Travel Ninja

Explore Seville: Must-See Sights & Secret Spots!

Exploring Seville offers a mosaic of cultural gems, from the Moorish influences in the historic city centre to the towering Giralda attached to the large cathedral. Whether you’re marvelling at the regal Real Alcazar, strolling through the verdant green parks, or indulging in delicious tapas, Seville encapsulates the essence of Andalusia. Don’t miss the iconic Plaza de España, known for its exquisite architecture and vibrant atmosphere, making it one of the most visited spots. Each corner of this beautiful city reveals a piece of its rich tapestry, ensuring that your trip to Seville is packed with memorable sights and tourist attractions.

Best Things To Do In Seville

Must see: Alcazar of Seville

Stepping into the Alcázar Real de Sevilla is like wandering through the pages of history, where every corner tells a tale of Moorish kings and Spanish royalty. This Royal Palace in Seville is not just a famous attraction; it’s a sprawling Moorish palace complex that continues to serve the Spanish King. Due to its popularity, securing your Alcazar tickets in advance is essential to avoid missing out on this enchanting experience. Whether you’re exploring its lush gardens or the intricate halls, the Alcazar of Seville promises a journey into the heart of Andalusian splendor.

Best Things To Do In Seville

Seville Cathedral & La Giralda

Ascending the Giralda tower of the Seville Cathedral, officially known as the Catedral de Santa María de la Sede, offers a panoramic view that sweeps across the cityscape. As one of the largest cathedrals in the world, this architectural masterpiece is built on the remnants of a Moorish mosque and encapsulates a treasure trove of history, including the tomb of Columbus and the ornate royal chapel.

Best Things To Do In Seville

The Seville Cathedral stands as a monumental beacon of cultural heritage, making it a must-visit for anyone wanting to delve deep into the heart of Andalusian grandeur.

Plaza de España – Spain Square Of Seville

Stepping into the Plaza de España in Seville is like walking onto the set of a historical epic. Built for the 1929 Ibero-American Expo to celebrate peace with Spain’s former colonies, this architectural tour de force showcases a grand neo-Moorish building encircling a vast 540,000-square-foot plaza, complete with a canal and central fountain. Each of the 48 tiled benches represents a different Spanish province, wrapped in the exquisite Andalusian tiles that narrate tales of heritage and unity.

Best Things To Do In Seville

Designed by Architect Aníbal González, it not only highlights Spain’s technological and artistic achievements but has also starred in films like Lawrence of Arabia and Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace. Whether you’re paddling a rowboat on the gentle waters or simply soaking in the vibrant atmosphere, the Plaza de España is a must-visit, encapsulating the spirit of Seville beneath its ornate ceramic tiles and magnificent staircases.

Santa Cruz District & Historical Center

Immerse yourself in the charming ambiance of Santa Cruz, the old Jewish quarter nestled in the heart of Seville Spain. This historic neighborhood is a labyrinth of narrow streets where every corner tells a story, flanked by quaint terraces and inviting restaurants that beckon visitors. As the historic city centre that houses majestic landmarks like the Alcazar Palace and the Cathedral, it remains a bustling hub that captures the essence of Seville.

Best Things To Do In Seville

Despite the influx of tourists, Santa Cruz retains an authentic allure that makes it a must-visit on any city trip. Whether day or night, the Santa Cruz district offers a timeless glimpse into the city’s grand past, wrapped in the warm glow of street lamps and the vibrant life of its cafes.

Park ‘Maria Luisa’

Step into the tranquil Maria Luisa Park, Seville’s most cherished green oasis of peace and natural beauty. Originally part of the San Telmo palace grounds, this public park was generously donated to the city in 1893 to be transformed into the public space it is today. Adjacent to the iconic Plaza de España, built for the Ibero-American exhibition of 1929, the park features several pavilions from the expo, adding a historical layer to its lush walkways.

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Whether you’re seeking a quiet retreat from the urban buzz or a picturesque picnic spot, Maria Luisa Park offers a refreshing escape into nature’s embrace right in the heart of Seville.

