Sevilla City was even more beautiful than I imagined it to be. I do believe the Girona Old Town close to where we live, is lovely. And I found San Sebastian to be one of the most beautiful Spanish cities, but more so because of the French influences. But, as I started to research the top things to do in Seville Spain, the one thing that struck me was how beautiful Seville city is. I knew right away I wanted to visit Seville Andalusia, not only for the food but for some of the top Seville attractions.
Seville Travel Guide
In this Seville travel guide, we share our tips on the top things to do in Seville Spain, whether you like culture, museums, history, or food. We hope these tips will help you plan your Seville itinerary. We’ve put together a few different Seville blog posts with loads of Seville travel tips. Together, we can help travelers to Seville figure out what to do in Seville, what to eat in Seville, and most important, provide recommended Seville restaurants.
*This post contains compensated links. Find more info in my DISCLAIMER.
Where to Stay in Seville Spain
There are a good number of hotels in Seville City Centre, including the old town that surrounds the Seville Cathedral. We stayed in Hotel Inglaterra on Plaza Nueva, which was definitely centrally located. The great thing about staying in this area of Seville is that you are close to all of the top things to see in Seville. Is it the best area to stay in Seville? Maybe. It can get pretty loud and pretty busy, particularly on the weekends. If staying in Seville city center, maybe ask for a hotel that doesn’t face the street or the main square to avoid the noise. But it helps to be only walking distance to some of the Seville top attractions.
There are also a lot of options using Airbnb Seville Spain, particularly for apartments that are outside of the busy city center but still within walking distance of all of the Seville attractions. We use Airbnb a lot when traveling, particularly when staying for more than a few nights. If you’ve never tried Airbnb before, then use this link for Airbnb Seville Spain for a discount off your first stay.
Best Hotels in Seville
While staying in Seville, we stayed at two different Seville hotels. The first in the Sevilla city center, the other a bit farther out.
Hotel Inglaterra on Plaza Nueva, very central located and classically European. Rooms start at €125 a night including breakfast. Check the latest prices here. Hotel Inglaterra is close to all of the Seville traditional food.
AC Marriott Seville Ciudad is outside of the city center, close to Plaza Espana. It is one of the Seville Hotels with a pool, but it is farther out. This is a good option if you are renting a car to drive around Andalusia, and they have a hotel pool. Rooms start at €90 a night. It is about a 30-minute walk to the city center, but it was very modern and very quiet. We generally tend to stay with Marriott when we can, and the AC Hotel Brand is a Spanish brand within the Marriott chain. Check the latest prices here.
I also like Melia, another Spanish brand. Their Melia Sevilla Colon is well-located, close to the city center, but not in an area that is too busy or noisy. Rooms start at €150 a night. Check the latest prices here.
One of the 5 star hotels in Seville Spain is Hotel Alfonso XIII, which is a Luxury Collection property. It is a luxury hotel sandwiched between the Sevilla Cathedral and Plaza Espana. The hotel alone is a Sevilla must see attraction and one of the top luxury hotels in Seville Spain.
History of Seville Spain
The history of Seville Spain is unique, well Andalusia is unique in general. There is so much more influence from outside of Spain in this area that still seeps into some of the top Seville Spain attractions. Most of this influence came from the Muslim world, through the Moors, and Seville once housed numerous minarets. These were “converted” along with the population, once Catholicism spread through the region. At first glance, it would seem that many of the churches that are on the typical list of Seville Spain Things To Do are just that – churches. But, look closely at the details of the artwork and architecture to see these Muslim influences that are not seen in most other Spanish cities.
Top Things To Do in Seville Spain
I mention the history of Seville because it drives a lot of the top Seville Spain attractions. This mixture of ancient cultures and religions, including Islam, Judaism, and Christianity, affects the architecture of the churches and the cathedral and even the Flamenco. It’s one reason why I couldn’t stop at creation a list of top 10 Seville attractions. I just kept going! Well, part of that involves food and drink.
1. Sevilla Cathedral
It seems that in the Seville Old Town all roads end up at the Sevilla Cathedral. It’s one of the key Seville Spain points of interest and certainly one of the top Seville landmarks. It’s unique among other churches of its size in that it was once a mosque when Seville was under Muslim control. The current church tower was a minaret then, used for the Muslim call to prayer. There are still Islamic architectural and design elements to be seen even on the exterior of the church. Also, it’s the third largest church in the world, with 80 different chapels inside. And, it houses the tomb of Christopher Columbus. The Sevilla Cathedral is definitely a Seville must-see attraction.
Book Your Sevilla Cathedral With a Guide – From €34
2. Climb La Giralda Sevilla
In addition to admiring the architecture of the Sevilla Cathedral, you can also climb to the top of the tower, known as “la Giralda” for views over the city. In fact, there is no reason to climb stairs. Instead, access to the top is through a serious of ramp ways, making it unique in another way.
