Huelva is a city in southwestern Spain, the capital of the province of Huelva in the autonomous region of Andalusia. It is located along the Gulf of Cádiz coast, at the confluence of the Odiel and Tinto rivers. The city centre of Huelva is highlighted by many lovely plazas and squares, including its palm-lined Plaza de las Monjas, along with a wealth of historical landmarks, monuments, seafood restaurants and bars. The Port of Huelva is divided in two sectors: the inner port, or East Wharf, which is located in the city, and the outer, or main port. Constructed in 1972, the East Wharf replaced harbour facilities built in the early-20th century. Currently, the East Wharf is used for smaller traffic, including tourist boats, and features one wharf. Construction of the Outer Port commenced in 1965 to the south of the River Tinto, and is currently home to six wharves.
Huelva has been an important port and major trading post since ancient times. The mineral wealth of the area north of Huelva brought Phoenicians, Greeks and Romans who, along with the later arrival of the Moors, left their archaeological mark on the city. However, the city reached its zenith in the 15th century with the discovery of America by Christopher Columbus, who lived in Huelva prior-to-and-after his famed voyage. Today, he is commemorated in various landmarks around the city. Exploitation of copper deposits by British interests made Huelva into something of a boom town during the late-19th and early-20th centuries. Many grand buildings were erected, and foreign mining companies built impressive ironwork loading quays that extended into the estuary, and their remnants still exist to this day. The grand neo-Moorish train station, the Estación de Sevilla, was also constructed around this time.
For centuries, Huelva's economy has been based on agriculture, mining and petroleum refining. However, in recent years, the abundant natural beauty of the Andalusian region has made Huelva a popular tourist destination for outdoor and nature enthusiasts alike. The southern-most region of Spain, Andalusia is the bridge between the continents of Europe and Africa, and the place where the Mediterranean meets the Atlantic. Renowned for its exceptional climate and wonderful beaches, it is also a region of spectacular geographical diversity that includes exquisite mountains, valleys, rivers, and desert and volcanic landscapes. In fact, Andalusia's alpine and tropical regions are less than 25 miles (40 kilometres) apart in some areas. What's more, Huelva's bustling ports and roadways offer easy access to exploring the city, province and entire Andalusian region.
In addition to its natural wonders, Huelva delights visitors with attractions of great historic, cultural and architectural interest. The evolution of the city can be explored during a visit to the Huelva Museum and Huelva's oldest parish church, the Iglesia de San Pedro. Discover Christopher Columbus' connection to Huelva before-and-after his discover of America at the Sanctuario de Nuestra Señora la Virgen de la Cinta, Monumento a Colón, Palos de la Frontera, La Rábida Monastery, Muelle de las Carabelas, Convento de Santa Clara, and other important city landmarks. Huelva's copper boom during the late-19th and early-20th centuries supported the construction of many grand buildings in the English Quarter, including Casa Colón, the imposing Gran Teatro and Clínica Sanz de Frutos. A host of stunning museums, churches and other lovely landmarks round out the city's seemingly endless array of architectural treasures.
Huelva's inland mountains, rivers, wooded forests and green pathways are highlighted by a wide array of picturesque and memorable sightseeing venues for outdoor enthusiasts. Land-based excursions include an exhilarating, cross-border zip-line excursion connecting Sanlúcar de Guadiana in Spain and Alcoutim in the Algarve, picturesque hiking and bird-watching adventures in the Sierra de Huelva, Nature Park of the Odiel Marshes and Doñana National Park, horseback-riding on Doñana Beach and El Rocío, and hot-air balloon flights over Doñana National Park. Other land-based sports include mountain biking, mountain-climbing, river-kayaking, Nordic walking, hang-gliding, caving, tennis, and bungee-jumping. Golfing enthusiasts can select from among many beautiful courses near Huelva, including the Isla Canela Golf Club, Costa Esuri Golf Club, Islantilla Golf Resort, Golf El Rompido, Golf Nuevo Portil, Bellavista Huelva Golf Club, La Monacilla Golf Club, or Doñana Golf Club. Scenic and fun-filled water-based excursions include fishing, boating and sailing along the coast of Huelva, as well as swimming, jet-skiing, water-skiing and windsurfing at splendid beaches and resorts such as Punta Umbria, Islantilla, El Rompido, El Portil, Mazagón, Matalascañas, and Isla Canela.
