When it comes to Seville, there really are only two types of people: those who have never been but are dying to go; and those who have been who are already planning their return. Spend a weekend, spend a month, this Andalucian capital will capture your mind, soul and taste buds with its characteristic sultry exoticism.
Many people prefer to travel during the winter, spring and autumn and escape the northern European climate. However, to avoid peak crowds and get amazing deals, consider the low season months of June, July and August. Yes, it will be steamy with temperatures reaching the high 30s or more, but with research and planning, you can have a unforgettable experience at this time.
StarWars fans will do a double take at the stunning Plaza de España in beautiful Parque Maria Luisa. Covering the area of five football pitches, the sweeping 1929 structure combines styles from Art Deco, Renaissance, Baroque and Moorish architecture and was the setting of the City of Theed in Attack of the Clones. What a wonderful place to spend your time, especially after its €14 million government investment. Back in the old town explore the ornate Moorish Royal Alcazar and Seville’s magnificent cathedral, the world’s largest gothic structure and supposed burial place of adopted son Christopher Colombus. Its belltower, La Giralda, is visible across the city and is a handy landmark if you lose your way, which is kind of inevitable in the winding white washed narrow streets of Santa Cruz.
Messing about on the River
Ah the historic Guadalquivir. The closest thing that Sevillianos have to a seafront and a key player in Spain’s colonial past. Join the locals and stroll for miles along the pretty promenade. You’ll pass the Plaza de Toros, where you can pop in for a fascinating audio tour, and the Moorish Torre del Oro, brilliant against the bright blue sky. Stop for respite from the sun for refreshments in one of the shady river front bars. Get closer to the water with a cruise on the river. Boats depart regularly from the Torre del Oro costing €14 for an hour’s cruise. Or hire kayaks for a fun and relaxing experience. Several companies offer guiding and include safety briefings and snacks.
Cross the river at Puente Isabel II, Spain oldest iron bridge, and reach the quieter neighbourhood of Triana. Many tourists never make it to this side but it’s well worth the trip. It’s the place to buy local ceramics and there’s even a museum dedicated to the craft. Try Santa Ana Ceramics close to the bridge. They don’t close for siesta, but they do rest on Sundays. Nearby is the authentic Triana Market busting with flowers, fruit and a load of food stalls selling fresh salmorejo (like gazpacho) and hand carved jamon. Come sit and eat with the locals before venturing to the old church of Santa Ana built in 1266 which is home to a painting of sisters Rufina and Justa, 3rd century potters and Seville’s patron saints.