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Gibraltar City Guide


Gibraltar City Guide

"Why am I here?" Most visitors to Gibraltar understand this monkey's sentiments

Image: Matthias Haeuser

Gibraltar Overview:

Considering the acres of press coverage the battle between the UK and Spain over Gibraltar gets, you'd think there would be something worth fighting over. I'm still trying to discover what that is - maybe the Spanish like monkeys?

The last colony on mainland Europe, Gibraltar is British owned and so still has Pounds Sterling as its currency. It is a curious glimpse at an anachronistic version of England, though little else. But it does have monkeys.

Gibraltar can actually be a good arrival point for your Spanish vacation. Check out Flights to Gibraltar.

Best Time to Visit Gibraltar:

September 10 is Gibraltar National Day - expect to see lots of British flags being waved, if only to antagonise the Spanish.

Number of Days to Stay in Gibraltar (excluding day trips):

How long do you need to look at monkeys?

Read more on How Long to Stay in Each City in Spain.

Three Things to Do in Gibraltar:

  • Did I mention there were monkeys? The Rock of Gibraltar is home to some Barbary Macaques, the only wild apes in Europe. Natives of Africa, no one knows how they got to Gibraltar. They're cute but can be quite ferocious, especially if you have an ice cream or a flash car.
  • Walk around the Rock and enjoy the views.
  • Due to the tax-free status of the colony (and you were wondering why they want to remain British?), electronic goods, cigarettes and alcohol are cheaper than in Spain, though not necessarily as cheap as in other countries.

Take a look at this Gibraltar Sightseeing Tour.

Day Trips from Gibraltar:

Gibraltar is a day trip. It is far too expensive to stay in Gibraltar itself. Stay in nearby La Linea or Tarifa.

As Gibraltar is a bit of a pain to get to, it's worth doing a Gibraltar Sightseeing Tour. A day is all you need in Gibraltar.

Where to Next?:

West to Cadiz and then to Seville or north to Ronda

Distance to Gibraltar:

From Seville 203km - 2h20 by car, 4h by bus (take bus to La Linea). (No train) Read more on Seville

From Barcelona 1143km - 11h20 by car, 19h by bus (take bus to La Linea; only every other day). (No train) Read more on Barcelona

From Madrid 670km - 6h45 by car, 8h (take bus to La Linea), 12h by train (station is called San Roque-La Linea) Read more on Madrid

Car Hire in Gibraltar:

For car hire in Gibraltar, check out the following links:

First Impressions of Gibraltar:

It is virtually impossible to get public transport into Gibraltar, but as it is actually quicker to walk in from La Linea, it isn't even worth trying.

As you arrive in La Linea, you'll see the way to Gibraltar. For a start, there's a great big rock (that'll be the Rock of Gibraltar) and secondly, there'll be a huge line of cars waiting to go in so they can smuggle cigarettes and alcohol out.

As you walk through passport control (don't forget your passport, you're leaving Spain!) you have to cross what appears to be a huge parking lot. It's actually Gibraltar aiport! Once on the other side, it's about a ten-minute walk to Grand Casemates Square, Gibaltar's main square. From there, walk along Main Street (I'll let you guess why it's called that) through Gibraltar's main shopping area. Walk the full length of the street, through Southport Gate. There is a cable car on Red Sands Road which will take you to Apes' Den to see the monkeys. That's why you're here, right?

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