Seville is one of the most typically Spanish cities that the country has to offer, and due to its somewhat understated reputation it is also a great deal cheaper than Madrid or Barcelona. All in all it is a great place to visit as a backpacker to gain a true taste of Spain without damaging your tight budget!
Seville has an incredible reputation as one of Spain’s most authentic Spanish cities, credited with inventing tapas, having the most passionate Semana Santa (Holy Week), having more narrow medieval streets than anywhere else in Andalucia, and maintaining its traditional Anaducian atmosphere. Seville has avoided the detrimental effects of mass tourism and modernization and has retained its original charm and beauty, making it a great city to explore.
The city is easy to navigate by foot, in fact being a pedestrian in Seville is the best way to absorb the amazing atmosphere and culture. A walk through the Santa Cruz district of the old town will leave you feeling as though you have stepped back in time and are in a quaint little Spanish village from bygone years.
The city’s tourist information centre can be found in the Laredo building on Plaza de San Francisco. Not only does it provide free internet access, but the staff there are also very knowledgeable and can provide you with free maps, postcards and discount vouchers to use around the city.
Here are some of our recommendations of what to do while backpacking in Seville.
The Plaza de España is a good central place to start your explorations of the city. Located in Maria Luisa’s Park this impressive and majestic architectural structure was designed by the Spanish architect Anibal Gonzalez as the central office for the Ibero-American Exposition, a world fair that was held in Seville in 1929. The main attraction of the Plaza de España now are the 58 benches that line the front of the building which depict through mosaics the provinces of Spain. Admission is free.
If the heat of the day gets too much for you after wondering around the Plaza de España then head into the beautiful parkland area of the Maria Luisa Park to find a shady palm tree to relax under. You will find many of the city’s older residents doing exactly the same thing. Follow the link to know more secrets about Parque de Maria Luisa and Plaza de España.
A cathedral of scale.
A must-see destination in Seville is the city’s Cathedral of Santa María de la Sede. It gained the title of the world’s largest cathedral when it was completed in the 16th century. It contains over 8 chapels and is the final resting place of Christopher Columbus. Definitely the Cathedral and its tower, La Giralda, worth a visit! You will get your first glimpse of the cathedral from the roof of Sevilla Inn!
Seville’s royal palace, known as The Royal Alcazar, was originally a Moorish fort built in the 10th century. As the royal family still use it today it is the oldest royal palace still in use in Europe. The palace is an interesting mix of architecture that has been added throughout the ages, and it is a fascinating place to explore. Entry into the palace costs less than €10 and it gives you access to the room where Christopher Columbus planned his famous journey of discovery. We have a few tips on what we think are the most interesting and beautiful parts of the Alcazar, and a resume about the history of the Real Alcazar.
Before you leave home
There are a few things that you can organize before you arrive in Seville to make your stay even more enjoyable. Some of the attractions in Seville can get very busy and lengthy queues can develop. As such, it is advisable to organize a Seville Card before you arrive. The card will guarantee you entrance into the main attractions as well as avoiding the lengthy waiting times. Like all cities in the world there are some incidents of crime in Seville. We recommend that all backpackers visiting the city are covered by backpacker travel insurance. This provides you with peace of mind from any crime as well as any accidents. When you are on a tight budget the last thing you want is to have to fork out to replace a lost or damaged valuable. If you are wanting to explore the city on your own as opposed to taking often expensive guides then come prepared with a Seville guide book or even an app, such as HearPlanet, which will provide you with all the information you need when exploring the city.
Enjoy your time in Seville!