Metropol Parasol – Setas de Sevilla

Dive into the architectural marvel of Setas de Sevilla, commonly known as The Mushrooms, a striking wooden structure that reshaped the skyline of Seville’s Plaza de la Encarnación. Constructed in 2011, this modernist wonder features rooftop walkways and a panorama terrace offering sweeping views of the city. Not just a feast for the eyes, Metropol Parasol is a hub of activity, housing an archaeological museum, a bustling food market with fresh produce and take-away stalls, and vibrant restaurants.

Best thing to do in seville

Whether you stroll the lattice structure by day or explore its illuminated form by night, Las Setas stands as a bold emblem of contemporary urban renewal in the historic heart of El Centro, blending the past with the future in exciting, dynamic ways.

Casa de Pilatos

Step into the historical splendor of Casa de Pilatos, a 16th century palace nestled in the historic district of Santa Cruz, just a stone’s throw from the famed Real Alcazar de Sevilla. This architectural gem, a testament to the Italian Renaissance, served as the residence for the governors of Andalucia during the 15th and 16th centuries. Its design boasts Mudéjar courtyards adorned with Roman statues and walls covered in vibrant azulejo ceramic tiles, creating a visual feast that has caught the eye of filmmakers, making appearances in «Lawrence of Arabia,» «Kingdom of Heaven,» and «Knight and Day.»

thing to do in seville

Explore the ingenious architectural layout where the first floor offered a cooling effect during summer and the second floor provided warmth in winter. A visit to Casa de Pilatos offers more than just a glimpse into the opulent life of aristocrats; it’s a journey through the rich tapestry of Seville’s Andalusian heritage.

Isla Mágica

Discover the thrill of Isla Mágica, Seville’s own 90-acre theme park, where history meets adventure across six Spanish colonial-themed areas reflecting the 16th- and 17th-century explorations. Perfect for all ages, this park offers a unique mix of attractions including the Iguazu log flume and the Jaguar roller coaster, alongside a variety of shows, shops, and restaurants. For those looking to cool off, Agua Mágica, the on-site water park, serves as an ideal escape from the summer heat.

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Visitors recommend arriving early to beat the crowds, especially to enjoy popular rides without the wait. Whether you’re bringing young kids or looking for fun without the historical deep dive, Isla Mágica offers value far surpassing typical U.S. theme park tickets, making it a must-visit in Europe.

Ramón Sánchez-Pizjuán Stadium

Experience the pulse-pounding atmosphere of Ramón Sánchez-Pizjuán Stadium, the iconic home of Sevilla FC. Since its inauguration in 1958, this stadium has been a crucial site for football in Seville, hosting World Cup and European Cup matches and is renowned for the vibrant energy of Seville fans. With a capacity for 45,500 spectators, it offers a unique European fútbol experience that’s electric whether facing local rivals Real Betis or giants like Real Madrid and FC Barcelona.

Ticket prices vary by opponent and seat location, but purchasing online or at the stadium box office ensures a clear view of the action. Located in the Nervión district, just a short metro ride from the city center, the stadium is accessible via the Nervión or Gran Plaza stations. Outside the fútbol season (from August to May), take a stadium tour to explore the director’s box, players’ tunnel, and pitch, complete with an audio guide—just remember, there are no tours on match days.

Palacio Bucarelli

Immerse yourself in the regal splendor of Palacio Bucarelli, a hidden gem nestled in Seville’s San Lorenzo neighborhood, just a short stroll from El Centro. Established in the 17th century, this majestic palace has been home to 14 generations of the Bucarelli family, who originally hailed from Florence during Seville’s Golden Age. As successful merchants of spices, silk, and precious metals in the New World, their legacy includes roles as viceroys and governors, and their heritage as prominent bull and horse breeders is well-documented through the many portraits and stories shared via an audio guide on the self-guided tour.

Explore the stables, chapel, sculpture studio, and lush summer salons. For a truly intimate glimpse into aristocratic life, opt for the ticket that includes access to the second floor where the Countess of Santa Coloma’s private quarters—the dining room, drawing room, and her bedroom—reveal the personal side of this noble residence. Note that while the northern section of the palace now serves as a hotel with a separate entrance, visitors should seek the grand stone archway on Calle Santa Clara to discover this enduring symbol of Seville’s storied past.

