Considered to be the oldest inhabited city in Europe, Cádiz was found as ‘Gadir’ by the Phoenicians in 1.100 BC. The city has a long list of spectacular beaches and returning visitors rave about the tasty Cádiz seafood, amazing monuments and intriguing museums. Most importantly, enamored visitors talk fondly of the gaditanos(people from Cádiz), and the crazy, yet fun Carnival whose upbeat songs will make you long for the city after you have left.
Cádiz’s Carnival Is Second To Rio’s In Fame
The Cádiz Carnival is widely known as a huge street party with eleven days of originality, fun and mass participation. The city spends the whole year preparing its biggest carnival celebrations. Fancy dress or costume is essential for the celebration, at least on the first Saturday and during the parades. There are two main parades in the carnival, El Gran Cabalgata (The Great Parade) and La Cabalgata del Humor (The Comedy Parade).
The Cuban Bond
If you remember the famous James Bond movie, Die Another Day, the shots of Halle Berry in a bikini in Cuba were actually shot in Cádiz. La Caleta was the beach used in the movie, while the island with the DNA replacement clinic was actually the Castillo San Sebastian. They also digitally removed the castle and transformed the city into Havana.
Lord Byron Lived In Cádiz
Lord Byron was one of the most famous English ‘Romantic’ poets, born on January 22, 1788 in London. His major works included Don Juan and Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage. When Lord Byron was 21 years old, he went to Seville after finishing his studies in Cambridge. He left Seville on July 28th in the same year to go to Cádiz. On a night at the opera in Cádiz, he saw a beautiful girl, which later inspired him to write The Girl of Cádiz.
ts 260 kilometres of Atlantic coastline feature long beaches with fine sand, many of them undeveloped and not excessively exploited for tourism. The whole coast is part of the Costa de la Luz.
You will find everything from first-rate urban beaches like La Victoria in the city of Cadiz or La Barrosa in Chiclana, through to virgin beaches such as the Levante in El Puerto; Los Caños de Meca and Zahora in the Barbate area, Bolonia in Tarifa and El Palmar in Vejer.
Places worth visiting inland include the vineyards of Jerez or the White Villages Route and the Bullfighting Route.
NATURAL PARK SIERRA DE GRAZALEMA
An excellent network of paths, forest tracks and several trails certified by Federación de Montaña, like the GR-7which from Athens reaches Tarifa, makes the ideal setting for hiking, horse riding and mountain biking. These paths include the Llanos de Líbar, with records the beautiful scenery through which these run, or the Pinsapar which reveals the strongholds of this botanical rarity. Angling on the Majaceite River, with the most trout in southern Europe, or tasting gourmet products authentic from the mountain as thistles, olive oil or local goat “payoya” cheese are a tangible example of its outstanding offer.
The more active guests can enjoy free flight at the stations of Algodonales and El Bosque, water sports in the Zahara de la Sierra reservoir, caving in the many caves and caverns or canyoning at Garganta Verde.
Its cultural sphere, the a Ruta de los Pueblos Blancos (White Villages Route) or the Archaeology encompass the monumental and historic magic of an area which houses, in addition, a water heritage that spreads waterwheels and mills along the banks of rivers and streams, like El Tavizna in El Bosque or Rivera del Gaidóvar. Majaceite, in Benamahoma, is home to the Water Ecomuseum.
The delicious gastronomy of Cadiz is a compilation of Andalusia’s most appetising dishes. The produce of the mountains and the sea, accompanied by outstanding wines, will transform any visit into a delicious experience. There is a wide range of fish and shellfish, including the local langoustines from Sanlúcar from which they take their name, the bienmesabe (fried marinated dogfish), the sea bream à la roteña, the gilthead sea bream baked in salt, clams with noodles, tiny shrimp omelettes, and numerous other dishes which are better to try than to describe.In the mountain area the local fare includes game casseroles (venison, wild boar, rabbit, partridge...), ajo caliente (garlic and pepper soup), Grazalema soup, kidneys with sherry, baby chorizos from El Bosque, pork loin in lard,...
The pastries and sweets, infused with the region’s Arab heritage, feature unique products such as the typical tortas from Chiclana, alfajores and Christmas sweets from Medina, tocinillos de cielo from Jerez, andamarguillos from Grazalema... Every town and village offers something to tempt the sweet-toothed on their travels around the geography of Cadiz
Retiros del Alma has chosen Cádiz to hold some of its Yoga, meditation and hiking retreats, for being one of those places of incredible beauty. Click here to see our retreats 2018.