Shot on Canon T7i and edited with Adobe Premiere. Please subscribe to me if you enjoyed the video.
Known for being the birthplace of Flamenco, Seville is a unique city that blends Spanish culture with its Moorish past. Filled with colorful houses, narrow streets, and delicious tapas, it’s the perfect place to explore on a warm summer weekend.
People have told me that different regions of Spain are like different countries—and it really showed when I flew into Seville from Barcelona. The large city blocks of Barcelona became small narrow streets—inhabited by cars, bikes, and pedestrians all at the same time. The large apartment buildings turned into small colorful townhouses, influenced largely by Moorish architecture in their design.
Seville is much smaller compared to Barcelona, and you can visit most of its attractions by walking. Here’s a map of my favorite spots.
The Santa Cruz Neighborhood
I stayed in the Santa Cruz district (formerly known as the Jewish Quarter). This neighborhood is walking distance from a variety of attractions—including the Alcázar, Cathedral of Seville, and Plaza de España. Food options are limitless here, as it is home to countless tapas bars, formal sit-down restaurants, and cafés. To put the cherry on top of it all, this neighborhood is also filled with gorgeous narrow streets surrounded by colorful homes inspired by both Spanish and Moorish design.
Where I stayed
Calle Miguel Mañara, 14
Pros: The location. It’s situated right next to the Alcázar and the Seville Cathedral. Its location in the Santa Cruz neighborhood makes finding food extremely easy. There are also several convenience stores located just outside the hotel. The check-in process was easy, and the staff even offered to provide a taxi service to and from the airport.
Cons: Because of how close it is to the Alcázar, the price ended up being pretty high. It also felt pretty touristy and didn’t feel as authentic as staying in someone’s Airbnb.
The Real Alcázar of Seville
Explore the Alcázar of Seville, which was a Christian royal palace built on a Muslim residential fortress. Its unique architecture is influenced by its rich history of Christian and Moorish rule. Be sure to visit the Hall of Ambassadors, which contains one of the most gorgeous ceilings. If you’re a Game of Thrones fan, you might also recognize the Alcázar’s Patio de las Doncellas courtyard, which was used as the filming location of the Kingdom of Dorne.
There’s lots to explore in this huge palace: including lush outdoor gardens adorned with palm trees and the Baths of Maria De Padilla, which is an underground pool that’s guaranteed to be kept cool in the sweltering summers.
Be sure to book your tickets ahead of time for a given time slot, as the line for the tickets can get extremely long.
If you’re looking for free attractions in Seville, this plaza is great for viewing open Flamenco performances and musicians alike.
El Pinton for Lunch
If you’re looking to eat tapas in a sit-down, upscale ambiance, try El Pinton. Their spacious dining room is illuminated by a huge window in the ceiling that lets in a lot of natural light. Even though the dishes and the setting might seem pretty fancy, the price point is really not too bad (especially compared to San Francisco prices). You can get a main for around 9.5 euros at lunchtime. The restaurant was fairly empty when I went at noon, but I’ve heard that it gets super busy around dinner time—so try making a reservation ahead of time.
I made the effort of waking up early to take street photos again :) Unfortunately, Seville’s sunrise happens fairly late (around 7:50-8:00), so the streets were still fairly dark when I went out.
Also known as Metropol Parasol (the Mushrooms of the Incarnation), Las Setas gets the crown for being the largest wooden structure in the world. Its modern design stands out against the city’s traditional Spanish and Moorish houses, and acts as a great viewpoint for the rest of the city. There’s even an underground farmers market where you can find fresh produce and small cafés.
It can get pretty confusing trying to figure out how to get up to the top of the structure. All you have to do is go down to the bottom-most level to purchase tickets (3 euros) to take an elevator up to the top.
See a Flamenco show
Seville is the birthplace of Flamenco, so definitely try to catch a show while you’re here. I bought tickets to see an amazing show at the famous La Casa del Flamenco, but you can also catch a lot of flamenco action out on the streets in Santa Cruz and in the Plaza de España. It’s amazing to see all the dancers so in sync with the guitarist and singer.
Breakfast and coffee at salt and sugar
Seville can get pretty touristy, which means I got tricked into having breakfast one morning at a coffee shop that served frozen pizzas (say what..?!). I found Salt and Sugar the next morning after an early photo walk and was drawn in by the dainty interior. I had a toasty croissant stuffed with a slice of a Spanish omelette (Tortilla Española) and a vanilla café con leche—which was so deliciously creamy and sweet (but probably super high in calories… but who cares when you’re on vacation, right?)
If you’re looking for something to do after visiting the Alcázar, the Seville Cathedral is located right next door. If you’re not too tired at this point, you can climb the La Giralda tower to get a great view of the city. Fun fact: Christopher Columbus is actually buried underneath the cathedral!
Eat Moroccan food
If you’re looking for a break from tapas, Seville is a great place for Moroccan food (considering it was previously ruled by the Moors). I went to Fez for lamb tagine (hearty moroccan stew eaten with cous cous) and Al Wadi for kebabs and seriously some of the best hummus I’ve ever had. Moroccan restaurants are also super accommodating for delicious vegetarian options.
Now… if you don’t mind, I’m going to dump more photos of the gorgeous Santa Cruz neighborhood here :)
Photos were taken on the Canon T7i and edited in Adobe Lightroom CC, with the exception of a few taken on my iPhone and edited with VSCO.
With its middle-eastern influences, Seville was definitely one of the most unique cities in Europe I’ve visited. It’s also one of the most colorful cities I’ve seen (up there with Burano!). Seville’s small size also makes it really convenient to see all the attractions in a day or two—perfect for a weekend getaway!