Things To Do: Bike Tour In Seville

Discover Seville from the saddle on a bike tour, the most fun and efficient way to cover the sprawling beauty of this Spanish city. Seville’s excellent cycle paths make it uniquely suited for exploring its rich tapestry of sights and landmarks. Whether you rent a bike on your own or join a guided tour, you’ll find that the city’s attractions are perfectly spaced for two-wheeled adventures. A guide can enrich your experience with captivating stories about the history and culture that define each stop. This approach not only provides a fresh perspective on Seville’s attractions but also offers a healthy mix of outdoor activity combined with insightful sightseeing. So, pedal your way through the heart of Seville, and see the city as locals do, effortlessly and breezily, making your way from one landmark to another with ease and joy.

Triana District

Cross the Guadalquivir to explore Triana, one of Seville’s most vibrant districts, where the echoes of bullfighters and flamenco dancers still resonate through the narrow streets. Once the main district of the city’s traditional arts, today Triana offers an authentic neighborhood experience, perfect for those who wish to stroll through its colorful boulevard in the evening and soak in its unique atmosphere.

Thing to do in seville

Don’t miss the Mercado de Triana for a taste of local life or cap off your visit with a flamenco show, an essential Seville experience that captures the spirit of the real Triana. This district, separated from the main city by the river, provides not just a backdrop for beautiful photos but a chance to live the city’s history through its vibrant present.

Plaza de Toros

Step into the heart of Spanish tradition at the Plaza de Toros de la Real Maestranza, Seville’s premier bullfighting arena and one of the oldest in Spain. Built in the 18th-century with a stunning Baroque façade, this iconic landmark draws up to 13,000 spectators to its famed bullfighting festival, the largest in the world. While bullfighting remains a controversial sport, many locals consider it an integral art form of their culture.

The on-site Museo Taurino offers a historical perspective, featuring exhibition halls filled with matadors’ outfits, weapons, and bullfighting art by renowned artists like Goya and Jean Cocteau. Explore the Patio de Caballos and the Capilla de los Toreros (bullfighters’ chapel), and even if you choose to skip the fight, the rich history encapsulated within the bullring makes it a must-visit.

Things To Do: Visit A Flamenco Show

Immerse yourself in the passionate world of Flamenco, the iconic dance and music that embodies the spirit of Andalusia. In Seville, the historical heart of Flamenco, you can experience this vibrant tradition at its best. The Museo del Baile Flamenco (MBF) in the city center offers a deep dive into the dance’s rich history, while Triana, the renowned flamenco centre, pulsates with authentic performances nightly.

Choose from the most popular tablaos like Casa de la Memoria, or the deeply authentic Orillas de Triana and Teatro Flamenco Triana. For a lavish evening, El Palacio Andaluz offers shows combined with dinner, providing a full sensory feast. Visiting these venues offers more than just entertainment; it’s a cultural immersion, far removed from the typical tourist trap, allowing you to experience a profound piece of Andalusian culture.

Landmarks: Torre del Oro

Step into the past at the Torre del Oro, or Tower of the Gold, a historic 12th-century landmark located on the banks of the Guadalquivir river in Seville. Originally part of the Moorish city wall, this iconic tower has served many roles—from gold storage and prison to a military watchtower. Today, it houses the Museo Náutico, a naval museum that explores its involvement in New World trade and exploration.

Thing to do in seville

Visitors can ascend to the lookout point for 360-degree views of the city, offering a unique perspective on Seville’s rich history. Whether you’re a history buff or just looking for a panoramic city view, the Torre del Oro is a must-visit.

Palacio de las Dueñas

Discover the hidden splendor of Palacio de las Dueñas, a magnificent palace built in the late 15th century under the influence of Renaissance, Gothic, and Moorish styles. Once the residence of the renowned Duchess of Alba, and now held by the House of Alba, this architectural gem is nestled in the old center of Seville. The palace is famed for its beautiful gardens dotted with lemon trees, ceramic tiles, and intricate archways, offering a lush backdrop for a leisurely sunny Seville afternoon.

Thing to do in seville

Inside, the well-preserved interior showcases an opulent glimpse into the lives of wealthy aristocrats with its collection of antique furniture and vibrant flowers. Visitors can explore this hidden gem through a guided tour, making Palacio de las Dueñas a must-see for those looking to uncover the grandeur of Seville’s noble past.

