Vejer de la Frontera was declared in 1976 Historic-Artistic Complex, won the First National Prize for Tourism of Beautification of Villages in 1978, was on the list of most beautiful villages in Spain in 2014 and the second most beautiful in Andalusia after Aracena in 2015 and has as many recognitions from different portals. What will you like so much?
What to see in Vejer de la Frontera in 1 day (map with detailed route)
In a unique enclave at the top of a 200-meter hill is the old town of a beautiful town with a lot of history, just 8 km from the coast of beaches. Dare to write about main attractives what to see in Vejer de la Frontera It is not an easy task but after "soaking up" a lot of documentation and, above all, very grateful to all the love of all the information, suggestions and advice that you have sent us, we did not want to let it pass. Vejer is a town whose charm is not in a specific monument, not even in panoramic views "infarct" but it is in what transmits its entire set (own MAP based on that of the Junta de Andalucía)
The essence and magic of Vejer is walking, entering its streets, its legends, its cuisine and its surroundings ... Still, we have made the effort to decide what you can not miss when you visit (because it does not seem like a choice ...! It is necessary!) The wonderful town of Vejer since you leave the car in one of its parkings. We opted for the one in the lower part of the Plaza de España on Calle Paseo de las Cobijadas, 17 (click Google Maps)
From here, along Silla Vieja Street we ascend directly to Merced Street from where we begin a fascinating walking tour.
1 The Plaza of Spain
The entry into Vejer de la Frontera cannot be more triumphant than leaving aside Casa Del Mayorazago, an 18th-century manor house Baroque style with two courtyards that is one of the most emblematic monuments.
The square, dating from the 15th century, becomes the "nerve center" of the town's life, a place with a lot of atmosphere where there were bullfighting events during the 16th and 17th centuries, an essential promenade, with multiple dining options (and even stay) and where we will return later to get some of the best views of the city from the Caliph's House.
The ornamental fountain made from Sevillian tiles located in the middle of the Plaza de España and also called "Plaza de los Pescaítos", was designed and created in 1955. It is flanked by 4 frogs that feed the goldfish and the curiosity of little Olivia
Here is also located the City Hall and Court of Peace.
2 La Cobijada and its viewpoint
We left the Plaza de España ascending along Costanilla Street and later Reyes Catolicos to reach Trafalgar and we began to perceive that Vejer of steep alleys, Nasrid patios and labyrinthine fabric, legacy of Muslims who inhabited the town from 711 to 1264, which brings architecture and wealth to one of the most beautiful villages in Spain.
Thus we arrived at the Shelter, a monument to the woman who covered part of her face with a black cloak and only left a right eye in sight. The Shelter also refers to that typical and traditional costume of Vejer de la Frontera that since 1976 is used in patron celebrations and has become a symbol, being able to be intuited by all the streets, churches and squares. And not! It has nothing to do with the Arab past in the Peninsula or in its resemblance to the Burkas because its origin comes from the peninsular kingdoms in the 17th and 18th centuries, that is, Castilian. In fact, under the monument these verses can be read "shelter that you discovered your captive face for the sake of freedom", as a thank you and support for the liberation of women.
This point is also one of the best viewpoints to see the most modern Vejer that maintains, of course, the identity and the color white.
3 The Jewish Quarter and The Arch of the Nuns
For him Closed Gate Arch we access the Jewish quarter, full of local craft shops and art galleries and a particularly photogenic street that ends in the Arch of the Nuns.
This arch is located right next to the Convent of the Conceptionist Nuns, another very prominent stop in the city that we will make later.
4 Vejer de la Frontera Castle
Having a castle ... were we going to miss it? Not at all, and less after Oli discovered the castles and stories that surround them on our trip to Cascais. Vejer Castle dates back to the X-XI centuries and is located in the highest point of the town, for strategic defense reasons.
Vejer, however, is not an original Muslim settlement, but Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Romans (where the city was called Besaro), Visigoths and Muslims themselves until it was reconquered by Ferdinand the Catholic.
Many many years ago, there was a King named Ferdinand III the Holy that he wanted to conquer everything and, little by little, he was extending his territory more and more. Alfonso X the Wise would happen to him and with him he lived the Revolt of the Mudejars in 1264 which had disastrous consequences for the Muslims of Andalusia and Murcia. The fact is that, in the midst of all these revolts and constant struggles to conquer everything, the border that separated the Crown of Castile and the Kingdom of Granada passed through the towns of Jerez, Conil, Chiclana, Arcos and many others. The border was not only physical, its symbolism went far beyond separating two territories. Its importance covered aspects at the level military, political, economic, religious and cultural, and it was a place that, despite being an area of many contacts and openness, was very unstable because The conflicts were constant.
He Visiting hours The castle is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Saturday. On Sundays it closes facing the public.
