Isla Canela Road Trip

Isla Canela Road Trip

Here is a short trip around Huelva, Isla Canela. If you start at the marshes of Almonte you can find the village of El Rocio, where thousands of pilgrims flock each year on the first Monday of Pentecost, to honour their Virgin. The shrine which was built in the seventies, the sandy streets at the doors of the brotherhoods, and the views of the marshes are wonderful.

Follow the road which takes you to Matalascanas. There you can enjoy the long Atlantic beach, take a look at its impressive lighthouse and stroll through the Dune Park along a path through juniper and pine trees. If you still have energy after this trip into nature, you can visit the Marine World Museum  which is the Visitor Reception Centre for the National Park of Donana. A road runs through the National Park of Donana and connects Torre de la Higuera beach with Mazagon beach. There are several recreational areas before reaching the turn-off leading to Parador beach, with spectacular Asperillo cliff.

From Mazagon to Huelva the landscape becomes more industrial and ends at La Rabida. Here you can visit the Jose Celestino Mutis botanical garden which is free of charge there are species from all five continents the Muelle de las Carabelas dock with a reproduction of the three ships that took Columbus to America, and the monastery of Santa Maria de La Rabida.¬† Opposite the monastery, on the other side of the Huelva estuary, you can see the mouth of the Odiel and its marshes, also a protected Natural Landscape. Cross the bridge over the river Tinto to join a road that leads along the Juan Carlos I dam to the lighthouse, opposite the refinery. Punta Umbria, one of Huelva’s official summer destinations. Wooden walkways lead to the famous dune beaches of Enebrales and Mata Negra. After a swim, continue on to El Portil, at the edge of another of the protected natural spaces on the Costa de la Luz the mouth of the river Piedras and La Flecha del Rompido, a 10 km sandbar that extends towards El Terron which is home to one of the most important colonies of waterfowl such as the pintail, cormorant or the little egret. From here, head towards La Antilla, a long family beach with a great promenade, palm trees and terraces that almost touch the sand.

The scenic coast road takes you to Isla Cristina, Isla Canela. As well as its magnificent beaches Islantilla, Centro or Punta del Caiman, it has great tapas bars. The route ends in Ayamonte, on the banks of the Guadiana river. You can see the estuary, the International bridge and the Portuguese town of Vila Real de Santo Antonio. The church of the Divino Salvador, Pozo Nuevo and the Museum of the Brotherhood of La Soledad which contains pieces from the local Holy Week celebrations, are must-visits along the road to the area of La Ribera, which puts the finishing touch to the route with its fishing ports and marinas, and its busy streets around the Plaza de La Laguna.