There are so many wonderful things to do in Seville Spain that you won’t want to miss.
Sevilla has Moorish history and architecture, amazing food, fun activities, and did I mention the restaurant scene?
This article will cover the absolute best things to do in Seville, the top places to visit, and Seville attractions that you won’t want to miss.
Getting to Seville
There are a few ways of getting to Seville depending on where you are coming from. The Seville Airport, officially called San Pablo Airport, (code: SVQ) is incredibly close to the city center and in a taxi takes less than 10 minutes from door-to-door.
If you are flying in from major hubs around Europe like London, Paris, or Frankfurt, then you can get direct flights to Seville. You can also fly to Seville Airport from Madrid and Barcelona quite easily with budget airlines Vueling or Ryanair.
However, if you are coming to Seville from further afield, or like me, you’re coming from a country in Europe that perhaps doesn’t go to smaller airports, you will have to connect somewhere.
Where to Stay in Seville
There are so many wonderful hotels and apartments to stay in Seville. I have found accommodation in Seville to be generally higher than in other cities in Spain that I have visited.
Especially compared to Madrid, which surprised me considering Madrid is known as one of the most expensive cities in the country. However, if you book far enough in advance, you can definitely get great value for money in your hotels in Seville. These are our top picks.
- Budget Hotel: Hotel Patio de las Cruces is a gorgeous little family-run hotel with double rooms that start at a very affordable $45 per night. The patio area is a fantastic place to escape the Seville heat and the location is unbeatable for this price. Book a stay at Hotel Patio de las Cruces here.
- Mid-Range Hotel: Hotel Fernando III is an absolute bargain with rooms starting at just under $100 per night. The rooms are spacious and comfortable. A really nice breakfast is available each morning. There is a gym and a very nice rooftop pool. Book a stay at Hotel Fernando III here.
- Mid-Range Hotel: Hotel Macià Sevilla Kubb is another great mid-range hotel located just on the edge of the city center. They have a rooftop pool, a fantastic buffet breakfast, and clean and modern rooms. Watch the video at the bottom of this post to get a full tour of the rooms. Rooms start at $70 per night. Book a stay at Hotel Macià here.
- Luxury Hotel: Plácido y Grata which translates to placid and pleasant, is exactly what this boutique hotel feels like when you walk through the doors after a day of exploring Seville. The rooms are all decorated in calm and neutral colors. A fabulous breakfast is included in your stay and served out in the peaceful patio area. Rooms start at $174 per night. Book a stay at Plácido y Grata here.
If you want to book an apartment or house for your stay in Seville, I highly recommend doing a search on Plum Guide here.
Their apartments are more expensive than the ones you might find on Airbnb, but they support local businesses and families and they ensure that only the very best properties (approximately 3% of people who apply) are accepted. These are a few of my top apartment picks on Plum Guide:
- Rooftop Ready – A rooftop pool on the roof of this central city apartment makes it very appealing. It’s also very cute and stylishly decorated and one of the best prices you’ll find for the location at about $165 per night. Book a stay at Rooftop Ready here.
- Morning Hours – Another apartment in the center of Madrid with a rooftop pool (it gets so very hot in Seville, so you’ll be grateful for this option if you visit in the summer months). This apartment is very modern and has everything you need to self-cater while you are in the city. It’s well located and the lobby of the building will remind you that you’re in beautiful sunny Spain. The apartment costs $290 per night. Book a stay at Morning Hours here.
- Floral Plaza – While this apartment doesn’t have a rooftop pool, it does have a gorgeous balcony where you can look out over Seville each morning with coffee or in the evenings with a glass of wine (or cold beer!). It’s also fantastically priced at under $100 a night right in the center of Seville. Book a stay at Floral Plaza here.
Awesome Seville Tour Guides
While I was in Seville, I had the pleasure of working with two really wonderful tour guides, both of whom I highly recommend if you want to get under the skin of Seville.
Diana is a local to the city. She was born and raised in Germany (her mother is German, her father is Spanish), but after finishing school her family decided they would move to Spain and she followed.
She speaks excellent English, Spanish, and German and knows the city like a true local. You can book tours with her by visiting her website here or by emailing here at email@example.com.
The other tour guide who was incredibly knowledgable about the history of the city was María. Born and raised in Seville, María is the go-to woman in the city for tours of the Alcázar, cathedral, and general walking tours to learn more.
In fact, about 80% of the facts that I am sharing with you below came from the notes that I took while touring with her. You can visit her website here or send her an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. She speaks excellent English and of course, Spanish.
