Visiting Gibraltar’s museums

Gibraltar Nature Reserve

While Gibraltar may be titch sized, it has a colourful and complex history. The country houses a number of fine museums where visitors can learn about the history and culture of the place. There are some very interesting artefacts to explore in Gibraltar’s museums.

Visitors to the country will find a select number of places to stay in Gibraltar. There are a limited number of hotels properties to choose among.

However, when it comes to restaurants Gibraltar has a good number of eateries, cafes and places to eat.

Some of the top museums to visit in Gibraltar are:

Great Siege Tunnels: One of the main attractions is the Great Siege Tunnels located in the Upper Rock. These are manmade and dug when the Great Siege of Gibraltar happened in 1789-83. There was an attempt by the French and Spanish to capture the area from the British. This was to enable them to install large gun in an area known as The Notch. The attack was a failure with Gibraltar remaining a British territory. Because of critical military requirements, an incredible 25 metres long 2.4 sq metres wide tunnel construction took place in a mere 5 weeks.

Second World War Tunnels: When World War II broke out there was a plan to accommodate a 16,000 strong military garrison with provisions. For this, it became necessary to extend the earlier tunnels existing from the time of the Great Siege. As a result, new tunnels 17 miles long were added to the existing tunnels. There were plans to link the south-east bases with the western side base. Two major roads the Fosse Way and the Great North Road came up at that time.

Gibraltar Museum: The best place to know more about the unique history of Gibraltar is to visit the Gibraltar Museum. The exhibits in its many galleries showcase the long history of the country starting from Carthaginian times, occupation by the Moors and Spanish and the three centuries of British rule. Other interesting exhibits include the natural history of the area along with a wide variety of marine life exhibits found on its coastline. Another interesting place to visit in the museum is its basement, home to an Arabic bath from the 14 century.

St Michael’s Cave: Among the many natural treasures of Gibraltar, St Michael’s Cave is the most fascinating. It houses a 600-seat auditorium for events held here. The cave itself formed over centuries, with water eroding the limestone and creating a series of tunnels and subterranean tunnels. Rumour has it that some of them stretch as far to the African Straits, and is the passage by which the Barbary Apes travelled from Morocco. With sheer drops, the stalagmite and stalactite formations in the lower and upper chambers are breathtakingly beautiful to see.

100-Ton Gun: Another famous attraction on the Rock is its 100-ton gun of Magdala Battery. It saw action in the period of 1877-1906 and is one of 4 pieces built. Two remained in Gibraltar and the other two installed in Malta. This is the only remaining gun in Gibraltar. Even though it had a limited range and took around 4 minutes to load and fire, it packed a powerful punch, enough to rip through 15 inches of steel armour.

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