Sevilla doesn’t seem to be on most people’s travel lists, but it should be. With such sunny warm winters and so much to see and do, it is a great destination.
We spent the weekend on foot, walking through the city and taking in the magnificent architecture. The weather was warm during the day, and chilly at night (similar to the desert in winter) so as long as you dress appropriately, it is a perfect time of year to experience this romantic city.
A weekend in not enough for this wonderful city, but we did the best to make the most of the 2.5 days we had – between sightseeing, a bit of shopping, and many stops for tapas and cañas!
We landed on Friday evening, made a quick stop for some tapas, and then went for a stroll that led us first to a Christmas Market for a quick ferris wheel ride, followed by a trip toPlaza de Espana. While I was expecting a typical Spanish Plaza, this topped the standards – Plaza de Espana was built in 1928 for an exposition and today, houses government offices. Notable movies that were filmed here include Lawrence of Arabia and Star Wars Episodes I and II.
On a Friday night, it was magical – the plaza was all lit up, and there were no people around, making it seem like something out of a fairy tale. We spent some time wandering around and just taking in the intricate mosaic tiles, brick carvings, and of course, the stellar views of the building reflecting in the moat amongst the moonlight.
(Note: we later went back to visit during the day, and while still beautiful, the people, handicraft stalls, and lighting just wasn’t the same. That said, we did rent a rowboat and went for a quick ride around the plaza which was worth it – 5 euro for 35 minutes).
Eventually, we started to get a bit chilly, and headed for some tapas and continued the birthday celebration!
Following a quick breakfast, we made our way to Sevilla Cathedral. I have seen so many cathedrals since living in Europe, that spending 9 euro to see another felt steep, but I couldn’t be more grateful for doing it. The Seville Cathedral is the largest gothic cathedral in the world, and the third-largest church in the world! Not only will the size and scale take you for surprise, but the intricate carvings and the numerous alters are astounding. The orange trees lining the courtyard are beautiful, as is the views from the top of the belltower. And also, it is apparently the burial site for Christopher Columbus as his tomb is there.
We then headed into the Jewish Quarter for some tapas and cana, as well as a bit of wandering around – this area reminded me of the Moroccan medina’s and are fun to just get lost in.
We eventually made it further into town to Metropol Parasol. Las Setas is controversial amongst the locals and for good reason. Seville commissioned a german architect to build a structure above the parking garage, to redevelop the Old Quarter. This wooden built structure took 6 years to complete (4 years longer than planned) and came in 50 million euro over budget (100M in total). While the views from the top are nice, I’m with the locals in that the structure is an eye sore – compared to all the Renaissance inspired architecture, this thing stands out. It costs 3 euros to go up, and includes a free drink, but we actually skipped the drink (hearing it was basically a sugary mojito) and continued down the street into what looked to be the shopping district with all the major stores!
We spent the remainder of the evening wandering around town, and exploring the area right on the river. While Triana market was mostly closed, just on the other side of the river, there was a bustling prepared food marketing with loads of stands for food and drinks. It was a great place for a pre-dinner snack and drinks.
We ended up the evening back near the hotel for tapas and vino, as usual!
Our final day in Sevilla was action packed. Following a hearty breakfast, it was time to visit the Real Alcázar de Sevilla. We spent a few hours wandering through the Alzacar and then through the immense gardens, before heading out for a stroll to Plaza de Espana (for a day time view). We made a detour on the way to the plaza to revisit the prepared food market for some polpo and sangria which given the warm sun, was a great way to enjoy the outdoors along the river.