We have been to Seville for two days. What a lovely, lively and pleasant city! We highly recommend it.
Via Mazagon and Huelva
First we sailed to Mazagon, because it seemed easy to travel from there straight to Seville. Looking back at that, it would have been easier to go from Faro, as there are direct buses. But we had a wonderful sailing trip from Vilamoura to Mazagon. So it was worth it.
Ultimately the journey of Mazagon to Seville wasn’t that bad as well. It took us just over two hours to get there and also two to get back.
And it was all well worth it. We enjoyed Seville!
Hotel, food and drink
We stayed in Petit Palace Marqués Santa Ana. A nice hotel, very friendly to dogs. Nice staff, nice beds, great showers. Very central location in the city. And they gave us a box to take with us, so we had WiFi everywhere for those two days. This hotel is definitely a recommendation!
Of course we had looked for things to do and see in Seville. But we actually like it better to just “feel” the city and soak up the atmosphere.
Also, we usually can’t enter museums or other official landmarks with a dog anyway.
To experience Sevilla, mainly means eating and drinking. You will find terraces, restaurants, bodegas and tapas bars everywhere. After the trip we were quite hungry, so we walked towards the cathedral. We sat down at a nice street corner, at Bar Gonzalo. We both had a large glass of gazpacho and shared a portion of cod croquettes. It was tasty, nice and we enjoyed the area. Unfortunately, we had a very different experience later…
Feria Abril Seville
Herco had noticed earlier that hotels in Seville were incredibly expensive. It turned out that it’s normally not like that, but it was just because of a huge festival week: feria Abril.
Just outside of the centre, there was a huge fairground with hundreds or maybe even thousands of eateries. Women and girls strolled in beautiful, traditional flamenco dresses and families rode in the carriages through the streets. There were horseback riders and many eating families.
We enjoyed seeing it. But we liked the city centre better. The feria was just too massive for us. A bit like walking through the centre of Amsterdam on Queensday (nowadays Kingsday) when you don’t live in Amsterdam.
It was the last day of the festival and in the evening there were fireworks.
Walking through town
We walked a lot these two days, criss-crossing the city, soaking up the atmosphere. Wandering around in the nice neighbourhoods and narrow streets. Beautiful ‘peak through’ vistas, courtyards and surprising squares and architecture. And we were lucky to have the perfect weather for walking around.
The area around the cathedral, with the bell tower and Alcázar, was one of our favourites. Many tourists, but with a pleasant atmosphere. The Torre del Oro down by the river is also pretty nice.
But what really impressed us, was the Plaza de España. What a lovely, pretty square that is! So beautiful and with a pleasant atmosphere. The park around it is also magnificent. And because it is spring, everything was lush green and the trees had flowers. It smelled nice and the birds and parrots made a lot of noise. We could have stayed here all day.
La Maenstranza (bullfighter stadium) and the modern big fish tail were a bit disappointing to us. But the walk to get there, straight through the heart of the city, was definitely worth it.
You can also rent bikes to go around Seville. We already had plenty to do for only two days, but otherwise it is definitely a nice option!
Restaurants: do’s and don’ts
We did not take the hotel breakfast for 15 euros per person. Instead we had breakfast in town for 5 euros per person. With fresh orange juice, a cappuccino and a delicious sandwich. We sat there, enjoying the sun, in front of Hotel Alfonso XIII. Bar White, this place was called. Great alternative!
We have mainly been eating small bits all the time. We took some tasty tapas at Casa Tomate, Bar el Cathedral and somewhere in the small streets a bit further into Santa Cruz.
Although we had eaten that tasty gazpacho and croquettes at Bar Gonzalo at noon, we had quite a disappointment in the late afternoon. We took a mix of varied tapas for 10,00 euros. What a mistake that turned out to be. I think she just put all the left-overs on a plate. Really dirty and greasy. Potato salad, Russian salad and pieces of giblets. Very gross. Moreover, the server was very unfriendly and the white wine was acidic. No, these were some of the filthiest tapas ever!
On Monday afternoon we had lunch at Bodega Gongora. We had a good spot on a crowded terrace in a small street. Excellent Menu el dia for 11,50 euros. Many waiters going back and forth, but the service was chaotic. I got the wrong main course and had to be fairly straightforward to get the right plate instead. Herco’s paella was cold and my second order of water was calculated on the bill, but was never served. Not that much of a recommendation, although the place itself was fun.
Seville: do it!!!
Seville really is a great city. So if you have the opportunity to go there: do it!