Due to its compact size, Huelva can be easily explored in just a single day.
Going Ashore in Huelva
The ship is scheduled to dock at the Levante Quay, a five-minute walk on-foot from the town centre, or South Quay, a 9.2-mile (14.8-kilometre) drive from the town centre. Taxis are metered and available at the pier, but must be requested.
Shopping opportunities in Huelva include handmade leather products such as boots, accessories and saddlery, jewellery, clothing, gourmet items, antiques, handicrafts, and souvenirs. Popular shopping destinations for general products include the Costa Luz Shopping Centre, City Centre Shops, Holea Shopping Centre, and Aqualón. Antique items can be found at the Philately-Numismatic San José and Numismatic Onuba. Boutique shopping experiences include Flamenco: Ajolí Shop, Manuela Macías, Rocío Trastallino, Tys, Strena Shop, and many upscale brand names at the El Corte Inglés Shopping Centre. On Fridays, there is a big market on the outskirts of the city. The local currency is the Euro.
Huelva is home to a wide array of delectable Spanish, Mediterranean, Mexican, Asian, contemporary, and international cuisine. Local specialities include tapas, chocos in sauce with broad beans, and fried with a thin coating of flour; cuttlefish eggs; Iberian black pork meats, including acorn-fed ham, sausages and candied pork cheeks; striped venus and wedge clams in sauce; fresh fish roasted on a bed of coarse salt; mojama, or dried fish; stewed fish; white prawns and seafood from the Huelva coast; Condado de Huelva wines and vinegars, including orange wine; olive oil; canned fish, including mackerel, bullet tuna, small sardines, and tuna ventresca packed in olive oil; and traditional pastries and sweets such as cocas, pestiños, hornazos, torrijas, and roscos. Popular restaurants in-and-around Huelva include Bonilla, Ciquitrake, Portichuelo, Acanthum, El Paraíso Tapas, Casa Miguel, Juan José, Puro Chup Chup, Bar Papis, Terranova, Acanthum, Kalaka Vinos y Tapas, Pinchoteca, Azabache, Macha, La Mirta, El Rincón de la Rocina, Mesón El Pozo, La Fonda de Maria, Ciquitrake Gastrobar, Taberna Guatine, El Sur Cerveceria, Bar Paco Moreno, and Heladeria Pura Vida. Popular hotels for dining include the NH Luz Huelva, Eurostar Tartessos and AC Huelva.
The hub of Huelva's city centre is its palm-lined square, Plaza de las Monjas, which is located near the pedestrianized shopping district, along the streets of Concepción to Berdigón. The relatively compact centre of Huelva is highlighted by many pretty plazas and squares, historical monuments, and a wealth of seafood restaurants and bars.
Palos de la Frontera
Palos de la Frontera is a town and municipality located in the southwestern Spanish province of Huelva, in the autonomous community of Andalusia. It is situated approximately 6.2 miles (10 kilometres) from the provincial capital, Huelva, and is most famous for being the place from which Columbus set sail for America in 1492. The Casa Museo de Martón Alonso Pinzón features a permanent exhibition of articles, documents and bibliography relating to the town's role in the discovery of America. In the main square is a statue to Pinzon, the builder of the ships and a plaque to the sailors, most of whom were from the village. Here at St. Jorge, Columbus and his crew prayed before setting sail, and the water needed for their long voyage was drawn from the old well in Palos.
