The Costa de la Luz is translated as the coast of light and being west facing on the Atlantic it has a bright vivid light that highlights the the extensive white sandy beaches and dunes that abound on this coast. It Stretches from Gibraltar and Tarifa in the south to Ayamonte (just across the Guadiana river from Portugal) in the north and includes the provinces of Huelva. The city of Huelva is a coastal city, on the Costa de la Luz, characterised by the wide estuary that becomes the River Odiel. It has a strong historical link with Spanish Latin America and its ancient central quarter architecture, with narrow streets, reflects this. It also has immense buildings and structures from a 19th century industrial expansion.
The expansion in Huelva was undertaken mainly by the English mining company – Rio Tinto, and it transformed Huelva into one of the most important towns in the south of the country.
Huelva is the birthplace of the great explorer Christopher Columbus who discovered America, and as you’d expect there are many monuments although the city is now a largely industrialized, with heavy industrial plants and factories lining the Odiel waterfront.
The city is full of Andalucian architecture, including the Cathedral of La Merced (18th century). The heart of the city is the shady Las Monjas Square. Hotels near Huelva Cathedral.
Cadiz has a much quieter coast than its neighbour, the Costa del Sol, and is completely unspoilt as lack of hoards of tourists means that the villages and towns retain their authentic spanish feel and atmosphere. Cadiz the capital of the province is sited on a long narrow peninsula, surrounded on three sides by the Atlantic Ocean. stands on a peninsula jutting out into a bay, and is almost entirely surrounded by water.
With it’s around three thousand years of history, it is the oldest city of Europe, where Fenicians, Carthagenes, and of course Romans have had their settlements.
Cadiz is still a working port and both the city and wider province are popular holiday destinations for thousands of Spaniards who flock here each summer.
The old city looks quite Moorish in appearance and is intriguing with narrow cobbled streets opening onto small squares. You pass through some lovely parks with wonderful views of the bay.
Cadiz museum contains one of Spain's most important Zurbaran collections. The archaeology exhibitions display Roman; Carthaginian; and Phoenician finds, and ethnology exhibits include pottery; baskets; textiles; and leather works. There are a number of hotels near the Cadiz museum Newer areas in Cadiz consist of wide avenues and more modern buildings. In addition, the city is dotted by numerous park plants, including old giant trees supposedly brought there by Columbus. It is extremely rich in natural beauty and some of the most important Natural Parks of Spain are found here: Sierra de Grazalema and los Alcoronocales.
From the northwest the towns, cities and beaches of interest to tourists include - Ayamonte, Isla Cristina, Lepe, El Portil, Punta Umbría, Matalascañas, Sanlúcar de Barrameda, Chipiona, El Puerto de Santa María, Cádiz, Chiclana de la Frontera, Conil de la Frontera, Zahara de los Atunes, Los Caños de Meca, Vejer de la Frontera, Bolonia, and Tarifa.
Other places along the coast, of somewhat less touristic interest (again, in order, from northwest to southeast), are: Islantilla, La Antilla, El Terrón, Cartaya, El Rompido, Mazagón, Rota, Puerto Réal, San Fernando, and Sancti Petri.