What to see in Seville, the city of Alcazar and flamenco
Seville it is not only the largest city in theAndalusia but it is also the cradle of flamenco and the home of the famous Feria de abrilone of the most overwhelming parties of the whole Spain. But Seville is also known for its style and refinement as well as being home to Don Giovanni, the most famous seducer of literature. For all these reasons, there is a long list that lists what to see in Seville, the capital ofAndalusiathe region famous for beaches but which also represents a paradise forbaroque architecture. Many of its buildings and monuments are richly decorated and will leave people in awe of tourists, impressed by its unique style and personality of the buildings.
A special way of being that is fully revealed during the great celebrations of the Semana Santa in Spainthe period of Easter where the country is overwhelmed by devotion and the desire to party. But not to be missed, to fully grasp what to see in Seville, it is also the period of Feria during which they are set up hundreds of casetas- or stands – which attract all the inhabitants who party even all night long. Then in the summer, when the heat hits hard, the city seems to doze off and the streets will seem all dedicated to you who will enjoy the silence that invites you to take a siesta.
What to see in Seville: discovering the city
Strolling around the city aimlessly is often the best way to immerse yourself in all it has to offer and marvel at how long the list of what to see in Seville is, which often gives the feeling of crossing the door of the past and stepping back in time. Old buildings, squares and street furniture are well preserved and protected as well as traces of the deep Christian tradition of the city that offers splendid sacred buildings among which the Cathedral of Santa Maria.
To the west of the cathedral, along the river, it is located Arenala neighborhood that hosts thearena of bullfights and the theater while a more commercial vocation is evident along the lively streets of the center such as Calles Sierpes And Cuna. Some of the best museums and the city’s entertainment centers are located in Isla de Cartujajust north of the neighborhood of Trianaalong the river Guadalquivir. To these elements of charm is then added the cuisine that has been able to blend very different elements with legacies of the Moorish influence that can be found in honey desserts or in the use of dried fruit. A practical tip: during the Feria de Abril or the Semana Santa prices can often skyrocket. This is why it is a good idea to book early and compare the offers well so as not to risk paying a madness.
What to see in Seville: the wonder of the Alcázar
L’Alcázaror the majestic Royal Palace of Seville is an architectural marvel that mixes styles Mudejar and Gothic. At the center of the complex is the Palazzo del king Pedro Ibuilt in 1364, one of the many projects undertaken by the Moorish dynasty that came to power in 1161. I He died they built a large mosque and a palace called Al-Muwarak but once the Christians regained power, King Pedro I ordered the construction of his palace on the site of Al-Muwarak. The best craftsmen were employed to create the interior inside Mudejar style of the palace surrounded by courtyards and gardens.
Over the years other sovereigns have expanded the structure and still today Spanish royal family use the top floor as an official residence. Also for this reason the Alcazar is at the first place in the list of what to see in Seville as evidenced also by the fact that it is a site protected by theUnesco.
The tiles and the symbol of a lion
Visitors enter the complex through the Plaza del Triunfo then passing through the Puerta del Leonwhich has a decoration made up of classic tiles azulejos – representing a lion. From here you reach the Patio del Leone and then, through a triple arch, you reach the Patio de la Monteria which adjoins the royal palace of the king. From the courtyard of the main building, the Patio de las Doncellas it is possible to reach numerous rooms including the Hall of the Kingsthe Hall of the Ambassadors and the Hall of Charles V. The complex has a magnificent golden dome, tiled walls and a rich collection of tapestries.
During the visit you can also discover the Banos de Dona Maria de Padilla, with the large rainwater tanks, the Casa de Contratacion, a house used by merchants that dates back to the 150th and the unmissable gardens with the thousand colors and scents that derive from the orchards and flower beds interspersed with swimming pools and loggias. The palace is a perfect backdrop for the most exciting films and has appeared in so many films, from Lawrence of Arabia to recent Game of Thrones.
What to see in Seville: the cathedral
There Cathedral of Santa Maria of the See of Seville is a large Gothic-style structure and prides itself on being the third largest church in the world. In addition to being a place protected byUnesco. The cathedral was built with the evident purpose of being the most opulent and beautiful possible, a tangible sign of the wealth of the city and was completed in 1506, after 101 years of construction. The cathedral’s dome collapsed twice: the first just five years after completion and the second due to an earthquake in 1888.
The tombs of the great of Spain. And also of Columbus
Inside there is a long nave covered by a golden ceiling that rises to the incredible height of 42 meters high. The church has a large and beautiful Gothic altar made more valuable by scenes carved from Pierre Dancart which represent moments in the life of Christ. To access the beauty of 15 doors on the four sides of the building while the interior welcomes 80 chapels including those in which rest the remains, among others, of Christopher Columbus, Fernando II of Castile, Alfonso X of Castile, Pedro I of Castile and Elizabeth of Hohenstaufen. Some of the architectural features of the mosque that once stood on this site have been incorporated into the structure of the church which incorporated its columns and bell tower.