Moguer played an important part in the first of Columbus' voyages. Located a few miles inland on the Río Tinto, it was an important centre of sea travel during 15th and 16th centuries. The importance of Moguer can be judged by the number of historical buildings that still exist here. Among them is the Convento de Santa Clara, which not only stands out as an outstanding work of architecture but was also the place where Columbus pledged his allegiance to the Spanish Crown before he left on his 1492 voyage. The building was severely damaged in Lisbon's Earthquake of 1755, but later rebuilt. It was declared a national monument in 1931.
Located 4.3 miles (seven kilometres) south of Huelva city where the Tinto and Odiel rivers meet is the 15th-century Franciscan Monasterio de Santa María de la Rábida. The monastery was constructed in 1412 on the site of a Moorish stronghold, and its Moorish influences can still be seen in its Mudéjar architecture, including the fine cloister and 14th-century Gothic-Mudéjar church. La Rábida is where Christopher Columbus consulted with the Franciscans about his plans for organizing an expedition of discovery. Whilst waiting for financial backing from the Catholic Monarchs, Ferdinand and Isabella, for his voyage to the New World, Columbus also stayed here between 1491 and 1492. This monastery also played a central in the Christian evangelisation of the Americas.
Muelle de las Carabelas (Harbour of the Caravels)
Located near La Rábida on the Río Tinto estuary is the Muelle de las Carabelas, or 'Harbour of the Caravels'. This waterfront exhibition features life-sized replicas of Columbus's three ships: the Niña, Pinta and Santa María, built for the 500th anniversary celebrations in 1992. The museum next to the boats has details of Columbus's life, regular video screenings and a café.
Monument Plus Ultra
Close to the Muelle de las Carabelas is the Monument Plus Ultra, which commemorates the first transatlantic flight between Spain and America. Opposite the harbour is the Foro Iberamericano, a modern outdoor venue for summer plays and concerts.
Monumento a los Descubridores
In the park near the La Rabida Monastery is the Monumento a los Descubridores, or 'Monument for the Discoverers', which was built in 1892 to commemorate the fourth centenary of the discovery of America. Also near the monastery is Iberamericano University.
Sanctuario de Nuestra Señora de la Cinta
This whitewashed 15th-century chapel is famous for its associations with Christopher Columbus, who prayed here prior-to-and-after his famed voyage to the New World. Perched on El Conquero Hill approximately 1.86 miles (about three kilometres) north of the city centre, it commands a wonderful view of the Odiel Wetlands and has been declared a Site of Cultural Interest.
Iglesia de San Pedro
Huelva's oldest parish church, the Iglesia de San Pedro, was constructed in the 15th and 16th centuries on a hilltop site of a mosque and next to the remains of a medieval fortress. It faces a pleasant palm tree-lined square, the Plaza San Pedro. On the northern side of the church is the Cabezo de San Pedro, a wooded hill with lovely vistas overlooking Huelva City. In 1999, the church was designated a Site of Cultural Interest.
La Merced Cathedral (Huelva Cathedral)
The Iglesia de la Merced used to serve as the church of the neighbouring convent, the Convento de la Merced, and was designated a cathedral in 1953. It is one of the best examples of Baroque architecture in Huelva province, with a striking pink exterior and a bright white marble interior. It dominates the Plaza de la Merced, an elegant square lined with tall palm trees.
Museo de Huelva (Huelva Museum)
Huelva's provincial museum, housed in a modern building on the Avenida Sundheim, has an interesting archaeological collection, with objects from the megalithic sites of La Zarcita at Santa Bárbara de las Casas and El Pozuelo at Zalamea la Real, Tartessian treasure from the necropolis at La Joya, and Phoenician and Greek artefacts discovered in excavations within the city. Moorish artefacts are also on display. In the mining section are objects of Roman mining activity, including the museum's biggest find, a huge Roman water wheel from Río Tinto used by slaves for drawing water out of the mines. The highlight of its fine art collection is the work by Daniel Vázquez Díaz, a 20th-century artist from nearby Nerva whose murals on the life of Christopher Columbus can be seen at the La Rábida Monastery just outside the city.
