No me ha dejado, they say of Seville: “it has not forsaken me.” The Andalusian capital is, without doubt, one of Europe’s most attractive and enchanting cities. On a 48-hour mini-break, you will find plenty to make your visit here linger fondly in the memory long after leaving, just as the city’s motto promises.
Wandering in Santa Cruz and Triana
Seville surrenders its charms and secrets to the aimless wanderer. The majority of your first day in the Andalusian capital couldn’t be better spent than on foot, exploring the old Jewish quarter of Santa Cruz and the gyspy quarter of Triana. Santa Cruz is the scrunched-together maze of narrow streets that surrounds Seville’s cathedral and Alcázar; although it is the busy touristic center of Seville, it has kept all of the charm that has seduced visitors for centuries. Eschew the touristy (and expensive) horse-drawn taxis that hang around the cathedral in order to be able to nose around Santa Cruz properly: many of the streets are so narrow that there’s barely enough room for two pedestrians side-by-side, let alone a horse and carriage.
Destinations Unlocked:Let our travel expert Stefano help you find your perfect Culture trip
Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
Cross the San Telmo Bridge
After getting lost in Santa Cruz, cross the ornate San Telmo bridge to the other side of the distinctively pale-green Guadalquivir river. On this side of town, the ambience changes slightly but definitely as you enter the romance-drenched gypsy neighborhood of Triana. Bullfighting and flamenco are deeply associated with this achingly pretty quarter, the colorful houses of which are decorated with locally-made ceramics. These are on sale in many of barrio’s independent shops, which sit next to old-style tapas bars – plastered with huge old bullfighting posters and bursting with local life – on the scruffy, beautiful streets. While you’re in Triana, don’t miss the recently-renovated covered market – another superb place to sample Triana culture.
Read about the amazing matadors
In his fascinating autobiography, the legendary Triana-born gypsy matador Juan Belmonte recounts his rebellious childhood. He remembers hanging around the Alameda de Hércules in the early 1900s, smoking with his deliquent friends and openly-mocking passers-by. Characters such as the young Belmote gave this spacious plaza a bad reputation for the rest of the century, and until recently it was a sinister area which visitors were recommended to leave well alone. Things couldn’t be more different now: Plaza Alameda is one of the city’s most popular nightspots, and is packed with fashionable bars and restaurants offering a range of international cuisine as well as traditional Andalusian fare. And after a day’s wandering, you will need a good meal.
Seeing the sights
Kick off the second half of your 48 hours in Seville with a trip to the Metropol Parasol monument in the heart of the city center. This amazing wooden sculpture was built between 2005 and 2011 and is locally referred to as Las Setas, or “the mushrooms” due to the distinctive shape of its vast canopies. It is perched delicately above Roman ruins – a fact which made construction a lengthy and controversial project – that are viewable in the ground-floor’s archaeological musem, while a rooftop walkway offers panoramic views of the city.From the mushrooms it’s but a five minute walk to Seville’s two key historic attractions. The Cathedral of Saint Mary of the See is the largest Gothic cathedral and third largest church in the world. Construction of this sprawling complex commenced in 1401 and continued for over a hundred years. In 1507 the cathedral was finally opened, quite spectacularly succeeding in its original aim – namely, to show the rest of Europe how powerful and wealthy Seville had become.
All over Andlausia, displays of Catholicism might sit alongside great monuments from the region’s Moorish period. Seville is no exception, with its Moorish Alcázar palace located just a few minutes on foot from the huge cathedral. Though considered one of the finest examples of Moorish architecture in Spain, the Alcázar’s various sections in fact have differing styles and date from the Mudéjar and Renaissance periods as well as from the city’s time under Moorish rule.
Soak it all in
For a suitably romantic conclusion to your second day in this enchanting city, head to the banks of the Guadalquivir river for the sunset. Flowing from Córdoba through inland Andalusia, Seville and eventually out into the Atlantic ocean, the Guadalquivir has the only river port in Spain and brought Seville great wealth after Columbus discovered the New World in 1492. Reflected in its slow-moving waters, the lights of Triana lend sunsets here a beauty that will stay with you for a long time after leaving. Seville, indeed, will not forsake you.
Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip
meet our Local Insider
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A GUIDE?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
WHAT DESTINATION IS ON YOUR TRAVEL BUCKET-LIST?
I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
KEEN TO EXPLORE THE WORLD?
Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.