I've traveled to southern Spain often because of the food, culture, and friends I've made. I love almost everything about the trip—even the jet lag. You can also see flamenco dancers, enjoy tapas and paella, or relax by strolling along the riverfront promenade. There are plenty of things to do in Seville—I've rounded up over 30 of them, and that's only the tip of the iceberg!
Seville is one of Spain's most popular cities, and for a good reason. It's home to the oldest cathedral in Spain and an Alcazar Palace that dates back to the 13th century.
Maria Luisa Park is one of Seville's most popular parks because it offers fun activities for kids and adults (like an amusement park)! It's also home to several beautiful sculptures and fountains, which make it a great place to explore with a group or on your own.
You'll want to head here on weekends when musicians often perform—and even during the week, you'll find plenty of activity.
I find the best time to go to Seville is either is Spring and fall, before and after the intense Spanish heat.
1. Get a drink at the oldest bar in Sevilla
The oldest bar in Seville, El Rinconcillo was established in 1672 and is still operating today. It's known for its traditional Spanish decor and delicious tapas with a twist! I like mini Spanish bars there are beautiful design elements and details that set this spot apart. While the spot is no longer a secret if you're able to get there on a quiet day you're in for a treat.
2. Drink sangria on Plaza de España
This beautiful plaza is located right in the historic center of Seville, which means you can enjoy a sip of sangria while taking in the city's architecture and atmosphere. Even if drinking wine isn't an option you can still take in the beautiful architecture, the beautiful topographical maps that include each autonomous region of the country or get a selfie in front of the huge fountain. They're usually plenty of street vendors, and this former site of the worlds fair is a great place to spend the afternoon.
3. Go to a flamenco show at Tablao Flamenco Los Gallos
It's hard not to fall in love with this historic tablao flamenco show space! If you want to see one of the best flamenco dancers perform live, this is the place to do it! In addition, you'll be able to enjoy your favorite traditional Spanish songs while eating fresh paella or other local dishes.
4. Try some local wines at Vinoteca Marques de Riscal
This wine store has been around since 1838 - one of Seville's most famous landmarks! If you want to wine from around Spain (and beyond), this is where you need to go!
5 Visit The Jewish Quarter
This is the oldest Jewish district in Europe and one of the most vibrant. It's got a gorgeous synagogue and a bunch of cool bars and restaurants—and it's the home of flamenco music!
6. Barrio Santa Cruz
This district used to be where all the rich people lived—but now it's filled with excellent shops and restaurants. There are also many great hotels here, so you can stay nearby to explore more than just the museums!
7. Giralda Bell Tower
This bell tower was built in 1184 by Almohad Caliph Yaqub al-Mansur as part of his mosque complex at Seville's cathedral; today, it's one of Seville's most iconic landmarks. You'll see it everywhere!
8. Tour Alcazar Palace and Gardens
The Alcazar Palace and Gardens is a Moorish palace in Seville, Spain. The Alcazar of Seville is the former royal residence of the rulers of the Emirate of Granada. The Alcazar was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site along with the General Archives of the Indies in 2010. The beautiful gardens and the hungry peacocks will make it a memorable experience.
You can see the evolution of architecture every time, the continued influence of the Moorish design influences, and the beautiful use of color throughout. I suggest taking a day to explore this and booking tickets in advance will be advisable. I would check for a combined tour led by a local guide, including tickets, an audio tour, and guided access.
9. IIglesia Colegial del Divino Salvador
This church has been standing since the 16th century and was built on the site of an earlier church dating back to the 10th century. The church is known for its unique architecture, which includes a Renaissance-style façade and a Baroque interior featuring frescoes by Francisco Bayeu y Subias.
This church is near Plaza de San Francisco and has some of Seville's most beautiful architecture. It is considered one of Seville's best examples of Renaissance-style architecture, with its square bell tower and arched windows with decorative motifs. Inside you'll find a stunning Baroque ceiling painted with frescoes by Francisco Bayeu y Subias.
10. Naval Museum
If you're interested in learning more about Seville's rich maritime history, this museum is a must-see! Located in the Castillo de San Jorge, it features exhibits on all things nautical: navigation tools, naval art, sculpture, ship models… even Spanish galleons!
11. Metropol Parasol
This large wooden structure near Plaza de América has become one of Seville's most iconic landmarks since its opening in 2011. It features three levels with shops, restaurants, offices, and apartments—and it's completely covered in colorful ceramic tiles!
This structure was designed by Jürgen Mayer H., who also designed the Mercedes Benz Museum in Stuttgart, Germany. It's located on Plaza de la Encarnacion, close to Plaza Nueva and Puerta Jerez, both popular tourist attractions in Sevilla, Spain. The building, also known as the Setas of Seville, is covered with wooden planks that look interesting and resemble something from an old fairy tale book! Its design captures some interest from visitors who want to see something different than they've seen before when visiting others.