Castillo y Alcázar de los Gúzmanes
The Castillo y Alcázar de los Gúzmanes, the venue of the annual Niebla Festival of Music and Dance, has permanent exhibits relating to armoury, falconry, paintings, sketches, and documents related to ancient Arab science and medicine.
Casa de los Marchenas
Located at Plaza de la Laguna in Ayamonte, the 17th-century Casa de los Marchenas displays a large collection of Sevillan ceramics and wrought iron work.
Located on Calle Huelva in Ayamonte, the 18th-century Casa Grande is home to various art exhibitions and the Municipal Library.
Centro de Visitantes Cabildo Viejo
Located at Plaza Alta in Aracena, the Centro de Visitantes Cabildo Viejo displays an environmental exhibition with photographs, sketches and informative panels.
Museo de Jamón (Museum of Ham)
Located on the Gran Via in Aracena, the Museo de Jamón offers an interesting exhibition describing the culture and industry surrounding Iberian ham, from rearing the pigs to curing the ham.
Museo de Arte Contemporaráneo (Museum of Contemporary Open-Air Art)
Located in the centre of Aracena is the Museum of Contemporary Open-Air Art, a permanent, open-air exhibition of contemporary sculptures.
Museo Geológico Minero
Located at the entrance of the Gruta de las Maravillas in Aracena, Museo Geológico Minero displays an exhibition of minerals.
Museo Diocesano de Arte Sacro
An interesting collection of religious art is housed at the Museo Diocesano de Arte Sacro, which is located in Moguer's Monasterio de Santa Clara.
Galería Fernando Serrano
Contemporary and traditional art can be seen at the Galería Fernando Serrano in Moguer.
Centro Arte Moderno y Contemporáneo Daniel Vázquez Díaz
Modern and contemporary paintings are exhibited at the Centro Arte Moderno y Contemporáneo Daniel Vázquez Díaz, which is located at the Plaza Hijos Ilustres in Nerva.
Museo de la Villa
Situated in an old olive mill on Almonte's Calle Sebastián Conde, the Museo de la Villa contains an exhibition relating to the culture of the area and its natural environment.
Specialist Museum for Exhibits of Holy Rosaries
Located in Aroche, the Specialist Museum for Exhibits of Holy Rosaries displays a unique and comprehensive collection of rosaries, religious items and artefacts.
Centro Cultural de la Villa
Located in a 15th-century hermitage in Almonte's Plaza Fuente de las Damas, the Centro Cultural de la Villa has an interesting art gallery, a collection of 18th-century maps and a large library of old books.
Santuario y Aldea de El Rocío
Located on Calle Ermita in Almonte, the 15th-century Santuario y Aldea de El Rocío features fascinating articles on display relating to the annual El Rocío Pilgrimage.
Located next to Doñana, El Rocio Village was built around a hermitage that was erected and consecrated to a Virgin, Nuestra Señora del Rocío, in the late-13th century. Today, the devotion to this Virgin extends not only to Andalusia, but also to other locations in Spain and around the world. Coinciding with the Pentecost, El Rocio hosts an annual celebration in honour of the Virgin known as the Romería del Rocío, which attended by more than one million people.
Named after the river that flows through the region, which itself was named for the reddish streaks that colour its water, Rio Tinto has become a landscape within a landscape. Arising out of the midst of the surrounding greenery, the giant opencast mines of Rio Tinto create a surreal, almost lunar landscape. The removal of layer upon layer of soil and rock, in the search for iron ore, copper, silver and a host of other mineral ores, has tinted this part of the world in hues of dusty pink, brown, yellow, red, and grey. So great is the scale of operations that the depression created resembles a man-made crater that measures approximately 4.3 miles (about seven kilometres) across. From the edge of the 'crater', a giant space opens up before you, and the trucks at work far below appear toy-sized when in reality most are the size of a house.
Muelle del Tinto
Still standing is the 3,822-foot (1,165-metre) long Muelle del Tinto, where minerals were brought from the Rio Tinto mines by train. The Muelle del Tinto was restored in 2003.
