Spanish School in SantaMaria

Puerto de Santa Maria

El Puerto de Santa Maria, the city of the 100 palaces, was listed as Heritage of Cultural Interest and is one of the most famous tourist resorts of the coast of Cadiz. The Bahia de Cadiz Natural Park is its most valuable natural resource, above all thanks to its many sandy beaches (which total about 16 km of coast) where the sun shines throughout the whole year.

Legend says that the city was founded by Menesteo, a Greek soldier who arrived here after the Trojan War (indeed, the first name of El Puerto de Santa Maria was Puerto de Menesteo). After the invasion of Spain by Muslims, the city acquired the name of Alcanatif; Arabs stayed in the country until 1260, when they were expelled by the king of Castilla, Alfonso X, who then gave the city its current name in honour of the Virgin Mary.

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Christopher Columbus lived here from 1483 to 1486, and it was right here where Juan de la Cosa (the owner of one of the three caravels) drew the first map of the new continent in 1500.

The nearest beach is Playa Puntilla, which benefits from a perfect location and breathtaking views over the Cadiz Bay. It offers tourists many cafés and restaurants where they can try the famous pescaito frito (fried fish). Playa Muralla and Playa Manantial are also famous: the first one is located at the end of Puerto Sherry and offers incredible sunsets over the bay; the second one is a beautiful sandy beach about 3.5 km long perfect for families (here you can surf). Another beach you shouldn’t miss is Valdelagrana, on the other end of the city by crossing the river Guadalete: this beach is more than 6 km long and almost reaches Cadiz!

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El Puerto de Santa Maria and Andalusia offer many entertainment possibilities, among which we recommend the Carnival, one of the most famous in the whole country thank to its satirical groups (chirigotas) that enliven the city with music and dance; and the Feria de Abril, in Seville: a week full of dance, typical costumes and sherry (El Puerto de Santa Maria is one of the three cities in which this wine is produced, together with Jerez de la Frontera and Sanlucar de Barrameda).

How to get to Puerto de Santa Maria

The best option to go to el Puerto de Santa Maria is flying to Jerez de la Frontera airport; alternatively, you can also choose Malaga and Seville airports, well connected to the city by fast train and bus services (for more information about prices and timetable, visit or

If you want, the school can book for you the transfer to and from the airport (it will charge a supplement for this service).

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