12 days in Spain & 4 days in Paris- 9/12/14- 9/9/28/14

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

4 days in Seville - Day 2

Break/Real Alcazar

After visiting the Cathedral we wandered around and went back to the main Square of Plaza Virgen de Los Reyes.

Plaza Virgen de los Reyes
Plaza Virgen de los Reye

We am not sure what these columns are used for but we are guessing that they were used to tied horse carriages in the old days.



We sat on the steps of the Archivo de Indias building.  This is the back of the building (you see the front a bit later).

This is really nice area to rest and see people go by..



Horse-drawn carriages and picture-snapping tourists are part of the scenery here.


Horse drawn carriage tour is a very popular attraction in Seville.

he horse drawn carriage tour is a very popular attraction in Seville. It's a great experience to get an overview and orientation of the city, especially if you are short of time. Moreover, the driver will give an explanation of the monuments and sights you see... and he can even tell you some tales and funny anecdotes. - See more at: http://www.seville-traveller.com/horse-drawn-carriage-tour.html#sthash.WKcySywl.dpuf


It is a great experience to get an overview and orientation of the city, especially if you are short on time.  We had 3 days here and plenty of time to discover the city on foot.




Archivo de Indias housed in the ancient merchants' exchange  named the Casa Lonja de Mercaderes, is the repository of extremely valuable archival documents illustrating the history of the Spanish Empire in the Americas and the Philippines. The building itself, an unusually serene and Italianate example of Spanish Renaissance architecture, was designed by Juan de Herrera and evokes the greatness of the Spanish empire at its peaks circa 1600 . This structure and its contents were registered in 1987 by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.



Tree with pink blooms in front of the building.


Still too early for lunch so we stop by Haagen Dazs for some refreshment and ice cream.




We got a blueberry smoothie, a tropical passion smoothie with exotic couli and a few bottles of agua con gas.


This so relaxing and nice to slow down and just to take our time...

Real Alcazar of Sevilla

The Alcazar is a fortified palace of which the construction was ordered by Abd Al Ramn III.  Because of it's beauty it was chosen as residence by many monarchs in the centuries that followed. It is now the residence of Juan Carlos the recently abdicated King of Spain when he visits Seville.

We are now lining to get in The Alcazar of Seville - "Real Alcázar de Sevilla" in Spanish.

We are entered from the Plaza del Triunfo through the Puerta del León or Lion's Gate. The large gate, set in a massive crenellated defensive wall, is decorated with an azulejo (ceramic tile) depiction of a heraldic lion.

Entry fee: General admission: €8.50

We are getting inside the palace

 The palace is renown as one of the most beautiful in Spain. It is the oldest royal palace still in use in Europe, and it was registered in 1987 by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.

This is what you see as soon as you walk in the Alcazar

This behind us where people are lining up to buy the tickets to get in.


Originally a 10th century palace built for the governor of the local Moorish state, this building still functions as a royal palace.  It is also the Oldest palace in Europe that is still in use. 

This is the courtyard of the Hunt (patio de la Monteria)

View of the courtyard from the 2nd level.


Map of the Alcazar

Hall of the kings where many portraits of kings and Queens of Spain are hung.

On display fans from different time period.

Painting of the Giralda tower.


Virgen de Los Marcantes (Madonna of the seafarers)

The central scene is the image of the Madonna sheltering a group of Native Americans under her cloak, with four Saints around her: Saint Sebastian 

The upper palace

The Alcázar is still a royal palace. In 1995 it staged the wedding feast of Infanta Elena, daughter of King Juan Carlos I, after her marriage in Seville’s cathedral. In the Cuarto Real Alto (Upper Royal Quarters), the rooms used by the Spanish royal family on their visits to Seville, are open for  tours several times a day but we did not buy the tickets as they were sold out. It’s essential to book ahead for an extra €4.50. Highlights of the tour include the 14th-century Salón de Audiencias , the monarch’s reception room, and Pedro I’s bedroom, with marvelous Mudéjar tiles and plasterwork which unfortunately we did not get to see.

We are now walking up to upper Palace. 


The stairways leading to the upper palace is very interesting combining wood, iron and tiles.

Seville famous intricate ceramic tiles.


We are now entering the ceramic tiles and tableware.

Seville a city open to the world.  The river Guadalquivir allowed Seville to be both an inland port and a city with strong faring tradition.

Maritime traffic was the best mean for commercial distribution of ceramics.   The ceramics also serve as a container for other produce such as oil, wine, mercury, etc... and its weight made it ideal ballast for ships.  Consequently, ceramic ware were able to reach overseas destinations.

Seville and Triana, the City's pottery district, were once an important centre of ceramic production. Although the Hispano-Roman culture was already familiar with glazed ceramics, it was in Cordoba during the Caliphate (10th Century) that the production of these pieces of tableware became widespread.  Nasrid Granada (13-15th centuries) would later come to the for in the extraordinary development of the glazed tiling featured in the its architecture.  Christian Spain received from al-Andalus this rich tradition which has survived to the present day.



Next..  Real Alcazar cont'd



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