Seville (or Sevilla as the locals call it) is the capital of the southwestern Spanish region of Andalusia. If you’ve been to Madrid or Barcelona you’ll notice there is something very different about Seville. The city was largely laid out under Moorish times and as a result the streets in the center of town purposely wind around corners almost randomly for defensive purposes. In other words, it’s very easy to get lost in Seville, but there are worse things that a longer-than-expected stroll around the streets of a gorgeous city like this.
What To Do
Seville’s Gothic cathedral is a highlight and it’s so large that it’s almost impossible to miss. Impressive from the outside, it can’t truly be appreciated until you step inside to see its enormous interior that resembles no other cathedral. Just next door you can visit the Real Alcazar, which is a lovely Moorish palace built on impressive garden grounds in the 12th century.
The city's Jewish Quarter is also nearby and worth a visit. The ultra-narrow streets are charming and this is a great place to grab a coffee or a glass of wine and relax, but the area is also filled with t-shirt and souvenir vendors so it’s probably best to dine elsewhere. If you are interested in bullfighting there is no better place than Seville and its picturesque bullring. Even if you object to the bullfighting part you can take a short tour of the arena to see and hear about the fascinating and brutal history of the “sport”.
For such a large city Seville doesn’t have a major airport. Most people will fly into Madrid and Barcelona and then arrive in Seville by train or bus, but it is possible to fly into Seville’s San Pablo Airport (code: SVQ) from within Europe. The airport is only about 10 km from the city and a cheap bus can take you directly to the city center.
Where To Stay
There are loads of hotels in Seville and prices can be quite reasonable. There is also a variety of hostels in Seville, but as everywhere the better ones tend to book up well in advance so plan ahead. You can often save some money by staying in the neighborhood just across the river, and central Seville is small so that’s not a bad choice. But there are also lots of reasonably priced places near the train station and even very close to the Cathedral in the heart of the city.