Huelva - City of Columbus
"Huelva - Andalucia"
Huelva is the capital of the Province of Huelva in Andalucia in the south/west of Spain. The city is situated on the southern coast of Spain on the Gulf of Cadiz and is located close to the Portuguese border.
The City of Huelva lacks the obvious attraction of other Andalucian cities such as Granada, Seville, Cordoba and the resorts of Malaga and Marbella. Due to the extensive industrial areas on the outskirts of the city, visitors are repelled away from the city. However, beyond the drab exterior of the city, visitors will be surprised by the pleasant city centre.
"Huelva City Centre"
Visitors to the city will head for the palm tree lined city centre square, Plaza de las Monjas, close to the pedestrianized shopping district where they will be spoilt for choice with a great choice of seafood restaurants, for which Huelva is well reknowned.
Huelva lacks much of the architecteural beauty and historically significant buildings that cities such as Seville and Cordoba possess. This is mainly due to the devastating 1755 Lisbon earthquake which destroyed much of Huelva's historic architecture. However, Huelva does have
the important historical distinction of being the departure point for Christopher Columbus' voyage to the Americas.
"Huelva and Columbus"
Columbus set sail from Palos de la Frontera, 13km from Huelva and recruited much of his crew from Huelva and it's surrounding towns and villages. Much of the city's tourist industry centres around this association with one of history's most famous explorers.
Columbus, is thought by most to have been born in Genoa, Italy around 1450. Columbus was convinced that he could find a sea route to Asia by sailing westwards but found it hard to find the financial backing to fuel his expedition. Columbus finally recieived backing from King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain which brought him to Spain.
In Huelva there are a number of important locations for anyone interested in the history of the Columbus voyage to the Americas.
La Rábida, Palos de la Frontera and Moguer are the three most important sites in the Columbus story. The sites are situated along the eastern bank of the Rio Tinto estuary and can all be visited in short excursions from Huelva.
The Columbus Monument in Huelva is also an important landmark of Huelva and there is a museum dedicated to Columbus near La Radiba which has three life sized reproductions of Columbus' three ships, The Nina, The Pinta and The Santa Maria.