Sevilla is a Spanish city bursting with life, culture, and passion. It seems everything the Sevillanos do, they do with passion! From flamenco dancing, to bull fights, to the chaos of eating tapas for lunch, to celebrating Corpus Christi with huge street parades in their Sunday best, Sevillanos do it all with passion and a big, friendly smile.
Sevilla had been on our travel bucket list for a while and when we booked the big birthday trip to Ibiza with the fam, we were able to fly a quick hop from Ibiza to Sevilla. It worked out perfectly and I highly recommend a visit for authentic Spain!
Our favorite squares were the Plaza El Salvador with the gorgeous Salvador cathedral, and the Plaza de San Francisco, adorned with a huge outdoor cathedral for the Corpus Christi festivities.
Pretty Plaza El Salvador ^^
Plaza de San Francisco above decked out for Corpus Christi.
We stayed in an airbnb right in the middle of the city on Calle de Pajaritos. It was beautifully decorated and very city center! If you’re in Sevilla during a major Catholic holiday, it might be even a little too city center in the middle of the parade route, but more on that later 😉 .
We are so lucky to have friends who live in Sevilla and show us around the city! Steve and Carmen made our time in Sevilla amazing and showed us some of the best tapas bars and took us out for a fun evening of carriage rides, bull fights, and a flamenco show. 🙂 Talk about an amazing evening!
They took us around streets of Santa Cruz in search of the best tapas in the city. The only way to do that… is to tapas hop!
Along the way, we stopped to take pictures of the prettiest streets and squares. These streets were more manageable during the day than in the crazy evening!
Eventually they took us to Las Teresas for the best jamón in the city. I washed mine down with a copa de sangria.
If you didn’t know, the Spanish take their jamón very seriously. Usually you can choose between jamón iberico or serrano, and both types are dry-cured by hanging from the ceiling. When ordered, the ham leg is thinly sliced onto plates to share and served with dry crackers.
It was fabulous, of course.
Next up was traditional tapas… onto the next bar!
Steve and Carmen took us to Bodega Santa Cruz, a wonderful, lively, and popular tapas bar with good prices. The food was all delicious, and for eight of us eating all the tapas we could dream of and drinking as much sangria, vino tinto, or beer as we wanted, the bill came out to around 60 Eur! Now that’s what I call good eats!
I was mildly obsessed with the paella here (along with so many other dishes!) and may or may not have had tres platos 😉 .
Carmen, who is born and raised here, gave us a plate to try. “It’s really tasty” she said, with a wink. I knew that was a bad sign!! but tried it anyway. Afterwards she told us it was… chicken blood or sangre encebollada, a traditional Andalusian dish. Ah, so good. 😉 🙂
The Bodega Santa Cruz also had a lovely view of the Hidalgo down the street.
After our tapas lunch, we explored around town some more, walking towards the Hidalgo and Cathedral…
… and the Tower of Gold, which sits on the Guadalquivir River and used to house the city’s gold (some gold came from explorers like Christopher Columbus) when Sevilla was a major trade city.
We went past the horse drawn carriages waiting to whisk you away…
We then came to the Hotel Alfonso XIII, the nicest hotel in Sevilla and where the Game of Thrones cast stays when filming.
Game of Thrones uses the Real Alcazar as the Gardens of Dorne and had just finished filming the day before! We casually inspected the lobby area before sitting down at the outdoor bar for a drink, waiting to ‘just happen to run into’ some of the actors 😉
But alas, no celebrity spottings today.
On a different day, we took Steve and Carmen to our favorite locale, Bar Estrella just near our apartment. The food here was also great, and the restaurant is filled with tiles galore and some crazy decorations.
This time Carmen had us try bull’s tail. It was quite good!
For the evening, we walked back through the gorgeous plazas towards las Setas de Sevilla, the large wooden tree-like structures in the city. It’s basically what I would call a city-park with no grass. You don’t need to spend a ton of time here but they are pretty cool to see.
Much more Sevilla to come!