Located in the Plaza de la Constitución, we are facing one of the key monuments to understand the city in many aspects.
The first news about its existence date from the early sixteenth century. After the Discovery of America, the population of the city increased considerably and houses adjacent to the existing wall began to be built. This external framework provided a situation of insecurity in the face of increasing attacks, such as Barbarroja or Drake. For this reason, the defense of the city was extended with this new construction, which consisted of a wall of land and was destroyed, without much effort, in the Anglo-Dutch looting of 1596.
With the reconstruction of a new defensive system, the city was able to resist a new attack in 1625, and it is from then on that he decides to surround the existing city with defenses.
The major changes in the wall begin to take place in 1731. The reforms were entrusted by the engineers Ignacio Salas and Juan Martín Cermeño. It follows the same style that is being applied in all European main cities and incorporates the system of vaults, glacis, contramines and barracks. To get an idea of what it looked like at this time, you can visit the Museum of the Cortes of Cádiz, where we will find a model of the city made between 1777 and 1779. Here you can also see that it was built in the narrowest part from the city.
The current name is received in the eighteenth century and since then its design has hardly changed. Due to the necessity of the passage of vehicles, the whole is remodeled, with a change of the tower (in its upper part) and the opening of two large arches, which currently runs the traffic The wall is made with stone oyster, another characteristic symbol of Cadiz architecture.
As a curious fact, look at the left side of the wall, you can find embedded one of the old entrances. Crowning the central axis, the tower is erected, where they have passed since the Christmas lights, to a Hercules in Carnival. In its front we find a set of paired columns, designed by José Barnola. In front of it, we have a fountain (Ojo !, which for some will be the most important) which is where the promotions of Cádiz CF are celebrated. And safeguarding the fountain, on columns, are the patrons of the city; San Servando and San Germán, sculpted by the Genoese brothers Andreoli.
On the inner side of the wall, we find the surprise of a marble townhouse as a triumphal arch, made by Torcuato de Cayón. From here you can access the vaults that give access to the monument. You will have to explore a little to find the access to the upper walk, but there is, don’t leave. Once there, you can access the interior of the tower, where there are images that show the most recent evolution of the walls.
Why should you visit?
Who does not like to inquire about a walled enclosure? Without a doubt, I am one of those who with the simple fact of walking through them, I move to another era and I love discovering that they saw from there.
Views, views and more views. From this point we can contemplate:
- The Bastion of San Roque and Santa Elena that close this walled complex.
- The Puerta Tierra zone (yes, I know, we are in the Puerta Tierra, but it is what is called everything built from the Plaza de la Constitución to the Carranza Bridge).
- The Old Town ,the roofs of the de Santa María neighborhood, the Cathedral in the background and the port on the right, are worth the prospect. And from here you can start to see something very characteristic of our city, the lookout towers.
- The Pepa Bridge (or the new bridge).
More information about the defensive architecture of the city and about the monument. It is a good starting point to get a general idea.
You are crossing a border without being asked for a passport. Here is the most symbolic axis of the city, separating the new, old part, Cadi. This is something that always draws attention to the one that is not from the city, the old town we call Cadi (Cádiz). And those born and / or residents outside the walls, are called Bedouin (there I enter). And this, is totally true.
And now that I’ve seen it, what?
You have gone up and down, it is not a great height, but if the day is sunny, surely it has taken its toll.
So to regain strength I propose two options that I really like. The first is the Saja River, from a beer to eat. If you have not been curious about the place on the outside, go through his profile on instagram, which will surely crave something.
If you prefer to take something with the sea in the background, then go to El Pelicano (they open at 6:00 p.m. so it is not an option for the morning).
If it is not time to take something, or just do not feel like it; Do not go too far. In the bastions of San Roque and Santa Elena, which are the ones that close the set, we have two more cultural options for our plan. On the one hand the Puppet Museum and on the other the Lithographic Museum. We’ll talk about both in later posts.
Just a bit of basic information
Schedules Monday to Friday: 9:30 – 13:30 / 18:15 – 20:15 Saturdays: 10:00 – 13:00
How to get there:
Be careful, because if you ask in Cádiz , you run the risk of being told that : “That is near” (Cádiz is small, but still, you do not feel like walking). Do not trust Cadiz very much in that aspect, which as I said, we are exaggerated “pa tó”! But in honor of the truth, is that in Cádiz you can walk everywhere.
By urban bus: On Avenida Andalucía we have a very close stop, where lines 1,2,3 and 7 pass. So you have access from almost any area.
If you come from outside: Past the monument, and going down the Cuesta de las Calesas we have the bus and train stations.
You already know that I am very addicted to maps, so this time will not be less. I leave you all the sites indicated above and we will expand it little by little.