Planning a trip to Cadiz, but not sure where to start? Here you will find the best things to do in Cadiz, one day itinerary for Cadiz, and many more tips to make your time in Cadiz fun and unforgettable.
Cádiz is an ancient port city in the Andalucia region of southwestern Spain. It is a beautiful artistic city rich in remarkable sights surrounded by picturesque towns, wild landscapes, and wonderful beaches. Does this sound good? If the answer is yes, you will love Cadiz.
Keep on reading to discover the best things to do in Cadiz and more travel tips. If you are planning to spend one day in Cadiz, at the end you will find a complete Cadiz itinerary that covers all the essentials.
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Best time to visit Cadiz?
Cadiz can be visited all year long, but I would recommend late spring or early autumn to enjoy the beautiful warm weather. This will give you the chance to enjoy the top things to do in Cadiz pleasantly. In summer, the weather gets super hot, but you have the chance to take a swim anytime you want, so if you like sunbathing, summer is also a great choice for you.
How many days to visit Cadiz?
Generally, the best things to do in Cadiz can be covered in 1 or 2 days. If you want to make some day trips in the region and take it in a more relaxing way, you can stay between 3 to 7 days.
Day trips from Cadiz can be fun for nature lovers, hidden gems hunters, and people who love wild beaches, so I recommend keeping one day for a short getaway and discovering something beyond Cadiz.
How to get around Cadiz?
If you plan to stay only in Cadiz, you can simply walk around. The old town is not so big and you have everything you need. The popular Cadiz beach – Caleta is right in front of the old town. If you plan to explore the rest of Andalusia, then a car is essential and you can plan an amazing road trip around the area.
What to eat in Cadiz?
One of the best things to do in Cadiz is to eat! Andalusia has a lot of specialties like Gaspacho and Rabo de Toro. We already talked about these dishes in Seville, but unlike Sevilla, Cadiz lies on the ocean so it’s seafood the real protagonist of Cadiz cuisine. You will find fish restaurants or takeaway everywhere in the old town; you simply can’t go wrong with this.
The most popular dishes include prawn fritters, cuttlefish and potato stew, seasoned fish roe, marinated fried chicken, and Spanish oyster thistle stew. The region of Cadiz is also famous for wine production, especially in the Jerez area.
Where to stay in Cadiz?
The best area to stay in Cadiz is undoubtedly the old town. You will be surrounded by art, bars, restaurants, and many lively streets filled with locals. All the top things to do in Cadiz are located in the old town. There are a lot of beautiful hotels in the old town and you can call them hidden gems of Cadiz, so here is a list of some of the best hotels in Cadiz.
LUXURY: Parador de Cádiz
Parador de Cádiz is located less than 5 minutes from the beach, behind the famous Gran Teatro Falla. It is a modern building and it offers the guests all the comforts. Here you can find a terrace with sea or city views, a Spa and wellness center, a gym, swimming pools, a bar, and a restaurant. The rooms are sophisticatedly decorated and some of them offer a spectacular view of the ocean.
MID-RANGE: Hotel Argantonio
Hotel Argantonio is one of those hidden gems in Cadiz that I mentioned earlier. The hotel is located in the heart of the old town, it is an authentic Andalusian building that will remind you of the times of Arab domination in Spain. The rooms are stylish and carefully decorated, definitely one of the best hotels in Cadiz, especially for this price.
AFFORDABLE: Hotel Las Cortes De Cádiz
Just like the previous hotel, the Hotel Las Cortes De Cádiz is located in the heart of the old town in a typical Andalusian house. The rooms are simply decorated but with style. Some rooms offer some city views. All essentials are provided and you can enjoy also a beautiful view from their terrace.
Overview of the Best things to do in Cadiz
Now that we clarified the practical information about Cadiz, it’s time for some fun. Let’s discover the best things to do in Cadiz together and let’s get closer with Cadiz. In this list, we will cover main attractions, hidden gems, beaches, free things to do, unique museums, and of course, the best restaurants and food experiences. And so much more, so keep on reading!
Discover the secrets of the cathedral of Cadiz
The cathedral of Cadiz is probably one of the nicest churches in all of Spain and definitely, a must-see in Cadiz. The square where the cathedral stands is one of the best photo spots in Cadiz, but bring your wide-angle lens.
The Cathedral is also known as the “Cathedral of The Americas” because it was built with money from the trade between Spain and America. The cathedral was started in a baroque edifice and was completed in the neoclassical style.