5 Convent of the Conceptionists
The origin of the Convent of the Concepcionistas goes back to 1552 but it was occupiedin 1584 by the conceptionist nuns, thanks to who receives the current name and Franciscan religious. But since its inception the convent had many construction problems, in 1618 the first failures appeared because of the pressure exerted by the main vault. Although over the years the necessary reforms were made to mitigate the damage suffered by the building, the last works did not arrive until relatively recently. The Convent keeps several crypts inside, which makes this convent much more mysterious and interesting. Inside is the Municipal Museum of Customs and Traditions of Vejer and, if you feel like entering, the entrance costs only € 1.
During the years 1993 and 1994 it was restored until the final result is what we can see today: the walls were raised, a new vault was designed and built (this time with materials that did not cause fractures or damage to the convent walls) and other arrangements to properly maintain the convent. This convent has two groups of chapels, those of the Gospel and those of the Epistle; and three crypts: of the founders, of the Franciscans and that of the conceptionist nuns.
6 Church of the Divine Savior
On the same ground where this imposing church stands, once there was a mosque. The Church of El Divino Salvador is a symbol for the people of Vejer and is situated among the most visited monuments in the city.
His style is a mixture of two stages of construction, a first part that was built during the fourteenth century, which would be the head and that responds to the Gothic style - Mudejar; and a second part, from the end of the 15th century, beginning of the 16th, which corresponds to a later extension, already of Gothic style - late. Whether or not you love art history, it is an essential visit in the city.
7 Medieval wall
Vejer de la Frontera preserves, fortunately, some 2 kilometers from its medieval wall and serves as a memory of when it worked as a strategic element for the defense of the people. Walking along the walls following its walls and streets becomes a must in your visit to Vejer, especially when you receive the first impact of what this wall really is. Stone streets, thick walls and years of history ...
There are also three towers that protected and defended this wall:Mayo Leadership Tower, San Juan Tower andSliding Tower;and 4 doors of the Villa: Arco de la Vila, Arco del Sur, Arco de la Puerta Cerrada and Arco de Sancho IV.After Vejer was released, a project began reconstruction of the walls, because during the reconquests they were quite damaged, taking advantage of the cracks of Arab samples that remained in the city.
8 San Francisco Market
Before leaving through the Puerta de la Segur or Puerta de Poniente of the old defensive bulwark in Vejer de la Frontera, it is a good opportunity to do some shopping in some of the most original stores that the town has.
Also to taste that appetizer that the body is already asking for and what better place than in the San Francisco Market ...
We are facing a gastronomic market, formerly a food market, where you can enjoy the Andalusian atmosphere and taste typical products and dishes of the area. A market is always a good place to stop to meet and enjoy the local people, the authenticity that you breathe in a typical market you will not find anywhere else.
9 The Slider
We went outside, north of the historic center, and a street, Lto Sliding, gives access to one of the most beautiful and photogenic views of the city, and that with all that we have seen the bar is high, not very high ... By it we can skirt the city to the Puerta de Sancho IV and the Convent Church of La Merced de Santa Catalina leaving as a backdrop the mountains that surround Vejer de la Frontera as well as terraces and charming restaurants.
Join any of these plans: see a sunset, a sunrise (if you are early risers), walk after dinner to do the digestion or to enjoy the silent Vejer
10 Church of La Merced de Santa Catalina
Although it began to be built in 1633, the Church (and Convent) of Our Lady of Mercy of Santa Catalina did not begin to be used as a place of prayer until 1946.
But before this, this church he lived a lot of history, including an earthquake with terrible consequences for the structure of it, in 1773, although to our surprise, the church is preserved in a fairly good state of renewal.
We have returned to the point of origin, the Plaza de España, so it is a good time to decide where we will eat (below we leave many options). However, one should not leave Vejer if approaching (better already by car - has parking enabled -) to another of the symbols par excellence of the city ... the Windmills!
It is easy to find many relationships between Vejer and its mills. In the beginning the mills were water to later want implant windmills. However, the weather conditions in the area did not allow it and the solution went through changing its shape, developing a more robust body, similar to the La Mancha and that allowed its correct functioning.
More things to do and visit in Vejer
Did you know that Vejer de la Frontera is twinned, for historical and cultural reasons, with the blue town of Chef-Chauen? For those who want to complete a full-time visit even more, you have the following options:
- Combine with the pretty town of Medina Sidonia called the "Balcony of the Bay of Cádiz" and also at the top of a hill
- Excursion to Vejer de la Frontera and Medina Sidonia from Cádiz.
- Excursion to Vejer de la Frontera and Medina Sidonia from Jerez.
- Excursion to Vejer de la Frontera and Medina Sidonia from the Port of Santa María.
- Gossip those Nasrid facades and courtyards which reveals an open wooden gate. They are wonderful. Special mention to the facade of Calle Mesón de Ánimas, nº1, prize in the XVIII Contest of Patios, Facades and Zaguanes (and surely many more that we did not see)
- Roman Aqueduct of Saint Lucia: 7 mills, this time of water, of the fifteenth century accompany this aqueduct that was perfected by the Arabs and became another prominent symbol of the city. At the time, the aqueduct, as expected, was used to drive water and, the mills, to grind wheat. Currently they only serve as a memory of a bygone era.
