There is certainly no lack of things to do or places to visit during your stay in Gibraltar. Below we list some of the key sites to visit. Detailed information on all these can be obtained from the Gibraltar Tourist Office, Casemates Square, Gibraltar. Tel: 00- 350 20045000. Fax: 00-350 20045865. Email: email@example.com Website: www.visitgibraltar.gi
The Upper Rock: this can be reached by car but the road is narrow and winding. It is probably wiser to take one of the Rock tours organised by taxi or coach or by taking the cable car. Included in the tour are the Upper Rock Nature Reserve giving magnificent views of North Africa and the meeting of the Atlantic and Mediterranean; St Michael's Cave, the Apes Den, the historic Siege Tunnels plus Europa Point. The Nature Reserve is open daily from 0930 – 19.00.
St Michael's Cave: this is a dramatic natural grotto around 300m above sea level. There is a cross-section of a stalagmite on view, which shows the history of its growth. The cave is also used as a venue for concerts and forms a magnificent auditorium especially for classical music, son et lumiere events and boasts a new sound and lighting system that produces dramatic effects.
Lower St Michael's Cave: has an underground lake and a multitude of different types of stalagmites and stalactites which can be visited by prior arrangement.
Great Siege Tunnels: during the late 18th century the sieges led to a network of tunnels being excavated into the Rock as defences. Amongst these were tunnels for a proto-type gun, the first one ever to be able to fire downwards. The tunnels are a honeycomb network covering some 32 miles. Some sections are open to the public and others by special arrangement only.
Gibraltar – a City under Siege: this exhibition demonstrates the appalling conditions the soldiers lived under during the sieges. There is graffiti dating back to the 18th century. You can also see the old water supply system.
Gibraltar Museum: situated in the centre of town just off Main Street in Bomb House Lane. The Museum tells the 200 million year history of Gibraltar from its prehistoric beginnings to the present day and includes an audio visual presntation. The lower part of the building houses what is probably the best preserved Moorish Bath House in Europe dating from the 14th century. The Museum is open Monday to Friday from 10.00 – 18.00. Saturday from 10.00 – 14.00. Closed Sundays.
Botanical Gardens: these famous gardens can be used as a wedding location and are situated by Grand Parade and the Cable Car terminal. The gardens opened in 1816. The gardens are a sublime area of calm away from the hustle and bustle of the city. The gardens have a wooded appearance with olives and Mediterranean stone pines plus Dragon trees and palms from the Atlantic islands. Flowerbeds display flora from sub-tropical areas such as South Africa and Australia. Seek out the Dell with its waterfall, fountain bridge and plants – an oasis of peace.
Cable Car: The Cable Car is the best way to get to the Top of the Rock, ensuring visitors make the most of their time in Gibraltar. At the Cable Car, visitors will be able to experience the breathtaking views of Europe and Africa from the Top of the Rock, see the Apes in their natural environment, and also discover Gibraltar's fascinating history with a personal interactive hand-held tour available at the Top Station – all this included in the return fare.
Within the Top Station complex is the Top of the Rock Cafeteria which provides the most spectacular setting in Gibraltar to stop for a bite to eat or a drink, and the Top of the Rock Souvenir Shop which sells a range of exclusive 'Top of the Rock' Souvenirs.
Having taken in all that the Cable Car has to offer, visitors will still have plenty of time to enjoy a stroll within the Nature Reserve and to take advantage of Gibraltar's Duty Free Shopping Centre in Main Street located just 200 metres from the Cable Car Base Station. Opening Times - 09:30 to 19:15 - 7 days a week. Last Cable Car down 19:45.Except 1st Nov to 31st March 09:30-17:15. Last Cable Car down 17:45 N.B. The Cable Car will not stop at the middle station between the months of April to September inclusive. The Cable Car runs continuously throughout the day, approx every 10 min. No reservation is required.
City Hall: this building is on the far side of the piazza from Main Street and the House of Assembly. It houses government and the Mayor's official offices. It was opened on 24th November 1924 by the Governor, Sir Charles C. Munro and is believed to be on the site of an old hermitage.
City Gates & Fortifications: the gates and fortifications are a constant reminder of Gibraltar's military past. The Casemates Gates, which lead into the beautifully refurbished Casemates Square, were opened in 1727 and are a typical portal in the ancient City walls. Other notable landmarks worth visiting are the Charles V Wall, Devil's Tongue, Kings Bastion, Line Wall and Southport Gates.
The Convent: the official residence of the Governor since 1728. Originally it was the convent of Franciscan Friars who dwelt there from 1531. The Ballroom, where regular classical music recitals are held, is formed from the nave of the chapel. Next door is the chapel itself. King's Chapel, is part of the original Convent, where two former Governors are buried and which displays various regimental flags. It is open to the public daily.
Cathedral of St Mary the Crowned: situated in Main Street it is built on the site of the chief mosque. During the great sieges the constant barrage of shot and shell destroyed many of the original Spanish and Moorish buildings. However, some of the original structures can still be seen.
Moorish Castle: it is one of the first sights that greet you as you enter Gibraltar. It dates back to the 11th century and was last rebuilt in 1333. The 'Tower of Homage' is the only remaining part of the original castle complex. It now houses Gibraltar's short-term prison.
Shrine of Our Lady of Europe: located at the southern end of the Rock, the shrine was originally a mosque and was converted into a chapel by the Spanish in 1462. The constantly burning light in its tower was the original Gibraltar lighthouse. The famous pirate Red Beard plundered the shrine. However, its most valuable treasure, the 15th century statue of the Virgin and Child escaped, and is still venerated there to this day. Nearby are Europa Point where the Gibraltar lighthouse is the only one regulated by Trinity House outside the UK plus the new Ibrahim-Al-Ibrahim Mosque.
Nelson's Anchorage: the old port of Gibraltar, built by the Spanish in 1627, is still to be seen on Rosia Road. It was to this haven that HMS Victory sailed with Nelson's body after the Battle of Trafalgar. Nearby is Parson's Lodge where three 18 ton ten inch rifled muzzle loaders were once housed. These were replace during World War II with more modern weapons. Also visit the impressive 100-ton gun installed at the beginning of the last century but never fired in anger. At the top of Main Street, beyond the Southport Gates, is the Trafalgar Cemetery which although is named after the famous battle only contains the remains of two sailors who died of wounds at the battle. As 2005 was the 200th anniversary of the sea battle a statue was erected to Admiral Lord Nelson by the cemetery.
Great Synagogue: Gibraltar has a large Jewish community. The Great Synagogue dating back to 1724 is one of the oldest on the Iberian Peninsula. The Flemish Synagogue, on Line Wall Road, is happy to arrange guided tours, which include a short history of the Rock's Jewish community. Also check out Jews' Gate, part of the Jewish history of the Rock, from whence you can enjoy magnificent view of the Rif Mountains.
Rock Tours: One way of visiting Gibraltar's main tourist sites is by taxi or minibus. The 'Rock Tour' will take you around Gibraltar and includes St Michael's Cave and the Apes' Den. Licensed Guides run all these tours and can give you a wealth of information on the history, cultural and heritage of Gibraltar.
World War II Tunnels: This is a two and a half hour tour that takes you through the tunnels where the invasion of North Africa was planned by General Dwight Eisenhower and must be booked in advance.
By the way you'll see lots of golfers unloading their gear at Gibraltar airport yet the Rock doesn't have a golf course. Many golfers opt to stay in Gibraltar and venture into nearby Spain where there are several good golf courses just a short drive away in San Roque and La Línea. The San Roque courses include Valderama in Sotogrande – home of the 1997 Ryder Cup and World Golf Championships.