A 2019 holiday to Seville is brimming with culture, physical wonders and zest for life. The home of Don Juan, Figaro and Carmen, Seville lays on the banks of the Guadalquivir soaking up the Mediterranean sun. The largest city in the south of Spain, Seville is also the capital of Andalusia, attracting visitors from all over the world with its legendary heritage, spectacular architecture and immersive Spanish culture.
Visit Seville’s visual marvels including the Alcazar Palace, the cathedral, lush parks and gardens, and the cultural heritage museums. Spend the day at a local theme park or water park, or indulge in some tapas and an evening flamenco show. Visit the Aquarium or get in a round of golf. Whatever your inclination, you’ll find something in Seville tailored to your tastes.
No holiday to Seville is complete without a tour of its ancient cultural heritage. Alcazar Palace, built in the 1360s for Pedro the Cruel of Castille, showcases some of the best surviving examples of Mudejar architecture. The castle was also the site of filming for scenes in the cult HBO series Game of Thrones. There are a host of other cultural heritage sites to visit including Santa Maria de la Sede Cathedral, the largest Gothic cathedral in the world, the Giralda, originally built as the minaret of the Aljama mosque, and the Metropol Parasol, the most iconic example of contemporary architecture in the city.
Other popular attractions include the Orange Tree Patio, the oldest garden in the city, as well as the Spanish art museum Museo de Bellas Artes, tapas tours around the city where tapas was invented, the Seville Opera and flamenco tours.
As the birthplace of the tapa (small plate of food), Seville is home to a fabulous array of tapas bars and tours. There are at least two tapas tasting tours, one on either side of the river. La Brunilda, tucked away in the back streets of the Arenal quarter, offers a dazzling array of innovative new twists on traditional dishes, while El Rinconcillo is a historic tapas bar dating back to the Inquisition, serving delicacies like fried sea anemones and bowls of giant olives. Andalusia also has many quality wine provinces, so there are usually delicious local bottles on the menu.
As well as the city’s signature dish, there are plenty of eateries catering for more international tastes. Redhouse Art & Food is a trendy bistro serving a range of international meals in a contemporary atmosphere surrounded by mismatched chairs and abstract art. Seville is also home to establishments serving Andalusian, fusion, Basque, Italian, contemporary Spanish, British, Thai and Peruvian cuisines - to name just a few!
Seville is the perfect setting for a great family holiday, with plenty of thing to do to keep the whole family happy. Family fun can be had anywhere from theme parks to water parks, flamenco shows or the aquarium. The Isla Magica amusement park is themed around 16th century Spanish colonial adventures. It has white-knuckle rides, rollercoasters, stage shows and a cinema with tilting seats. Younger children are specially catered for in their own area. Seville Aquarium is home to over 7,000 species of marine life, with a touch pool and a shark tunnel.
Aquopolis Sevilla is the city’s water park, which has rides and attractions like Fast River, black hole and foam slides for the active types, and a Jacuzzi for parents to kick back while the kids have some fun. There are plenty of sight-seeing tours available in the city, allowing you to pick one that will interest the whole family.
Action & Adventure
There are plenty of leisurely activities and things to do to get the blood pumping on a Seville holiday. The city offers active holidaymakers a wealth of options including the water park with its fast-flowing rides, slides and waterfalls, and the theme park at Isla Magica with its white-knuckle rollercoasters. There are walking tours of all the major attractions to satisfy a sense of discovery, and bicycle tours as well. There’s a 9-hole golf course at Real Club Pineda, where visitors can play if accompanied by a member, and the city’s football club at Estadio Sanchez Pijuan.
Seville’s traditional sport is bullfighting and the bullring at ‘Catedral del Toreo’ at the Maestranza is the best place to experience it. The building itself also has a rich history, dating back to 1762, and visitors to the place include some big names like Orson Welles.
While the city itself has no beaches, a Seville holiday can still be a beach holiday. There’s a wealth of beaches in Andalusia, and plenty of opportunities to soak up the coastal sun. The closest beach to Seville is the Matalascañas, a beautiful sandy beach where you can hire a sunbed or chill out with a cocktail.
Further down the coast is Bolonia, the most popular beach in the area. Situated in a large bay, the beach here is largely undeveloped and you can find a small number of isolated coves dedicated to naturists. In the centre of the bay, there are sunbeds to rent from most of the beach bars, while the southern part of the bay is great for water sports, such as kite surfing and wind surfing.
A Seville holiday is a chance to soak up the atmosphere and the lively nightlife. From upmarket experiences, including classical concerts and opera, to flamenco tours, Copa bars and late night theatre, the wonder of Seville is its variety. The Maestranza Theatre hosts seasonal opera, flamenco and orchestral concerts, while the Fundacion Tres Culturas del Mediterraneo showcases African and Arabic music. For open-air bars, the scene along the river at Calle Betis in Triana and Torneo, on the opposite bank, is lively with bigger clubs for dancing open at weekends.
El Mundo in Alfalfa puts on themed nights, while Río Latino in Triana has a more local flavour, playing Spanish pop hits. The area of Alameda is the hub of the LGBT+ scene in Seville, as well as having some alternative rock and metal clubs in the area.
On a couples’ holiday to Seville there are so many ways to kindle a romantic atmosphere. For early risers there is a hot-air balloon ride for two above the city, allowing you to capture the romance of the rivers, forests and parkland stretching out towards mountain peaks. For a more immersive experience, enjoy each other’s company in a private horse and carriage. Indulge in a couples’ spa experience at the thermal baths, built on the site of a 16th century Turkish hammam. Soak in one of the warm bathing pools or the salt water bath, and take advantage of the jet streams and steam room.
See the city from the river on a Guadalquivir Cruise, or spend the day sightseeing on foot or bicycle. Heat things up with a night on the town, and perhaps a spot of flamenco dancing. Sample the local cuisine at one of the many tapas bars by the river and try the bottles from the Andalusian wine making provinces.
Seville is a city known for its joyous approach to life, as well as its orange trees. The city is saturated with ancient history, architecture and tradition. Then blended with a cosmopolitan atmosphere and modern art. The home of Carmen, Don Juan and Figaro, the city has been consistently immortalised in operatic works. Tapas was invented here, and the locals love to showcase their flamenco dancing.
There are a number of festivals throughout the year that celebrate the culture of Seville. Semanta Santa, or Easter week, is characterised by masked penitents and lavish carnival style floats. Feria de Abril, or April fair, is the largest fair of the year in Andalusia. It is a week-long celebration in which locals take to the streets for parties, food, drink, sherry and most importantly, flamenco.