How to spend 1 day in Gibraltar

Spend 1 day in Gibraltar is one of the best things to do in your Tour of Andalusia. As a lot of people say Gibraltar is a slice of Britain in the sunshine of Spain. Britain has its space on the Mediterranean sea. Gibraltar is situated in Spain, it is just a small part, a little piece of land with a full rock straight in the middle. Gibraltar is one of the smallest countries in Europe.

We have been in Gibraltar on our tour of Andalusia, going up and down the Mediterranean coast of Spain. We went from Malaga to Cadiz and passed by Gibraltar for one day visit. Travel to Gibraltar from another Spanish country is a high suggestion we will give to you.

Gibraltar landscape on the sea and harbour maquaques free
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 How to spend 1 day in Gibraltar

One day in Gibraltar can you let you understand how it works to be in a State far a lot from the mainland. Gibraltar is under the Reign of the Queen of England.

It is a state under the Commonwealth. It may only be 6.8 Kilometers squared but is an own state. 1 day in Gibraltar will have a full to-do list. The British reign of Spain has a lot to give to its visitors, you can explore the World War II tunnels, going straight to the beaches.

You can hike the Rock of Gibraltar or use the Cable Car up to the Rock and visit the monkeys. Gibraltar is not really famous as a holiday destination, but is worth to be visited, not everyone knows but you can even visit the beaches of Gibraltar and enjoy the sunshine.

Gibraltar is really a unique place. There are not a lot of places in the World you can say are in the territory of a Country, speaking and acting as another country.

Gibraltar is geographically anomaly, languages anomaly. It is a mix-match between Spanish culture and British attitudes. It is not at all Spanish, and not British either.

Gibraltar landscape on the sea and harbour
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When we were planning a trip to Gibraltar, our Spanish friends (we have a lot) asked us why we were considering a trip to Gibraltar. For them, there is nothing to visit at all, nothing worth visiting and a Spanish country in the hands of another country.

In Spain for a long time is the progress a debate about the chance to get back Gibraltar. After the Brexit vote in Uk and all the British countries, Gibraltar voted No for the majority. It was when the Spanish Government started to push more on the return of the Rock under Spanish law.

Gibraltar Top Sighteseeing | Gibraltar Tourists Map

The map of the best things to do in Gibraltar in one day
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Trips from Costa del Sol to Gibraltar

As you know and tell you above a lot of times, Gibraltar is not part of Spain. It is on Spanish territory but is an own nation under the control of England.

If you are planning your next trip to the Costa del Sol, the part of Spain most known as Andalusia or Andalucia, you want to miss a day trip to Gibraltar. 1 day in Gibraltar is more than enough to visit this small piece of land.

You can plan your day trip to Gibraltar from Malaga, Sevilla, Cadiz, or even from Almeria and Granada. Or grab a bargain for a shopping tour of Gibraltar from Costa del Sol for 28 Euro! It is worth and all the destination I mentioned you before are not that far. You can also visit Gibraltar on a one day trip from Marocco. The distance between Europe and Africa in this part of the World is so small.

There are some bus companies offering day trips to Gibraltar even from Portugal. It is easy to find full-day trips from Algarve, Portugal to Gibraltar.

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Malaga to Gibraltar day tours

Rent a car to Malaga Airport is one of the solutions to visit Andalusia on an Epic Road Trip. Rent a car in Spain is cheap and easy, we have done it a lot of times and found no problem at all. If you are considering renting a car, you need to know all the highways in Spain are free, but you need to pay a tax if you want to reach Gibraltar.

Be sure your company cover a trip to Gibraltar, it is considered a new country, so most of the rental companies don’t allow you to go over the Spanish Board. If your rental contract doesn’t allow you to go over, don’t be afraid, you still can go to Gibraltar.

You will leave your car in the city close to the Board, it is called La Linea de la Conception. If you feel unsafe leaving the car in one of the free parking spaces around the small town, there are many car spaces to the parking lot before boarding.

From Malaga the day trip is amazing, the roads are really good and you don’t need to worry if you are not an expert driver.

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Bus Malaga Gibraltar

If you cannot drive or don’t want to rent a car in Andalusia, don’t worry, you are still able to make your day trip to Gibraltar. There is a lot of Bus from Malaga to Gibraltar, almost one every 15 minutes from the main bus station of Malaga.