Check out La Giralda and Sevilla Cathedral from a different perspective – Book a Sevilla Roof Top Tour From €38
3. Plaza Espana
Another one of the top Seville tourist attractions is Plaza Espana. There seems to be a “Plaza Espana” in most Spanish cities, but the one in Seville is unlike all others. Rather than being a simple square in the center of the city, it’s a monument to every region in Spain. Yes, even Gerona, our home! Built for an Expo in the 1920s. The story of Spain is told through the painted tiles and artistic details, unlike anything else in Spain.
Movie buffs might recognize some of the architecture because Plaza Espana was a filming location for Game of Thrones and Star Wars (Attack of the Clones). Don’t forget to also spend a few minutes wandering through Maria Luisa Park, which faces the Plaza. It’s a great place to explore and escape the hot Seville sun.
Seville Sightseeing Pro Tip: Try visiting Plaza Espana in the morning, before the crowds get insane. Also, there aren’t a lot of food options, so perhaps eat before going over. Food options are limited to some tourist kiosks and a couple of cafes. A great spot that isn’t too far from Plaza Espana, and makes a great stop before or after seeing the Seville sights in the area is Cerveceria Mary Reyes on Calle del Almirante Lobo, near the Puerto de Jerez. They have the best pringa sandwich we had in Seville!
4. Visit Alcazar Seville
Another Game of Thrones filming location, the Real Alcazar Sevilla is one of the top things to see in Seville Spain if you love architecture. It’s close to the Sevilla Cathedral and can be visited on the same day if you only have one day in Seville. Like much of the architecture in the area, the Alcazar was a Moorish fort that later became a Christian royal palace. It’s one of the best examples of the combination of these two architectural styles.
What to do in Seville Spain Pro Tip: When is the best time to visit Alcazar Seville? Similar to Plaza Espana try to visit in the morning, before the crowds and the heat kick in. To make the most of a short stay or a weekend in Seville, try booking an Alcazar and Sevilla Cathedral Tour. This way you can skip the lines, learn about the history of the Alcazar and the Cathedral with an official guide. Either way, it’s best to book the Alcazar ahead of time.
5. What To Do in Seville Spain? Flamenco!
This is more a must do in Seville Spain rather than a thing to do in Seville. You can see Flamenco being performed on the city streets and in some of the main squares of the Seville city center. But, to see some of the best Flamenco in Seville, definitely pay to attend a performance. Even better, the Flamenco and Tapas Tour we took with Devour Tours included food and Flamenco, but also helped us to understand the history and tradition of this famous dance.
6. Visit the Seville Museums
I understand many people travel to explore museums, even if they are not on the top of our personal list of what to see in Seville. Here are some recommended Seville museums to check out, in addition to the Flamenco Museum Sevilla. There is the Sevilla Fine Arts Museum, just behind the Plaza de Armas Seville, a little outside the center of the city. It features work from prominent Spanish artists including El Greco. Or visit the Naval Museum, in part to check out the Torre del Oro, or Golden Tower. Once a military watchtower in the 13th Century, it was named after the color the tower projected onto the water. Other museums include the Architectural Museum and the Museum of Arts and Traditions. Each of these offers a different way to learn about Sevilla history and culture.
7. Wander Through Santa Cruz – the Jewish Quarter
There is some romanticism to wandering through the narrow, old streets of the Barrio Santa Cruz, which was the old Jewish Quarter of the City. It’s a reminder of the history of Seville, once a city that houses Christians, Muslims, and Jews in peace and tranquility. You can also pause and get a glimpse into some of the lovely courtyards and decorated entryways to the buildings, some of which are just lovely. Obviously, be respectful to the locals! Look for the Calle de Los Besos, or the street of kisses as well. It’s one of the most narrow streets in the city.
The Best Things To Do in Seville Involve Eating (Or Drinking)!
To us, of course, this should be no surprise, some of the top Seville things to see happen inside the Seville tapas bars and restaurants. There is just something about the buzz within a tapas bar, watching the diners as well as the bartenders, and if you can the chefs. But, there is more to the best things to do in Seville Spain than just eat patatas bravas and paella!
8. Eat Tapas
Maybe we are biased because we travel for food, but for us when people ask what is Seville famous for, we answer tapas! Like much of Andalusia, the southern region of Spain, many of the top places to visit in Seville are tapas bars and restaurants. It’s easy to see when wandering around the city that the locals love to eat and drink and enjoy their time out with friends and family. We recommend doing the same! Or, book a Tapas Like a Local Tour With Devour Tours. We loved our tour through the Triana neighborhood and learned so much!
What are the Best Restaurants in Seville Spain? Our Seville Guide to Food
There is no shortage of tapas bars in Seville Spain. Here are some resources to help you find great tips on eating out in Seville. We share our recommendations on the 23 Best Tapas to Eat in Seville and recommendations on Where to Eat in Seville in our Seville Food Guide.
