The beauty and romanticism of Cádiz are synthesized in one place: Medina Sidonia, a destination straddling the Sierra de Cádiz and the Atlantic Ocean that always welcomes the traveler with open arms.
Different cultures have left their mark on the extensive historical-artistic heritage of Medina Sidonia, which is one of the oldest cities in Spain. Without a doubt, one of the best places to see in Andalusia.
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What to see in Medina Sidonia
The town belongs to one of the most important natural spaces on the Iberian Peninsula, the La Janda lagoon region, because of its great ecological wealth. However, the historic center of Medina Sidonia is also of great importance and is a pleasure to behold. A monumental space named Historic Artistic Site and Asset of Cultural Interest in 2001.
Monumental arches and wall
The Medina Sidonia wall dates from the Islamic period - the Islamic Middle Ages. Although it has been somewhat diminished to date, we can still contemplate its structure, some sections enclosed between houses and others more extensive, which is so testimony to the strategic location of Medina Sidonia within Cádiz.
The most photogenic places on the wall are the arches and the access gates to the city: the Puerta de Belén, the Puerta de la Pastora and the Puerta del Sol.
- The door of Bethlehem is the access point to the medieval town. It is so called because in the niche there is an image of the Holy Mary of Bethlehem.
- The Pastora door has a horseshoe arch and a large access staircase. It is an Arab door of access to the walled enclosure. It is also known as Puerta de la Salada due to the fountain at the end of the staircase.
- Puerta del Sol faces east, so the sun rises here every morning. A perfect location to take some beautiful pictures of the trip to Medina Sidonia.
Medina Sidonia Castle
It is the ruins of an old fortification used by Romans, Muslims and Christians located on the top of the Castle hill of which only the remains remain since from the XNUMXth century onwards it was used as a quarry for other constructions such as the Town Hall or the main church of Santa María la Coronada.
From its vantage point, 300 meters above sea level, there are exceptional views of those that hypnotize. Visiting the Medina Sidonia castle is the best opportunity to observe the town in all its splendor and the beautiful surrounding landscapes. The ascent from the center of the town is super pleasant and the archaeological site itself is perfectly adapted to walk among the historical remains.
Church of the Santa María la Mayor,
Very close to the Castle in the upper part of the city is the Church of Santa María la Mayor la Coronada, a Gothic-Renaissance temple, with a Latin cross plan and three naves that was built on an old mosque.
It has a Herrerian style façade with very striking Andalusian Plateresque influences. However, the interior is no less so because inside is the impressive Plateresque-style main altarpiece, the nave of the Epistle or the Conception, the carving of the Christ of Forgiveness by Pedro Roldán from 1679, the Custody of the Corpus Christi from 1575 , the baroque choir and the rococo altar.
Church of Santiago
It is a rectangular church, triple nave and Mudejar style with a spectacular coffered ceiling dating from the early XNUMXth century. It is dedicated to the patron saint of the city and of Spain: Santiago el Mayor.
Both the convent and the current church have their origin in the XNUMXth and XNUMXth centuries. The Victoria Church is made up of three naves, a brick tower and a large dome that was decorated in its time. Inside there are several very important works of art to see, such as two sculptures by Martínez Montañés and a high altar with the Virgen de la Victoria that is attributed to the Pedro de Ribera school.
Plaza of Spain
In the Plaza de España, the day starts very early and ends late with the closing of their businesses. It is the nerve center of the city and a meeting point for its inhabitants. Here there are bars, restaurants and terraces where you can have a drink after a long walk through Medina Sidonia and savor the slow pace of life and the familiar atmosphere of the locals.
In addition, in the Plaza de España is the Town Hall. A baroque style building that houses the Municipal Historical Archive.
The Ethnographic Museum of Medina Sidonia takes a look back in time for the customs and lifestyle of the people of Assisi through a complete exhibition where you can see from household objects, tools for working in the field and crafts to a collection of antique furniture.