El Puerto de Santa Maria is my second home. Located almost in the center of the Bay of Cadiz, this is a town of great historical importance. It is the birthplace of famous people such as Pedro Muñoz Seca and Rafael Alberti, who also had a leading role in the discovery of America. Christopher Columbus spent long periods of time here preparing for the journey to the New World and it was here where the caravel Santa Maria was named. While retaining its quiet small-town character, where time passes slowly, it is one of the most touristic places in the province of Cadiz. It has about 16 miles of beaches, all of fine golden sand. The anchor beach is in fact called the beach of Santa Catalina and has a length of 3 km and a width of 40 meters. To its left Cadiz is clearly visible from the coast and to its right Rota. Here, thanks to the Levante and Poniente winds blowing frequently, you can practice water sports such as windsurfing and kite-surfing. But it is the sunsets that are undoubtedly the best reason to visit. The sun completely takes over the horizon of the bay, clear of buildings that obstruct its path. Peace pervades the soul of all who witness this spectacle. Only the discreet murmur of the waves and the occasional seagull accompany this moment of introspection. The sky goes from yellow to orange and orange to dark blue in less than an hour and the lights come on in Rota and Cadiz. They illuminate the sea, creating small water reflections. Certainly, if I ever get lost, this will be the place you will find me ...
This huge beach is over 6 kilometres long by 85 meters wide. It's a very popular beach of fine white sand, with a moderate swell. It's equipped with all amenities. In addition to a beautiful promenade, it has parking, making it very easy to access.
It's a spectacular ride along the Malecon to Faro Marina, from where you can see the Bay, which is especially beautiful at sunset. Even better is when the classic boats are in the harbour, there are some fantastic sights. The best in town.
Dedicated to Our Lady of Miracles, the city's patron, this building was built in the 15th century and was later renovated. The Door of Forgiveness is Gothic and the Door of the Sun is Baroque. It sits in the "Plaza de España", a lovely place with storks' nests and silence.
This is the place of my dreams. Fortunately, it's very close to where I live. It makes me forget everything bad, in this world full of stress and evil. Here, I realize how wonderful nature is, especially the sunsets. It has the best sunsets I've ever seen in my life. I recommend it.
They began to build this castle in the 10th century and over the centuries it has been dedicated to different functions. It was originally a mosque, going on to become a Christian tempo, sanctuary and even local municipality. It's rectangular and has 8 towers. The predominant style is Gothic. It was named a National Monument and is perfectly preserved. You can visit although it's privately owned. Very easy to get to, as it is in the heart of the town.
Puntilla Beach is not a beach that is particularly striking. It was always considered the poorer beach. Maybe that's precisely its charm. The people are warm and friendly. From The lace looms Cadiz, guarded by two large breakwaters.
This is the old Market of El Puerto de Santa María, built in 1776, in the style of the era. It was used for the sale of fish and dealings between merchants. It's right in front of the medieval castle. To get to this area you have to pass all of the Ribera del Marisco, the tourist zone. It's advisable to leave the car parked there because it's not that far. It is a rectangular building with a facade of 6 arches on columns and a segmental central arch. In this center there is a fish carved in the rock oyster and the coat of arms of the city. Currently the Old Fish Resbaladero or a nightclub.
The terrace overlooking the river is nice. The pub is very nice, despite its several downfalls. The drinks are expensive, including the beer. There is a charge for parking per hour (previously it was only 1 euro). You have to dress formally in summer and at night. You can't wear shirt or shorts of the skater/surfer type or flip flops, or they won't let you in. It also has a bit of a snobby and exclusive atmosphere. It is highly recommended for a good time and a drink.
It is one of the most typical squares of El Puerto de Santa Maria, located in the old quarter next to the Hospital of St. John of God and beside the Contractual Marketplace and Castillo de San Marcos. It is best to leave the car at the end of the Ribera del Marisco and follow the path on foot to the medieval part of the town which is just a few hundred meters. This secluded square is for pedestrians only and is called Micaela Aramburu Avenue de Mora. Rectangular in shape, all paved and centered at its end by the source of Columbus, that is decorated with tiles in the Seville style. The front is partially covered by the terrace of a restaurant, the other sides are enclosed by houses. This keeps the area cool in summer and also protects it from the wind.
This is a mall that is built on industrial land. It is situated out of town, across the river Guadalete, so you have to keep track of Valdelgarana as a kilometer until you reach a roundabout with a reproduction of one of the caravels. It is a small shopping center, divided into two floors, but with plenty of parking spaces. Almost at the edge of the road there is a Mc Donald. Bahia Mar has a supermarket occupying most of the surface of the ground floor as well as a multiplex. It also has other business. The parking is on the top floor. There is no danger of competition from the other major commercial center of El Puerto de Santa María, which is on the road to Jerez and is called El Paseo, as this is one of the largest in Andalusia.
The pub Reconquista of Puerto de Santa María, is on Ribera del Rio Street, on the corner of Javier Burgos Street. It's one of the places we biker friends like to go to for a drink when we're doing the route of the Port, before De Jerez GP or any other night of the year. It's certainly one of the places with the best atmosphere, to have good drinks, meet people and listen to good music. The restaurant is decorated in the style of the Middle Ages and conquest, with the typical windows, knights and coats of arms.
Eye! as of August 31, 2011 this service has been deleted. There is now a catamaran located almost next door, with a different schedule. Anyway, its a great place. I've written about the catamaran if anyone is interested. http://www.minube.com/rincon/barquito-o-catamaran-a-cadiz-y-rota-a694571
Wondering what to do in El Puerto de Santa María? El Puerto de Santa María boasts beautiful beaches of fine golden sand that invite you to swim and relax. They are by far the most famous of the plethora of great El Puerto de Santa María attractions. Valdelagrana beach, the beaches of La Puntilla and El Aculadero, and the beaches of La Muralla and La Calitathat all rank among the top places to visit in El Puerto de Santa Maria.
As for things to see in El Puerto de Santa María proper, options include the Iglesia Mayor Prioral and the Castillo de San Marcos, which was built from an ancient Islamic mosque and became a fortified church in the times of Alfonso X the Wise. They have preserved both the qibla wall where the mihrab was situated and the Almohad design.
Other things to do in El Puerto de Santa María can be found on its city website, where you can consult the various El Puerto de Santa María activities of the day, the ocean tides, and some popular touring routes. For additional information about attractions in El Puerto de Santa María, go to the tourist office in the Plaza of Alfonso X.
If you feel you have run out of stuff to do in El Puerto de Santa María, check out some of the nearby towns such as Jerez de la Frontera, San Fernando, Chiclana de la Frontera, Puerto Real, and Rota.