Seville is the grand capital of Andalusia

Seville is the vibrant capital of Andalusia in Southern Spain, it is home to some of the finest monuments and ancient sites in Spain, including Seville Cathedral, the Alcazar gardens and the riverside Torre del Oro (Golden Tower).

Seville is Spain’s fourth-largest city, boasting the first high-speed railway line in the country – the Madrid-Seville AVE line opened in time for the 1992 World Expo held in the city.

“Seville,” wrote Byron, “is a pleasant city, famous for oranges and women.” Whilst this is very true, it's just the tip of the iceberg as Seville has become one of the most visited cities in Spain due to its rich history and cosmopolitan atmosphere.

It enjoys an enviable location on the banks of the River Guadalquivir; not to mention Seville is where the famous tapas where invented.

5 Interesting facts about Seville

  1. The locals of Seville, known as Sevillanos, have a fierce pride in their heritage and have little interest in what goes on elsewhere in Spain.
  2. Spring in Seville is very special as the girls all get to wear their Flamenco inspired outfits during the local festival, the size and spectacle of the annual April fair need to be seen to be believed as photos simply do not do it justice.
  3. If you feel as if you have stepped back in time in Seville then tell one of the locals, they will be over the moon. Change is not something the people here buy into and the term “if it isn’t broken don’t fix it” could have been coined in this city. It’s a shame some other places didn’t buy into this ethos.
  4. Due to its fabulous array of preserved architecture from all periods,  Seville is the most popular city among filmmakers.
  5. Seville has a unique atmosphere as even though its a very large city the ambience makes you feel as if you are in a small town, which is extremely pleasant.


Top Attractions in Seville

Seville is a cultural hub in Andalucia and a wonderfully vibrant and friendly city to visit.

Like many cities in Andalucia, Seville was fought over by many cultures, including the Roman and Arab Empires.

Other top sites around Seville include a stroll along the banks of the Guadalquivir River and exploring the Almohad walls, La Giralda and the famous La Maestranza bullring, the oldest of its kind in the world.

Seville Cathedral

Seville is a great place to visit almost any time of the year and one of its star attractions is the Santa Maria de la Sede Cathedral, the largest Gothic cathedral in the world and recognised as a World Heritage site by UNESCO.

Seville Cathedral is an imposing sight, located in the heart of the city just a few minutes walk from the Guadalquivir River.

The construction lasted for well over a century, the idea of city elders at the time was to “ to build the grandest and most magnificent Cathedral that people will think us mad”.

The stunning central Nave rises well over 40 meters and is flanked by 80 side chapels.

The Basilica was built on the site of the Aljama mosque from the Moorish dynasty which dates back to the 12th century.

» The Seville Cathedral 

La Giralda

La Giralda
La Giralda

One of the city’s principal landmarks is La Giralda – a colossal tower originally erected by the Moors as a mosque minaret and later converted into a bell tower for the world’s largest Gothic cathedral. You get an incredible view from the top.

So venerated was the Giralda that the Moors tried to destroy it before the Christian conquest of the city; this failed, and the Giralda became the bell tower of the Christian cathedral.

La Giralda is famed for its magnificent 15th-century Gothic architecture and hand-carved wooden altarpiece.

The Royal Alcazar of Seville

Royal Alcazar of Seville
Royal Alcazar of Seville

The Moorish Alcazar was originally used as a palace, which was enlarged to feed the unusual habits of the ruler al-Mu’tadid, who needed space to house his harem of 800 women and to house the skulls of his enemies.

Under the occupation of the Almohads, the sprawling Alcazar complex was turned into a citadel, stretching to the twelve-sided Torre de Oro on the banks of the Guadalquivir river.

» The Royal Alcazar de Seville

The Torre de Oro

Torre de Oro
Torre de Oro

The Torre de Oro ( Golden Tower ) was built by the Almohad Caliphate in the 13th-Century in order to control access to the city via the Guadalquivir river.

The tower was also used as a prison during the middle ages.

One of the must-visit places in Seville.

» The Torre de Oro

Casa de Pilatos

Seville Casa de Pilatos
Casa de Pilatos

The Casa de Pilatos is a quite stunning Andalusian palace and the permanent home of the Dukes of Medinaceli.

Here you can see the lavish interiors of an Italian Renaissance building with Moorish Mudejar elements and decorations.

Major refurbishments were carried out during the 19th-century which added to its picturesque appearance.

» Casa de Pilatos

La Giralda

La Giralda
La Giralda

One of the city’s principal landmarks is La Giralda – a colossal tower originally erected by the Moors as a mosque minaret and later converted into a bell tower for the world’s largest Gothic cathedral. You get an incredible view from the top.

» La Giralda 

The Triana District

Triana District
Triana District

The district of Triana is located on the west side of the River Guadalquivir and was known as  “the independent republic of Triana”.

Staunchly proud of its gypsy origins Triana was celebrated for its colourful ceramic tiles which adorned many of the homes and buildings in the area. The tiles were made from mud from the river bank.

Triana has been home to many of the top flamenco artists and bullfighters, the rich past of its inhabitants have made the district a popular attraction in the city with great tapas bars, a thriving flamenco scene and vibrant nightlife.

The cobbled streets of the Barrio Santa Cruz in Triana are ideal to walk around in the cool of the early evening, check out the typical homes and workshops that litter the area before dining out at one of the eateries located along the river bank.

Maria Luisa Park

Maria Luisa Park
Maria Luisa Park

Beat the heat of the afternoon and steel yourself for a long night on the town with a nap in Seville’s elegant Maria Luisa Park. There’s plenty of cool shade to doze in, be sent asleep to the rhythmic trickle of the fountains.