12. Visit the Antiquarium
Underneath the Setas is a museum showcasing the city's most prominent site of the Roman occupation. I recall it feeling like a huge archaeological dig and
13. Maria Luisa Park
Maria Luisa Park is one of Seville's most popular parks because it offers fun activities for kids and adults (like an amusement park)! It's also home to several historic buildings and
14. Visit the Cathedral of Seville
The Seville Cathedral is a great place to visit. It is one of the largest cathedrals in the world and was founded in 1401. The cathedral has undergone many changes over its long life, but it remains one of the most impressive buildings in Spain.
You can visit this UNESCO World Heritage Site for free, and there are many things inside that you can see, including the tomb of Christopher Columbus. There is also a chapel dedicated to John Lloyd-Webber, where he performed a concert once!
The cathedral is not massive inside—it only seats 2,500 people—but it still feels huge thanks to its high ceilings and tall pillars holding up those ceilings. The main attraction here, though, has got to be its beautiful stained-glass windows that depict scenes from Bible stories like Adam & Eve eating from trees or Noah's Ark during storms at sea (this part was my favorite because I love animals).
15. Explore Seville's Craft Beer Scene
If you're into craft beer, you also have a lot to love about this city. Whether you're into some crisp regional lager (Cruzecampo) or the local craft beer options, there are plenty of options. Rio Azul, Hops and Dreams, Biercraft, or Manaquilla will be spots to try brews from the city and around the country.
Streets are lined with orange trees, and Seville it's also known for its variety of oranges, which is perfect on one of the famous Inez Rosales olive oil flatbreads.
16. Try Authentic Tapas
Tapas are a traditional Spanish dish served in bars and cafes. They are small portions of food you can enjoy while you drink your favorite tipple. This is a great way to try new foods, meet new people, and discover the local culture!
There's no better way to find good tapas bars than in Seville, so make sure you check out these top places:
- La Botija - Tapa: Jamón Serrano & fresh tomato salad with mozzarella cheese & balsamic vinegar dressing
- Casa Paco - Tapa: Patatas Bravas (fried potato cubes with spicy tomato sauce)
17. Visit the Archivo de Indias
The Archivo de Indias is a repository of documents relating to the history of Spain's overseas empire, including its exploration and conquest. It contains a wealth of information on the Spanish empire, including maps and letters from voyagers such as Christopher Columbus (whose signature you can see).
18. Take a Cooking Class
Ever wanted to cook like a Spanish chef? Now's your chance! Cooking classes are available at many of Seville's museums and cultural centers. You'll learn about the history of food in Spain, as well as local culture, and maybe even some Spanish vocabulary. Nailing the Spanish tortilla recipe or getting comfortable with some tapas basics, you'll be bringing home some tips in no time.
19. Relax in the Plaza de España
The Plaza de España was built for the 1929 Exposition 1929, which celebrated Spain's centennial abolition of slavery. The plaza is a large square in Seville, Spain. It was designed by Ricardo Bastida, with gardens designed by Joaquín Vázquez Díaz and sculptures by Enrique Pérez Comendador.
20. Go to a Flamenco Show
If you're a fan of music and dance, you might want to see a Flamenco performance in Seville. Flamenco dancing originated in Andalusia, Spain, and is performed by a group of people with guitars, castanets (hand clappers), and singing voices. The performers often move around the stage while they sing and dance to the rhythm of their music.
This performance can be enjoyed from afar in one of the many theaters where it takes place. However, if you want to get up close and personal with these talented artists, check out one of many festivals happening throughout Seville on any given day! The Casa del flamenco or
21. Enjoy a Horse-Drawn Carriage Ride
A white horse-drawn carriage is a great way to see the city and get a feel for its culture. You'll be led through narrow streets and past monuments such as the Alcázar gardens and the Giralda tower. Your tour will last about an hour, during which you'll get to know your driver—who will probably tell you some exciting stories about Sevilla.
22. Take a Tour
Taking a quick tour is one of my absolute favorite ways to settle into a new city, explore the city center, and plan my activities for a short-term stay. One of the first activities I do joining a hop-on hop-off tour lets me relax and adjust to the time zone, helps me get a lay of the land and the distance between landmarks, and well it allows me flexibility if I want to jump off and spend time at one of the stops.
These tours will sometimes have a two-day option which is great if you are using the bus for transport around the city. Feel free to book ahead and if you're doing if you're visiting multiple countries, see if there's an opportunity for a bulk discount. There are also plenty of opportunities to book a walking tour; if you are into biking, Seville is a great city to take it all in.