Map of Things to Do in Seville
Awesome Things to Do in Seville Spain
There are so many fantastic things to do in Seville that you won’t want to miss. These are just a few of the best Seville attractions that I loved on my trip to the city.
1. Royal Alcázar
The Royal Alcázar, as the name suggests, is a royal palace in Seville. Visiting this is without a doubt a must for places to visit in Seville. The royal palace was built originally for King Peter of Castile by the Castillian Christians in the 14th century.
It was built on top of the site of a Moorish royal palace that was destroyed by the Christians in 1248. This is one of the best examples of Mudejar architecture in Andalusia and it continues to be a royal palace today for the Spanish royal family.
That means when they visit Seville, this is where they stay. Unfortunately, that means when they are visiting, it’s closed to the public, so always be sure to check ahead of time and pre-book your tickets so you don’t miss out.
Tickets to the Alcázar are €14.50 (about $15 USD) and can be purchased on the official website here. This ticket allows you to skip the ticket line and walk straight in.
2. Seville Cathedral
Officially known as Catedral de Santa María de la Sede, the Seville Cathedral is another of the very popular activities in Seville Spain that are worth adding to your list.
Much like the Alcázar, the cathedral was built over Moorish buildings. The cathedral of Seville actually used to be a mosque and if you look closely at the bell tower, you’ll see that it doesn’t look like your average bell tower.
That’s because the bell tower actually used to be the minaret of the mosque that sat on this site. One of the main attractions of the Seville Cathedral is the tomb of Christopher Columbus.
While not much of his remains are actually inside (they opened it back in 2015 and realized much of his remains must still be on the island of Hispaniola where he was originally buried. The cathedral is actually one of the most important art collections in Spain with over 700 pieces that you will want to explore inside each of the chapels.
You can also take in the largest altar in the world. Just look for the large gold altar that sits behind the gates. The smaller silver altar is made entirely of silver that was mined in Mexico.
There are several ticket options available depending on how much of the cathedral and bell tower you would like to visit. It is highly recommended to pre-book tickets if you are visiting during the summer months or around school holidays. You can book your tickets here.
3. Plaza de España
The largest plaza in Spain, Plaza de España was built in 1928 for the 1929 Ibero-American Exposition. The entire plaza mixes Renaissance, Baroque, and Moorish styles to make it one of the most interesting plazas I’ve ever been to.
The plaza is without a doubt one of the most visited Seville attractions, but it is so large it never feels too busy. The best time to visit is around golden hour just before sunset. The sunset light over the plaza is absolutely stunning and perfect for photos.
There is usually a group playing music and dancing flamenco. Just be cautious of pickpockets here, especially when sitting or standing around crowds.
You can simply stroll along the walkway admiring the different cities of Spain and how they are represented in mosaics or you can rent a little boat to take along the river.
4. Parque de María Luisa
Plaza de España is technically located inside this park, however, there is a lot more of it to explore so be sure to walk through and discover the duck ponds, the paths that wind through blooming flowers, and past more Mudejar architecture.
This park is the main green space in downtown Seville, so if you are looking for a quiet place to relax in the afternoons, somewhere to have a picnic where you’ll find some shade or nice running paths, this is where you’ll want to head.
The park actually used to be a private garden that was part of the San Telmo Palace (which we’ll talk more about below).
However, in 1893, the gardens were donated to the city and have been a public space ever since. Inside the park, you will discover more buildings that were built for the 1929 Ibero-American Exposition including the buildings that represented Argentina, Mexico, Colombia, Brasil, and Guatemala.
5. Setas de Sevilla
Setas de Sevilla is a plaza with a beautiful and quite striking art feature that you cannot miss.
It is one of the more modern Seville attractions to check out while you’re in the city. This plaza has a lot of history that existed before it was modernized. I
t was actually home to Seville’s first-ever food market in 1832, Mercado de Encarnacion. At its peak, there were over 400 stalls selling produce, meats, and anything else the people of Seville might want or need.
In 1973, due to the arrival of supermarkets, the congestion of nearby roads, and the immense growth of the city, the market was moved to a different location.
It wasn’t until 2004, that the Seville city council began work to turn the plaza back into somewhere that Sillivians could gather.
They created an international competition and asked architects around the world to submit their ideas. Over 60 ideas were put forward, but the Metropol Parasol project was chosen.
Designed by the German architect Jürgen Mayer, the design was inspired by the Ficus in the Plaza de San Pedro and the vaults of the Cathedral of Santa María de la Sede.
