Solo Travel in Gibraltar
Gibraltar is an ideal destination for a long weekend break. If you are planning a trip to Gibraltar, below is our guide on how to travel solo in Gibraltar including where to stay, what to see and do and how to get around. All companies included have been recommended by solo female travellers and come with our Solo Female Friendly endorsement. Just choose the relevant section or read the full article.
- Solo Travel in Gibraltar
- Things To Do in Gibraltar
- Accommodation in Gibraltar
- Gibraltar Tours
- One Day in Gibraltar
- Getting Around Gibraltar
- Gibraltar Airport
- Best Time To Visit Gibraltar
- Map of Gibraltar
- Plan a Trip to Gibraltar
- Related Posts
Solo Travel in Gibraltar
It’s easy to be a solo traveller in Gibraltar. People speak English, it’s easy to navigate your way around and the territory is safe. Gibraltar has a small city/town feel with many expats living here. Just hang out at one of the English pubs or the marinas and you’ll soon spark up a conversation. If you’re solo in the evenings you can go ice-skating or watch a movie at the multi-screen screen cinema at King’s Bastion Leisure Centre.
Things To Do in Gibraltar
Gibraltar is a British Overseas Territory on mainland Europe. Situated near the country of Spain, on the Bay of Gibraltar, this destination has a rich military history and the world-famous rock. This iconic limestone rock juts out into the sea, providing views of Spain and the North African coast.
Even though Gibraltar is a small destination, it appeals to many different solos and has enough to keep you busy for a long weekend. There are beautiful nature sites, the historic Gibraltar Botanic Gardens and several walking trails to hike around.
Gibraltar is known for its monkeys! These famous Barbary Macaques live in the Apes’ Den. As Europe’s only free roaming monkeys they roam freely on the Rock so don’t be surprised if you encounter one trying to grab your handbag.
One of the Territory’s largest attractions is St Michael’s Cave, a natural grotto, that was once used as a hospital during WWII. Today it is an auditorium and you can take a tour to experience this natural environment and its limestone caves.
Inside the rock are the Great Siege Tunnels, excavated during the Great Siege in the late eighteen century by military engineers. You can also see the World War Two Tunnels that created a fortress inside a fortress within the rock.
You can learn more about WWII through the film shown at O’Hara’s Battery, located at the highest point of the Rock. The Battery also houses original material from WWII including a giant gun. This isn’t the only gun in Gibraltar. A 100 ton gun Victorian super-gun is located at Nelson’s Anchorage.
To delve into Gibraltar’s history, visit the Gibraltar National Museum and Moorish Baths, which houses original artefacts and photographs of Gibraltar, as well as its military history and natural history. It is also home to reconstructions of a Neanderthal woman and child. Visit the lower part of the museum for the Moorish Bath, one of the best preserved in Europe. For fine art and crafts, see the three galleries within Casemates Barracks and Montagu Bastion, or visit the Mario Finlayson National Art Gallery for works by local Gibraltarian artists.
If castles are more your style, part of Gibraltar’s legacy is the Moorish Castle that dates back to the 12th century. The castle marks the period of Moorish occupation, and was rebuilt after being mostly destroyed in the 14th century. Trafalgar Cemetery is another landmark in the military history, or take a tour of the Garrison Library to learn more about its collection of works and treasures.
Europa Point is a great place to spend a few hours. It is one of Europe’s southernmost points and has been recently refurbished. The Ibrahim-Al-Ibrahim Mosque is one of the impressive buildings here. Built in the late twentieth century, and paid for by the King of Saudi Arabia, the mosque is used by the Muslim population in Gibraltar, and is also open to the public. Close to the lighthouse which has been operating since 1841, is a memorial to Sikorski, a war time hero and exiled Prime Minister of Poland who died in a plane crash in 1943.
