In early spring or late fall, Seville’s massive cathedral, stunning Alcázar and world-class art museums are bathed in sun. Add great value tapas and 3 days in Seville is the perfect mini break.


Seville is the hottest city in Europe. As the rest of Europe cowers in the cold, Seville’s historic buildings rise into clear blue skies and warm temperatures.

A Gothic cathedral, the largest by volume in the world, towers over cobbled laneways and tiny picturesque squares, framed by perfectly shaped, fragrant orange trees. The alcázar, built during Christian rule but with Islamic design, contains exotic palaces, fountained courtyards and walled gardens – an insight into the colourful past of this once powerful city. A large wooden structure, affectionately known as the mushroom, brings Seville into the modern day.

While Seville is a popular tourist city, locals still enjoy a bewildering array of traditional tapas bars and modern restaurants, dishing up some of the best food in Andalucía.

Seville is a place to see and to savour. To eat and to drink. To wonder the halls of its mighty past and drink in the bars of its current, balmy glory.

It is undeniably one of our favourite cities in Europe. Here’s how to spend 3 days in Seville.

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3 DAYS IN SEVILLE OVERVIEW

DAY 1 AM / Exploring Las Setas and Casa de Pilatos

DAY 1 PM / Staring in awe at Seville Cathedral and its Giralda

DAY 1 EVENING / Sipping sunset cocktails with the best views in the city

DAY 2 AM / Meandering the cobbled laneways of Barrio de Santa Cruz

DAY 2 PM / Exploring the intricate palaces and gardens of the Real Alcázar

DAY 2 EVENING / Dining under the lights of an old church

DAY 3 AM / Strolling the tiled walls and fountains of Plaza España

DAY 3 PM / Absorbing the Spanish masters at Museo de Bellas Artes

DAY 3 EVENING / Mixing modern tapas with traditional flamenco


WHY GO TO SEVILLE?

Exploring the Islamic influences in this Christian city

Strolling the cobbled laneways, fountained patios and tiny squares

Absorbing the finest art in Spain outside Madrid

Visiting intricately designed casas, palaces and churches

Tasting superb tapas at even better prices

Learning to be as relaxed as the Spanish

3 days in Seville itinerary: Shady lanes, sun-drenched squares and tasty tapas

DAY 1 AM / LAS SETAS AND CASA DE PILATOS

Begin by grabbing breakfast at La Cacharreria in El Centro for their great selection of sandwiches, waffles and eggs. Satiated, make your way to Metropol Parasol (locally known as “Las Setas”), which claims to be the largest wooden building in the world. Take the lift to the summit and stroll its undulating walkway for views over the city.

Grab a take away coffee at Virgin Coffee to explore bohemian Calle Regina and the narrow laneways of Santa Catalina. Here, quirky shops and hipster-inspired craftiness blend with old-school Spanish eateries.

End up at Casa de Pilatos a mansion with a mix of architectural styles. Downstairs, the Mudéjar (hybrid of Islamic and Christian designs) courtyard contains a renaissance fountain and sculptures, flanked by a gothic chapel. Upstairs, where the owners lived until a few years ago, the Mudéljar ceilings and windows surround rooms decorated like a grand European house.


METROPOL PARASOL / 9:30 – 22:30 Sun – Thurs; 9:30 – 23:30 Fri – Sat | Price: €3 | Location: Plaza de Encarnación

CASA DE PILATOS / 9:00 – 18:00 Nov – Mar; 9:00 – 19:00 Apr – Oct | Price: €10 downstairs; €12 both floors but upstairs is only via a 30 minute tour | Location: Plaza de Pilatos

DAY 1 PM / STARING IN AWE AT SEVILLE CATHEDRAL AND ITS GIRALDA

It’s a tight squeeze at Bar Alfalfa, but it is worth it for the traditional tapas (try the solomillo and the croquetas) and bustling Spanish atmosphere. Dusty bottles line the shelves behind a row of hams hanging from the ceiling. After lunch head to the Cathedral.

For 500 years Muslims ruled over Seville. Unlike Córdoba, not many of their buildings survived but their influence can be felt everywhere. When the Christians originally captured the city in 1248 they used the mosque as their cathedral. But, 175 years later the decaying mosque was eventually destroyed and the gargantuan Seville Cathedral built in its place. It claims to be the largest in the world by volume.