Iglesia Colegial del Divino Salvador

Step into the serene ambiance of Iglesia del Salvador, the second most important church in Seville, right after the great cathedral. Known as Savior Church, this historic landmark captivates visitors with its beautiful main altar and stunning wall and ceiling paintings that echo the grandeur of Seville’s religious artistry. While exploring the city, a visit to this church offers a peaceful retreat and a chance to see intricate artwork up close.

Thing to do in seville

It’s a landmark that enhances any tour of Seville, and conveniently, your ticket to the Cathedral of Seville typically includes entry here as well, making it a must-see for anyone interested in the architectural and spiritual history of the area.

Museo de Bellas Artes

Explore the Museo de Bellas Artes in Seville, a treasure trove second only to Madrid’s Prado in its collection of Spanish masterpieces. Housed in an old convent, this important art museum showcases works spanning from the Middle Ages to the 20th century, featuring renowned Spanish artists such as Francisco de Zurbarán, Velázquez, and Bartolomé Murillo. The serene patios of the former convent provide a contemplative backdrop to the paintings and sculptures that trace the rich tapestry of Spanish art history.

Thing to do in seville

A visit here is not just a journey through the annals of art, but a peaceful escape into the aesthetic spaces of one of Seville’s most revered cultural landmarks.

Basilica de la Macarena

In the less explored Macarena district of Seville, the Basilica de la Macarena stands as a beacon of spiritual and architectural beauty. Constructed in the 1940s, this Catholic temple surprises visitors with its vibrant white and golden-yellow exterior. Step inside to experience the intricate interiors—from frescoes that dance across the walls and ceiling to gold accents that create a shimmering aesthetic.

thing to do in seville

Home to one of the city’s most famous procession figures, the Madonna statue, this church offers a contrast to Seville’s massive cathedral and is a quick stop worth making. Whether you’re taking a leisurely stroll through the historic Macarena neighborhood or seeking a unique cultural experience, the Basilica provides a profound glimpse into the local heritage and devotional practices.

Sightseeing On A Guadalquivir Cruise

Experience Seville from a unique perspective with a sightseeing cruise on the Guadalquivir, one of Spain’s most significant rivers. Flowing right through the heart of Seville, this river offers a serene pathway to view the city’s stunning monuments from the water. Choose between a leisurely boat trip or an adventurous kayak tour to glide past historic sites and absorb the scenic urban landscape.

These tours provide a refreshing escape from the bustling city streets and a chance to see Seville from its historic lifeline, making it a must-do for any visitor looking to capture the essence of the city in a tranquil setting.

Jardines de Murillo

Nestled against the historic walls of the Alcazar complex, the Jardines de Murillo offer a lush retreat right in the heart of Seville. These charming public gardens were gifted to the city by Queen Isabella II in 1860, transforming the grounds of the Alcazar palace into a public space. Named after the painter Murillo, whose birthplace is nearby, the gardens feature serene paths lined with shady trees and mosaic benches, perfect for a peaceful stroll.

Visitors can also admire the monument to Columbus, adding a historical touch to the serene landscape. A visit here is a breath of fresh air, inviting you to relax under the green canopy, away from the city’s hustle.

Hospital de los Venerables

Tucked in the heart of the Santa Cruz district, the Hospital de los Venerables stands as a stunning example of baroque architecture from the 17th-century. Originally serving the elderly and poor, and later as a residence for priests, this complex now enchants visitors with its central patio and the church adorned with frescoes by the Valdés family. Today, it houses the Velázquez Center, a museum dedicated to Sevillian painters such as Diego Velázquez and Bartolomé Esteban Murillo, offering an immersive audio guide tour.

For a taste of local flavor, a tapas tour in Andalusia is a perfect complement, where a local guide leads you through non-touristy, authentic tapas bars, pairing delicious tapas with local drinks and rich background stories for a truly fun evening out.

Tip For Food Lovers: Tapas Tour

For food enthusiasts eager to delve into the culinary heart of Andalusia, a tapas tour in Seville is indispensable. Experience the city like a local, guided through non-touristy, authentic tapas bars by a knowledgeable local guide. This entertaining tour not only allows you to savor a variety of tapas but also pairs them with local drinks, each accompanied by interesting background stories that enrich your dining experience far beyond the simple pleasure of eating.