23. Enjoy a Morning Run in the Maria Luisa Park
Maria Luisa Park is a beautiful outdoor space, the perfect place for a morning run. You can choose between running on the path or through the park. If you decide to run on the trail, be careful of cars because it's not closed off from traffic. The park has many attractive trees and is peaceful and quiet, especially during the morning hours when many people are still asleep or getting ready for work. This park also has a lake, so I recommend running around it!
24. Eat Churros and Hot Chocolate for Breakfast
Churros, or Spanish doughnuts, are a popular breakfast food in Spain. They are made from flour and water and deep-fried until they reach a light golden color. You can find churros all over Spain at various times of day—not just for breakfast like Americans might expect!
Churros are usually eaten with hot chocolate (chocolate Caliente), which is made by mixing hot milk with powdered cocoa mix to make a thick paste. This is then poured into a cup filled with drinking chocolate powder, sugar, cinnamon, and sometimes vanilla extract. The two ingredients combine to form a lovely drink perfect for warming up on cold winter mornings in Seville!
25. See the Giralda Bell Tower
The Giralda is a bell tower in Seville, Spain. It was built between 1181 and 1198 as the minaret of the former mosque on the same site. The tower is most famous for its incorporation into Christopher Columbus' flag; he used it to denote that he had discovered new lands. The Giralda is a UNESCO World Heritage Site because of its Moorish architectural style and history, but it's also an incredible photo opportunity!
Muhammad I of Seville built this structure after his victory over Almoravid forces in 1091 (the original minaret). He did so to celebrate his victory over those who would have otherwise taken over his city—and thus, how could we miss out on such an essential piece of history?
27. Take a Walk Along the Walls of Triana at Sunset
While you're in Triana, take a walk along the walls of Triana at sunset. The walls are a great place to take in the city at sunset. The Mercado de Triana is a beautiful spot, and there are plenty of opportunities to get good food on this side of the river.
28. Take a day trip to see a Spanish bodega.
The word bodega means something different in Spanish culture, and in this case, you would be getting a guided tour and tasting of a local family winery. My friend Pepe's has been producing wine for generations and is located a short drive from the Guadalquivir river.
29. Buy Spanish Wine
If you love wine, you'll want to try some Spanish wine. Spain is known for its incredible winemaking, so it's no surprise that there are many different types of wine here—and they're also affordable! You can buy a bottle of Spanish wine and enjoy it with any meal in Seville. The best part? You can get a glass or two with your food in many places!
30. Take a side trip to Cordoba.
If you have time, it's worth taking a side trip from Seville to Cordoba. It's about a 30-minute train ride away and is home to one of the most famous sites in Spain: the Mezquita (mosque).
Cordoba was founded by the Romans in 206 AD but became Muslim when they invaded Spain in 711. The Mezquita dates back to this period and is still used for Muslim worship today.
31. Take a Food Tour
A food tour of the city is also a great way to enjoy the region's delicious cuisine, which heavily influences North African and Middle Eastern flavors. It may allow you to dive deeply into some of the oldest tapas spots in the city, or if you're really into the specific neighborhood or cuisine, there are plenty of options.
32. Grabbing a cup of coffee
No having a leisurely Spanish breakfast might sound like a waste of time if you're looking to get all the sites in. Still, I encourage you to spend one morning at a local café bringing a delicious toasted Jamon bocadilla and get into the day.
Some of my favorite moments in the city we're having were having breakfast with my buddies Ryan and Angela and seeing some of the elders who have been having breakfast at the same spot for overseeing some of the elders who have been having breakfast at the same place for over 30 years.
33. Visit the Alameda did Hercules.
This is one of my favorite areas of the city, and it is not only great for folks who are perpetual night owls or if you're ready to get to the farmers market on a Saturday morning.
The weekly farmers market is a beautiful way to try a bunch of Spanish cheeses, see what kinds of local fruit are available, and pick up some last-minute gifts before the end of your trip.
34. Take a walk by the river.
You'd be crossing the river to go into the Triana neighborhood but even taking a stroll by the river before it gets too hot is an excellent option if you are taking your time to explore the city; there's plenty of opportunity to sit at the edge of the river enjoy the beautiful bright, beautiful buildings across the way and watch the boats go by.
35. Get a late dinner
Spanish food culture is delightfully different in that most locals will eat later, and some of the best parts of the city are open late. Of course, there are restaurants that you will find that are open at the usual 5 to 7 dinner time, but if you're looking to get a flavor and do as the locals do, get yourself an afternoon snack rest while everything is closed and gear up for a low-key dinner out.