Malaga – Gibraltar is one of the main route served by the best bus companies in Andalusia. It helps every day the commuters to go to work to Gibraltar. The cost of the bus to Malaga Gibraltar will be really cheap. It will cost you around 10$.

We suggest you check all the Bus available for the route Malaga to La Linea de la Conception. It is the main town on the board with Gibraltar. The route doesn’t expect any change and it will take you from 1.50 hours to 3 hours.

1 day in Gibraltar - Tour of Gibraltar - Bus Gibraltar
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Gibraltar bus tour

There are a lot of offers for the Gibraltar bus Tour, but you need to be careful and avoid scam. Be sure every time you are planning a Bus Tour in advance to visit, book and pay just from the official site.

If you arrived already in Gibraltar or don’t feel to book a tour online, we will suggest you ask the information point once you pass the boarding of Gibraltar.

Just after the check-in of Gibraltar, there is a small official point of the Tourism of Gibraltar. It will provide you with a map of the land, the main sightseeing of Gibraltar and the most useful information about the places to see and the official tours.

Gibraltar guided tour price starting from just 10£ and you will visit all the best sightseeing of Gibraltar.

Just after the boarding of Gibraltar with Spain, there is a lot of advertising about the Hopon Hopoff Gibraltar Sightseeing Bus, taking you from the boarding point to the main tourist attraction places.

1 day in Gibraltar - Tour of Gibraltar - Top of the rock sightseeing tour
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Reach to the Top of Gibraltar

One of the main attractions of Gibraltar is the Rock. The big mass looking at Africa Continent, dividing Europe to Marocco. One thing we are sure about about your trip to Gibraltar, is “You can’t come to Gibraltar and not climb the famous rock of Gibraltar”.

There are a lot of ways to reach the top, rising 426 meters from the sea. You will reach the top, the famous apes with a cable car or Gibraltar taxi Rock tours. You can also drive, hiring a car and reaching the top of the huge limestone rock.

The last option is the one we advise against it, is not easy to reach the top and the streets are not the best. From the top, you will enjoy an amazing view. We choose to conquer the top of the rock with the cable car, the easiest way. At the top, as well as stunning vistas, there are over 200 Barbary macaques, which are the only population of monkeys in Europe.

The top of the Rock is not the main attraction you can visit. One of the Gibraltar official tours takes you inside the rock, visiting the Michaels Cave or the Siege Tunnels. You can have your Gibraltar tours from the cruise ship for an affordable price. Check also, Dolfin watching for less than a lunch at the local restaurant. It will be a nice experience for cheap.

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Gibraltar Cable Car cost

To reach the top of the Rock you can take a ride on a Cable Car. It is one of the best things to do in Gibraltar on one day trip. It will take you from the main point in Alameda Gardens, it is on the Southern end of Main Street and reachable by bus directly from the board bus stop.

To go to the top of the Rock will take you only 6 minutes, but the view from the top and during the trip to reach the sum is amazing and unreliable. It will run until 7.15 pm with the last way down from the top.
In some period of the year the Cable car will shout down early, so be sure to check before your trip.

1 day in Gibraltar - Tour of Gibraltar - Apes on the top of the rock
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The view of Gibraltar Sea Port, the Airport Runway and the Spain Border – This is one of the best viewpoints of Gibraltar

Gibraltar one day itinerary

1 day in Gibraltar is completely affordable, it is small but rich in things to do. Even if most people think Gibraltar is an expensive place, it is not in reality. It has an affordable cost for the holiday apart from the accommodation.
Drink a soft drink in the country’s main square will cost you no more than the equivalent of 2.5 euro or 3 at maximum.

In Gibraltar, the local currency is the Pound Sterling, like in the United Kingdom. If you are a British citizen, you can easily pay with your debit or credit card without seeing your bank account charged by abroad fees. (Check with your bank before your trip abroad).

If you want to pay cash, all the main shops will accept indifferently euro and pound sterling. Once you have passed the boarding on the bus, you will take the bus to the city centre. The ticket cost 1,5£ or 3 Euro. Yes, the euro is more expensive!

1 day in Gibraltar - Tour of Gibraltar - best photo spot gibraltar
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It’s very unknown but Gibraltar has got nice sandy beaches all around. This is one of the beautiful beaches you can enjoy visiting Gibraltar in one day.

