Traveler Profile: Sarah, 40, UK
Location: Seville, Spain
Time of Year: May
Travel Goals: History, culture, and relaxed dining
As a lone traveler, I headed to Seville in Andalucia to soak up the streets and the historical sights, checking out some low-key dining options during my day and evening in this musical city.
Morning Stroll in Barrio Santa Cruz
The day started with a lovely, relaxed walk through the narrow, cobbled streets of the neighborhood of Santa Cruz. This area was once Seville’s Jewish quarter, it offers a winding maze of alleys, charming white houses, and walls adorned with colorful flowers.
Fellow Traveler Tip: Early morning is perfect for photographs as the light is incredible, and the streets are less crowded.
Visit to the Seville Cathedral and Giralda Tower
Late morning, I headed to the cathedral, which boasts being the world’s largest Gothic cathedral. I climbed the Girala Tower, which offered breathtaking views of the whole city – a good place to get your bearings. It’s a long way up the winding ramp but worth it. You can also visit the resting place of Christopher Columbus.
Fellow Traveler Tip: The ticket for the cathedral, including the tower, is great value at €9. Various offers and discounts are offered for children, disabled and residents.
Check Out the Mushrooms
I stopped to see ‘Las Setas’ (The Mushrooms), a modern artwork in Plaza de la Encarnación. The contrast with the city’s history is stark, and the huge wooden structure allows you to walk among the rooftops and experience the panoramic views of the city. I also visited the market and the Roman and Moorish ruins on display here.
Fellow Traveler Tip: Information can be found at the Seville Tourist Information. visitasevilla.es
Afternoon at the Real Alcázar
The Real Alcázar is a must-visit. With a mix of Christian and Mudéjar architecture, this royal palace shows off Spanish history in this part of Spain, a melting pot of Christian and Moorish ancestry. I wandered in the beautiful gardens, enjoying the break from the noise of the city.
Fellow Traveler Tip: Ensure you take time to take advantage of the tranquility and shaded areas. alcazarsevilla.org
Evening at Plaza de España and Flamenco Show
As the sunset, I headed to Plaza de España for some evening entertainment and my favorite activity – people watching! The streets and typical colored Spanish tiles in the square were stunning and the perfect place to enjoy a cold ‘tinto de verano’ aka ‘wine of the summer.’
Although the streets are full of dance and music, I booked an intimate theatre flamenco show in one of the small venues for the most authentic experience. It was an intense experience.
Fellow Traveler Tip: One way to learn more about flamenco and see a performance is to visit the Museo del Baile Flamenco (Flamenco Dance Museum). museodelbaileflamenco.com
Tapas and Local Cuisine
You can’t go to Seville and not have tapas – it’s a staple and is often served free with a drink in the bars. I wasn’t always sure exactly what I was getting, but all the small plates offered an adventurous and exciting delicacy. Tapas is a great way to sample Andalucian food without breaking the bank. This relaxed way of eating suited me to a tee.
Fellow Traveler Tip: You can participate in an organized tapas tour to learn about tapas’s history, culture, and traditions while taking in the city sights. sevillatapastour.com
If you visit Seville in the summer, carry water; even in May, it was very hot. Research your route to get the maximum tourist experience; there are various maps and apps that can guide you. But don’t forget, Seville is not a place to rush – take the time to sit and watch; the beauty of this city is the people and the music reverberating around the streets.
Tourist information: visitasevilla.es
Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / Kirk Fisher.