish banners were confiscated during the nearby battle of Zahara and have been on show in a church in Arcos since 1483.

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