Not far from Europa Point is the Shrine of Our Lady of Europe & Museum. The Shrine used to be a mosque and has since been converted to a Roman Catholic chapel. Inside is a statue of the Virgin Mary and Child which dates back to the 15th century.
Views of Gibraltar
For a great view, the Skywalk stands 340 metres above sea level and offers panoramic views. The glass panels cover an equivalent of 4 tennis courts, and you can see all three countries from here on a clear day as well as the surrounding areas. Or walk along Windsor Bridge, a 71 metre-long suspension bridge across a gorge, situated at Royal Anglian Way.
For more views, the UNESCO World Heritage Site Viewing Platform at the Gorham’s Cave Complex site on the east side of the Rock gives a perfect vantage point of the Neanderthal Caves. It tells the story of the site, our human evolution and the Neanderthals who once lived in Gibraltar. The findings that have been excavated over 25 years. Gorham’s Cave Complex and its buffer zone, the Gibraltar Nature Reserve covers 40% of Gibraltar’s territory. You can see views that extend to the Rock at O’Hara’s Battery which stands 1400 above sea level. Or take the cable car to the top of the Rock.
Or just walk along the city wall in the city and you’ll see the archway, an American War Memorial built to commemorate the comradeship of the U.S. Navy in World War I.
The rock of Gibraltar is known as one of the mythical pillars of Hercules, and where it is positioned is one of the world’s busiest sea-lanes. The Strait of Gibraltar divides Europe and Africa and it is said the rock has been a seafarer’s haven for centuries. Underneath its waters are more than 30 wrecks and reefs, where you can dive remains of ships from WWII and Napoleonic times. You can also learn to dive here at one of the established diving schools. Gibraltar also lies on migration routes and is also popular with bird lovers.
If you prefer to stay above the water, you can try stand up paddle boarding or sailing for the first time and come away from your trip as a confident sailor. The Bay of Gibraltar is an ideal place to see dolphins in their natural environment and you can take a boat tour from the marina, or just enjoy a coffee and a bit of yacht-spotting instead.
Cafe culture dates back to the 1800s with traditional coffee houses in the Main Street and Casemates Square. Irish Town is also a coffee lovers haven with pubs and restaurants. You can find all types of food in Gibraltar from Asian, Moroccan and European. Fish is also popular here and there are specialist fish and Mediterranean restaurants. As well as the typical British food in English pubs, be sure to try the local cuisine: Calentita, pinchitos, or kebabs.
Once a year a ‘Calentita’ food festival takes place in Casemates Square. Sitting in one of the lively bars in Casemates Square, it’s hard to believe that this used to be the centre of public executions in Gibraltar.
At night, it's perfectly safe to hang out at the marinas. Gibraltar has two marinas, the Queensway Quay Marina, and Ocean Village Marina, where you can find classy bars, restaurants serving international cuisine and casinos. Chatham Counterguard has lively bars and is also vibrant at night.
One of the prettiest places in Gibraltar is Catalan Bay Village, a sheltered bay with dramatic rocks. This former fishing village was formed in the 18th century by Genoese settlers and is an ideal place to stare out at sea whilst enjoying some freshly-caught fish.
For nature, head to the Gibraltar Botanic Gardens. Opened for more than a century, you can find exotic plants and flower beds, and references to Gibraltar’s military past. Visit here in the summer months and you can enjoy a cultural show at the open air theatre. Also inside the gardens is the Alameda Wildlife Conservation Park where you can see exotic and unusual species.
The Gibraltar Nature Reserve, Upper Rock is another area for nature. With nature trails. Heritage sites and landscapes, the Reserve covers much of the Rock’s surface and is one of the visitor attractions here. Or walk through the Commonwealth Park in the heart of the town for its attractive gardens.
If you love shopping, Gibraltar has VAT free shopping. The main thoroughfare is the place to shop whether you’re looking for perfume, electronic goods, or just a cheap bottle of wine or spirits. Don’t forget to explore the old quarter and get lost in the narrow backstreets and alleyways as you stumble upon independent shops. You can also find designer brand outlets near the city centre.
