This is the hidden gem of Cadiz. Puppets and puppeteering have moved on leaps and bounds with their use in movies from Aliens, Jaws and Jurassic Park to the stage show turned film War Horse. Now of this would be possible without the work of the worlds great puppeteers, of which Francisco Peralta González was one. Said to have built the first person to build a full length puppet (82 cm) it was articulated and equipped by a series of controls that allowed precise movements. The mechanisms included chains, clutches and springs which are now common place in theme parks all over the world. This small and quirky museum has scary and funny puppets from all over the world some are used in shows especially during Cadiz’s annual carnival.

Whilst he spent much time in the historic city of Segovia northwest of Madrid, where he formed a museum in ancient Roman walls of the city he was from Cadiz where he started in the Tía Norica puppet company. Born in 1930 he was the first to receive the silver medal for merit in the Fine Arts in Spain in 1990. In Segovia there are 38 puppets distributed over two floors, but in Cadiz there are more. Also housed in the walls of the city, near the gate or huge arches the Peralta museum of Cadiz, also over two floors has far more puppets in a modern cozy section of the new city walls. Jean’s film shows you where to find it, and it is quite near the port so a good first or last call, and a sample of the very many puppets.

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All the information there is written in Spanish, so take the audio guide as you walk round or ask the staff if they might offer a tour. Entrance is free.

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