- Palace of the Marquis de Tamarón: Built outside the border walls, it was an old manor house
- Sanctuary of the Virgin of the Olive, Patroness of Vejer: It began as a Visigothic basilica in the seventh century and, over the years, underwent different transformations. In 1779, what we can see today was raised if we visit this sanctuary church, in a neoclassical style. In the front yard, where you enter the church, you will see a column, something like a pedestal. It is about Roman remains and it was left there because bones and a funerary inscription were found underneath it. The altarpiece of the interior is of baroque style and in its center is the image of the Virgin of the Olive, patron of Vejer, in, unfortunately, quite bad condition.
El Palmar, the beach of Vejer de la Frontera
Vejer has a beach! Yes, as you read it. And it is one of the "The 7 best beaches in Cádiz (desired in the Caribbean)"that you should not miss on your trip. 8 kilometers of golden and final sands, forty meters wide in a wild environment, beach bars, surfers and the most beautiful sunsets of the Costa de la Luz, make it a real paradise…
We, however, enjoyed it on our journey through Conil de la Frontera that you can read in "What to see in Conil (and its sunset in El Palmar)"Although you can combine it perfectly with an afternoon day after visiting Vejer de la Frontera. In addition, the mythical beach bars such as theCortijo el Postman, practically on the beach, for lovers of tapas or El Dorado Vejer, typical food and even offers flamenco performances.
Where to eat in Vejer, an essential gastronomic route
You were already waiting for it, right? Because if something stands out in Andalusia, among many other things (do you notice that it is already our second home?) Is gastronomy. Recommendations of charming restaurants where to eat typical dishes in Vejer de la Frontera:
Jardin del Califa A Patio with special and magical garden where they serve Moroccan food, excellent service and with a lot of charm. It belongs to the Casa del Califa and also has a tea shop where you can enjoy the best views of the city while enjoying a relaxing Moroccan tea
Steakhouse La Brasa de Sancho B All kinds of meals, salads and meats with a cozy interior but a terrace overlooking the Plaza de España where it is in glory.
Las Delicias Restaurant C Charming restaurant in an old 19th-century theater renovated in the middle of La Corredera street and with designer kitchen.
The Jewish Quarter D Located in the neighborhood with the same name, charming corner ideal for a romantic eveningVaro House E Ideal terrace to cover or try the tuna of almadraba in its thousand possible ways (tataki, carpaccio, tartar, ...)Vera Cruz F Chosen by Tripadvisor readers as one of the best restaurants to eat in Vejer.El Mastrén Artisan Ice Cream G where to try a unique chobichoc or even a craft beer
Other places that could be added on this gastronomic route are the same San Francisco Market, a perfect place for those who prefer a snack or two other options recommended by other travelers:El Punto Restaurant, with great recommendations that ensure quality and a great result.
4 seasons VejerDo you know that sometimes we eat with our eyes? Well, this is one of those cases because the dishes of this restaurant are incredible.
The Castilleria, at the exit of Vejer, in an environment full of nature and away from all noise, one of the most exquisite and tasty meat grills in all of Cádiz. Carnivores, you have your temple here
Practical information for your holiday in Vejer de la Frontera
How to get to Vejer
Vejer is located one hour away from Jerez de la Frontera Airport, through the Highway A-4 and A-48. This road also passes through Chiclana. From other cities like Seville it will take you some more, almost two hours on the AP-4. Due to its importance in terms of tourism, it has very good connections with other Andalusian cities and towns. You can locate Vejer through this Google Maps link.
Weather in Vejer
Weather in Vejer is characterized by warm temperatures but pulling at mild and not too extreme. If you want to check the weather during your travel dates you can check the forecast for Vejer de la Fronterra on timeanddate.
Where to sleep in Vejer, charming hotelsHotel La Casa del Califa It is undoubtedly a charming option to sleep in Vejer if you decide to spend the night here, a hotel that breathes a very arabic style, mixing vivid colors with large white surfaces, in addition to the best services ... including swimming pool!
The Vejer Shelter, with the typical decoration of an Andalusian corner. This hostel is an ideal option for two travelers who do not want to spend too much and are looking for a different place to stay. With a romantic air that gives that relaxed and collected atmosphere and has its own Andalusian patio, what more can you ask for?
What do you think of this what to see in Vejer de la Frontera? More affection, as much as you have not transmitted one of the most beautiful villages in Spain, we have not been able to put it. Even Nico has enchanted walking through its streets and Oli hallucinated with the castle and the viewpoints. Special thanks to Gema, friend of Paula, who came to see us these days and who helped us with the photos. And you, do you already have Vejer de la Frontera among your future visits?
Isaac, Paula, Oli and Nico, from Vejer de la Frontera (Cádiz)