GI – Gibraltar

Gibraltar is an autonomous British territory on the Iberian Peninsula

To know
Gibraltar is a 426 m high and 5 km long promontory that closes the Gulf of Algesiraz to the east.

For the Greek-Roman world Gibraltar constituted one of the two columns of Hercules that marked the borders of the known world beyond which the unknown extended; the other is the rocky outcrop Jebel Musa, in Morocco.

What see
Almost all the upper part of the Rocca is a natural reserve so the walks are very pleasant and interesting as there are more than 600 plant species, it is also a very popular place for observing migratory birds. The Rock is inhabited by Barbary macaques from the colony of Gibraltar who roam the streets freely. In the Bahía de Algeciras there is a large colony of dolphins and many boats organize excursions to spot them.

1 The Convent (El Convento), Main Street. Former convent founded in 1536 by the Franciscan order, official residence of the governor of Gibraltar since 1728. Today, tourists go there to observe the changing of the guard carried out by the Royal Gibraltar Regiment. The original structure was remodeled several times during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and the building is now in classic Georgian style with Victorian influences. Part of the complex is King’s Chapel, a British garrison church stationed in Gibraltar.

2 Gibraltar Museum. The museum houses an exhibition of Gibraltar’s architecture and military history. In the historic center around the museum you can still see the British fortifications, barriers and posts. Most of the Spanish and Arab buildings were destroyed during the sieges that occurred in the 18th century. National Museum of Gibraltar.

3 Cathedral of Saint Mary the Crowned. The Catholic cathedral of Gibraltar consecrated on the site of a previous mosque immediately after the reconquest of the city in 1492 by the Duke of Medina-Sidonia, in the service of the Crown of Castile. Under the rule of the Catholic Kings, the old building was demolished to make way for a new Gothic-style church. In the courtyard of the cathedral the foundations of a building that served as a court at the time of the Moorish domination are visible. In 1810 work began on its reconstruction and in 1820 the clock tower was added.
Władysław Sikorski, a Polish politician and prime minister who died in 1941 in a plane crash off the coast of Gibraltar, is buried there. The bishops of Gibraltar are buried in a crypt under the statue of Our Lady of Europe. Cathedral of Santa Maria Incoronata (Gibraltar).

4 Church of Sant’Andrea. Protestant church erected in 1853 by Scottish soldiers stationed in Gibraltar. St. Andrew’s Church (Gibraltar).

5 Cathedral of the Holy Trinity. The Anglican cathedral with Moorish architecture. It was consecrated in 1838 in the presence of Queen Mother Adelaide, widow of William IV Holy Trinity Cathedral (Gibraltar).

6 Moorish Castle. Erected in 711 by the Berber leader Tariq ibn Ziyad a year after the conquest of the Rock of Gibraltar which took its name. In 1462 the fort passed into the hands of the Duke of Medina-Sidonia, vassal of the Crown of Castile. It was restored in 1552 by the Italian engineer Giovanni Battista Calvi. Until 2010 it served as a prison. Today the castle is a major attraction and its image appears on the back of the Gibraltar pound banknotes.

7 Trafalgar Cemetery, Southport Ditch, Trafalgar Road. Most of the tombs in the Trafalgar cemetery house British sailors who died in Gibraltar at the Battle of Trafalgar (1805). From here you can walk to Europa Point, the southern end of the promontory, on which stands a lighthouse, the Christian Shrine of Our Lady of Europe and a beautiful newly built mosque.
8 Great Siege Tunnels. Dug by British troops during the siege that lasted from 1779 to 1783. The tunnels represent only a small part of the more than 70 km of tunnels dug in the fortress, most of which are closed to the public. Nearby stands the Tower of Homage, a remnant of the ancient Arab castle of Gibraltar, built in 1333.
9 Cave of San Michele. The cave of S. Michele is an imposing natural cave, which today hosts concerts, plays and fashion shows. During the Neolithic period it gave refuge to the inhabitants of the Rocca.

10 Europa Point (Punta de Europa). The extreme southern tip of the promontory where the waters of the Mediterranean mix with those of the Atlantic and where you can see the profile of the opposite African coast.

11 The Mediterranean Steps. The Rock of Gibraltar can be reached, as well as by cableway, through this narrow and steep staircase carved in the rock. It begins at the intersection of Queen’s Road and Engineer Road, near the Jew’s Gate bird observatory and winds its way through dangerous rocky spikes until it reaches the military posts called Lord Airey’s Battery and O’Hara’s Battery. The staircase was restored in 2007 at the expense of the government and the Ornithological and Natural History Society. Although not easy, the route pays off those who travel it with magnificent views of the eastern side of the promontory and the Mediterranean Sea.

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