Before you start your tour, just a few words of caution concerning the Barbary apes that roam around the Upper Rock and the Top Station. The apes are a renowned and established part of the history of Gibraltar but they are wild animals and should be treated with caution.
Don’t get too close to the apes as they live in a semi-wild state and may bite if provoked. Be especially careful of baby apes as your actions may be misinterpreted and may provoke an unexpected or aggressive reaction from its parent or other adult apes. Adults are very protective of the younger apes.
The apes are fed a balanced diet to ensure that they remain healthy and are able to continue roaming freely on the Upper Rock. Do not feed them under any circumstances and avoid close contact. Human diseases as common as flu can be fatal for the apes and they are prone to diabetes if feed sweet things. And finally, be especially careful with plastic bags as the apes associate these with food and keep an eye on all your belongings. The apes have been known to open zips and snatch bags from unwary visitors!
Welcome – History Intro
You are now 412 metres above sea level. From here you can begin to get a sense of the strategic importance of Gibraltar’s location and of the role it has played in many episodes of European history. It has been, and still is, an impregnable fortress standing at the meeting point of two seas, the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea, and of two continents, Europe and Africa.
When the Romans came to Gibraltar, they considered the Rock to be one of the two Pillars of Hercules and they called this place Non plus ultra, which means “there is nothing beyond”. The Romans believed that Gibraltar was where the world ended. You can visit the remains of Gibraltar’s Roman Baths in the Gibraltar Museum.
Later, the people of North Africa left their mark here. Gibraltar was under Moorish control for nearly six centuries. You can hear more about this period during your tour. The position of Gibraltar, guarding the entrance to the Mediterranean is unrivalled, and has for many years been fought over and claimed by both Spain and Britain.
Today, Gibraltar has a population of some 30,000, all living in an area of just 6 square kilometres. At different times Gibraltar has seen an influx of native Italians, Portuguese, Maltese, British, Spanish and Moroccans. The present-day Gibraltarian is a descendant of all these.
Gibraltar today is much more than an historical site, a strategic outpost or an excellent place to watch wildlife. Gibraltar continues to be a crossroads between different cultures. Few places of its kind can be found anywhere else on the planet. Catholics, Anglicans, Jews, Muslims and Hindus live here today in perfect harmony. Gibraltar’s population is a microcosm governed by mutual respect, tolerance and peaceful co-existence, making it a symbol of what the world one day aspires to achieve.
The toilets are located immediately below the café and shop and are accessible by either walking down the steps from the cafe or from the middle terrace, as you walk up into the building. Look out for the various signs pointing you in the right direction.
The Nature Reserve is a protected area located in the upper rock where you will find some of Gibraltar’s most important historical sites.
These include: St Michael’s Cave, Great Siege Tunnels, City Under Siege Exhibition, World War II Tunnels, Moorish Castle, Apes Den, Mediterranean Steps, and the old Jewish Cemetery. In fact you are already in the reserve since the Cable Car Top Station is located within its boundaries.
If you have not already purchased a Nature Reserve ticket, you may purchase them from the Mons Calpe . Just ask any member of staff for assistance.
Mons Calpe Suite
Perched 412m within the Cable Car top station is the Mons Calpe Suite Restaurant and Bar. Open daily as from 10.30am we highly recommend you step inside and enjoy a delicious meal or cocktail in Gibraltar’s most spectacular restaurant and bar.
The Mons Calpe Suite is also available for private hire and is very popular as a wedding venue. Getting married on the Rock is extremely easy. Please contact as any member of staff if you would like more information on getting married in the Mons Calpe Suite or about hosting a private at the Top of the Rock. Alternatively you can visit the website at www.monscalpesuite.com.