The adjacent Giralda was born as a almohad minaret, one of only three remaining structures of this type in the world and was built in 1194 as part of the mosque that stood here before the cathedral. When the Moors were driven out, in 1248, the king Alfonso X insisted that the tower not be destroyed like many other Moorish structures and churches that it be preserved by becoming the cathedral bell tower in 1402. It has a simple structure and the decoration is created by the shadows produced by the brick trellis which is different on each side of the tower. Inside instead of the stairs there are wide ramps that lead to the tower. Going up the ramps you can see great views of the cathedral alongside.
What to see in Seville: the barrio de Santa Cruz
Santa Cruz it is a “barrio” or rather a neighborhood in the medieval part of the city and in the past it was the Jewish area of the ancient city. Santa Cruz is bordered by the Calle Santa Maria La Blanca, Jardines de Murillo, Calle Mateas Gago and Real Alcazar and it is one of the most picturesque areas in which to walk stopping at eat a tapas in the many taverns or to shop. And why not, indulge in a little relaxation in a hamman in pure Moorish style.
Santa Cruz was intended for Jews when the Christian king Ferdinand III of Castile conquered Seville by taking it back to the Arabs and at that time the Jewish population of Seville was the second largest in the country. In 1492, however, the decree of the Alhambraalso known as the edict of Granada ordered the expulsion of all Jews of Spain from the country and from that point the neighborhood of Santa Cruz declined. During the 18th century the area was restored and many dilapidated buildings were refurbished and new churches built. One of the changes in the 18th century was the conversion of a former synagogue into the current cchurch of San Bartolomeo.
Squares and Moorish views
Visitors can enjoy the labyrinth of streets and squares that intertwine with each other, giving glimpses of great beauty and making this area one of the unmissable destinations in the list of what to see in Seville. Which for many remains the most beautiful city inAndalusia.
Among the squares to see in Santa Cruz are Plaza de los Venerables and the Plaza de Alfaro which inspired the balcony scene in Romeo and Juliet; Plaza de Dona Elvira it has a gorgeous tiled azulejos and was once an outdoor theater while in Plaza de Santa Cruz there is a magnificent 17th century wrought iron cross called Cruz de la Cerrajeria. The neighborhood is lively night and day with many clubs, tapas bars and outdoor cafes.
One of the most charming streets in Santa Cruz is Callejon del Agute which runs parallel to the old city walls but does not forget to come to the calle Mateas Gago to dine and to visit theGeneral Archive of the Indies which is housed in the palace seat of the ancient merchants, the Lonja de Mercaderes house. Here are preserved valuable archives relating to the history of the Spanish Empire from the Americas to the Philippines. The Renaissance building was designed by Juan de Herrera and completed in 1598 with the aim that merchants had a place to meet, trade and discuss disputes instead of meeting in the cathedral where they used to congregate; today it is a UNESCO site.
Colonial history gathered in one place
In 1785 the King Charles III ordered that documents relating to the colonial history of Spain be collected and kept in one place that strangely was not Madrid. Until that time the documents had been kept in different locations a Simancas, Seville And Cadiz. There are 43,000 documents which consist of about 80 million original pages preserved on 8 km of shelves. Three centuries of Spanish colonial history are preserved here and used for research and studies. The documents are grouped into 16 sections, including documents related to mail, Cuba, maps, justice, government, accounting, and more. The treasures are represented by the diaries of the gods Conquistadores, from the letters of Miguel de Cervantes and from the maps and diary of Christopher Columbus.
What to see in Seville: the wood mushroom
Finally, from ancient to modern: The “Mushroom of the Incarnation”Is a large ultramodern structure in the Plaza de la Encarnacion in Seville and it is the largest wooden structure in the world. It consists of two concrete columns that house the facility’s elevators that provide access to a lookout point. Structure covers 150 meters by 70 meters and consists of six “umbrella” shapes supported by columns at a height of 26 meters from the ground. The property was designed in 2005 by Jurgen Mayer who won a competition held by the municipality to rehabilitate the square. The initial cost of the structure was estimated at 50 million euros, but during the construction works the costs increased due to technical changes in the construction and the final cost was 75.8 million euros. It was completed in 2011.
Visitors can go up to an observation point or “mirador”To look down on the structure and the city. Access to the viewpoint is from the ground floor next to theAntiquarium. The Antiquarium offers the opportunity to see archaeological finds from the Roman era and the remains of a Moorish Almohad house.