Inside, check out the tomb of Christopher Columbus and the remarkable chapter house. A slowly winding ramp takes you up 35 floors to the top of the Giralda. As you ascend checkout the Mudéjar items on your left. The views from the summit are an ideal way to close out the sightseeing on the first of your 3 days in Seville.

DAY 1 EVENING / DRINKING SUNSET COCKTAILS WITH THE BEST VIEWS IN THE CITY

Take the lift up to the EME Catedral Hotel bar for sunset drinks. Yes, they are twice as expensive as anywhere else, but the views are four times as good. Shimmy your way up to the glass panels and stare in wonder at the magnificent view.

For dinner head to Mamarracha, a stylish modern tapas bar with excellent food and swish contemporary décor. Low hanging bulbs light up wooden tables surrounded by a plant wall. The zucchini and basil risotto and the Ibérica sirloin with chimichurri were top notch.


SEVILLE CATHEDRAL / 11:00 – 17:00 Tue – Sat; 14:30 – 18:00 Sun; 11:00 – 15:30 Mon | Price: €9 Cathedral and Giralda; €25 rooftop tour | Location: Avenida de la Constitución

DAY 2 AM / MEANDERING THE COBBLED LANEWAYS OF BARRIO DE SANTA CRUZ

Begin the second day of your 3 days in Seville with breakfast at Bar El Commercio. It’s traditional, so try the churros con chocolate. In Spain, churros aren’t the sickly sweet sugar encrusted desert you might get elsewhere, (nothing wrong with that) but more of a slightly sweet breakfast dish.

This morning explore Calle Sierpes and Calle Velázquez in Centro, before heading into Barrio Santa Cruz. This medieval Jewish quarter is a tangle of twisty laneways and tiny squares and a great place to get lost.

If you like your grand art masters pop into Hospital de los Venerables, a hospice that contains 10 to 12 masterpieces by Zurburán, Montanes, Murillo and Velázquez. The entrance fee is a little on the steep side, so the unwilling in your group can have a coffee in the beautiful square outside instead.

For 100 years most of the wealth of the Spanish Empire flooded from the Americas into Seville, until the river began silting up at the turn of the 16th century. The records for Spain’s involvement in the Americas now rest in the Archivo General de Indias. There is not much to see but it’s worth strolling the halls and watching the film on the second floor detailing this important part of Seville’s history.


HOSPITAL DE LOS VENERABLES / 10:00 – 14:00 Thurs – Sun | Price: €10 | Location: Plaza Venerables

ARCHIVO GENERAL DE INDIAS / 9:30 – 17:00 Mon – Sat; 10:00 – 14:00 Sun | Price: Free | Location: Avenida de la Constitución

DAY 2 PM / EXPLORING THE INTRICATE PALACES AND GARDENS OF THE ALCÁZAR

There are hundreds of places to eat near the Alcázar (unsurprising), but we recommend perching with locals on the high tables at Bodeguita Casablanca. The food is good and the views even better.

Recharged, enter the Alcázar (which you should book in advance online to avoid long queues). This is the most magnificent of Seville’s fine buildings. Originally a fort during Islamic times, for many years after the Christian conquest in 1248 it became home to Spanish Kings, who developed and enhanced the buildings.

The most impressive of which is the Mudéjar Palacio de Don Pedro. It’s intricately carved facades, arches and ceilings rise above tranquil patios, tinkling fountains and gardens bursting with colour. It takes a couple of hours to explore the palace and gardens, so make sure you give yourself enough time before it closes.

DAY 2 EVENING / DINING UNDER THE LIGHTS OF AN OLD CHURCH

In the evening amble up to Alameda de Hércules in the northern part of town. It’s a buzzing area in the evening with a number of good restaurants. Our pick is Duo Tapas, where interesting food is served in a tiny square under fairy lights hanging from an old church.

After dinner, head to Habanilla Café on the edge of Alameda de Hércules where a lively mix of locals gather to listen to whatever is on offer that night.


