Sanlúcar is known for its distinctive manzanilla wine, the driest of all sherries, which acquires a dry, slightly salty tang from the winds blowing across the sea from North Africa. The town is also known for having some of Spain's best seafood. Many Andalusians come here just to dine.
Start your exploration on the landmark Plaza del Cabildo, a delightful square ringed with palm trees and very Moroccan in appearance.
A 3 1/2-hour cruise is available through Real Fernando, Bajo de Guía (tel. 95-636-38-13), for 16€ ($26) per passenger. This cruise heads up the Guadalquivir River and makes various stops in the Doñana National Park. Cruises depart April to October daily 10am and 4pm. From November to March a daily cruise is at 10am.
Among Sanlúcar's many churches, a highlight is the 14th-century Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de la O, Plaza de la Paz (tel. 95-636-05-55), open a half-hour before and after each Mass conducted Monday to Friday at 7:30pm and Sunday at 9am, 11am, and 7:30pm. Admission is free. Although much altered over the years, this is Sanlúcar's greatest church. It has an impressive interior with a Gothic and Mudéjar portal that depicts lions bearing coats of arms.
Also intriguing is Iglesia de la Trinidad, dating from the 15th century and just off Plaza del Cabildo in the heart of town. It's open Monday to Saturday from 10am to 1:30pm. Today the palacio is the home of the duchess of Medina Sidonia. You're taken on a guided tour of the mansion and its beautiful gardens and shown through salons filled with antiques and the works of such Spanish masters as Goya and Morales. Since this is a private residence, it may be shut down at any time without notice. Check with the tourist office before coming.
Finally, pay a visit to one of Sanlúcar's famous bodegas where the delicate manzanilla is produced. Unlike Jerez, there are few to choose from. The best is also the home of the major producer of manzanilla: Antonio Barbadillo, Calle Sevilla 25 (tel. 95-638-55-00), open Tuesday to Saturday for visits at noon and 1pm and costing 7.50€ ($12) for admission.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.