If you want to avoid the typical British bus on two decks, you can reach the city centre in 20 minutes walking. It is nice and you will enjoy walking through the Gibraltar airport runway, the amazing Arbour and the defence walls.

Founded in 1930, the Gibraltar Museum encompasses history, culture and the natural world. It takes visitors on a journey back in time to the first known inhabitants of the area — the Neanderthal people, over 127,000 years ago, and then forward to the Phoenicians, the Carthaginians, and later, the Moors, who at one time ruled Andalusia.

Planning a day trip to Gibraltar and maybe you are wondering whether it’s a destination worth visiting? We say, yes!

1 day in Gibraltar - Tour of Gibraltar - gibraltar city centre
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In your full 1 day in Gibraltar don’t miss walking in the city centre, remember Gibraltar is Tax-Free

Read here everything you need to know about the best things to do in Gibraltar. We start with a little bit of background info about the history and culture of Gibraltar.

We then also share our best tips for visiting Gibraltar for a day, including what to know when crossing the border of Gibraltar, where to park, which currency to use, etc. I would also recommend tours and hotels you can pre-book.

The best rock tour Gibraltar is worth to be paid, the view from the top is amazing and you will meet friendly Macaca and Apes den just at the top. The Authorities feeds the animals just at the top, avoiding them get down to the rocks.
There is an official rock tour available just out of the boarding, we will suggest you check even a tour taking you to the Europa Point. It is amazing to think to be in direct eye contact with the African Continent and just the sea separate you from Marocco.

So make sure you read all the way to the bottom!

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Spend a full 1 day in Gibraltar and enjoy the visit to the funny monkeys on the top of the Rock

The Ruins of A Moorish Castle

As part of Andalusia, Gibraltar was dominated by the Moorish. It was a population coming from Northern Africa and was in southern Spain for over 800 years. The Moorish have been dominated part of Italy, Sicily and Sardinia as well. The last one has in the own flag the 4 Moorish, the sign of big domination.

The Moorish made up a lot of building in the whole of southern Spain, in Gibraltar as well. They build not just castles but even gates, walls and towers. The Moorish Castle Complex is called “Tower of Homage and is dating back to the 11th century.

On the top of the Castle still has the British flag like Admiral George Rooke put up in 1704 when Gibraltar firstly became under the British Reign.

1 day in Gibraltar - Tour of Gibraltar - Monkeys of Gibraltar
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The Apes are definitely one of the attractions of Gibraltar, they live just on the rock overseeing the state/city.

Why spend your holidays in Gibraltar – 1 day in Gibraltar

Gibraltar is one of the best places to spend the holidays for British people. It is a great place to be if you are an American or a British citizen. You can have all the usual comfort of a British country but with the sunshine of Spain and the Mediterranean weather. It is well known as one of the best retirement places for British citizens.

Is common to think to be in Uk, as Gibraltar look like the best English cities, London or Manchester. It has all the common aspect of an English town, but with a window on the sea and with the sun up in the sky.

It has a lot from the Spanish culture even the way they act, it is a proper mix of culture, you cannot compare Gibraltar with other English cities. Gibraltar even if it is just 7 Kilometers squares have a lot of beaches.

1 day in Gibraltar - Tour of Gibraltar - Gibraltar beaches
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Best Beaches in Gibraltar

Gibraltar is really small, it is true, but it has actually six beaches, not too big but well served. If you are the kind of person who likes the sandy beach you will have to head to Sandy Bay. Other sandy beaches are Eastern Beach, Catalan Bay, and Western Beach.

We suggest you visit the Catalan bay, it is really amazing with a cute village on the back. Gibraltar has a small airport on the sea, it is close to Eastern Beach.

You can easily watch the planes landing on the runaway while you are taking the sun on the beach. Over the beautiful sandy beaches, there are also pebble beaches. Camp Bay and little bay are suggestive rocky beaches, it has a lot of beach services and water sports served on the lido.

Unusual things to do in Gibraltar | 1 day in Gibraltar

Alameda Botanic Gardens

Gibraltar is a small British gem in the middle of Spain. It has a lot of unique places to visit and stay. One of the best places to visit in Gibraltar is the Alameda Botanic Gardens. Is unusual to find a wide range of species of flora in this part of Europe.

In the Alameda Botanic Gardens, you can find a wide selection of palms, pines and olives from Asia, Australia, California and South Africa. Check the website of the Botanic Gardens for special events and concerts.