In 2010, Setas de Sevilla was unveiled with a brand new (and very modern and clean) Mercado de la Encarnacion beneath it. Climb up the steps to the top to take in some wonderful views of the streets below.
6. Triana Neighborhood
The Triana neighborhood of Seville is located just across the Guadalquivir River and is one of the coolest and most historical places to visit in Seville.
Triana used to be where the potters of the city lived. It was close to the river, which meant plenty of water for making the clay, however, the kilns made the air quality of the city quite terrible.
However, you can still learn a lot about the incredible pottery and indeed, those stunning tiles you saw inside the Alcázar, while you are visiting Triana.
Head to BarroAzul to learn all about how those gorgeous Mudejar tiles are made and try your hand at making them yourself. It’s a fun and educational experience and a great activity for both adults and kids. Check out their website here.
One of the must-see Seville attractions in Triana is the Triana Market or Mercado de Triana. Inside you’ll be able to purchase absolutely delicious local produce, some of the best Jamon Iberico in town, and purchase the freshest seafood.
There are also a few restaurants where you can have tapas, coffee, or a cold caña (a small beer). Besides the Mercado, Triana is a fantastic place to head by night to enjoy the bar scene. All along the waterfront bars line the street with tables spilling out along the sidewalks, and people sitting along the river’s walls with their drinks.
It’s a lively atmosphere, especially on a Saturday night. I also highly recommend heading to not only one of the best restaurants in Triana but one of the best restaurants in all of Seville. Alfarería 21 is located inside Casa Montalvan, home to one of the most important ceramics manufacturers in Seville.
They have completely refurbished the restaurant inside and out to maintain the stunning tiles and the food here is outstanding.
I recommend having a lot of tapas plates to share with some of my favorites being the pate, the octopus, the Iberico pork cops, and the croquetas. Make a reservation on their website here, especially if you are visiting on the weekend.
7. Plaza del Triunfo
You will likely pass through Plaza del Triunfo when exploring the Seville Cathedral, but it is well worth making a point of simply enjoying this plaza while you are here.
They say the plaza is called Plaza del Triunfo (Triumph Plaza) because on November 1, 1755, there was a very large earthquake in Lisbon that was felt all over the Iberian Peninsula.
Many buildings collapsed and many people were killed, however, the church remained completely unharmed and everyone that was worshiping inside of it that day was safe. That is why they call this Triumph Plaza.
Now you can sit in the shade, watch the horse-drawn carriages take people on tours around the center, and take in the stunning architecture and history of all that surrounds this plaza.
8. Plaza Nueva
Plaza Nueva is a very large space in front of the city hall building, called the Ayuntamiento in Spanish. The city hall building is really the reason to come to this part of town and to walk around the winding side streets that twist in every direction.
The plaza in front of the city hall building, Plaza Nueva, is usually home to different events throughout the year and it feels like there is always something different to see or experience while you are visiting here.
In the center of the plaza, you’ll spot a statue of Fernando III of Castile, he is called “the saint” and was kind of Castile, King of Galicia, and King of Leon during the 13th century.
While in the plaza, look for the Chapel of San Onofre. It still stands today and was built as part of the Convent of San Francisco in the 16th century.
Plaza Nueva is particularly beautiful around Christmas time where you will see plenty of nochebuenas or poinsettias adorning the green spaces.
9. Plaza de America
Plaza de America is one of my favorite places to visit in Seville. If you are looking for a park to relax in that doesn’t get too busy but is absolutely stunning, this is the one I would recommend.
It’s technically located inside Maria Luisa Park, but it is right on the edge and feels like a completely different place. With a pond at the center, around you, you’ll find two museums that are well worth checking out.
The Archeological Museum of Seville is located here inside a neo-Renaissance-style building that was originally constructed for the 1929 Ibero-American Exposition.
On the other side of the plaza is the Museum of Popular Arts and Traditions. Inside a neo-Mudejar-style building, this museum has some really interesting exhibitions on folk art and traditions of this region of Andalucia.
It’s a wonderful and visual place to come to learn more about Seville’s history.
10. See a Flamenco Show
Perhaps this should be higher up on the list, but seeing a Flamenco show is one of the best things to do in Seville and should not be missed.
While it is unclear where exactly Flamenco was started, it’s certain that it began in the Andalucia region around Seville, Cadiz, and Granada. And while the style differs across the region, these days, Seville is one of the absolute best cities in Spain to immerse yourself in Flamenco.
