One of the great pleasures of arriving by cruise ship is the proximity of the port to the Old Town.
The seafront is characterised by palm trees, look-out towers and white-fronted houses; the landmark twin towers of the Baroque Cathedral are just a couple of blocks away from the mooring.
Cádiz is the gateway to Jerez de la Frontera and the great Moorish city of Seville. Also on the doorstep is the Doñana National Park, one of Europe’s last great wildernesses.
Set in the southwestern corner of Andalucia, Cádiz is one of the oldest cities in the Western World and was founded by the Phoenicians around 1100 BC.
Cádiz has few specific tourist sights. Instead, its appeal lies in the shabby-chic charm of its Old Town, and a stroll round the walls and a promenade along the adjacent beach front is a very popular way to spend a couple of hours here.
• In the Old Town pay a visit to the 18th-century Cathedral and the Museo de Cádiz.
• Jerez, 30 mins away, is famous as the home of sherry and a trip to a bodega is de rigeur while horse lovers will not want to miss the show (and much more) at the Royal Equestrian School.
• Seville, 1½-2 hours by coach, is one of the great cities of Europe. Its Santa Cruz quarter is quintessential romantic Southern Spain while its Real Alcázar (palace-fortress of the Arab kings), and its Cathedral, complete with Giralda Tower, are two of the country’s greatest monuments.
• Lovers of nature and bird watchers should visit the Doñana National Park; boat trips depart from Sanlúcar de Barrameda (11 miles north).
Cadiz Tourist Board
Paseo de Canalejas, Cadiz, Spain
Tel. (+34) 956 241 001.
Leather goods (especially suede coats), handcrafted wooden furniture, rugs and carpets with Arab-influenced designs. Sherry from Jerez.
Andalucían specialities include gazpacho (a chilled tomato soup) and a variety of fish, particularly fried. There are four main types of sherry: fino (pale and very dry); amontillado (medium dry); oloroso (medium-sweet) and dulce (sweet).
When to go:
Summers are hot and dry with temperatures rising to around 35°C (95°F) and winters are mild with a little rain. Cadiz is cooled by Atlantic breezes so does not reach the extremes of temperature to be found in inland Andalucia.
1.6km (1 mile).