La Carboneria

Outside Feria week, flamenco music is hard to find in Seville, with most venues offering tacky “shows” instead of the real thing. La Carbonería is an exception – a quirky bar north of Santa Cruz church which hosts sessions by local gypsy musicians most night of the week.

» La Carboneria


The April Fair – One of the largest in Spain

Seville April Festival
Seville April Festival

Seville is also famous for hosting one of the best annual fairs in Spain. The famous Seville April fair is held around two weeks after Easter celebrations each year and now draws over a million people a year. A large number of visitors come from all over Spain and all corners of the globe.

The fair began back in 1947 as a cattle fair and over the years took on a more typical Spanish feria feel as we know them today. The Seville April Fair or Feria de Abril, as it is known by, has become very special and important for many reasons.

The Seville Fair starts officially on the Monday with the Dining of Fish - “La cena del pescaito” -  and the parade in which the city mayor presides over before switching on the lights around midnight, this is usually accompanied by a spectacular firework display which booms out across the city announcing that the fair is officially underway.

Apart from the fun, shows, drinking, partying and general merriment, the fair has become a true celebration of flamenco dancing. Many of the most famous dancers, composers and singers of this passionate art form come from Seville.

Eating out in Seville

Eating out in Seville is a real treat with more tapas bars and restaurants you can shake a stick at!

Popular areas in Seville to dine out include the Triana district, located just across the Guadalquivir River on the west side of the city. Here you will find a selection of great tapas bars and restaurants, many have terraces overlooking the river, a great place to sit outside and enjoy a riverside atmosphere.

Visitors are spoilt for choice when it comes to eating out plus the night-life in Seville – known for good reason as La Marcha is second to none. This usually means an interminable tapas-bar crawl around Santa Cruz district, followed by a session in a nightclub and a mass get-together at dawn on the Calle San Salvador, not for the faint-hearted!

Popular Restaurants and Bars

La Azotea 

La Azotea is in fact a small chain of 4 restaurants located all around central Seville.  Traditional dishes with a modern twist served are served in a relaxed atmosphere. The menu is high quality and standard across the 4 restaurants. Popular dishes include Baby shrimp crusted hake with a pepperoncini mayonnaise, Sea anemone mousse with maracuyá chutney & seaweed mayonnaise and Acorn-fed Iberian pork served over a mushroom hummus & stewed vegetables. Not to be missed!

El Rinconcillo

Located on Calle Gerona, 4 this is reportedly the oldest restaurants in Spain, this top-class eatery was founded in 1670. Real authentic cooking served in a typical Andalucian atmosphere.  You will not find a better culinary venue if you're looking for authentic tapas which include homemade croquetas, black foot ham,  cured meats and the finest fried fish selection anywhere.  Eat out here and you will not be a disappointment.

El Gallinero de Sandra

Located on Calle Esperanza Elena Caro, 2 this is a fine dining restaurant serving high quality Spanish and International cooking.  Enjoy a selection Mediterranean dishes cooked by top Chef chef Nacho Dargallo and his partner  Sandra Rodríguez.  Popular dishes here include the Beef Salad with Guacamole and Nuts, Ham Croquetas and the Cod and Chickpea soup.

Bodeguita Romero

Located on Calle Harina,10  the Bodegita Romero was founded back in 1939, now one of the most popular tapas bars in central Seville.  You will be treated to a large selection of typical local and Spanish dishes at very reasonable prices, tapas start from €2.50 per plate. Top dishes to try include the cod and ham omelets,  wild asparagus and quails eggs,  oxtail and the delicious deep-fried aubergines with honey poured over the top.

Bar Modesto

As the city which claims to have invented tapas, Seville kicks aside all competition except maybe San Sebastian. A good place to pick up the trail is Bar Modesto, in the Santa Cruz district, which offers just about every tapas imaginable.

Seville Weather

The Seville weather boasts warm mild winters with very hot summers. The best time to visit is in the spring and early Autumn when the temperatures are mild and the hotels less expensive. You can also take part in the Seville April Feria, one of the largest of its kind in Spain.

Free  Walking Tour of Seville

Pancho tours FREE walking tours of Seville every day from 11.00 am. This excellent free walking tour lasts around two and a half hours will help you learn about the history of this famous city whilst visiting sites such as the Seville Cathedral.
Meeting Point:  Plaza Reyes - Ends at Plaza Espana

Tours & Excursions


Recommended accommodation in Seville

Luxury High-End

The beautiful 5 star Mercer Hotel is located in the heart of the historic old quarter close to all the main attractions, shops and eateries. Built around a converted historic Andalucian mansion the Mercer Hotel offer large modern rooms complete with all the amenities for a perfect stay in Seville. The hotel is close to Seville Cathedral, La Giralda and Archivo General de Indias.  Reviewer Rating: 10.0

Mid Range

The Hotel Casa Del Poeta is a charming 4 star hotel located in the old quarter close to all the cities top tourism destinations. This first class hotel has 18 charming rooms and is set in the area's vibrant nightlife district, just a short walk from Alcazar of Seville, Archivo General de Indias and Archbishop's Palace. Reviewer Rating: 8.6

Budget Accommodation

The popular 1 starred Hostel One Catedral is certainly an excellent budget friendly choice of accommodation. Located close to the Alcazar Palace and many of the cities top attractions and just a few minutes walk from the Guadalquivir river. There are 9 comfy rooms, a pool and a nice bar to enjoy tapas and a drink. Reviewer Rating:  8.0