The characteristic of Ceuta, a wonderful city with a double heritage, has to be Spanish, despite its location on the African continent.
It is a peninsula on the Mediterranean Sea, east of the Strait of Gibraltar, on the African coast, not far from the Moroccan city of Tangier and Tetouan. But we do not confuse: Ceuta is a Spanish autonomous city; it is opposite to Andalusia, and more specifically to the Spanish town of Algeciras reached by ferry in no time.
What makes it unique and certainly interesting Ceuta is precisely the combination of European and African culture that are not absolutely opposed, but instead live happily, creating an atmosphere that fascinate visitors.
Once arrived at the port, which is on the mainland, you have to cross the moat of San Felipe to get to the center, enclosed around the peninsula.
Photo CC-BY-SA Ecemaml
The first thing that attracts attention is the big fortifications overlooking the Plaza de Armas, that is, the “Murallas Reales”, founded by the Arabs to defend the city. Following the walkway and walking on the walls, you can enjoy a fantastic view of the blue sea and the entire city, with its beautiful Andalusian palaces and large squares.
One of the latter is the Plaza de la Constitucion, which is connected to the promenade Plaza de Africa “Paseo de Las Palmeras”. On the Plaza de Africa, with its very well-kept flower beds, overlooking the Cathedral Santa Maria de la Asuncion, built the mosque between the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries in predominantly neo classical style, with a beautiful black marble facade.
Also on the same square there is also the Shrine of Nuestra Senora de Africa, also called “Parroquia de Santa Maria de Africa”, built on the Portuguese shrine. On August 5, at the end of Feira de Ceuta, which includes various events, it is celebrated precisely Nuestra Senora de Africa.
Walking along the “Paseo de la Marina Espanola” you can already see the spectacular Parque Maritimo del Mediterraneo architect Cesar Manrique. Here ponds, waterfalls, fountains and gardens are so harmonious that it seems completely natural. But there are not only beautiful gardens. In fact, there are also various games for children, bars, restaurants and even a casino. Parque is therefore very popular both day and night.
Mount Hacho, east of the city, is one of the places not to be missed. It is said to be the mountain moved from Hercules to open a passage between the Mediterranean and the Atlantico. You can reach the top of Mount Hacho by cable car, and from there see everything strait from the Mirador de San Antonio. Perched on the cliff there is the fortress of the Castillo del Desnarigado, with its museum.
The most visited beaches by the inhabitants of Ceuta are the Playa de la Ribera and, to the southeast, the Playa del Chorrillo; They are both sandy, from fairly shallow and obviously with clear sea. As in any other Spanish beach, there are kiosks that sell not only drinks, but are instead equipped to cook fish or grilled meat.
Ceuta is a small town but, for all that it offers to its visitors, is a roaring success!