REAL ALCÁZAR / 9.30 – 17:00 Oct-Mar; 9:30 – 19:00 Apr-Sep | Price: €11.50 at the gate; €12.50 online; €6 more for the audio guide | Location: Patio de Banderas

DAY 3 AM / STROLLING THE TILED WALLS OF PLAZA ESPAÑA AND ITS CHILLED PARK

Start the last day of your 3 days in Seville itinerary at Plaza España. Built in 1928 for Ibero-American Exposition its huge semi-circular building is a mix of styles and adorned with tiled alcoves. It surrounds a plaza of fountains, bridges and rectangular ponds.

Stroll the nearby Parque de Maria Luisa with its shaded paths and manicured gardens, before heading north through the Antigua Fábrica de Tabacos (old tobacco factory), a magnificent building now housing the University of Seville. Take a quick peruse at the Alfonso XIII hotel.

Next, amble up the river, past the Torre del Oro, a 13th-century Islamic watchtower, and around the Toros de la Real Maestranza, the oldest bullring in Spain. Unless you are really into bullfighting, skip the very poorly organised tour.

Cross the river and meander Triana market. Fresh meat and fish stalls are interspersed with cafes and bars. Try a coffee and pastry at Café Bocasú – but not too many because lunch is coming up.


TOROS DE LA REAL MAESTRANZAS / Tour Every 20 minutes 9.30 – 20:00 | Price: €8 per person | LocationPaseo de Cristóbal Colón

DAY 3 PM / ABSORBING THE SPANISH MASTERS AT EVOCATIVE MUSEO DE BELLAS ARTES

Back across the river, Bartolomea is a great stop for innovative tapas in a relaxed modern space. Their Ibérica pressée with apple purée and pistachio pesto was the best dish we devoured in Seville.

Take solace from the afternoon heat at the under-visited but very good Museo de Bellas Artes. The building, a beautiful convent, houses a few grandmasters from the 15th to 20th century. But its undisputed highlight are the towering Murillo’s dramatically hanging in the church attached to the convent. With a few El Greco to boot, you’ll wonder why you can get in for free.

Take some weight off the feet at Creéme Helado, just across the square. Their ice cream is smooth and delicious. Just around the corner, artisan coffee allows you to pick from coffee all around the world.

DAY 3 EVENING / BEING TRANSFIXED BY TRADITIONAL FLAMENCO

On the final night of your 3 days in Seville, take in a Flamenco show at the Museo del Baile Flamenco. Dancers stomp, clap and swirl their way around a tiny stage (or a pretty patio) backed by a guitarist and a couple of singers. It is a rousing and enjoyable Spanish night.

For dinner, snare a table on the footpath at El Pinton.


MUSEO DEL BAILE FLAMENCO / Performances run through the late afternoon and evening | Price: €22 | Location: Calle Manuel Rojas Marcos

ALL THE INFORMATION YOU NEED TO HELP PLAN YOUR OWN 3 DAYS IN SEVILLE ITINERARY

We believe that a little pre-planning, research, and understanding what you are looking for in a destination, will help make your travels far more successful. Here’s some further information we think you might need to plan your own 3 days in Seville itinerary.

GETTING TO SEVILLE

A range of International flights arrive at Sevilla International Airport (or San Pablo Airport). It is a 20 minute €22 (+ €1 per bag) taxi ride into the centre of town. A bus (€4) runs from the airport to town roughly every 20 minutes making a number of stops including Sevilla Santa-Justa train station and Plaza de Armas.

The Spanish rail network is excellent. Trains regularly connect Seville with other major Spanish cities including Córdoba, Madrid, Barcelona, Cádiz and Málaga.

CHECK FLIGHTS

GETTING AROUND SEVILLE

Seville is a compact city with all the destinations in this itinerary within walking distance. As many of the sights are in the old town, getting a taxi would probably take longer to get to where you want to go anyway.

If you decide to head further afield good alternatives are renting a bike or using the tram (€1.40 per single).

BEST TIME TO GO TO SEVILLE

Seville is the hottest city in Europe. In summer the temperature can reach into the forties, so it is best to avoid June to September. We suggest March to May when fresh growth makes the trees and gardens a lush green, the temperatures are not too high and the rains of winter are beginning to die away.

In particular, a weekend to Seville in March and April can be a cheap way for northern Europeans to get some winter sun while enjoying a historically interesting and beautiful city.

