Unaccountably, Cádiz’s oldest quarter is rarely named as one of Andalusia’s most beautiful barrios. Yet this maze of shabby-chic streets that surrounds the city’s great cathedral is every bit as enchanting, in its own unique way, as Seville’s Santa Cruz or Córdoba’s San Basilio. It’s packed with old-school tapas bars and boutique clothes shops and is home to some of the city’s most beautiful buildings.
La Viña is Cádiz’s old fishing quarter and occupies the south western tip of the city near the La Caleta beach. It has resisted the passing of time admirably, populated as it is with elegantly crumbling buildings and tapas bars that have been going for generations (check out Casa Manteca, a local legend). The local fishermen still moor their boats on the barrio‘s stretch of coast, immediately next to Santa Catalina castle.
About halfway along the waterfront thoroughfare of Avenida Campo del Sur, a colony of lazy wild cats lives amongst the huge manmade boulders piled up against the sea wall. Maintained by a local collective called Cádiz Felina, they doze and sunbathe on the rocks by day, undisturbed by the seagulls who come and go. Wild cats are usually treated as vermin elsewhere in Andalusia, so this little gang is a touching and unique aspect of Cádiz street life.