Once you enter the Cathedral, you have to pay particular attention to the beautiful stalls of the choir, which is a real masterpiece of wood. After, complete the visit to the interiors admiring the chapels and the crypt.
After visiting the interiors of the church, climb to the Clock Tower, from there you can see a complete view of the entire city and wonderful views of the Atlantic Ocean.
You can visit the cathedral every day from 10 am to 9 pm except on Sundays, when the visits start at 1.30 pm. The last entrance is 45 minutes before the closing time and the admission fee is 7 euros.
Refresh yourself in the Parque Genoves
While visiting Cadiz, you might want to relax in a park to escape the heat and Parque Genoves is a perfect place for that. Visiting the park is also one of the best free things to do in Cadiz. Its origin dates back to the end of the 18th century, but throughout its history, it has had various extensions and remodeling.
When visiting the park don’t miss the several botanical species in the park and the Cascada y Puente elevado Parque Genovés. Here you can see a waterfall that forms a picturesque lake. For the best view, climb to the bridge on top. You can also enter a little grotto inside, where you will be able to see the waterfall from an alternative point.
Sunbath or watch a sunset on the Caleta Beach
Caleta Beach is probably the most popular beach in Cadiz. It is a natural harbor and it has a relevant history since Phoenicians, Carthaginians, and Romans all arrived here when approaching Cadiz. It is the smallest beach in the city and is isolated from the others.
What makes this beach special is its location. La Caleta has inspired musicians and poets over the years. It is also pictured in 007: Die Another Day.
The white sand on the beach is perfect to relax and spend a day just laying down. You will find many “chiringuitos” around. Chiringuitos are the typical Spanish bars on the beach and they offer an unforgettable view of the forts of San Sebastian and Santa Catalina.
If you love photography, or if you are making a romantic stroll, I highly recommend waiting for the sunset here. I have seen many sunsets in my life, but this place is certainly special, don’t miss that experience!
Try the flavors of Cadiz at the Central Market
As I mentioned previously, eating your way through local food is one of the best things to do in Cadiz. And the Central Market is the place to do that.
Seafood is the star of the market. You will find several stands where you can try the finest and freshest fish cooked in front of you. You can pair it with a nice glass of cold Cruzcampo or Tinto de Verano. In this market, you can also buy fruit and vegetables, so if you want to cook your fish at home, you will find everything you need to bring the taste of Andalusia directly to your table.
Just in front of the market, there is a little kiosk where to try the best churros in Cadiz since 1933. Churreria la Guapa bakes and fries the best churros and porras in Cadiz according to the locals. You can’t visit Cadiz without trying their churros, I consider this experience one of the top things to do in Cadiz.
When you are visiting the market, don’t miss Flores Square, just next to the main entrance to the market. In this lively square, there is a Freiduria Marisquería Las Flores and they are famous for their fried fish. It’s one of the best restaurants in Cadiz.
Visit the Gran Teatro Falla
The Gran Teatro Falla stands in Fragela square and it is one of the most beautiful theatres in Andalusia. It is built in the typical Neomudéjar style, made of red bricks, and has three grand horseshoe arch entry doorways on its principal façade, with alternating red and white voussoirs.
Here you can attend operas and plays all year long. Check their website to see their program.
If you happen to visit Cadiz in February, the theater hosts the art competitions of the Carnival of Cádiz, one of the most famous in all of Spain.
Climb the Torre Tavira and see the city from the top
The clocktower of the cathedral is not the only observation point to see Cadiz. The Torre Tavira is the highest point of the city, in fact, it is 45 above the level of the sea. From there you can enjoy not only a wonderful panorama of the city but also visit the first camera obscure in Spain.
The tower was built in a Baroque style and designated the official watchtower of the Cadiz port in 1778.
The tower is open every day from 10 am to 8 pm, and the admission fee is 5 euros. You will have the chance to visit the rooftop and the Camera Obscura.
Ride a bike or take a romantic walk in Alameda Apodaca
Taking a stroll in the Alameda Apodaca is one of the top things to do in Cadiz, especially in summer. Alameda Apodaca is a broad avenue with cobbled streets, with a variety of cobblestones that form beautiful geometrical designs.
Trees and fountains are abundant, making it the perfect spot to sit down and relax in the shadow. There are courses all along the streets. And, unusually, they are interspersed with stone columns. Here you will see the characteristic glazed ceramics and wrought iron, the design of the lampposts are truly remarkable.
I recommend you to come here for the sunset time because this is one of the best places in Cadiz to catch a beautiful sunset.
