The Coolest Neighbourhoods in Cádiz, Spain

Cádiz, Spain; Alberto Racatumba/flickr
Cádiz, Spain; Alberto Racatumba/flickr
Mark Nayler

The underrated city of Cádiz boasts some beautiful old neighbourhoods, such as the fishing quarter of La Viña and a cluster of shabby-chic streets surrounding the cathedral known as El Pópulo. Read on for Culture Trip’s tour of the coolest neighbourhoods in Cádiz.

El Pópulo

El Pópulo is the oldest part of Cádiz and clusters around the city’s great Santa Cruz cathedral. Plaza de la Catedral (itself one of the barrio‘s most beautiful spaces) is surrounded by a maze of shabby-chic shopping streets on which smart boutiques are interspersed with no-frills tapas bars. These streets are also home to three 13th century arches, the Arco del Pópulo, Arco de la Rosa and Arco de los Blancos. Notable spots are the lively Plaza San Juan de Dios and Plaza Candeleria, the latter of which surprises with some beautiful buildings and the spit-and-sawdust gem that is Bar Estrella.

La Viña

The former fishing quarter of La Viña occupies the south-western extremity of Cádiz behind the Playa Caleta. This is a great place to head at night, as it is packed with restaurants and tapas bars to suit every taste, from the ultra-traditional Casa La Manteca to the more modern hangouts that line Calle Virgen de la Palma. Despite its popularity with tourists, this is still very much a working, residential barrio and the place to be if you want to take the pulse of Cádiz’s street-life. There are also some architectural treasures to be found amongst the quarter’s gracefully-ageing townhouses and long-abandoned buildings.

1. Santa Maria

Santa Maria lies just behind the Puerta de Tierra – one of the city’s original principal entrances – and is the first part of Cádiz you’ll encounter if arriving by bus or train. It’s a tiny barrio and quickly gives way to El Pópulo, but it’s worth lingering here to explore the charmingly-scruffy backstreets and for a quick tapas at no-nonsense local joints like Bar Botica (you’ll be the only tourist there). Santa Maria is also a great place to stay, situated as it is out of the busiest areas of Cádiz yet walkable from all the main attractions. Hotel Convento Cádiz, which is housed in a stunning 17th century convent, is the quarter’s best hotel.


Occupying the heart of old Cádiz is “El Centro” – a busy area of shops, bars and offices packed into a tangle of improbably narrow streets. Be sure to check out Plaza Topete – a pretty square nicknamed Plaza de las Flores due to its several colourful flower stalls. Topete is also where to head if you’re a fan of churros, as they’re a house speciality at the hugely popular Bar La Marina. Just off Plaza Topete is the barrio‘s nerve-centre, Plaza Libertad, where’re you’ll find the wonderfully pungent, chaotic and noisy Mercado Central. As with all of these old neighbourhoods, the best way to explore El Centro is to ditch Google Maps and get lost.

San Carlos

A tightly-packed quarter of smart 18th century townhouses, San Carlos sits on the north-western tip of Cádiz overlooking the port. This is another of the city’s residential, working neighbourhoods – albeit one in which a lot more money is kicking around in than La Viña. Its principal square is the Plaza de España, home to a famous monument to the Spanish constitution of 1812, whilst the striking Casa de las 4 Torres (“House of the Four Towers”) is the barrio‘s architectural headliner. From its seafront promenade you can also watch the enormous cruise liners come and go in Cádiz’s port.

landscape with balloons floating in the air


Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world

Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.

Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.

Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.

Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.

We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.

Winter Sale Offers on Our Trips

Incredible Savings

Edit article