Our base for the night was a secure car park in a town called El Puerto de Santa María, a short boat ride across the bay from Cádiz. El Puerto is home to seven sherry bodegas including Osborne’s, which was set up by Englishman Thomas Osborne Mann in 1772. The company logo is the back bull which has become Spain’s unofficial national symbol which we’ve seen on hillsides along our travels through Spain.
We boarded an early catamaran, taking in the passing scenery on the half hour journey into Cádiz, made even more enjoyable when considering the return journey cost just €5.40. Once on dry land we found the tourist information office and then studied their map over a coffee. The city’s major industry seems to be tourism, and the tourists are well taken care of. Some of the sights are free to get in, or charge a nominal sum, and there are also four self-guided walking tours which follow coloured lines painted across the pavements, with points of interest highlighted in a free information leaflet.
Over the course of the day, when we weren’t sat in the shade eating or drinking, we followed three of the tours and about half of the fourth. There’s much to see and do and we really enjoyed the day there. Here are some photos:
This coming Sunday marks the start of Semana Santa, the holy week running up to Easter. It’s a huge event, bigger than Christmas, and there will be parades all across Spain. The roads and squares around many of the cathedrals have been closed off, with barriers and seating being put in place. There’s not much commercialism, we’ve seen virtually no Easter eggs (nor Cadbury’s creme eggs unfortunately) and no hot cross buns. We’re told that many places close down for the week, or are only open in the mornings.
We’d planned to stay in Cádiz for two days, but having walked 12.5 miles we saw all we wanted to see in one day. Given the impending Semana Santa madness, we decided that it would make sense to be in and out of Sevilla before it all starts, so this morning we left Cádiz and we’re now parked up about 15 minutes walk from Sevilla’s Plaza de España.