II World War Tunnels

If you like the story of World War II, you will find it suggestive to visit some sites in Gibraltar. As you know Gibraltar was an important and strategic land in that period. Gibraltar was the place where the ally ships and vessels supply themselves. Through the tunnels, Gibraltar provides essential storage, defence and shelter to the allies.

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The cannons of Gibraltar are very famous, and was a strategic point during the 2nd world war

The cannons of Gibraltar

At the top of the rocks, there is a massive cannon that used to be the main defence of Gibraltar. No one could pass the strait of Gibraltar without been attacked by the British defence. That’s why Gibraltar was strategically important in World War II.

Visit the Ibrahim-Al-Ibrahim Mosque

The Ibrahim-Al-Ibrahim Mosque is a proper Mosque in South Europe. It is going straight in the list of unusual things to do in Gibraltar due to the proximity to the shrine of Our Lady of Europe. The Cristian and Muslim structures, near each other, are the symbol of the religious harmony reign in Gibraltar. Gibraltar is the point of junctions between the Arabic culture and the Old Continent culture.

The Cathedral Of The Holy Trinity

This church is more oldest than Gibraltar State, it was built in the 1830s. It is the mixed style of a European church and Islamic influences. It has its own place in the list of unusual things to do in Gibraltar.

There is the presence of the decoration and the porticoes typical of Islamic buildings, with the organ, the religious statues and the wooden altar typical of a Catholic church.

1 day in Gibraltar - Tour of Gibraltar - cute monkeys of gibraltar
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Is Gibraltar a Worthy day trip Destination?

Gibraltar is not the place you will fall in love with. It is not a common British country, and not Spanish neither. Gibraltar is a hybrid, pushing tourism as much in the last few years. There are not big places to visit, but on the other side, you will see a different culture in one place living together. You will also enjoy amazing landscapes from the top of the rock, limiting your view to two Continents and three different Nations on a clear day.

Since the military operation have been shouted down, Gibraltar has been a touristic attraction. It has increased the cruise ships tourism becoming one of the busiest port in South Spain.
It is not the best country you will see on your road trip to Andalusia, but it will give a different taste.

So at the end of all the considerations above, Gibraltar is worth to be visited is surrounded by an epic road trip. It is also a tax-free place; you will not pay your allowance tax for your purchase in Gibraltar. It will affect tobacco and alcohol especially.

1 day in Gibraltar - Tour of Gibraltar - Gibraltar Border with Spain
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 Things to know before visiting Gibraltar
1 day in Gibraltar

You will need the Passport of valid ID

Importantly do not forget your passport or a valid ID when entering Gibraltar. You are entering a new country, so you will need your identification documents to be allowed to visit it.

Gibraltar is not part of the Schengen Zone and entering Gibraltar means that you are crossing a proper border.
For entering the country you will do the same procedure you usually do while at the airport, scan the passport or present your ID.

Avoid enter in Gibraltar with the Car

We will suggest you avoid driving into Gibraltar at all. It could be really annoying to wait for the long queue for the car controls and documents controls. However, It will be a really amazing experience to drive crossing the Gibraltar Airport runway.

It is not easy and also really pricey to park the car in Gibraltar, that’s why we highly suggest leaving your car in one of the parking spaces out of the Board.

1 day in Gibraltar - Tour of Gibraltar - La linea de la conception Spain - Gibraltar Border
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Cars Controls and Allowances

If you are entering Gibraltar with the car, be ready for accurate controls, sometimes too much. It is not smooth at all and will take you long when you are leaving the British zone especially. The cars are indeed being checked to go in and going out of the country.

You will have a maximum amount of tax-free products allowance. For the cigarettes, the maximum allowance is 200 cigarettes per person on your way back to Spain.

TIPS | Remember you don’t need to pay anything for entering Gibraltar with the car, avoid and beware of the scam. There are a lot of people trying to sell you a pass to Gibraltar, asking money for it. It is a scam, there is no fee that you need to pay to visit Gibraltar in your car.

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Park the car on the Boarding for Free

Be on a budget is what we love.
If you are driving to Gibraltar from Malaga like us on our Epic Road trip to Andalusia, try to find the best place to park your car. The queue will be really long in Gibraltar, the price of the parking inside the country will be really high. Try to find available spaces free around the town of La Linea.