Barrio de Reina Victoria
The Barrio de Reina Victoria, otherwise known as the 'Barrio Obrero', or 'Workers' District', is a testament to its name; an example of a Victorian English suburb superimposed onto an Andalucian landscape. Situated at the eastern end of Alameda Sundheim, just a short walk from the city centre, it's worth a visit for its peculiar mix of Victorian Colonial architecture and bright primary colours that the current occupiers have used to enliven their dormer windows and front doors.
Rio Tinto Mining Park
Rio Tinto boasts 3,000 years of mining history, from the Phoenicians to the 1950s, and offers a unique insight into Britain's foray into Spain during the copper boon in the late-19th and early-20th centuries. Today, you can visit its mining and railways museum in the old hospital, with its Roman mine reconstruction and Maharajah's carriage; Peña del Hierro Mine, where you enter an actual mining gallery; a Victorian-era British house; and Bella Vista, the English barrio, complete with social club, Presbyterian Church and village green. You can also take a 13.6-mile (22-kilometre) train-ride aboard an original wooden carriage to see the old mines, machinery and extraordinary landscapes.
Doñana National Park
Locally-known as 'Coto Doñana', this UNESCO World Heritage Site in Andalusia occupies the right bank of the Guadalquivir River at its estuary on the Atlantic Ocean. It is notable for the great diversity of its biotopes, especially lagoons, marshlands, fixed and mobile dunes, scrub woodland, and maquis. It is also home to five threatened bird species, one of the largest heronries in the Mediterranean region and the wintering site for more than 500,000 water fowl each year.
Paraje Natural de las Marismas del Odiel (Nature Park of the Odiel Marshes)
The Paraje Natural de las Marismas del Odiel, or Nature Park of the Odiel Marshes, is the second-most significant wetland reserve in Andalucía after the Parque Nacional de Doñana. This large estuary and marshland of the Odiel and Tinto rivers covers 27.8 square miles (72 sqaure kilometres) between Huelva City, Punta Umbría, Gibraleón and Aljaraque. It was granted protected status in 1989. Within the Odiel Nature Reserve are some smaller protected areas: the Reserva Natural Marismas del Burro, between Gibraleón and Huelva city; Reserva Natural Isla de Enmedio, between Aljaraque and Punta Umbría; Paraje Natural Estero de Domingo Rubio, south of La Rábida; and Paraje Natural Lagunas de Palos y las Madres, between Huelva and Mazagón. The Odiel Nature Reserve is also home to Huelva City's only beach, El Espigón, along with abundant wetlands, flora and fauna, diverse bird species, sparkling rivers, and scenic walking and nature trails.
El Conquero and Parque Moret
Huelva's biggest park, the vast El Conquero and adjacent Parque Moret, is crossed by Avenida Manuel Siurot, with dilapidated postmodernist sculpture decorating its viewpoints. The views over the Odiel Estuary are superb, however. At the northern end of the avenue is the Sanctuario de Nuestra Señora de la Cinta. Parque Moret has a large woodland area, with fruit trees and allotments on its south eastern edge.
Parque Alonso Sánchez
Consisting of three hills, this park in the city centre is worth the climb for its splendid panoramic views. It has some interesting statues dedicated to bullfighters, the flamenco singer Paco Toronjo, Huelva's patron saint and villages in the province of Huelva.
Jardines de Muelle
Located near the port, these are Huelva's best-kept gardens, and feature a variety of tropical trees and shrubs. It is not the city's most tranquil spot, however, as it is bordered on all sides by busy roads with the bus station nearby. In the gardens is a statue of Alonso Sánchez, considered to be Columbus's antecedent in discovering America, since he provided the route that Columbus followed on his voyage.
Natural Park of Sierra de Aracena and Picos de Aroche
The spectacular natural beauty, culture and landmarks of Sierra de Aracena and Picos de Aroche combine to create one of Huelva's most memorable destinations. These lovely mountain locales feature white houses, cobbled streets, medieval fortresses, and beautiful churches and mosques such as the Mosque of Almontaster, and La Peña de Arias Montano. In addition, the Cave of Wonders, splendid pastures, and more than 621 miles (1,000 kilometres) of marked trails offering breath-taking panoramic views highlight the natural splendour of this unforgettable park.