Itálica (Santiponce)

Just a stone’s throw from Seville in Santiponce, the Itálica Archaeological Park offers a captivating glimpse into Roman times. Established in 206 BC, this once-thriving city is the birthplace of Emperors Hadrian and Trajan. Visitors can explore extensive excavations including an impressive amphitheater and intricate mosaic floors that narrate tales of its storied past. For those looking to deepen their engagement with this historic place, a guided bike tour makes for an enlightening half-day tour, providing not just exercise but educational insights into the lives of ancient Romans.

Thing to do in seville

Plaza Nueva

At the heart of Seville, Plaza Nueva stands as the central square, not just geographically but also historically. Dominated by the Ayuntamiento, Seville’s town hall, this area is an architectural marvel blending Renaissance style from the 16th century with expansions in neo-classical style. It’s more than just a hub for civic activities; the square regularly hosts various events and is adorned with a prominent statue of King Ferdinand III of Castile, adding a royal touch to its bustling environment.

Whether you’re soaking in the historical ambiance or attending an event, Plaza Nueva offers a unique slice of Seville’s rich tapestry.

Palacio de la Condesa de Lebrija

Nestled in one of the quieter shopping streets of El Centro district, the Palacio de la Condesa de Lebrija is a city palace rich in history and art, making it a must-visit for anyone exploring Seville. This majestic residence, originally built in the 16th century and enhanced with restorations in the early 20th century by Doña Regla Manjón Mergelina, the Countess of Lebrija, houses an extensive art collection that includes everything from Roman mosaic floors sourced from Itálica to paintings by Van Dyck and a Sorolla portrait of the countess herself.

The decorative elements within its walls, such as Arab arches and coffered wooden ceilings, along with sculpture and pottery from various civilizations, showcase the blend of cultural influences that have touched this noble family’s legacy. Visitors can explore the private rooms where the countess lived, offering a personal glimpse into the aristocratic lifestyle of historical Seville.

What To See In Seville: Semana Santa

During Holy Week, from Palm Sunday to Easter Sunday, Seville transforms into a spectacle of faith and tradition, making it one of the most vibrant times to visit this historic Spanish city. Semana Santa is celebrated with intense fervor here; the city streets are lined with processions of brotherhoods wearing distinctive robes and pointed hats, carrying sacred statues and richly decorated altars of Jesus and Mary to the cathedral.

Thing to do in seville

This profound religious event is a deeply immersive experience, offering a unique insight into the local culture and spiritual depth of Seville, drawing crowds from all corners to witness the solemn beauty and intricate ceremonies that fill the city center.

Archivo General de Indias

Located in the historic Plaza del Triunfo, right beside the iconic cathedral and Real Alcázar, the Archivo General de Indias stands as a monumental piece of Seville’s rich history. This 16th-century building, originally a trade fair for the New World, is now inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List and serves as a vital archive holding invaluable records of the Spanish Empire’s activities in the Americas.

Accessible to the public and free of charge, it hosts various exhibitions that delve into the intricate history of Spain’s transatlantic exchanges. Visitors can explore an array of documents and artifacts that paint a vivid picture of colonial trade and administration, making it a must-visit for history enthusiasts exploring Seville.

Day Trips From Seville

Exploring Seville serves as a perfect starting point to delve into the rich tapestry of Andalusia with a variety of day trips that highlight the diversity of the region. From Seville, the charming Pueblos Blancos, such as Zahara de la Sierra and Ronda, offer a glimpse into Andalusian culture set against picturesque backdrops of whitewashed buildings and rustic scenery. For those intrigued by history, a day trip to Córdoba reveals the majestic Mezquita, a masterpiece of Islamic architecture, while Granada boasts the iconic Alhambra, a pinnacle of Moorish art in Spain.

Not to be missed, the rugged landscape of El Caminito del Rey provides thrilling vistas for the adventurous. Further afield, the unique culture of Gibraltar and the sherry-soaked festivities of Jerez de la Frontera await exploration. Each destination, easily reachable from Seville, offers distinct experiences, turning a stay in the city into a gateway to discover the wonders of southern Spain.

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