Jerez de la Frontera

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"Jerez" and "Xeres" redirect here. For the wine, see Sherry. For the wine grape, see Graciano. For other uses, see Jerez (disambiguation).
Plaza de la Yerba
Plaza de la Yerba
Flag of Jerez
Coat of arms of Jerez
Coat of arms
Location of Jerez de la Frontera within Cádiz province
Location of Jerez de la Frontera within Cádiz province
Jerez is located in Andalusia
Location in Andalusia
Jerez is located in Spain
Location in Spain
Coordinates: 36°42′N 6°7′W / 36.700°N 6.117°W / 36.700; -6.117
Country  Spain
Autonomous community  Andalusia
Province Cádiz
Comarca Campiña de Jerez
Judicial district Jerez de la Frontera
Commonwealth Municipios de la Bahía de Cádiz
 • Alcalde María José García-Pelayo Jurado (PP)
 • Total 1,188.23 km2 (458.78 sq mi)
Elevation 56 m (184 ft)
Population (2013)
 • Total 215,180
 • Density 180/km2 (470/sq mi)
Demonym Jerezanos
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 11401 – 11409
Official language(s) Spanish

Jerez de la Frontera is a municipality in the province of Cádiz in the autonomous community of Andalusia, (Spanish: Andalucía) in southwestern Spain, situated midway between the sea and the mountains. As of 2013, the city, the largest in the province, had 215,180 inhabitants; it is the fifth largest in Andalusia. It has become the transportation and communications hub of the province, surpassing even Cádiz, the provincial capital, in economic activity. Jerez de la Frontera is also, in terms of land area, the largest municipality in the province, and its sprawling outlying areas are a fertile zone for agriculture. There are also many cattle ranches and horse-breeding operations, as well as a world-renowned wine industry.

The city is located 12 km (7.46 mi) from the Atlantic Ocean, in the Campiña de Jerez, region appropriate to cultivate the vineyards that produce the famous sherry. It pertain to commonwealth Municipios de la Bahía de Cádiz with a metropolitan area of over 650.000 inhabitants. Some famous places in to the city are Alcazar of Jerez, Church of San Miguel, Charterhouse of Jerez, the Cathedral of San Salvador.

Since 1987 the Grand Prix motorcycle racing in Spain is celebrated in the Circuito de Jerez in early May. In these days, the city receives thousands of bikers from around the world. The same circuit has hosted several Formula 1 Grands Prix, including the 1997 final race of the season, which was marred with controversy for a notable high-profile championship-deciding incident. Other popular festivals in the city are Feria de Jerez or the Holy Week in Jerez.


The city of Jerez is governed by the ayuntamiento (municipality) of Jerez, whose representatives, as in other towns in Spain, are elected every four years by universal suffrage for all citizens older than 18 years of age. The body is chaired by the mayor of Jerez.


View of Cathedral and bodegas.

The economy of Jerez has traditionally been centered on the wine industry, with exports of sherry worldwide. Because it lacks the civil service that other cities enjoy, Jerez has based its economy on industry. The cultivation of fruits, grains, and vegetables and horse and cattle husbandry has also been important to the local economy. It is the home base for the Spanish Military Stud farm, the Yeguada Militar de Jerez de la Frontera.

After the wine crisis in the 1990s, the city is now seeking to expand its industrial base. Tourism has been successfully promoted. The city's strong identity as a center for wine, flamenco, and horses, its popular festivals, MotoGP hosting and its historical heritage have contributed to this success.

The city is the home of Jerez Airport and has also been positioning itself as a logistics hub for western Andalucia, through the integration between the airport, the rail system and nearby ports.

In May 2012, Time Magazine profiled Jerez as the most indebted town in Spain, the vanguard of Spain's impending economic collapse and the consequent dissolution of the European Union.[1]


The name Jerez goes back to the Phoenician Xera, Sèrès, later Romanized under the name of Ceret; the location of this settlement, however, remains unknown.[citation needed]

The classical Latin name of Asta Regia, unrelated to the present name, referred to an ancient city now found within Mesas de Asta, a rural district approximately 11 km (6.84 mi) from the center of Jerez.

The current Castilian name came by way of the Arabic name شريش Sherish.[2] In former times, during the Muslim occupation of Iberia, it was called Xerez or Xeres. The name of the famous fortified wine, sherry, which originated here (although some argue that it originated in Shiraz, Persia), represents an adaptation of the city's Arabic name, which is pronounced Sherish. Frontera refers to a Spanish frontier, located on the border between the Moorish and Christian regions of Spain during that period,[when?] a regular host to skirmishes and clashes between the two regions. Over two centuries later, after the Castilian conquest of Granada in 1492, Xerez definitely lost its status as a frontier city, but did not lose that designation.

After the Kingdom of Castile took Jerez on October 9, 1264, following the name given by the Muslims to the city in the period known as the Reconquista, the city was then called Xerez in medieval Castilian, transcribing the consonant /ʃ/ (like the English sh) with the letter x, as was the rule at the time. In the 16th century, the consonant /ʃ/ changed into the consonant /x/, with the corresponding spelling of Jerez.

The old spelling "Xerez" as the name given to the city survived in several foreign languages until very recently, and today continues to influence the name given to sherry: Portuguese Xerez [ʃəˈɾɛʃ], Catalan Xerès [ʃəˈɾɛs], English sherry /ˈʃɛrɪ/, French Xérès [ɡzeʁɛs], Italian Xeres [ˈksɛɾes]. The city's main football team continues to use the old spelling, Xerez.