9. Try The Local Wines of Andalucía
Before traveling to Seville, I will admit that I knew very little about the wines of the area, other than Sherry. Even if you can’t book a day trip to some of the local vineyards or Sherry bodegas in nearby Jerez, be sure to try some of the local wines (of course with tapas) during your Sevilla sightseeing tour. Try some of the driest white wine in the world, called Fino or Manzanilla. Or, go for the Pedro Ximenez, which is more sweet, like a dessert wine. From what we saw, one of the top Seville activities for locals seems to be sipping sherry at a tapas bar. You can tell because the glass is smaller and shorter.
Learn more about Southern Spain in this Seville Guide Book
10. Take a Vermouth – A Top Sevilla To Do
We love vermouth, a sweet and bitter fortified wine that is having a bit of a renaissance in Spain. It’s commonly drunk before lunch, or before dinner, to help open up the appetite. Even more than that, there is a tradition of “taking a vermouth,” which involves having a glass of vermouth with friends and family, along with a few tapas, to catch up. This has become an almost daily ritual since we moved to Spain in 2017.
We drank vermouth at several more traditional Seville tapas bars. But, we also stumbled across a new addition to the scene. This new vermouth bar in Seville carries not just the vermouth of the house, which is typical for tapas bars in Spain, but they carry vermouths from all over Spain. At La Vermutera de Sevilla on Calle Castelar, they are serious about their vermouth. Plus, they are offering amazing tapas, more like a San Sebastian pintxos style.
11. Have a Coffee Under the Metropol Parasol
This was not something I read about when researching places to visit in Seville Spain. We just happened upon it, quite unexpectedly. That said, it’s certainly one of the Seville places to see! Just north of the main Seville sights, the Metropol Parasol is a large wooden art structure made of 6 parasols or umbrellas. You can see loads of families with small children using the Metropol Parasol as an urban playground. Just visit one of the many cafes or bars underneath, or just next to it, to enjoy the view and the people watching.
12. Things to Do in Seville at Night – Cocktails and Gin and Tonics
We are not really night owls. But there really are tons of opportunities for Seville nightlife, from simple tapa bar hopping to grabbing a gin tonic or cocktail. One way to enjoy a night in Seville, perhaps away from the tourists, is to cross the Guadalquivir River into Triana. Or, enjoy a sunset rooftop cocktail at one of the main cocktail bars, like the two hotel bars with rooftop terraces and views of the Cathedral Sevilla, Eme Hotel and Dona Maria’s Bar 17. It’s a perfect way to end a day sightseeing Sevilla.
How to Get to Seville
We arrived in Seville on the AVE train, the highspeed train that links the major cities of Spain. We pretty much traversed most of Spain on the train, traveling from Girona in the Northeast of Spain, all the way to Seville, with a stop in Barcelona. There is a direct AVE train from Barcelona to Seville, which took about 5 ½ hours. There is also a direct AVE train from Madrid to Seville as well in about 2 1/2-3 hours. You can book train tickets through RENFE, the Spanish rail service.
FAQs – More Facts About Seville
- Where is Seville Spain? Seville is a city in the Southern Spain region of Andalucia.
- What is the weather in Seville Spain? Seville is known for having little rain and bright blue skies most of the year. The weather is extreme in July and August, with temperatures hitting 100. Winter is mild but can get chilly in the evenings.
- What is the best time to visit Seville? When to visit Seville Spain? In April, Seville hosts a huge city fair called Feria de Abril, which fills the streets. The city celebrates flamenco, music, and food. The city also comes alive during the Holy Week (Semana Santa) festivities around Easter. This can be a spectacle, but it is insane. Because the heat and crowds in July and August can be extreme, summer is to be avoided. The spring and fall are probably the best times to visit, but winters are also fairly mild.
- What are the airports near Seville? The Seville Airport has connections to a few dozen destinations through Europe and North Africa. Or, you can fly in and out of Madrid airport and connect to the city by train.
- How do I get from Madrid to Seville? The best way to get to Seville from Madrid is by high-speed train, which takes between 2 ½ to 3 hours.
- How do I get from Malaga to Seville? The best way to get to Seville from Malaga is by high-speed train, which takes about two hours.
*This post contains compensated links. Find more info in my DISCLAIMER.
Learn More About Seville Tourism and Seville What To Do
You can get loads more Seville tourist information from the Sevilla Tourism Board. They have several Seville tourist office locations throughout the city. They are bright orange and easy to spot. They can provide information on arrival and can provide a Seville tourist map too.
Pin It! Seville City Guide – What To See in Seville Spain
Amber Hoffman, food and travel writer behind With Husband In Tow, is a recovering attorney and professional eater, with a passion for finding new food and drink destinations. She lives with her husband, Eric, in Girona, Catalonia, Spain. Together over the last 20 years, they have traveled to over 70 countries. Amber is the author of the Food Traveler’s Guide to Emilia Romagna.