Catedral de Santa María de la Sede: Seville’s cathedral
Seville’s cathedral was built on the footprint of the city’s grand mosque, originally constructed in the 12th century. When the cathedral was finished in the early 16th century it was the largest in the world. Although that may no longer be the case, it is still an awe-inspiring space.
A visit to the Real Alcázar of Seville
Once upon a time, when Seville was the capital of Al-Andalus, the ruling Almohade caliphate built a palace in the city which they named ‘Al Mubarak’ or 'The Blessed'. It was the hub of both the city's government and its artistic and literary life. Little of that palace remains today, apart from some foundations. On these, in the thirteenth century, the conquering Castilians built their own palace to serve as both seat of government and royal residence, a function the Alcazar performs to this day.
A walk in the gardens of Seville’s Real Alcázar
The most intriguing gardens to explore often feel like a series of rooms, each with a distinctive style of decoration. We wander from area to area, never knowing what might be around the next corner. We get glimpses through trees and over hedges, and sometimes wider views that draw us on, ever eager to see more. Such are the gardens of the Real Alcázar of Seville.
Gallery: Seville’s mushrooms, art or architecture?
In the Plaza de la Encarnación of Seville a strange structure reaches skywards. This is the Metropol Parasol, often referred to by locals as the Mushrooms, Las Setas de la Encarnación. The dramatic forms arch overhead, framing views of the surrounding streets and buildings.
A walk in Seville’s picturesque Triana district
Just to the west of Seville’s city centre, across the Guadalquivir river, lies Triana. This former working class neighbourhood was once home to the Escuela de Mareantes (School of Navigation) which instructed many of the famous sailors of the 15th and 16th centuries. Both Columbus and Magellan studied there before their expeditions in search of new worlds. It is famous too for its tradition of ceramic tile work and its unique style of flamenco.
Gallery: Majolica, the ceramic tiles of Seville
Spain, along with its neighbour Portugal, is home to some of the most beautiful tilework in the world, and much of it originates in Seville. Or more accurately, in the Seville barrio of Triana. Known as Majolica, or sometimes Talavera, after the ceramic centre of Talavera de la Reina in Castilla, these tiles have been produced in this country for hundred of years. Made initially for churches and palaces, the art later spread to homes, adorning floors and walls.
The bliss of returning to the air
I believe I’ve mentioned once or twice in this blog that I love travelling! It’s the thing I’ve most missed during the past two years, when the world has been turned upside-down. Yes, I know that sadly worse things have happened to very many people than a few missed trips abroad. But the fact remains, I’ve missed travelling, and I know many others have felt the same.