The entrance to the Nature Reserve and the place to start if you feel like a walk around the southern and eastern side of Gibraltar. The views are fantastic but it is not for the faint hearted!
Jew’s Gate & Mediterranean Steps
“And Her Britannic Majesty, at the request of the Catholic King, does consent and agree, that no leave shall be given under any pretence whatsoever, either to Jews or Moors, to reside or have their dwellings in the said town of Gibraltar”
(Article X – Treaty of Utrecht 1713)
Under the rules of the above mentioned article Gibraltar had a problem, what to do with a fairly sizeable Jewish population? The area ‘Jew’s Gate’ is thus named because of the old Jewish cemetery dating back to the 1700’s. The cemetery was placed here specifically away from the prying eyes of any Spanish visitors so the article was never seen to be broken. The last burial there was in the 1860’s but the cemetery is beautifully maintained to this day. It is now the official entrance into the Nature Reserve through which visiting cars, taxi’s and buses have to pass.
Next to this is the entrance to the Mediterranean steps, roughly an hour long walk through the fauna of Gibraltar that stretches all around the southern end of the Rock snaking upwards towards O’Hara’s battery. By the end of this walk you will have seen examples of the wild flowers unique to Gibraltar such as Candytuft, Thyme, Chickweed, Campion and Saxifrage. The views of the south and along the eastern side are worth the effort. As the name implies there are a lot of steep steps so if you intend to tackle it in the summer take a floppy hat and plenty of drinking water.
How to get there:
The beginning of the walk is located at the main entrance of the Nature Reserve. Foreign registered cars are currently not allowed into the Nature Reserve so forget driving your car up. If you do have a car you can park it at Grand Parade which is also where the Cable Car base station is located. Parking is free. Otherwise catch a bus no 3 that will drop you off just after the old Casino. From here follow the signs into the Nature Reserve until you get to Jews Gate. Here you will be asked to pay a walking entrance fee of £0.50pp. This excludes entrance into various sites.
Once you get to the top of the Med Steps we also recommend you head for the Cable Car Top Station which is only a short walk further north. There you can purchase a one way ticket down and avoid the long walk back. Tickets are available on this website or at the Souvenir Shop at the Top Station.