What would this city be without its harbour? The harbour has been the strength of its economy for centuries, sending native products abroad and bringing in merchandise from other countries. It was once the port of Madrid, being easily accessible across the flat meseta of La Mancha, with a railway service that connected the capital of Spain to the sea in 1858. Today we can enjoy this rehabilitated harbour in a different way, with its handsome, hundred-year-old customs building contrasting with an ultramodern pedestrian port area dedicated to leisure and entertainment.
Walkways, cafés, restaurants and entertainment centres decorate this splendid Sports Marina where sailboats and recreational craft seek safe haven. On the Levante quay is the maritime station, controlling passenger boat and pleasure craft access. On the Poniente quay is the Royal Regatta Club, founded in the late 19th century, the port authority building conserving beautiful stained-glass windows in the ancient Marine Captaincy building, the Fishing and Nautical School and the merchandise and fishing docks, plus a modern shopping and leisure area.