Paradise in Cádiz: all you need to know about the Caños de Meca
Cádiz offers us miles of fabulous coast and beautiful towns and beaches to enjoy. There are many places where you can spend a few days with good weather and their fabulous way of life. We’re going to talk about one of those small localities and what it has to offer: the Caños de Meca. This hamlet situated in southern Andalusia, on the Cádiz coast, became an essential part of the hippy and bohemian movement of the 1960s and is still a place where you can enjoy the ‘karma’ and peace and quiet offered by its endless beaches with crystal clear water and nudists, and its La Breña National Park, whose stone pine vegetation drops directly over the sea.
Caños de Meca is just a small street of low houses situated on top of a cliff, but which in summer becomes the summer ‘mecca’ for surfers, hippies and bohemians, nudists and naturists that increasingly attracts families. This locality owes its name to the large number of freshwater pipes or jets that emanate from its cliffs and which culminate in the pipes located at the end of Pequeña Lulú naturist beach. Although not easy to access, they are worth visiting. And of course, what can we say about its “miraculous” mud that bathers extract directly from the beach rock to smear all over their body and which leaves the skin soft and tight.
The village of Caños de Meca
The Caños de Meca is a hamlet in the locality of Barbate, a small place that in reality lacks many monuments and archaeological points of interest. But the friendliness of its people and of the village’s bohemian vibe more than makes up for the lack of these places. So, be sure to enjoy a quiet stroll through this hamlet and make the most of the opportunity to buy some local items.
How to get to the Caños de Meca
You can get to the Caños de Meca via the A-48 Cádiz direction Algeciras. You have to take the turn-off in the direction of the Vejer-Los Caños de Meca road, and you’ll be there in no time. For tourists from Madrid, who are many and a very varied group, the best and fastest way to arrive is to go in the direction of Seville.
We have to say that there are few public transport means for this area and almost only focus on a summer service, so the best option is the car.
THINGS TO SEE IN CAÑOS DE MECA
El Palomar de la Breña
El Palomar de la Breña is a mere 10 minutes from the Caños de Meca. It is an ancient dovecote located in a 18th century hacienda and home to the wonderful sight of 7,700 pigeon nests built in clay.
This dovecote was constructed to store gunpowder for the ships that would head to the American continent, since these birds’ manure was at the time essential for its creation. It was also used as a messenger pigeon post, a real two for one.
The opening hours are 9.30 a.m. to 9.00 p.m.
Another fantastic site to see and enjoy are the Barbate Cliffs, although they are better known as the Tajo de Barbate. They are the most visited and famous cliffs of Cádiz.
While they are actually located between the Caños de Meca and Barbate, this amazing «Tajo» stretches out over 2.5 miles and is almost 328 feet high. High up on the cliff is the so-called «Tajo Tower», a fortress built in the 16th century.
An interesting fact is that during the tuna fishing months, the Almadraba traps can be seen in the ocean. A wonder.
Another of the places you absolutely must see in Caños de Meca is the so-called Meca Tower. At 36 feet metres high, it was built in the 19th century to complement the other two existing tower, Trafalgar Tower and Tajo Tower.
A place you must visit if you come to the Caños de Meca is Trafalgar Lighthouse, a true natural wonder. Yes, we did say natural, since to get to the lighthouse, you have to cross the famous Trafalgar Tombolo, quite a natural monument. Another two for one.
The beaches of Caños de Meca
If there is something that stands out in this zone, it is precisely the large number of beaches and their quality, since they cater to all tastes.
Mari Sucia beach
This beach is a beautiful, small oasis next to the road that goes to the Trafalgar Lighthouse. It is very special because its location offers a prefect view of the surrounding villages and, on a clear day, of Africa.
This beach is perfect for days with westerly winds, since at these times its waters are practically still. Conversely, with easterly winds, a lot of waves form and numerous remains of sea products wash up on shore.
El Pirata beach
El Pirata is a beautiful fine sandy beach located in the heart of the Caños. It could be said that it is the main one, since it is located in the middle of the village. It is a beach with small sections of rock, clear waters and little waves. Since it is an urban beach, it is the best equipped, with has several bars and restaurants, in addition to bathroom amenities.
Los Castillejos are small coves located half-way between El Pirata Beach and the nudist beach. They are quiet beaches with clear waters and are perfect for sheltering from the easterly wind, although you need to be careful, since at high tide they practically disappear.
Nudism – Pure Nature
One of the highlights of this getaway is undoubtedly the area’s coast. Sandy beaches and dunes stretch along the coastline, dotted with reefs and protection beneath the rocks. On a pleasant stroll through the area, one can see the famous “caños” or pipes of freshwater that give the place its name. This area has proved inviting for nudists. Caños de Meca has a stretch of beaches that include areas that allow visitors to remove any and all clothing. It provides an experience of freedom at its best, as well as the opportunity to feel the direct contact of the sun and water on your skin.
El Palmar, One of The Most Beautiful Places To See Sunsets In Andalucia
Don’t miss out on the chance to catch a sunset at El Palmar beach, where visitors have been known to literally applaud for one of the most beautiful sunsets in Andalucia.
Clay For The Mind And Body
If you are headed to Caños de Meca, be prepared to oxygenate your skin. On the rocky walls that form the coast, one can find a natural clay loaded with vitamins and minerals. This pure product of marine life will help soften one’s skin and body. The treatment is very simple. One need only take a piece of clay and get it wet in the sea water. After gradually softening it, you will knead it until you get a creamy texture. It is then that you can apply it to your body. Once complete, you can head to the sun and wait for it to dry, which should take about 40 minutes to get the full effect. After that, you can take it off with seawater and you’ll immediately notice how extremely smooth it leaves your skin. There is no better treatment than a natural one.
Savouring the best Cádiz gastronomy
Awards, prizes and several Michelin stars are the undisputable proof of the culinary value of Cádiz. If we focus on the food of the Barbate coast, visitors cannot leave before enjoying the local gastronomy and especially that of the Caños, which combines flavours of the land with traditional bites from the sea.
Where can these delicacies be found? La Breña, El Trafalgar, El Caña, Sajorami, La Pequeña Lulú and many more restaurants and bars that are the perfect place to try dishes based on the area’s stellar products, like beef steak, cod and of course red tuna.
La Pequeña Lulú bistro
Av. Trafalgar, 2, 11159 Los Caños de Meca, Cádiz
Tel: +34 603 369 145
Restaurante La Breña
Avda. Trafalgar, 4, 11160 Los Caños de Meca, Cádiz, Cádiz
Tel: +34 956 437 368
Restaurante El Caña
Av. Trafalgar, 11159 Los Caños de Meca, Cádiz
Tel: +34 659 509 076
Av. Trafalgar, 96, 11159 Los Caños de Meca, Cádiz
Tel: +34 956 437 121
Av. Trafalgar, 10, 11159 Los Caños de Meca, Cádiz
Tel: +34 956 437 019
WHERE TO STAY
If you are looking for accommodation in the area, we recommend the Hotel Fuerte Conil-Resort situated opposite one of the most beautiful beaches in Spain, La Fontanilla Beach, only 5 minutes’ walk from the centre of Conil de la Frontera. This hotel establishment inspires peace and quiet, security and trust with rooms with unbeatable sea views, spacious communal areas and an exquisite and native gastronomy.