Check on your GPS for Queensway or for Reclamation Road. If you feel unsafe leaving the car on the street, check for the Ocean Villages, where you will find a paid secure parking.

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The Gibraltar Currency – 1 day in Gibraltar

Gibraltar is part of the United Kingdom currency. If you still have some pound sterling, issued by the bank of England you can use it to make payments in Gibraltar. The pound is not the only currency accepted in Gibraltar. On the bus from the board, you can pay in Euro or in Pound, it will accept just cash, no card payment are allowed.

We suggest paying in sterling if you have the chance, do they try to get more advantage to charge you in Euro.
The only things are you won’t be allowed to pay with Gibraltar currency in Uk, so be aware of the change they are giving to you.

Budget Accommodation In Gibraltar

Gibraltar is an expensive place where stay, even for a night, we don’t suggest you stay in the country for just 1 day in Gibraltar. If you don’t feel to afford a reasonable price for five-star service, we will suggest you book your accommodation in a close place, and reach Gibraltar just for a day trip.

We stayed in a hotel in Algecesir, it is a small town with one of the main exchange ports with Marocco.

Q&A Day trip to Gibraltar

Is Gibraltar expensive to visit?

Maybe. Gibraltar is the perfect day trip. This little stretch of sand is ideal for a short trip. However can become expensive if you plan to take a direct flight to Gibraltar, and find accommodation there. The best way to make it with a lower budget is to land in Spain, Malaga is a good spot, rents a car, and visits Gibraltar for one day.

How long to spend in Gibraltar

One day is enough. Gibraltar is not so big, and over the walls, some nice beaches, the caves and the Rock, there is not that much surprising. However is a nice place to spend a day trip to Gibraltar and relax in the main square, having a British atmosphere but with nice weather.

How long does it take to walk around Gibraltar?

About Four Hour or so. Gibraltar is very small, just around 6.2 miles, 10 Kilometres in total, included the Airport. However to visit the attractions and things to do in Gibraltar, it can take you the whole day. This is the perfect day trip in Spain.

Can you walk from Gibraltar airport?

Yes. You will be surprised landing in Gibraltar, the airport is passing by the main entrance road, which is one of the most scenic airport in the world. You will walk across the runway, or passing with the bus which is not expensive, just 2£.

Are things cheaper in Gibraltar?

Yes, more than UK to be honest. Gibraltar is a duty free British Territory. This means that all the prices are tax free, so allow at least a 20% off on the regular price. Many Spanish people cross the border everyday just to buy cigarettes which are cheaper than in Spain. However there are strict rules about the amount of products you can buy and take out of the country.

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10 thoughts on “How to spend 1 day in Gibraltar

  1. Mostlyfoodandtravel says:

    Thank you for the tips. I do want to visit one day- I am from U.K. so it would have to be more than a day. Love the monkeys

  2. Matija says:

    Gibraltar looks like a fun place to visit, It’s still amazing that even today the British crown has some form of control over land that isn’t near her, I wouldn’t mind going there and exploring teh tunnels, the cannon, even the botanical garden, we can see about climbing the rock, cause you know fear of heights and all that, so probably gonna need a lot of encouragement

  3. Medha says:

    This is pretty useful information for me because I am planning my 2-week Spain itinerary for next year and I want to visit Gibraltar from Malaga. It seems like the bus is cheap and takes about 1.5 – 3 hours which is a reasonable amount of time (I might rent a car but maybe I won’t have the budget, haven’t decided yet). I am not fond of monkeys, but hiking the Rock of Gibraltar sounds like something I’d want to do, given those fantastic views!

    • Toti Maisto - Italiantripabroad.com says:

      Yep, you are true. Hike the Rock is an absolutely amazing experience. If you have question about your upcoming trip, feel free to ask, we are happy to help you out.

  4. Jas says:

    I’m terrible with geography so this is actually my first time hearing about Gibraltar. How interesting that it’s in Spain but still under the reign of the Queen! I love road trip adventures so this is definitely going up on my bucket list. Great tip about the coverage by the way! Looks like you made lots of new monkey friends too hahaa.

    • Bimba Italiantripabroad.com says:

      I think this is the best part of Gibraltar, meet new friends (monkeys) and having fun with them especially when they are trying to open your bag because they are looking for food.
      It’s a really nice small city and if you are planning a road tip in Spain it should be in your “Must do list”.

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