Cave of Wonders
Aracena is renowned for such treasures as a Moorish Castle, 13th-century church and Geological Museum. However, its most famous landmark is the Gruta de las Maravillas, or 'Cave of Wonders'. The cave is 1.5 miles (2.4 kilometres) in length, with subterranean lakes, striking colours, cathedral-like chambers, and exquisite stalagmites and stalactites.
Conservatorio de Música
In 1911, the art-nouveau Conservatorio de Música was opened on Calle Rico in the city centre. Today, it serves as the Clínica Sanz de Frutos.
The Gran Teatro is located on Calle Vásquez López, just around the corner from the Clinica Sanz de Frutos. Built in 1923, the Gran Teatro boasts a magnificent neo-classical façade and ornate interior.
Plaza de Toros
North of the city centre is the neo-Moorish Plaza de Toros. Completed in the early-20th century, the Plaza de Toros features a design reminiscent of the Las Ventas Bullring in Madrid.
Casa Colón (Columbus House)
A symbol of British power in late-19th-century Huelva, Casa Colón is the grandest of all the buildings constructed by the city's bourgeoisie around the same time. It is an imposing presence at the beginning of the Alameda Sundheim, with a terracotta façade and ornate wrought-iron balconies. Casa Colón was inaugurated as the Gran Hotel Colón in 1883 to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the discovery of America in 1892. The hotel was subsequently sold to the Río Tinto Company, who used it for offices and housing their mining management staff. One section on the northern side was used as a social club, with a dancehall, library and billiards hall, and a tennis court outside. The building consists of four individual sections around a central courtyard with elegant gardens and a fountain. In 1992, the building was refurbished as part of the 500th anniversary celebrations, and the former northern section was replaced by a modern exhibition and conference centre, the site of the major Latin American Film Festival each November.
Monumento a la Fe Descubridora
The Monumento a la Fe Descubridora, was inaugurated in 1929. It is symbolically situated at the Punta de Sebo, south of the city centre and overlooking the confluence of the Odiel and Tinto rivers. This massive statue is often mistaken for the figure of Christopher Columbus. In fact, it is a representation of a Franciscan friar of the La Rabida Monastery, which hosted Columbus while he was planning his first voyage and awaited confirmation of funding from the Spanish monarchs, Isabel and Ferdinand - in 1491-2. Statues of these Catholic Kings can be seen in a chapel inside the figure's pedestal.
Condado de Huelva Wine Route
The Condado de Huelva Wine Route travels through the El Condado region, which includes 17 municipalities in the southeast Huelva Province's Guadalquivir Valley that are renowned for their rural beauty, wineries and winemaking traditions. In addition to its award-winning wines, the region's traditional products include wineskin bottles, hats, flutes, drums, carriages, decorative textiles featuring embroidery, crochet, cross-stitch and bobbin lace, embroidered shawls, candles, kegs (many of which are exported and used for Scotch malt whisky), and pottery or basketwork articles.
Matalascañas is the name of a beach and resort within the Municipality of Almonte, Huelva Province, in southern Spain. It is renowned for having an ancient, upside-down tower on the sand called Torre la Higuera, one of the seven defence towers built by Phillip II in the 16th century to protect the coast from incursions by Turkish and North African corsairs. The Matalascañas coastline is surrounded by Doñana National Park, and was segregated from it in 1961 to allow the development of a beach-side tourist village. Matalascañas Beach is 4.3 miles (seven kilometres) in length, with an average width of 262 feet (80 metres), and merges into the pristine beaches of Doñana National Park along the Gulf of Cádiz. The mild Mediterranean climate, fine golden-sand beaches, mobile dunes, and crystal-clear water attract tourists throughout the year.
