“Our” plaza is Plaza de San Juan de Dios, a very short walk from the apartment.  One side looks like this.


Today, the opposite side looked like this.


We had noticed lots of German tourists, and had seen cruise ships in the harbor before, but this was like seeing one in your backyard swimming pool.



Apparently this is a normal sight for Gaditanos (residents of Cadiz).  During peak season there may be four cruise ships docked at a time.  Given how noticeable the German tourists were, with four ships in town, the city must be overrun.  From what we’ve seen, the citizens take it with a bit of humor and try to make everyone feel welcome.

To dock a cruise ship so close must have required a lot of dredging.  The modern day port is nowhere near the old port at La Caleta beach.

Old port.



New port.



Until recently, we had only seen cruise ships docked a little further away…



…with the auxiliary boats tied up closer.



We live a very short distance from the new port.  All the main transportation facilities, the port, the train and bus stations, are all clustered together.

Located just beyond the port is the impressive and beautiful new bridge, called the Constitution 1812 Bridge, or “La Pepa.”



No large public work is ever completed without controversy.  You can read some of the details here:  https://www.thelocal.es/20150924/double-the-budget-and-five-years-late-la-pepa-bridge-opens-in-cadiz.

In summary:

  • The cost was over 1.5 billion euros, more than double the projected cost.
  • It opened in 2015, about 5 years later than planned.  Delays were attributed to the economic downturn.  (Remember the cathedral?)
  • It’s both longer and higher than the Golden Gate Bridge.
  • With the extra height, quite large ships can pass directly beneath.

My picture doesn’t remotely do it justice.  Despite all the negative points above, it really is amazing, and I think will be a proud accomplishment (when the sticker shock wears off).

Since I started writing this post, the cruise ship in our plaza has set sail, and been replaced.



It’s the Christopher Columbus, and it seems fitting that it should be here for Super Bowl Sunday!

I’ll tell you how game day went for us in the next post…