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Seville

The historic quarter of the Andalusian capital shows us a legacy of monuments that are the product of its Arab past and its position as a prosperous port facing the Americas. Buildings declared World Heritage Sites, districts with a strong popular flavour and festivals of International Tourist Interest mark its character.

Seville has witnessed the passage of the most diverse civilisations. Hispalis was founded by the Tartessans and next to it, the Romans built the remarkable city of Italica. The long Muslim rule, from the year 711 till 1248, left indelible marks in this city. The Seville's splendour came with the Discovery of America. During the 16th and 17th centuries, its port was one of the most important in Spain, having the monopoly on trade with the overseas colonies.

The historic quarter has an interesting collection of historic buildings like the Gothic Cathedral, built on top of the Almohad Mosque of Seville. Of this Arab inheritance the old minaret - today the famous Giralda -and the Patio de los Naranjos are preserved. Inside we will discover the tomb of Christopher Colombus.

Next to these are the Reales Alcázares. Its walls enclose various rooms, luxurious salons and romantic courtyards. The Archive of the Indies leads us to Spanish renaissance art. It is one of the most important documentation center in existence relating to the conquest of America. On the banks of the Guadalquivir we find the Torre del Oro, of Arab origin, which dates back to the 13th century and was part of the ancient walls.

Two festivals, deeply rooted in the Sevillian character and introduce us respectively to their devotion and their folklore. Sevillian Easter unites art and tradition for several days when decorated Baroque carvings tour the streets amid public fervour. For its part, the April Fair leaves behind processional solemnity for colour and joy. Parades of carriages and regional costumes are rounded off with open-air parties.

The capital of Andalusia has its own special magic. Visit the Santa Cruz neighbourhood, with its whitewashed houses, barred windows and interior patios filled with flowers. Stroll through Triana and Plaza de España square, savour a delicious plate of fried fish on the banks of the Guadalquivir River and take in a fascinating flamenco show in any of the city’s tablaos (flamenco clubs). These are just a few of the options that await you in Seville.

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