I’ve had the privilege of visiting Spain before, but only made it to Barcelona, Valencia, and Madrid. The south-west cities were left untouched due to time constraints and lack of knowledge. I had no idea what I’d be missing.
Over the past few years, I’ve heard countless times that Seville is not to be missed. Therefore, I made sure that our plans included a week stopover this time around.
We’ve been here for three days now and I could not be more impressed with the city. The architecture is stunning, the history rich, and the streets are impressively clean for the amount of tourists aimlessly walking around (us included). The locals have been friendly and tolerant of our bad Spanish (and bad English for that matter).
We have been blessed with great weather (just one afternoon shower yesterday), which has given us the ability to tour the city on foot. This is our absolute favourite way to see any city, and lucky for us everything in Seville is in relatively close proximity.
This means despite your timeline in Sevilla; whether an afternoon stop-over, a two day weekend trip, or an extended stay, you can visit what I consider Seville’s Top Three Must-Sees.
The Giralda is the name given to the bell tower of the Cathedral (Cathedral of Saint Mary of the See). It was erected by the Almohads between 1184 and 1198 and is the dominating feature of the Sevilla skyline. The Giralda was originally the minaret of the mosque that was eventually replaced by the Cathedral which is the third largest Cathedral in Europe. This is an enormous structure. Tourists are welcome to enter the Cathedral and admission includes access to the Giralda. Tickets are 8€ for an adult and an extra 3€ for an audio guide. There is almost always a line up but the consensus is it’s worth the wait.
The Alcázar, like the Cathedral, is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is a complex of palaces and gardens that the rulers of Seville have occupied from the time of the Romans. It has been damaged and rebuilt and added to numerous times over its history; one can spend hours wandering the grounds and taking in the opulent architecture from many different periods. The fee to enter is 9.50€ and splurging for the audio guide (which comes highly recommended) will cost you an extra 5€. Therefore, it is a pricey place but one that is definitely worth the splurge.
This is a place you must go both day and night. Beautiful in both lights, the lively bustle you’ll find during the day diminishes at night, leaving you a moment to really take in the magnitude of the building and it’s surroundings. Built in 1929 as the main showcase of the Ibero-American Exposition, the plaza is also situated in the Parque de María Luisa, a stunning urban park. This allows visitors the opportunity to explore the lush grounds and various fountains and monuments. The Plaza and access to the Parque are both free!
Finally, a special mention to Pancho Tours. As mentioned, our favourite way to see a new city is by walking, and these guys provided one killer walking tour of Seville. They also afford you the ability to ask a local for recommendations on restaurants, the best flamenco shows, etc. Our guide was Guillermo and he was exceptionally knowledgeable. Definitely check them out.
If you are looking for more suggestions on what to see/do in Sevilla check out recommendations from some of these great bloggers:
Have you been to Seville? Have I missed something awesome?