Huelva City

Huelva is a mecca for those interested in Christopher Columbus. © Michelle Chaplow
Huelva is a mecca for those interested in Christopher Columbus. © Michelle Chaplow

Overview of Huelva

Huelva may lack the region's star attractions of other provincial capitals, but once you get past the industrial sprawl on its outskirts, the centre is a pleasant place with many pretty plazas, absorbing historical monuments and, as you'd expect from a city with a bustling port, a wealth of seafood bars and restaurants.

Huelva and its environs is a Mecca for those interested in Christopher Columbus, with a number of significant tourist attractions relating to the famous explorer. Cristóbal Colón (as he is known… More →

Huelva is a port city which holds an important place in the history of Andalucia, as the area from where Columbus sailed to American in 1492. In the 19th and early 20th century, it was an… More →

Museums in Huelva City: Museo de Huelva, Casa-Museo Zenobia-Juan Ramón, Museo Diocesano de Arte Sacro, Monasterio de la Rábida.

Huelva is not a large provincial capital however it is certainly well known and for good reason. It is from here that Christopher Columbus set sail for America in 1492 and there are number of… More →

Huelva, being a port town, is most famous for the exquisite seafood that can be found here. Shellfish is a popular choice in the area and it is very easy to find restaurants serving the freshest… More →

Not the most beautiful of Andalucia’s provincial capitals, having lost many of its historic buildings in the devastating Lisbon earthquake of 1755, Huelva nevertheless has its own charm. Since… More →

For a quieter break, the quiet maritime city of Huelva contains various Roman and Phoenician artifacts as tourist attractions and is home to the oldest football club in Spain, Recreativo de Huelva… More →

Huelva's capital city is home to just one beach, El Espigon. It is a relatively young beach, in that it was 'born' after works on the Juan Carlos I dock in the seventies. The 3 kilometre beach is… More →

Huelva's bus station is at Calle Doctor Rubio (Tel: 959 25 69 00) providing with regular buses to Seville and resorts along the coast. There is a twice-daily service to Portugal and the Sierra de… More →

The principal shopping streets are the narrow pedestrianized streets of Concepción, Palacio, Pérez Carasa and Berdigón and the roads leading off this main drag. Sara Merino has a good selection of… More →

In Huelva, late-night bars are clustered along Calle Pablo Rada and on Calle Aragón to the west of the Plaza San Pedro. Bar Grial on Calle Ciudad de Aracena and Bar Paco Moreno on Paseo… More →

Although most of Huelva's historic buildings suffered badly in the 1755 Lisbon earthquake, several pre-18th-century churches escaped destruction or were successfully restored. The most famous of… More →

As a busy port, Huelva's staple food on offer in its bars and restaurants is a wonderful variety of fresh fish and shellfish, some locally caught. It is renowned throughout Spain for its "gambas… More →

Huelva's attraction for successive generations of settlers lies in its geographical position on a large river estuary, on the Atlantic coast, and its proximity to rich mineral deposits. Its… More →

The biggest park, the vast El Conquero and adjacent Parque Moret, is crossed by Avenida Manuel Siurot, with dilapidated postmodernist sculpture decorating its viewpoints. The views over… More →

The mineral wealth of the area north of Huelva brought Phoenicians, Greeks and Romans who, along with the later arrivals of the Moors, left their archaeological mark on the city. Visit the Museo de Huelva to see evidence of their stay in Huelva. Exploitation of copper deposits much later by British interests made Huelva into something of a boom town. Many grand buildings were erected in the late 19th century and the early 20th century, like the Casa Colón, the imposing Gran Teatro and the Clínica Sanz de Frutos.

Located on the mouth of the Odiel and Tinto estuary, Huelva has been an important port since the Phoenicians established it as a major trading post. It reached its zenith in the 15th century, however, with the discovery of America by Christopher Columbus, who recruited local sailors for his voyage and, on his departure and return, prayed to the city's patron saint at the Sanctuario de Nuestra Señora la Virgen de la Cinta. Today he is commemorated in the Monumento a Colón.

The Muelle © Michelle Chaplow
The Muelle is a popular attraction in Huelva.

Another pivotal point in the port's history was the industrial development in the city in the late 19th century due to mining activity to the north. Foreign mining companies built impressive ironwork loading quays that extended into the estuary that, although decaying, still exist today. The grand neo-Moorish train station, the Estación de Sevilla, was also erected around this time.

Badly damaged in the 1755 Lisbon earthquake, Huelva lacks the architectural splendour of Seville. It does possess, however, several notable churches, like the oldest one in the city, the Iglesia de San Pedro, and the Catedral de la Merced, with a magnificent Baroque façade.

The hub of the city centre today is the palm-lined square, the Plaza de las Monjas, close to the pedestrianized shopping district, along the streets of Concepción to Berdigón. The centre is relatively compact so you can see the sights without having to hop on a bus, although you may want to for the Sanctuario de la Cinta, located 3km out of town.

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