From intimate flamenco bars to a monumental cathedral, Seville is a city of contradictions that never fails to surprise and delight. If you’re a Game Of Thrones fan then you’ll also recognise Seville as the fictional city of Dorne, the home of the infamous House Martell.
After hearing positive reviews from friends, family and colleagues, I decided it was time to explore the Spanish city for myself on a recent long weekend – and it didn’t disappoint.
Here are just 10 of the wonderful activities the city has to offer. You’re going to love it.
Visit The Alcázar Of Seville
The Alcázar of Seville really is a must-see. The World Heritage site includes an opulent palace hidden in the heart of the city alongside beautiful gardens, complete with citrus trees, peacocks and everyone’s favourite: a maze. The palace and its beautiful gardens were home to the Martells in GOT.
Book tickets online in advance to avoid the queues, which reportedly hit two hours during peak times. Alternatively, if pre-orders have sold out online, head to the entrance for the 9.30am opening (we did this and were in within 20 minutes).
Address: Alcázar of Seville, Patio de Banderas, 41004.
Marvel At The Cathédrale De Séville
As the world’s largest gothic cathedral, The Cathedral of Saint Mary of the See (better known as Seville Cathedral or Cathédrale De Séville) is a sight to behold. Architecturally the building is fascinating and soaked in history – it was once a mosque, before the catholic church was built on top of the old remains. You can buy tickets online in advance for entry to avoid queues.
Address: Cathédrale De Séville, Av. de la Constitución, s/n 41004.
Take Photos At Plaza De España
Seville’s Plaza de España has the wow factor. The magnificent architecture swings around the plaza in a large semi-circle, revealing a photo-ready fountain in the centre. 48 small pavilions surround the building, each dedicated to a province of Spain. There’s also a moat, where you can hire rowing boats, or bike hire available. Fun fact: the plaza was even used as part of the set for Star Wars: Attack of the Clones.
Address: Plaza de España, Avenida de Isabel la Católica, 4100.
Relax At Parque De María Luisa
If you’re visiting Plaza de España, it’d be rude not to stop off at the stunning park nearby. Parque de María Luisa is the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle, with duck ponds, shaded spots and quiet corners that are made for picnics. Find a bench under one of Seville’s famous orange trees and watch the world go by.
Address: Parque de María Luisa, Paseo de las Delicias, 41013.
Drink Cocktails At Hotel Doña María
Cocktails at Hotel Doña María’s aren’t the cheapest, but with that view of Seville Cathedral’s Giralda tower, you won’t mind paying the premium. Head to the rooftop through the hotel to watch the sunset before heading to the nearby Santa Cruz district (the old Jewish Quarter) for dinner.
Address: Hotel Doña María, Calle Don Remondo, 19, 41004.
Eat Tapas At Bar Patanchon
Not far from the cathedral, Bar Patanchon became our favourite tapas stop in Santa Cruz. Expect classics like patatas bravas alongside mouth-watching manchego croquettes, deliciously fresh prawns and the silkiest calamari I’ve ever eaten. If the menu doesn’t appeal, there are dozens of other restaurants in the area. Bodega Santa Cruz is also popular – I’d recommend for quick lunch light bites because seats are limited and you may end up propping up the bar.
Address: Bar Patanchon, Calle Mateos Gago, 41004. Or Bodega Santa Cruz, Calle Rodrigo Caro, 1, 41004.
Watch Flamenco At La Carboneria
Hidden in the backstreets of Seville, this venue feels like you’re entering someone’s garage upon arrival, but it opens up into a casual bar-cum-theatre. Inside you’ll find locals nestled among tourists to watch mesmerising, authentic flamenco dancing performed to live music. Shows start around 8.30pm and last for around 20 minutes before a 30 minute break, then repeat. The atmosphere is electric.
Address: La Carboneria, Calle Céspedes, 21A, 41004.
Grab Breakfast At Jester
If your body is craving some goodness after too many Sangrias, head to Jester for breakfast. You’ll find juices, coffees and fruit bowls alongside more substantial bagels and croissants. It has a slight hipster vibe and probably isn’t the most authentic spot in Seville, but it’s delicious nonetheless.
Address: Jester, Calle Puerta de la Carne, 7a, 41004.
View The City From Metropol Parasol
Also known as Las Setas (The Mushrooms), the Metropol Parasol is a giant, wooden, honeycomb-like structure that doubles at a viewing platform providing views across the city. Don’t be put off by the queues, they move fairly quickly.
Address: Metropol Parasol, Pl. de la Encarnación, s/n, 41003.
Treat Yourself To Churros
No trip to Spain is complete without some after dinner churros. You’ll find vendors scattered across the city, but I’d say this fried, doughnut-y delight is best enjoyed by the river, overlooking the Torre del Oro watchtower.