Known as the oldest continuously inhabited settlement in Europe, Cadiz, Spain’s millenary seaport, is a multicultural, elegant and vibrant peninsula surrounded by eroded seawalls swept on three sides by Atlantic waves.
Feel how time peels back at every turn while we lead you through the tight warren of old town streets; join us on a journey through 3000 years of history with our Cadiz Shore Excursion!
Founded as Gadir by the Phoenicians around the VII century BCE, some historians have identified Cadiz with the biblical Tarshish. In 45 BCE, under Julius Cesar, the city became a Roman municipality. On the seaward edge of the labyrinthine Barrio del Pópulo, you can admire the well-preserved remains of a Roman theatre, dating from the late 1st century BCE and, originally, with space for 10,000 spectators.
After the fall of the Roman Empire, the Andalusian city experienced a period of successive invasions by the Vandals, the Byzantines, the Visigoths and finally the Moors, who spread their power throughout southern Spain and beyond between 711 and 1492 CE. Their presence in Cadiz, which lasted until 1262, when they were finally ousted by Alphonso X of Castile, left a deep mark on the city’s atmosphere.
Cadiz’s Jewish history in a nutshell
Under Muslim rule, there were probably Jewish settlements in in Cadiz. Among those who were allocated properties in the area after its Reconquista in the 13th century, there was also a Jew, Samuel of Cadiz. The Jewish settlement grew as the island on which Cadiz was situated was linked with the mainland thanks to silt from the Guadalquivir River. Records of the inquisition's ruthless handling of cases from Cadiz in Seville in 1481 prove that there was a community of Conversos in the city at the end of the 15th century. When the Jews were expelled from Andalusia, Cadiz’s Jews moved to Castile. According to chronicler Bernáldez, in 1492, the year of the expulsion of the Jews from the entire Iberian Peninsula, 8,000 Jews left Cadiz mainly for North Africa.
In 1877 a census counted 209 Jews in Cadiz, mostly from Morocco, but no permanent community was formed.
On our Cadiz Shore Excursion, we will explore the fascinating and tragic story of Cadiz’s and Andalusia’s Jewry in depth!
Our tour throughout the centuries of the history of Cadiz, a millenary city on the Atlantic Ocean, continues with the city’s baroque-neoclassic jewel, the beautiful yellow-domed Catedral Nueva. Don’t miss a climb up the cathedral's (eastern) Torre del Reloj: the view on the ocean and the peninsula is absolutely breath-taking!
You can delve deeper into the city and Cádiz Province’s culture and history at the Museum of Cádiz, whose collection span both Phoenician and Roman archaeological treasures and Spain’s finest art works from the 18th to early 20th centuries. Outside of the museum, the local art scene is waiting to be explored: with artists drawn from all over Spain for the quality of the local light, Cádiz has a lively art and cultural scene.
Time to chill out? Sunbathe and enjoy a dip in Cadiz’s Copacabana-like beaches, Playa de la Caleta and Playa de la Victoria; hop between its many chiringuitos (beach bars) as you laze your way along the sands into town.
Don’t leave the city without tasting Cadiz’s delicious seafood dishes! The best choice is probably “El Faro”, a very popular tapas bar among Gaditanos (Cadiz’s citizens).
Enjoy all of Cadiz’s colors and flavours on our Cadiz’s shore excursion!