The Andalusian capital of Seville is just a scenic, one-hour drive from Huelva. From the rolling countryside dotted with olive and orange groves, vineyards and farms to the many architectural, cultural and artistic treasures of its beautiful city, Seville offers something for everyone to explore. City highlights include the Old Town, Alcazar, a magnificent, 14th-century fortress-palace built in the Moorish style, the Cathedral, Spain's largest place of worship and one of the largest in the world, La Giralda, the lovely Barrio de Santa Cruz, and more.
Flamenco is a lively and engaging form of Spanish folk music and dance from the Andalusian region in southern Spain. It includes cante (singing), toque (guitar playing), baile (dance) and palmas (handclaps). First mentioned in literature in 1774, the genre underwent a dramatic development in the late-19th century. Flamenco performances can be observed in a host of schools, restaurants, and other public venues throughout Huelva and its surrounds.
Huelva and its environs host a wide array of renowned annual events, including Almonte's El Rocío Pilgrimage, Holy Week in Huelva and Ayamonte, Huelva's Columbus Festival Week, during the first week of August, Fiesta de la Cinta, between September 3-8, San Sebastián Festival, on January 20, Semana Santa, during Easter Week, Latin American Film Festival, and the Huelva and Isla Cristina's Carnivals.
Cultural, Religious and Music Festivals
Huelva is also home to many fun-filled and popular cultural, religious and music festivals, including the
Round Up Marsh Mares Festival, La Rábida Music Festival, Villablanca International Dance Festival, and the Theater and Dance Festival in the Niebla Castle.
Bella Vista Golf Club
This beautiful, 18-hole course is nestled amidst pine groves near the beautiful beaches of the Costa de la Luz in Huelva. This course is ideal for year-round play, due to the mild climate, and suitable for players of all skill levels. The short distance between tees and greens make your game more efficient and comfortable. Bella Vista offers a number of auxiliary services and facilities, including a swimming pool, tennis courts, squash and paddle courts, putting green, practice range, and children's nursery.
El Espigon Beach
Huelva's capital city is home to just one beach, El Espigon. It is a relatively young beach, created after work was completed on the Juan Carlos I Dock in the 1970s. This tranquil, 1.8-mile (three-kilometre) beach is located on a sand spit that can be accessed only by driving across the Las Marismas del Odiel wetlands area. El Espigon Beach is ideal for long walks, kite-surfing and sport-fishing, and offers splendid views across to Punta Umbría. The beach is isolated with no facilities, except a lifeguard during the summer, so make sure you take plenty of water and food with you if you plan to go for the day.
Beaches and Resorts
Huelva offers convenient access to several splendid beaches and resorts, including Punta Umbria, Islantilla, El Rompido, El Portil, Mazagón, Matalascañas, and Isla Canela. All offer a host of relaxing and fun-filled amenities, including jet-skiing, water-skiing, windsurfing, tennis and horseback-riding.
Huelva offers a splendid array of outdoor activities, including an exhilarating, cross-border zip-line excursion connecting Sanlúcar de Guadiana in Spain and Alcoutim in the Algarve, picturesque hiking and bird-watching adventures in the Sierra de Huelva, Nature Park of the Odiel Marshes and Doñana National Park, horseback-riding on Doñana Beach and El Rocío, and hot-air balloon flights over Doñana National Park. Other land-based sports include mountain biking, mountain-climbing, river-kayaking, Nordic walking, hang-gliding, caving, tennis, bungee-jumping, and golfing at the Isla Canela Golf Club, Costa Esuri Golf Club, Islantilla Golf Resort, Golf El Rompido, Golf Nuevo Portil, Bellavista Huelva Golf Club, La Monacilla Golf Club, or Doñana Golf Club. Scenic and fun-filled water-based excursions include fishing, boating and sailing along the coast of Huelva, as well as swimming, jet-skiing, water-skiing and windsurfing at splendid beaches and resorts such as Punta Umbria, Islantilla, El Rompido, El Portil, Mazagón, Matalascañas, and Isla Canela.
Private arrangements for independent sightseeing may be requested through the Shore Concierge Office on board the ship.