Three days in Seville, Spain

Three days in Seville with the highlight being a guest at a Spanish / UK wedding in the Seville countryside.

In 2010, my two friends and I travelled from Australia to Europe, with a half day layover in London. During this trip we visited Seville, Cordoba, Grenada, Barcelona, Ibiza, Paris and then I continued to Scotland, ending in London for three days. This post covers our three days in Seville.  

Day 1 in Seville – wandering day

The girls and I decided to spend our first day in Spain without much of an itinerary, with the goal of simply taking in the southern Spanish city of Seville. That quickly turned into, “let’s do some shopping”, eat paella and have some Haagen Daaz ice cream. It couldn’t have been much of a better day really, even though it was the exact opposite of the “plan, plan and plan some more” plan I usually have!

We thought we should probably throw some sight seeing in so after mistaking the Cathedral for the Alcazar, we found the  massively large Real Alcazar complex, and went for a wander.

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The Cathedral, not the Alcazar! The view from Plaza del Triunfo. Seville’s cathedral is the third largest in the world, behind St Peter’s in the Vatican and St Paul’s in London.

Unfortunately it started raining so we had to check out the gardens from the inside of the buildings, but it was still very nice. We were thinking how awesome it would be to hold a party in one of the outdoor areas. The place was built for outdoor get togethers!

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Such a huge complex / could be excellent party pad
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We visited in 2010 long before the craze of Game of Thrones was ‘a thing’. Some scenes for the show were filmed at the Alcazar. Happy to know I was there before it was “cool”!
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A big job for the groundskeeper!
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More immaculate gardens
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Half sweaty, half wet from the rain
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More gardens

After a well deserved nap, we had a few cocktails on our hostel’s roof top terrace, a three course meal for 8 euros and then went to the pre-wedding drinks at a bar on the riverfront for the bride and groom to be (we were going to Mel’s friends’ wedding the next day). We thought it would be a good idea to meet the soon-to-be-newlyweds, seeing as Georgia and I were kind of crashing the wedding (albiet with an invite but without knowing anyone).

By this time we’d been awake way too long, so we went back to the hostel to crash.

Day 2 in Seville – Wedding Day!

Well we survived our first test of “who gets the bathroom first” when the three of us got ready for the wedding which had a 11am start.  The church was about a 15 minute walk from our hostel (well planned team!).

The church was absolutely beautiful. The service was Catholic, so kind of similar to what I’m used to, however the singing was quite different! There was a small group of singers singing acapella, so the guests didn’t have to sing! Half of the service was in Spanish and half in English, since the groom was from the UK and his friends and family don’t speak Spanish. The half and half approached worked well for me. It was nice to know what was being said, but it was also nice to hear the service in Spanish, because it’s such a beautiful language.

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Ready for the festivities!
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Inside of the church. It was located well away from the tourist trail so you wouldn’t accidentally stumble upon it and it was fairly nondescript from the outside. Very beautiful inside though!

After the ceremony, the bride and groom walked out of the church and were covered in rice and rose petals, while singers played instruments and sang, inspiring the newlyweds to dance along with the music. I have to say, the Spainish wedding feels a lot more festive than a Canadian wedding!

Afterwards we boarded buses that drove us out to the countryside for the reception. It was held on a large ranch complex, with beautiful gardens. After a couple hours of drinks and canapes outdoors, we went inside for the speeches and dinner (and more drinks). I was told that Spanish weddings don’t usually include speeches, but since it was half an English wedding, there were a few. The most touching part was a speech read by the best man, which was written by the groom’s sister, describing what his deceased father would have said if he were alive. Yes, there were definitely tears!

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The property where the reception was held. The weather couldn’t have been any more perfect
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Having fun with our new UK friends
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Dinner time!

 

Once dinner was over, we moved to the second level for dancing and the very well stocked open bar. The music switched between American and Spanish music. It was fun to watch the locals dancing Flamenco to the Spanish music. Those ladies (and all the men) knew how to dance. It was super impressive and made us all a bit jealous!

Since it was so warm outside (high 20s), we switched between dancing inside and lounging outside under the starry sky. The newlyweds were really lucky with the weather as it couldn’t have been a more beautiful day and night.

At 11:30pm a bus took us back to the city, which is when I returned to the hostel. My friends decided to keep on, with one getting back to the hotel at 5am, and the other around 11:30 am … ah to be young again!

It was quite an experience and a good time had by all!!

Day 3 – Recovery day and travelling to Cordoba

On a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being sleeping on a plane and 10 being uninterrupted sleep in a 5 star resort, my sleep was about a 3. I woke up around 5am when one of my friends stumbled in, with the best man from the wedding (not as dodgy as it sounds!)

He passed out and then two hours later left the room. I don’t think our French room mate was impressed to be woken up by a man in the room in our female only dorm. It’s probably a good thing we left this morning!

(for the record, for reasons unknown to my friend, he followed her to the hostel).

After finally getting back to sleep, I woke up at 8:30am and decided to make the most of the morning.

While strolling around a very quiet early-ish morning Sevilla, I was very thankful that I had decided not to drink the night before. I was feeling relatively fresh, and had a good couple hours seeing what I had missed the days before. The highlight was watching and listening to the massive bells ringing from the Cathedral in time for Sunday mass. I was hoping to go inside the cathedral and climb the Bell Tower but on Sunday it was only open at 2:30pm and we were aiming to take the 1:30pm bus to Cordoba.

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The cathedral’s Torre Giralda which dates back to the 1100s
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On their way to Sunday mass
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The cathedral and the Torre Giralda
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Beautiful view from one of the many bridges crossing the river
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Tapas sign in the Santa Cruz district, which was formerly the city’s  Jewish district. This area is sometimes called “the Disney Land of Spain” for its plethora of tourist shops. Even so, wandering its maze of streets is a must-do while in Seville.

When I returned to the hostel room I was expecting to see the girls awake but one was still sleeping and the other hadn’t come back yet. All was good though as everyone was eventually accounted for and we were able to check out on time at 12pm.

After lugging our bags during the 15 walk to the train station, we found our train which took us to Cordoba in about 1.5 hours. The views from the train were mostly of the countryside, so it was a nice relaxing way to spend a couple hours.

Next stop – Cordoba!

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