A Couchsurfer’s guide to… Sevilla

By: Daniel

The perfect picture!

There is almost no place in Seville as photogenic as Plaza de España. Even George Lucas realized it when he decided to film some sequences of Star Wars there. You can easily spend several hours there just taking pictures.  

Plaza España by LucVi/shutterstock

Best breakfast in town!

Of course we do “churros” in south Spain for breakfast, especially on weekends. Nevertheless, the real classic down here is the typical “tostá” (toasted bread). Almost any restaurant/bar open in the morning will offer you a decent one. There are many kinds depending what do you decide to spread on it. My favorite is the olive oil and smash tomato with Spanish ham or cheese. If you feel brave enough, you can try it with “manteca colorá” (animal fat butter), grossly tasty and over-caloric.

Best view in the city!

You cannot miss the sunset from the top of “Metropol Parasol“, aka “Las Setas”. It is the largest wooden structure in the world and the 360° view of the city is just amazing. The ticket is very cheap and you get a free drink in a bar at the market downstairs with it.

LucVi/shutterstock

Best place to grab a drink!

Doubtless, “Taberna Álvaro Peregil” is one of the most genuine bars in the city center. This tiny and typical place serves the so-called “vino de naranja”, a sweet red wine perfumed with the bitter oranges that grows all over the city streets.

Where to dance!

Carboneria” is a historical place to attend a free flamenco dance show at night. It became touristy, but it still preserves the bohemian essence that it had when I used to frequent it almost 20 years ago.

Flamenco show in Sevilla (Marcin Krzyzak/shutterstock)

Where to sweat!

There is a fabulous park where is very difficult to meet up with other tourists. “Parque Miraflores” has +200.000 acres of historic buildings, trees from all over the world, artificial lakes, open air gyms, urban gardens and an authentic local atmosphere. A perfect place to go jogging.

Where to try the local delicacy!

Tapas, tapas and more tapas. There are plenty of places to eat good tapas in Seville, bit also quite a few to eat bad ones. Follow local advice and try to eat the specialty of each place. My favorite tapa is a vegan one, “espincas con garbanzos” at “El Rinconcillo“, a bar open since 1670.

El Rinconcillo by: cornfield/shutterstock

Best quick bite!

You can try the best bites in town at the almost one century years old tavern “Blanco Cerrillo“. Famous locally for its “adobo”, marinade and deep fried anchovies. The soft inside and crunchy outside “pavía”, deep fried codfish is also a feast. You can order them to go or have them there with a local beer standing up in front of the steel bar, right like a local.

Best day-trip out of town!

Undoubtedly, the archaeological ruins of “Italica“, just 12km away from Seville. It was the first Roman city founded out of the Italian peninsula and it has the third largest amphitheater in the old Roman Empire. It was also the hometown of two of the most important emperors: Trajan and Hadrian. Some important scenes of “GoT” were filmed there. Not to be missed if you have at least more than a couple of days in the city.

Roman Amphitheater at Italica by Aleksandar Todorovic/shutterstock

Cute cafe!

I have to admit that coffee is not our strong suit in Spain. But things are getting slowly better year by year. However, there are cute places with decent hot drinks that are perfect to chill a bit or to hang out with friends. “Picalagarto” is my favorite, a classic among locals.

One experience not to miss!

Getting lost in the labyrinthine narrow streets of Santa Cruz neighborhood trying to find the Roman temple of Mármoles street.

Street in Santa Cruz (Irina Sen/shutterstock)

A tourist trap to avoid!

Avoid the city tour bus. Most beautiful places are in very narrow streets that you can just access by foot. You can walk everywhere within the city center. Almost every corner is worth a stop.

Historic moment!

There are just too many historical places in Seville that it is too hard to pick just one. Even if you visit the city for a very short period of time, there are at least three musts you absolutely cannot miss: the cathedral, the cathedral and the cathedral. Also the Alcazar and Torre del Oro if you’ve got the time.

Cathedral of Sevilla by: V_E/shutterstock

Anything else to add…

Address to anyone by saying “miarma”. It literally means “my soul” in sevillian dialect. You will probably get a surprised smile back and fully attention to whatever you want to ask or say.

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