As a little outpost of the United Kingdom found on the very edge of Europe, Gibraltar isn’t the easiest place in the world to get to. The border was closed between 1969 and 1985 (save for a brief pedestrian-opening in December 1982), so you could take the view that it is much easier today, but there we go. Gibraltar has an international airport that sits just inside its border, with a runway that juts out into the sea and gives many a first-time flyer a scare or two. Those looking to visit Gibraltar by bus must first get to the Spanish border town of La Línea de la Concepción and then stroll over the divide, which is generally our favourite way to visit. Driving in is also an option, but border queues can be pretty darn long. The sea is your final option, arguably the most romantic, with ferries running to the tip of Africa throughout the summer. Saying that, the nearby Spanish ports are more convenient for those looking to get a boat across to Morocco.
Gibraltar International Airport
Even if you aren’t flying into Gibraltar, the airport is going to be one of the first things you encounter in Gib. Ranked by The History Channel as the ‘Fifth Most Extreme Airport in the World’, it was opened in 1939 for purely military reasons. The runway was later expanded using rock from the Rock, before the whole thing went stratospheric following the introduction of low-cost flights at the beginning of the 21st century. The overwhelming majority of flights in and out are low-cost lines to the United Kingdom, with easyJet flying to and from Bristol, Gatwick, Luton and Manchester. To get to the airport from the centre of town, bus number 5 runs that route. Alternatively, walk there.
Arriving by Train
Gibraltar doesn’t have a train station of its own, but a number of the surrounding Spanish towns are lucky enough to boast decent rail links. The best option is Algeciras, a port city some 20km away on the other side of the Bay of Gibraltar. From there, get a bus or taxi to La Línea de la Concepción and walk across the border. Alternatively, train stations are found in nearby San Roque and Los Barrios.
Arriving by Bus
You can't actually get a direct bus to Gibraltar, but that makes the whole thing a little more interesting. Instead, get a bus to La Línea de la Concepción and simply walk across the border. Gibraltar’s network of public transport begins almost immediately once you are through customs.
While we don’t wish to impact the honest business of the humble taxi driver, there really is little reason to require a taxi in Gibraltar. The majority of the town is very walkable, and a good network of cheap buses run around the rest of Gibraltar. Still, if you need a taxi it is always best to book one in advance. Expect a surcharge of 50p for each bit of luggage.
Gibraltar isn’t big, so eight bus lines are sufficient enough to cover the territory. A single ticket costs ￡1.80, although the ￡2.50 all-day pass is clearly the real value ticket. Buses run every 15 minutes or so through the week and Saturday, with 20 minutes between service on Sundays.
Avis are the only car hire in town, with an office at Gibraltar International Airport. Keep an eye out for the occasional special offers.
The centre of Gibraltar is very pedestrian-friendly. The Main Street is one long pedestrian avenue lined with shops and pubs, while the entire territory seems to have space for strollers and amblers. Walking across the airport runway never seems to get old, although we do get a little scared when walking through the Keighley Tunnel towards Europa Point and the mosque. You can even hike to the top of the Rock of Gibraltar, depending on your fitness. We prefer to get the Cable Car up and then stroll down, although that is a bit tough on the old knees.