View of the interior of the Alcázar of Jerez
Jerez in 1835

Traces of human presence in the area date from the upper Neolithic, and humans have inhabited Jerez de la Frontera since at least the Copper or Neolithic Age, but the identity of the first natives remains unclear. The first major protohistoric settlement in the area (around the third millennium BC) is attributed to the Tartessians.[3]

Jerez later became a Roman city under the name of Asta Regia. After the fall of the Western Roman Empire, the Vandals and the Visigoths ruled it until the Arabs conquered the area in 711. In the 11th century it briefly became the seat of an independent taifa. Some years later 'Abdun ibn Muhammad united it with Arcos and ruled both (ca. 1040-1053). In 1053 it was annexed to Seville. From 1145 to 1147 the region of Arcos and Jerez briefly operated as an emirate under dependency of Granada, led by Abu'l-Qasim Ahyal. Later the Almohads conquered the city. In the 12th and 13th centuries Jerez underwent a period of great development, building its defense system and setting the current street layout of the old town.

In 1231 the Battle of Jerez took place within the town's vicinity: Christian troops under the command of Álvaro Pérez de Castro, lord of the House of Castro and grandson of Alfonso VII, king of Castile and León, defeated the troops of the Emir Ibn Hud, despite the numerical superiority of the latter. Castile conquered the city in 1264. The discovery of America and the conquest of Granada, in 1492, made Jerez one of the most prosperous cities of Andalusia through trade and through its proximity to the ports of Seville and Cádiz. Despite the social, economic and political decadence that occurred in the seventeenth century, towards the end of the Habsburg rule, the city managed to maintain a reasonable[citation needed] pace of development, becoming world-famous for its wine industry.


Jerez de la Frontera and the rest of the Cádiz metropolitan area has a SubtropicalMediterranean climate with oceanic influences, characterized by very mild and wet winters and long warm to hot and dry summers. The average annual temperature is 24 °C (75 °F) during the day and 12 °C (54 °F) at night. The average annual precipitation is 598 mm (23.5 in) per year, concentrated in the months of October through April. December is the wettest month with 109 mm (4.3 in). There are 54 rainy days per year, 137 clear days and 2,966 hours of sunshine a year.

Climate data for Jerez de la Frontera (Jerez Airport on the outskirts of the city)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 15.9
Daily mean °C (°F) 10.7
Average low °C (°F) 5.4
Precipitation mm (inches) 89
Avg. precipitation days (≥ 1 mm) 7 7 5 6 4 2 0 0 2 6 7 9 54
Mean monthly sunshine hours 181 181 233 243 297 310 353 337 258 228 187 162 2,966
Source: Agencia Estatal de Meteorología[4]
Basílica del Carmen
A glass of Sherry from Jerez de la Frontera
The art of venenciar

Main sights[edit]


Andalusian horse showing a historical Spanish walk, practiced in 'The Royal Andalusian School of Equestrian Art', Jerez de la Frontera
Puerta de Rota.
Palace of Bertemati.
Monastery of la Cartuja.

Jerez is known as the world capital of sherry wine, as well as for being a center of horsemanship and flamenco dancing. It is the home of the Royal Andalusian School of Equestrian Art, a riding school comparable to the world-famous Spanish Riding School in Vienna. Jerez, the city where flamenco singing began, is also proud of its Andalusian Centre of Flamenco.

There are two museums of note: the Jerez Archaeological Museum and the Atalaya Watch Museum (also known as "Palace of Time").

The old quarter of Jerez, dating from medieval times, has been named an "Artistic Historic Complex". The Easter week celebrations in Jerez are of "National Touristic Interest", and its remarkable Horse Fair (Feria del Caballo) in May is an event of "International Touristic Interest".


Jerez is present in most important national competitions. Clubs in different sports include:

Jerez is also the site of Circuito de Jerez, formerly called the Circuito Permanente de Jerez, where the annual Motorcycle Grand Prix is contested. The race course is a prime destination for Formula One teams who wish to perform off-season testing and hosted the Spanish Formula One Grand Prix from 1986-1990 before the race moved permanently to the Catalunya Circuit near Barcelona. Jerez also hosted the European Grand Prix in 1994 and the controversial race in 1997.

The 2014 Vuelta a España cycle race begins in Jerez de la Frontera on 23 August, with a 12.6 km (7.8 mi) team time trial. The race will take a 21-stage route, finishing in Santiago de Compostela on 14 September.


There are 76 elementary schools, 41 secondary schools, 12 adult education centers and 10 public libraries in the city of Jerez.[citation needed]

The University of Cádiz, the provincial university, has a campus in Jerez.

The city is also home to a member of the Official School of Languages (Escuela Oficial de Idiomas) and a center of the National Distance Education University (Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia, UNED).


According to official population data from INE, the municipality of Jerez had 215,180[5] inhabitants as of January 1, 2013. This makes Jerez the most populous city in the province, fifth in Andalusia, and 27th in Spain.


View from the Palace of Villavicencio
Lola Flores monument

International relations[edit]

Twin towns – Sister cities[edit]

Jerez de la Frontera is twinned with:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Lisa Abend (28 May 2012). "The vanguard of disaster". Time. Retrieved 7 May 2014. 
  2. ^ Deroy Louis, & Mulon Marianne (1992) Dictionnaire des noms de lieux, París: Le Robert
  3. ^ Pedro Bosch Gimpera (1995). El poblamiento antiguo y la formación de los pueblos de España. UNAM. p. 210. ISBN 978-968-36-4439-8. 
  4. ^ "Valores climatológicos normales. Jerez de la Frontera Aeropuerto". 
  5. ^ Population figures since 1996 from Spain's National Institute of Statistics
  6. ^ "Twin towns, Biarritz official website". Retrieved 2013-05-11. 
  7. ^ "Mayor's Newsletter". Retrieved 2012-02-17. 

External links[edit]