There are chapels, convents, synagogues and cathedrals in Gibraltar. In Main Street you’ll find the Catholic Cathedral of St. Mary, one of the earliest Spanish churches. After it was damaged during the Great Siege, it was modified in 1810 and subsequently Main Street was created.
Other places to visit for religion are: the King’s Chapel where British Governors are buried beneath. The Convent, a former Franciscan convent which is now the residence of Gibraltar’s Governors. St Andrew’s Church, opened by Scottish ex-patriots in the nineteenth century. And the Anglican Cathedral of the Holy Trinity, which was once the centre for Anglicans in the whole of Europe, and has a Moorish appearance. You can also take tours of the Flemish Synagogue, one of the oldest on the Iberian Peninsula that dates back to 1724.
Gibraltar is great for a short break from the UK or Spain or you can make the most of your time on the European mainland and explore more of Spain.
Accommodation in Gibraltar
There isn’t a great choice of budget accommodation in Gibraltar as many of the hotels are 4 and 5 star. If hotels are too expensive for your budget, consider renting a private room, studio or apartment on Airbnb. Airbnb allows you to stay with locals or rent out their whole apartments. Save $25 off your first Airbnb stay here
The best areas to stay here are near the marinas where bars and restaurants are walking distance or you may prefer to stay on the Rock for great views and make use of public transport to get around.
Named the Rock Hotel because of its position on the Rock, this hotel is world famous. Perched above the city with views of the Bay of Gibraltar, the hotel is nearly 90 years old and decorated in a colonial style. No matter where you go here you are guaranteed a sea view. The restaurant has panoramic views and each room here has a view of the ocean. You can swim in the sea water pool and enjoy the secluded gardens. Plus the Botanical Gardens are just nearby. Choose from a twin or double room, or a twin or double room with a balcony. Breakfast is included in the rate.
- Prices from £120 per night for a double room with sea view
- To book, check prices or availability for Rock Hotel
If you really want to stay in style, Sunborn Gibraltar is a super yacht and a floating hotel over seven floors. Situated in Ocean Village Marina, this five star hotel has everything you need for a classy stay. Each room has a TV and a champagne minibar. There are two bars, an infinity pool, a spa, gym, restaurants and even a casino onboard. And being at the marina means that there are even more bars and restaurants on your doorstep. Choose from a king room, a deluxe, superior or executive double, or if you’re feeling flush, upgrade to a suite.
- Prices from £168 for a king room
- To book, check prices or availability for Sunborn Gibraltar
Jasmine Coral Jay Boutique Botel
If you fancy staying somewhere unique and more personal, how about on an 80-foot motor yacht instead? The yacht has several cabins so you won’t be alone. The yacht has a TV lounge and music player and tea and coffee making facilities. The bathroom is just a walk away at the marina where you can also find bars and restaurants. It’s a great opportunity to feel like a yachtie for an evening or two! Choose from a budget twin/double, a deluxe double with a sea and rock view, or a deluxe suite with a sea view.
- Prices from £95 per night for a budget double room
- To book, check prices or availability for Jasmine Coral Jay Boutique Botel
Day Tours – Get Your Guide helps you to find top-rated activities and day tours in worldwide destinations including Gibraltar. Choose from a dolphin watching tour, a full day Gibraltar sightseeing tour or a Cable Car and dolphin watch tour. Although some of the tours require a minimum of 2 people, there are tours available for just one person. Just check the reviews, price and availability then book online.
One Day in Gibraltar
For your Gibraltar itinerary, start at the Gibraltar Nature Reserve on Upper Rock. You can either take a bus, a taxi or the cable car from Grand Parade to reach here. Taking a Rock Tour is a great way to learn about the evolution of the Rock and the Great Siege of 1779 – 1783, when construction of the tunnels inside the Rock began. See the Ape’s Den and the stalagmites and stalactites within St Michael’s Cave.