COSTS OF OUR 3 DAYS IN SEVILLE ITINERARY

The total cost of our 3 days in Seville itinerary, for two people, was €540. With Apr 2019 exchange rates of €1.16 to the British Pound; €0.89 to the US dollar; this equates to:

4 day Cappadocia Itinerary
US $600
4 day Cappadocia Itinerary
GBP £460
4 day Cappadocia Itinerary
EUR €540

CONSTRUCTING OUR 3 DAYS IN SEVILLE ITINERARY

We recommend 3 days in Seville as the perfect amount of time. There are a number of truly world-class sights and high-quality food and drink at very reasonable prices.

However, there are also quite a few middle-ranking attractions, the high entry fees of which can quickly add up. We suggest you skip Hospital de la Caridad; Torre del Oro; Toros de la Real Maestranza; Church Santa Ana and Hospital de las Venerables (unless you are really into art.)

The temperatures in Seville, particularly in the afternoon, can be extreme and siesta is common. So this itinerary spends most mornings walking the streets when the shops are open and the temperatures cooler. In the afternoons we take a bit of refuge in the Cathedral, the Real Alcázar and the Museo de Bellas Artes.

BOOKING TIPS FOR YOUR 3 DAYS IN SEVILLE ITINERARY

We recommend staying fairly centrally so that you can easily walk around this charming compact city. Like any city, there is a wide range of Airbnb options but if you fancy treating yourself then the EME Catedral hotel is in a perfect location with fantastic views of the cathedral.

BOOK YOUR STAY

ATTRACTIONS IN SEVILLE

Queues at the Real Alcázar can be very long, so book online before you arrive. You may still have to queue for 5 minutes to get in, but it’s a lot quicker than the other lines. Make sure you pick the right queue if you have booked tickets in advance.

General admission to the Cathedral & Giralda is less busy, but during weekends and holidays, it would still be wise to get tickets online. The Cathedral also offers tours of its roof for €15. These fill up a week in advance, so if you want to go, book online before you arrive.

The Flamenco performances also get booked up in advance. You can drop in on your first day to make a reservation for later in your 3 days in Seville, however, it’s slightly cheaper to book online in advance.

The online prices above are the cheapest ways to see these attractions, however, if you would like to organise a guided tour in advance, you can book with our partners.

Real Alcázar / Entrance & guided tour

Cathedral & Giralda / Entrance & guided tour

Good evening restaurants can fill up fast in Seville. If you arrive just as they open (usually about 20:00 – 20:30) you will get a table but after that you may need to wait. If you don’t fancy sitting in their bar with a glass of wine for a half hour or so, make a reservation.


GUIDEBOOKS & READING

We used the Lonely Planet guidebook for Andalucía which contains helpful information about opening times, attractions and is generally good for restaurant recommendations.

Another great source for restaurants is Foursquare. Download the app before leaving.

GET YOUR GUIDE

WHERE NEXT?

Seville sits in the Spanish region of Andalucía. An area blessed with important historical cities, great hiking and beautifully set white villages. If you can spend a little longer here, there is a lot to do.

Córdoba, a 45-minute train ride away, has the majestic Mezquita-Mosque, a truly unique building, where a 750-year-old Christian cathedral rises through the ceiling of a 1200-year-old Muslim prayer hall. It can easily be visited as a day trip from Seville – it’s worth it for the beautiful patios alone.

TOURING THE WHITE VILLAGES

2 DAYS IN CÓRDOBA

AN ISLAMIC CALIPHATE IN CÓRDOBA

Another option is to hire a car and make a two day trip across Grazalema natural park and the white villages that dot this very scenic area. Or if you fancy hiking then the walk down the 400m Garganta Verde is our pick of the best walks in the area.

If you have any questions please leave them in the comments section below – we will always reply. But before you go any further why not follow us on FACEBOOK, INSTAGRAM and TWITTER and sign up to our monthly NEWSLETTER.

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In early spring or late fall Seville’s massive cathedral, stunning alcázar and world-class art museums are bathed in sun. Add great value tapas and 3 days in Seville is the perfect break. #seville #sevilla

In early spring or late fall Seville’s massive cathedral, stunning alcázar and world-class art museums are bathed in sun. Add great value tapas and 3 days in Seville is the perfect break. #seville #sevilla

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