There are a few ways you can do this. You can visit the Flamenco Dance Museum which is located right in the city center. They have several ticket options which include a tour of the museum where you can learn about the history of Flamenco and then watch a show afterward.
You can check out all of the ticket options on their website here.
Another option is to visit Palacio Andaluz. The show here is renowned as one of the best in the city and is absolutely fantastic. You can opt to have dinner while you watch the show, but I think there are far better restaurants in town.
You can simply get a ticket up front and have a drink from the bar while you enjoy the show and then head for dinner afterward.
What I love about going to a show at Palacio Andaluz is that you can learn a bit about the actual music from some of the dancers and musicians beforehand. They offer different classes such as dance and percussion. I took the percussion class which was all about learning the beats that they use for dancing.
It was quite the challenge, but so much fun. Then during the show, I really noticed the speed and skill the musicians had and I had a totally new respect for not just the dancing but the musicians, too. You can book tickets for the show at Palacio Andaluz here.
11. Plaza del Cabildo
This is a small stop on your list of places to visit in Seville, but it is well worth exploring as you wander the streets of Seville’s Old Town.
Tucked off of a side street, you’ll discover a small plaza, Plaza del Cabildo.
I came here on a bike tour (more on that below) and I was absolutely in love. If you are lucky enough to visit Seville on a Sunday, this should be one of your stops for the day.
There is a flea market here each Sunday morning where you can find all sorts of interesting antiquities.
12. Palacio de San Telmo
The Palace of San Telmo is one of the grandest buildings in Seville and while visiting the interior isn’t possible, exploring the outside is well worth your time.
Built in 1682, this Baroque palace has incredibly ornate Ionic columns at the front. In its history, it has been used as a maritime academy and an orphanage for children whose seafaring parents never returned.
Then when Spain was occupied by France, it was home to the Count of Montpensier before becoming a hospital. In 1980, the palace underwent a 40-million Euro renovation and it is now home to the regional Andalucia government.
13. Mercado Lonja del Barranco
Mercado Lonja del Barranco is a local market that sits along the banks of the Guadalquivir River.
Made of galvanized iron and originally built in the 19th century, this used to be the city’s local fish market. It looks and smells quite different these days. Now it is something of an upmarket food hall.
Head inside and choose from vendors selling thick slices of Spanish tortilla, freshly shucked oysters, fried calamari, thinly sliced Jamon Iberico, and ice-cold beers.
The food part of the market closes at 10 pm, but the party continues outside at the lower bar area where you can continue to enjoy the DJ and cocktail options along the river well into the early hours.
14. Tour the City by Boat
If you’re looking for a fun way to explore the city by boat, book a tour with Guadaluxe.
They operate electric boats up and down the river right from the city center on absolutely stunning vessels that feel quite luxurious indeed.
There is an audioguide offered in several languages that share the history and importance of this river and the role it has played in the history of Seville over the last several hundred years.
You also get to learn about the different neighborhoods and monuments you are passing along the way. A drink is included in your journey to keep your refreshed or cool you down on those hot Seville summer afternoons.
For a cheaper option, this Get Your Guide tour is a nice alternative. It’s a one-hour tour for only €15 that takes you along a similar route. It’s slightly cheaper to pre-book on Get Your Guide than it is to book at the office (it’s €18 when booking at the office directly).
The boat is slightly larger and will therefore have more people on it. Book that tour option here.
15. Watch a Football Match
Like many big cities around Spain, there are two teams in Seville – Real Betis and Sevilla FC. In the summer months, there is no season, but you may be able to watch a partido amistoso or a friendly match.
However, once the season starts in late August, you will be able to go to competitive, lively games to see not only top-quality football but to enjoy an amazing atmosphere amongst the fans.
Sevilla FC also offers tours of the stadium including changing rooms and getting pitchside where you can learn about the club’s history and some of their biggest successes. You can book that tour through their website here.
16. Tour the City by Bike
A city bike tour may not appeal in the summer months when temperatures exceed 100 degrees Fahrenheit (37 degrees Celsius).
However, if you are visiting at any other time of year, a bike tour is one of the best ways to see lots of Seville attractions in a short period of time and get a bit of exercise in while you’re exploring.
I highly recommend See by Bike. The guys that run this company are absolutely fantastic. Born and raised in Seville, they know every little side street, fact, and story that you might want to know (and some you didn’t know you wanted to know!) about Seville.
They are passionate and funny, and make you feel safe riding in the streets of a busy city like Seville. They also simply offer bike rentals if you want to explore at your own pace or want wheels while you’re in Seville. You can check out their different tours on their website here.