The spot is also perfect for a bike ride along with other attractions of the city, so I highly recommend this bike tour.
Take a picture of the monument of Plaza de Espana
Plaza de Espana of Cadiz is one of the most famous squares in Cadiz and you should come here for a photo when you visit the city.
The square is located near the port of Cadiz, it hosts some unique buildings such as the House of the Four Towers, the House of the Five Towers, the Customs building, and the picturesque Monument to the Constitution of 1812, erected in exactly a hundred years later. The work began in 1912 by the architect Modesto López Otero and the sculptor Aniceto Marinas, to commemorate the Constitution of 1812.
As you can see, it’s an important and beautiful square and it won’t take long to visit this place, so make sure you add it to your Cadiz itinerary, even if it’s just for 1 day.
Visit one of the many museums the city has to offer
Cadiz is not a big city, but there are a lot of museums of different kinds of tastes.
If you like archeology, you can’t miss the Yacimiento Arqueológico Gadir. The Phoenicians traveled to the modern Cadiz and founded the town with the name of Gadir in 1100 BC thanks to the strategic position. Here you can learn about this history, on top of that, there is no entrance fee, so it is one of the best free things to do in Cadiz.
The museum is open from Tuesday to Saturday from 11 am to 3 pm and from 5 pm to 9 pm. On Sunday from 11 am to 3 pm.
The Museo de Cadiz goes through the history and the arts of the town and the area of Cadiz. Here you will find paintings, statues, and archeological finds. If you are passionate about history and art you can’t miss this unique museum in Cadiz.
The museum is open from Tuesday to Saturday from 9 am to 9 pm and Sundays from 9 am to 3 pm. There is no admission fee for European Union citizens, others have to pay 1.50 euros to enter.
Museo Del Titere is the museum of the puppets, it is located in the historical Puertas da Tierra in the old town. it displays a huge collection of puppets from all over Spain and the world. The space has the goal to honor the memory of the activity of puppeteers, companies, artisans, and creators from Spain and the rest of the world. The uniqueness of the museum makes this experience one of the unusual things to do in Cádiz.
The museum is open from Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 9 pm and it’s another free thing to do in Cadiz.
Feel the history in the Roman Theatre of Cadiz
The Roman Theater of Cádiz dates back to the 1st century BC and it is one of the best free things to do in Cadiz. It is located in the old town, just a few steps away from the Cathedral.
The ruins of the theater were discovered only in 1980 and it was one of the biggest theatres ever built by the Romans. It’s almost 120 meters in diameter making it the oldest and the second largest on the Iberian Peninsula. The theater could host up to 10000 people, a number that for the time was impressive.
As I mentioned, there is no admission fee, and you can check the opening times here.
Enjoy the Spanish way of life sitting outside in the old town with a cold drink
The old town of Cadiz is full of places where to enjoy life in the Spanish way. I already mentioned the area of the market and the streets around to enjoy some drinks and tapas but the area of La Vina will also give you the chance to try some local delicacies in a less touristic spot.
My favorite street was Calle Virgen de la Palma, a lovely street surrounded by palm trees and filled with restaurants and bars all around. The typical old houses are colorful and decorated with flower pots and it will give you vibes of old Spanish colonial places.
I personally loved Restaurante El Charpa, so I highly recommend making a quick stop here.
If you are not in the mood for a meal or drink, you can also come here for a walk and bring your camera with you as it is one of the best photo spots in Cadiz.
Have an unforgettable dinner with a view of the ocean at Restaurante El Faro de Cádiz
El Faro de Cadiz is the right choice for an unforgettable Spanish dinner with a fantastic view of Cadiz. This could be slightly more expensive compared to other spots in town, but the food, service, and quality will make it worth your money.
They have a wide menu where you can choose any kind of solution you prefer, including a fantastic degustation menu, where you will try all the best that Cadiz has to offer. If you prefer something more classic, you can try their Moriscos and fish dishes. The restaurant offers also some signature dishes and it’s up to you to choose.
If you ask me, this is one of the best restaurants in Cadiz and all of Spain, and I am sure you will love it too.
Take an iconic photo of Cadiz from Avenida Campo del Sur
When you google photos of Cadiz, you will see that the best view of Cadiz is from Avenida Campo del Sur. This avenue is quite long so it will depend pretty much on your equipment and your taste, the best photo spot is close to the Baluarte de Capuchinos. There you will find the iconic view of the cathedral and the old town on the blue water. Alternatively, you can walk until the Mirador El Vendaval and enjoy the view from there.
