The region of Andalucia in Southern Spain is full of charming cities that draw people from all over the world to explore. Nothing can be truer of its regional capital and largest city– Seville, Spain which is known for its year-round sunshine and lively atmosphere. Here we will share what to see in Seville Spain and, of course, the food of Seville.
Seville: A Glimpse into Southern Spain’s Jewel
Many visitors to Spain find themselves dazzled by the iconic ceramic tiles and architecture in Seville. But, just where is Seville? It is located in the Southwest of the Iberian Peninsula by the River Guadalquivir.
So, not quite near the beach but that doesn’t stop people from coming here to bask in the sunshine, enjoy the iconic Sevillian temperature, and wander around the Seville streets.
In fact, history lovers must visit this city as the Seville historic district transports visitors back into time as it used to be an important hub for culture, politics, the economy, and artists. Visitors are never bored in this city as there are many things to do in Seville, Spain.
Unveiling Seville’s Treasures: Cathedral, Alcázar and Beyond
The most unique characteristic of this city is the Mudejar architecture, a marvelous blend of Islamic and Catholic architectural styles. The historical center offers many attractions like the Seville Cathedral, Royal Alcázar of Seville, and Plaza de España.
This cathedral is the largest Gothic cathedral in the world, captivating many with its grandeur and size. Visitors can even climb La Giralda, the old mosque tower, to see spectacular 360 views of Seville.
As with most of the Andalucian history and culture, Seville was influenced by Arabic culture and architecture that was destroyed and built over once the Catholics restored their reign on the country.
Once you enter the cathedral, the ornate decorations and Christopher Columbus’s tomb, a main attraction for many visitors, will awe you.
The courtyard lined with orange trees is another famous spot. This is a peaceful garden area famous for its Seville orange trees.
All throughout the city you can find orange trees dotted along plazas and streets. But please beware, you shouldn’t pick them from the tree and eat!
They taste extremely bitter and people don’t intend them for direct consumption. Instead, they can make for delicious marmalades or provide medicinal purposes.
The Royal Alcázar, set in the Mudejar style, reflects the Moorish and Christian cultural influences. This palace is absolutely stunning.
Everywhere you look you can see intricate designs and patterns on the walls, doors, and ceilings.
Every corner has an immense attention to detail that leave visitors in awe of the symmetry and harmony of the different styles.
Plaza de España
Spain is full of plazas, or open public spaces where people can gather. You can find the most ornate plaza in Seville.
Designers crafted the square in the Spanish Renaissance style. The stunning part about this Spanish square is the use of tiles in a mosaic fashion throughout the area.
These azulejos, tiles typical in Andalucia, are bright and colorful adding a cheerful touch to the structure. The square also features 52 benches dedicated to the Spanish provinces, another iconic aspect. Plaza de España is a wonderful place to walk around and admire the typical Spanish style.
Discover the Vibrant Culture of Seville
Sevilla is a city that is bursting with culture, charm, and traditions. Take Triana Seville for example. Based on a map of Seville, Spain, this authentic quarter can be found across the Guadalquivir River.
It is a lively neighborhood with narrow streets to explore and beautiful azulejos tiles and pottery to admire. But most importantly it is the neighborhood to go to if you want to see a flamenco show.
Historically it has been the birthplace of many famous flamenco dancers, singers, and guitarists. Flamenco is a style of spirited music played with a guitar and accompanied by passionate singing and dancing.
It is an artform that expresses intense and deep emotions through storytelling. We highly recommend watching a show at one of the many tablaos in this neighborhood to experience the magical performance passed down through generations.
Savor the Mediterranean Flavors
Many visitors to the city delight in Seville’s food, as the Mediterranean diet influences it.
Some typical dishes that you must try in Seville are: gazpacho in the summertime; salmorejo; pescaito frito or fried fish like anchovies, squids, and cuttlefish; bacalao con tomate or cod with tomato; pisto con huevo or ratatouille with egg; chipirones a la plancha or grilled squid; espinacas con garbanzos or spinach and chickpea stew; serranito or a sandwich with pork loin, serrano ham, and roasted green peppers; and rabo de toro or bull’s tail.
Top Five Seville Restaurants and Tapas Bars
Sevilla is also known for its generous servings and selection of tapas which is an excellent way to try the Sevillian gastronomy. You can find the best Seville restaurants throughout the city. As a good rule of thumb, it is a good idea to check out more established places.
They maintain their traditional decoration and don’t adopt the recent popular fads over the years. They are also known as los bares del barrio or the neighborhood bars where you can stop by for a caña and some delicious foods.
There are numerous places to go for quality food and an amazing atmosphere, but here we will share the top five restaurants and tapas bars:
- Eslava: a tiny bar that is known for being the best tapas bar in Seville, especially for its seafood options.
- Bodega Santa Cruz: offers traditional Andalucian food and a great bar that is popular with the locals.
- Bodega Dos de Mayo: offers a wide range of dishes at cheap prices.
- El Rinconcillo: decorated with stunning azulejos this place is perfect to meet friends for a drink and try all the delicious dishes.
- La Bartola: is a vibrant restaurant with a variety of classic tapas and Spanish dishes. It also offers vegan and vegetarian options.
With this short list, we hope it introduces you to some of the options Seville has to offer with its restaurants and bars. We always recommend exploring the city for yourself and finding those hidden gems filled with scrumptious foods to try and enjoy.
Finding Your Perfect Stay in Seville
If you are visiting Seville then you are going to want to stay in one of the best hotels in Seville, Spain. The amazing thing about Sevilla is that it has almost every lodging option available ranging from truly luxurious hotels to hostels.
You have the option to splurge and stay at an extravagant hotel, a remodeled historical building, or cozy guesthouses. Whichever option you choose, the wonderful hospitality of the southern parts of Spain will pleasantly surprise you.
After you secure a place to stay, you should walk around the narrow streets of the city to find hidden gems. Learn about the culture and history of the city, and appreciate the culinary delights that you can try.