From here, travel to Europa Point to see the sea views across the Strait of Gibraltar, and learn about the Neanderthals and how Gibraltar was once their home. Then take in the stunning views at the Skywalk, a glass balcony that is positioned at the top of the Rock.
Join a walking tour or self-guide yourself around the town centre, seeing its original walls, Casemates Gates, Kings Bastion, and Charles V Wall. Gibraltar’s architecture is a mix of Spanish, Moorish, Portuguese, and British-style buildings.
Main Street is Gibraltar’s commercial district and the place to go for a spot of shopping. Wander through the streets and lanes and then shop til you drop. Enjoy lunch at one of Gibraltar’s marinas. Queensway Quay or Ocean Village offer you the chance to enjoy a meal whilst yacht spotting on a sunny day. Take a 90 minute dolphin watching tour in the afternoon to see pods of dolphins that live in the Strait of Gibraltar.
In the evening, head to Casemates Square for dinner to to people watch. The square has numerous bars, cafes and restaurants with different types of cuisine. Or catch the bus or a taxi to Catalan Bay and dine at a seafood restaurant whilst staring out to sea.
After dinner, head to Casemates Square to listen to some live music from one of the bars. Then when you fancy a change of scenery, enjoy a drink at Ocean Village or head to the casino for a flutter.
Getting Around Gibraltar
Gibraltar isn’t that large so it’s easy to get around the town centre by foot. Other parts of the territory can be quite steep so to reach other areas of Gibraltar such as Europa Point there are local buses (number 3) and taxis. You can buy an all-day bus pass which takes you to the main attractions such as Europa Point, the tunnels, Botanical Gardens and the Moorish Castle. I used a day bus pass to get around which cost £1.80. The number 9 bus will take you to the city centre.
To get to the Rock and Apes’ Den, you can take the cable car near the southern end of Main Street. The journey takes 6 minutes and costs £16.00. Or you can take a Gibraltar taxi tour to the highest point.
Gibraltar Airport is an International airport. It has direct flights with the UK, and Morocco. The airport is literally walking distance from the town centre, and you have to walk across the runway to get into Gibraltar. Even that is an adventure in itself.
From Spain, you can travel by bus to La Linea then pass through border control before crossing the runway into Gibraltar. Be prepared for queues to get into Gibraltar if you are driving. You can also reach Gibraltar from Malaga or Jerez airports, which are only 90 minutes by road. Use Rome2Rio to plan your journey into Gibraltar.
Best Time To Visit Gibraltar
It is said that Gibraltar has an average of 320 days of sunshine each year. The best time to go depends on what you are looking for. Gibraltar has a Mediterranean climate and the hottest months are June, July and August. There is limited rainfall between May to October but if you want to avoid the crowds you may want to avoid the summer holidays, where temperatures are approximately 30 degrees Celsius. Below is an annual weather chart from January to December to help you plan your Gibraltar trip.
- Can I drink the water? Yes but it does taste of chlorine so you may prefer to take a water filter with you.
- Is tipping expected? Yes, tipping between 10 to 20% is expected.
- Fixed price or barter? Fixed price.
- Any ATMs? Yes there are plenty in the city centre.
- Which side of the road do they drive? They drive on the right-hand side.
- Good for vegetarians? There are a few vegetarian restaurants. You can find vegetarian food in the restaurants.
- Any Seven Wonders of the World? No.
Map of Gibraltar
Plan a Trip to Gibraltar
Current time in Gibraltar
Budget – £100 a day (staying in a hotel)
Capital – Gibraltar
Population – 33,701
Language spoken – English but Spanish is also widely spoken.
Local Currency – Gibraltar has its own legal tender but you can also use Pound Sterling (£).
Did you know? Gibraltar has the only wild monkey population in Europe
Lingo – They speak English
The Best Time to Go – June, July and August