Sunset and sunrise are probably the best moments to take an epic photo, but also bright light on the white houses of the old town looks stunning. It’s a romantic thing to do in Cadiz and it doesn’t matter if you are traveling alone, with your friends or your loved one. This will be a beautiful souvenir from Cadiz to cherish your memories.
Get lost in churches and patios and find the best hidden gems in Cadiz
If you ask me, Cadiz is a hidden gem of Spain, but there are certainly more gems within the city as well. As you already know, there are a lot of hidden gems in the hotels of Cadiz. Apart from hotels, always pay attention to little patios. If you see a nice palace and the door is open, don’t hesitate to enter. You might find a treasure and it’s one of those unusual things to do in Cadiz that you can’t miss. My favorite hidden gem in Cadiz is the Women’s Hospital and it’s not far away from the market.
Then there are churches… In fact, the cathedral is only one of the best places to visit in Cadiz. Some churches you don’t want to miss are the Parish of St Anthony of Padua, the Iglesia del Oratorio de San Felipe Neri, the Convento of San Francisco, and Iglesia de San Lorenzo Mártir. Also, you can’t miss the Iglesia de Santiago in Cathedral Square.
And sometimes, hidden gems can be located in bars. One of my favorite bars in Cadiz is the Cockteleria Archivo De Indias. It’s a place where you can sip your drink in style.
And apart from this list, go and get lost in Cadiz. I’m sure you will find some hidden corners that you will love because Cadiz has many of those.
Take an epic day trip from Cadiz to Jerez de la Frontera
Jerez de la Frontera lies only 30 minutes away from Cadiz and you don’t want to miss it. Despite Cadiz being the capital of the region, Jerez de la Frontera has twice the inhabitants of Cadiz. However, Jerez is famous for the wine and horses, so let’s dive into it.
Here is produced the famous wine Sherry, which is exported all over the world. The very famous Tio Pepe has its “bodegas” just next to the Cathedral of Jerez, and if you are passionate about wine, you simply have to visit. Also, every year it is held a world-famous Horse Fair and during these days there are a lot of folkloristic events.
Just Like Cadiz, the city was founded by the Phoenicians, and it has a strong influence on the Arab culture that you can see in the Alcazar and the Santa María la Real church which was originally a mosque.
The cathedral is the main Christian symbol of the city and it’s a real baroque-neoclassic gem that you can’t miss. The old town of Jerez is surrounded by walls and has many relevant religious and civil buildings like Centro Andaluz De Flamenco Junta De Andalucía. This is the perfect spot to get in touch with the art of Flamenco as well.
Planning to visit more of Andalusia? Read this travel guide that covers the most beautiful places in the South of Spain.
Visiting Cadiz for one day? Here is a quick itinerary for one day in Cadiz
As I said, you should spend at least 2 days in Cadiz to enjoy the city and tick off these best things to do in Cadiz, but I know that time is limited. Also, a lot of tourists arrive in Cadiz on a cruise ship, so here is a little itinerary for one day in Cadiz.
Explore the old town of Cadiz, start by visiting the cathedral and the Roman theater, and head to the Plaza de San Juan de Dios which is a few steps away. It’s already lunchtime! Go to the central market, without skipping Plaza de Flores for some fish and finish your lunch with some churros.
After a nice lunch, check the women’s hospital and climb to the Tavira tower for a nice view of the city. After that walk to the Plaza de Espana and Santo Antonio, walk around the Alameda Apodaca through Parque Genoves, and take pictures of la Caleta Beach at the golden hour and from the Baluarte de Capuchinos when the sun is down.
Finally, walk to the district of La Vina where you can enjoy an unforgettable dinner between El Faro and El Charpo. And that’s a wrap! Your one day itinerary for Cadiz is over.
Resources for your Cadiz trip:
- Luxury hotel in Cadiz: Parador de Cádiz
- Mid-range hotel in Cadiz: Hotel Argantonio
- Affordable hotel in Cadiz: Hotel Las Cortes De Cádiz
- Cadiz city bike tour: book it here
- Tavira tower entry ticket: buy it here
- Recommended car rental: check it here
I believe that at this point, you are ready for your trip to Cadiz and excited to experience the best things to do in Cadiz. It’s time to hit the road!
I would love to hear your thoughts, so if you have any feedback or additional tips, leave a comment below. Also, check out my Instagram for regular travel videos and travel inspiration. Or explore other destinations on this travel blog.