Towns of the province of HUELVA: Alájar - Almonaster la Real - Aracena - Cortegana - El Rompido - Cartaya - Fuenteheridos - Galaroza - Huelva - Isla Canela - Ayamonte - Isla Cristina-Islantilla - Jabugo - La Antilla - Lepe - Matalascañas - Mazagón - Nerva - Punta Umbría -
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In Huelva there is something to suit any taste. You can admire the pedestrianised old town with it’s interesting heritage, gaze at the enormous remains of XIX Century industrial architecture, taste local cooking or stroll around English style cottages in the Obrero district.
A zone of particular natural interest due to the birds which come here, Huelva is without doubt the Analusian city most linked to the discovery of the Americas as Christopher Columbus lived in the nearby Rábida Monastery while preparing for his voyages and his crew came from Huelva and neighbouring Palos de la Frontera.
Although the city remains faithful to it’s maritime roots, in the XIX Century the English company Rio Tinto Ltd’s exploitation of the Rio Tinto Mines would mark the beginning of Huelva’s transformation into one of the most important industrial centres in the South of Spain. Imposing industrial constructions testify to this period of splendour.
The Museums of Huelva document Christopher Columbus’ discoveries as well as the town’s Muslim heritage. The Museum of Huelva, deemed a site of cultural interest, exhibits various valuable finds in it’s archaeology section; for example collections from sites at La Zarita and El Pozuelo, Tartessian treasure from the necropolis at La Joya and a collection of objects from Roman mining activity.
Harbour cityThe port’s Centre for Documentation and Data Retrieval is the point of departure for a tour along the banks of the Odiel River. In the Gardens del Muelle there is a monument to Alonso Sánchez, thought to be the, ‘pre-discoverer’ of the New World since he told Columbus of a route which the latter followed on his first voyage to the Indies.
Next to the former Zafra station, is the Plaza de Octubre which was designed for the Latin-American Exhibition in 1929 and the Las Canoas Pier, where boats leave for Punta Umbría and the Paraje Natural Marismas del Odiel.
After a small detour to admire the beautiful Neomudejar building the Estación de Sevilla, we return to the port area to see the 1,165 metre long Riotinto Pier, with it’s loading point, marking the end of the railway which transported copper from the mines to the city. From here we head to Monumento a Colón, in the Punta del Sebo; this colossal 20m tall statue was erected in 1929.
Historic HuelvaThe Plaza de las Monjas, one of the oldest squares in the city, houses the Convent of the Agustinas with it’s Mudejar patio, the Bank of Spain building and the Milagrosa Church, one of the only Neogothic buildings in the Province.
The prosperity of Huelva’s XIX Century upper class can definitely be seen in the old town in buildings like the Grand Theatre, with it’s impressive columns, built during this period.
It is worth adding a visit to the Nuestra Señora de la Concepción Church to this tour. This church is of cultural interest as it has a mixture of Mudejar and Baroque architecture and contains various valuable works by Zurbarán.
Fiestas:The festival of San Sebastián (January 20th), when palm hearts are traditionally eaten, kicks off Huelva’s festival calendar. This is followed by the unmissable Carnivals in February, the Semana Santa in April and then in May the colourful Cruces de Mayo (Crosses of May) celebrations.
In the first week in August there is a festival in commemoration the Columbus’ departure (Fiestas Colombinas) which also marks the beginning of the city’s bullfight season. In September the statue of Nuestra Señora de la Cinta is transported from it’s shrine to the Cathedral. At the end of the summer there is a Tapas Fair and then in November one of the most important cultural events in Huelva since 1975 takes place: The Latin American Film Festival.
GastronomyThe strong point of cooking from Huelva is the fresh fish and sea food that is sold every day in it’s markets. For example in the popular Mercado del Carmen you can buy cuttlefish, shrimps, tiger prawns, shellfish… the list is endless. Tasty seafood dishes such as monkfish in white wine or skate with paprika, rich chacinas (cured pork sausages), fresh meat from the Andévalo and the Sierra Onubense and wines from the Condado de Huelva; are just some of the regional delicacies.
How to reach Huelva
Leaving from the Canoas Pier, visitors can take a trip to the Marismas del Odiel Nature Park. A UNESCO Nature Reserve, the park spans 8,000 hectares around Huelva, Aljaraque, Gibraleón and Punta Umbría. It’s favourable position between Europe and Africa means that it is a popular site for migratory birds.
Huelva city, Spain. Tourism in Huelva Holidays in province of HUELVA, Spain. SOL Spain On Line.
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