Chipiona is a small town in southwestern Spain, located near Seville and Cadiz. It is sunny and warm all year round, and the bulk of tourists are Spaniards, fleeing from big stuffy cities to the gentle sea. Foreigners come here in the summer, including from neighboring Portugal (the city of Faro is only 300 km away). The resort welcomes guests in the best traditions of Andalusia – pampers with beaches, treats with sweet wine and traditional dishes, surprises with ancient architectural structures.
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The city is located at the mouth of the Guadalquivir River, the largest on the peninsula, and has played an important role in the navigation of the region for several millennia. For centuries, Romans, Arabs, Spaniards lived here, in the vicinity of Chipiona at different times there were fierce battles for this important outpost, and after the reconquista, Spanish domination was finally established here.
How to get to Chipiona
The nearest airport is in the city of Jerez (33 km), but the major air hub of Seville (110 km) is more popular. A taxi from the airport to the resort will cost from 220 EUR, the journey takes 1.5 hours. There are direct buses from Los Amarillos from the Seville bus station to Chipiona (official site in English), the journey takes 2 hours and 15 minutes. Buses of the same company run between Chipiona and Cadiz and a number of other major cities in Spain.
There is a railway station in Jerez where trains arrive from Madrid, Barcelona, Malaga, etc. (Official site of the RENFE carrier in English). Linesur buses will take you from Jerez to Chipiona in 50 minutes, the ticket costs 2.50 EUR. The prices on the page are for August 2021.
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Small and quiet Chipiona has no city buses. Local residents travel by private cars, bicycles or on foot. Taxi is considered the most popular public transport among tourists: a car can be called by phone or found in a special parking lot (for example, in the old town on Victor Pradera street). A trip around the city will cost 12-17 EUR.
There are several bike rentals in Chipione (for example, on Constitucion Avenue near the ring), and cycling is a pleasure here: dedicated bike paths lead to many beaches and attractions, and traffic in the city is not too heavy.
Hotels on the coastline, as usual, are more expensive: a “four-star” with full board will cost 170 EUR per day, beach chairs and umbrellas are also included. More economical options can be found in the old town, a few blocks from the beach – 70-90 EUR for a double room without breakfast. in such hotels, as a rule, they do not do intermediate cleaning, but they often have their own small restaurants.
In a hostel near the embankment for a room with a double bed they will ask 50-75 EUR per night, in a room with 8-12 beds – a little cheaper, only Wi-Fi is usually included in the price. There are practically no offers for apartments and country cottages in Chipione.
Chipiona has something to offer beach lovers: almost all the beaches of the city and the surrounding area are covered with fine sand and are awarded the Blue Flag every year.
The most popular city beach, located literally a stone’s throw from the famous Santuario de la Virgen de Regla Cathedral, is Playa de Regla. It is covered with fine clean sand and is crowded at any time of the year; there are public showers and toilets, changing rooms, rental of hammocks, umbrellas and sun loungers.
A stone’s throw from the lighthouse of Chipiona is a small Playa de las Canteras, only 400 m long. The entrance to the water here consists of boulders and corals, so swimming on it is not recommended, but the beach is great for evening walks.
Playa de la Cruz del Mar is quieter and a little further from the center, ideal for families with children. Fans of outdoor activities will love Playa de Camarón, where they practice windsurfing, sailing, bodyboarding, etc. (the agencies for renting equipment and teaching water sports are concentrated here).
Cuisine and restaurants in Chipiona
Chefs of Chipiona cook meat, poultry, vegetables from the garden and seafood with the same skill. Here, fresh produce from local farms is valued, and fishermen’s catches immediately go to the pan. Try kavayas asadas mackerel stew, giso de colès stew, gourmet tortilla with shrimp and other seafood, or various types of tomato soups.
Desserts with Arabic roots are popular in the region – almond pie, halva, “alfahors” (spicy biscuits with filling).
In a gourmet restaurant, the main course costs 25-35 EUR, however, at lunchtime, some expensive establishments have “set meals” that will cost 18-25 EUR (with dessert, without drinks). There are fast food cafes in the city serving decent homemade burgers with french fries and pizza (15-20 EUR for a full meal).
From the grapes grown in the vicinity of Chipiona, the world-famous Moscatel wine is made. This drink is golden in color, sweet and thick, with a subtle sourness.
Entertainment and attractions
It is worth starting sightseeing in Chipiona from the coastline: in addition to beaches and scenic walking paths, there are two important historical sites here. The Cathedral of Santuario de la Virgen de Regla (Paseo Costa de la Luz, 91), built in the 14th century, is an excellent example of a Gothic temple, still popular with religious residents of the city (admission is free). Below along the coast is Chipiona’s calling card – an old lighthouse that, since the mid-19th century, has shown ships the way to the mouth of the Guadalquivir River. Chipiona lighthouse (69 m) is considered the highest in Spain, the third highest in Europe and the fifth in the world. It is open to the public (from 11:00 to 13:30, in the summer also from 18:00 to 20:30), but tickets must be ordered at the Chipiona Tourist Office.
In the old town, there is the Muscatel Wine Museum, iconic for the region (Av. Ntra. Sra. de Regla, 8-10), which tells in detail about the cultivation and harvesting of grapes, wine production technology and wine traditions of Chipiona in a historical perspective.
Fans of the late Middle Ages will be interested in Chipiona Castle (Calle del Castillo, 5), built according to various sources in the 13th or 15th century. It was an important military site during the reconquest, later served as a prison (18th century) and a hotel (19th-20th centuries), and since 2000 it has housed the Cadiz and New World exhibition center. His collection includes materials relating to the time of the discovery of America and the first colonization successes of the Spaniards up to the signing of the constitution in 1812.