This Palace dates back to the 1400s AD and has real Roman mosaic floors. All of the furniture is left untouched, giving it an authentic grandeur.
8 Calle Cuna, on the northern edge of the Santa Cruz district;
tel: 954 227 802;
Entry is free - but beware there is a fee to pay if you want a tour of the top floor (used during the winter).
This is a splendid palace built in a similar style to the Alhambra in Granada with statues of romantic goddesses, azulejo tiling and enchanting fountains. According to legend, it is an exact copy of Pilate's palace in Jerusalem (hence the name). A beautiful blend of 16th century architecture and Mudéjar, Gothic and Rennaisance styles - a great introductory piece to these styles if you're going on to see the Alhambra in Granada.
Plaza de Pilatos, in the Santa Cruz district;
Open 7 days a week 9am to 7pm.
The alleyways of the Santa Cruz district wind between typical Andaluz houses with flowers on the balconies and cafés where flamenco is danced. Try and avoid the tacky tourist shops and restaurants and just wander around this former Jewish district of Seville to discover your own tranquility in the many plazas of this friendly and village-like district.
East of the Cathedral and the Alcazar
I hired a car from this English company. The car for a week during Easter 2006 cost £69 for two drivers, no excesses and service at Seville Airport with Crown Car Hire, the local agent, could not have been bettered. You could return the car full or empty but the rate they charged for a full tank was so reasonable that there was no point in trying to find a garage near the airport.
For the best view of Seville you just can't beat the one from the La Giralda - the highest tower in the city. It's a steep climb up the ramp but it's worth it.
Plaza Virgen de los Reyes; tel: 954 214 971;
Open: Mon-Sat 11am-5pm, Sun 2pm-6pm
The Murillo Gardens are very Sevillian in style, full of arcades and foliage, ceramic work and abundant flowers. A very peaceful haven in the centre of Seville. Ideal for children and families.
On Calle de Menendez Pelayo. The gardens border the walls of the Alcazar, leading into the Santa Cruz district.
Carmona is a beautifully located town founded by the Carthaginians and later made into a vital political and economic centre of the Roman and Moorish empires, giving it a glorious Roman necropolis with tombs, two gateways (Puerta de Sevilla and Puerta de Córdoba), a 15 century church (San Pedro) and an awe-inspiring Gothic Mudéjar-style church (San Felipe). There are numerous other Gothic churches, noble mansions and houses tucked away in the streets and squares of the old town, so just get lost in it all. To appreciate Carmona fully go up to the castle (now a parador) which looms over the town.
Carmona is 20 miles east of Seville, just off the motorway to Córdoba. Buses leave from Seville's Prado de Sebastian bus station (just across from Murillo Gardens) and the journey takes 1 hour.
This is a restaurant with a modern take on Spanish food. Ideal if you are getting a little bored of the standard tapas of jamon and tortilla.
Great value and exceptional food. Relaxed cafe type setting
Plaza Puerta Real 6 (just down from the NH Hotel on the river);
tel: 954 909 720
On sunny days this is a great place to sit and to take shelter at the square's eastern end, should it rain. The élite of Seville society use this square as a meeting place so it's a fantastic spot for people-watching. The plaza is also a good place to hail a taxi should you need one.
Plaza Nueva is close to the cathedral at the end of Avenida de la Consitución.
The Plaza de España is a massive half circle with palatial buildings. The fountain in the centre is a great place to rest (especially in the middle of the day) and appreciate this purpose-built exhibition showpiece of Seville. This square is also a must for Star Wars fans as it is featured in the films.
Plaza de España is a 10 min walk east of the cathedral and is signposted from there.
If you've been on the Thames or the Seine, you really won't get anything from this - views of old Expo '90 buildings and a lot of wasteland. We went because it was a massively hot day and we wanted to cool down, but we'd have been better off boiling.
I don’t recommend anyone to go anywhere near this "housing development". Taxi drivers won't take you there and the police only go there in extreme cases, usually by the dozen (of vans), but on Sundays there´s a great market in "The Alameda de Hercules". Try the food in Los Robles (calle Argote de Molina), it’s not cheap, but the food is great.
On Thursdays there´s a street market called “El Jueves”. On Wednesdays they put a sign on the church door which says "tomorrow is Thursday", just in case you forgot it's Wednesday.
Some things may have changed in the 20 years since I lived there but the art school dance goes on forever. Avoid if possible La plaza de la Pulmareja, which is close to La Macarena, but try to visit La Plaza de San Romanand and the bar of the same name. They have a blackboard which counts down the days to La Madrugá, the night between Thursday and Good Friday when the Cristo de Los Gitanos goes out for a walk. I once saw and heard Cameron de la Isla singing Saetas there, spinechilling.
c/ Argote de Molina is one minute from the cathedral
Celebrated bar with waiters from the Manzanilla sherry producing town of Sanlucar de Barrameda. Bustling with well-dressed Sevillianos. It serves good fish dishes and manzanilla at just over a euro a glass.
11 Calle Albareda
You don’t have to agree with killing a bull to take a tour of the ring, its baroque façade and its underbelly. Beneath the stands you will be shown the operating theatre for unlucky matadors and the museum of fighting treasures – suits and statues of the famous.
Plaza de Toros de la Real Maestranza; Paseo de Colón, 2; www.realmaestranza.com/
This is one of those great places that you think you've just discovered and then find every other visitor knows it. You get live music in a cool cavernous setting. Plenty of locals seem to go there too. Easily missed - just a small door in the wall and not much to advertise it. Especially good to hear a bit of flamenco, with some authentically gurning singers. Free entry.
Calle Levies - in the Barrio S Cruz. Best to ask someone
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