A Hippie’s Journal of: Seville – Andalucía
Ah! Seville .. the city of Tapas, Gazpacho, Flamenco and those famous juicy Oranges.
As you stroll down the narrow streets in the old centre of the city, you will be amazed at what Seville has to offer you. The abundance of History mixed with Tradition makes Seville the perfect getaway destination, regardless wether you are a newly wed couple, or a young family.
Here are some handy tips for your next backpacking adventure into the jewel of Andalucía!
If you are under the age of 25 and still attending school, Seville’s tourist sites offer over a 70% discount on entry tickets, that’s if you are classified as a student, so be sure to bring your student card with you (alongside your ID) as it is extremely handy in the city. They will always want to see proof though, so purely telling them that you are from a different country and still in school, understandably, isn’t enough for them to let you get in with a major discount. This is also applied to minors and seniors.
Although I gallivanted during the day, (and loved it), and because I usually visit Seville when its booming with life in the summer, some days reaching up to 40º celsius during mid summer, it really was kind of a ‘warm’ experience for me, and I’m definitely not ignoring the fact that it felt like I had to take a shower every 30 minutes. For those who don’t mind this, day time is really the best time to view the city, but for those who would prefer a calmer, (less sweatier), and less stressed tour, some of the main city sites provide nighttime tours, which I would highly suggest, and maybe go out into the hills or visit a quainter near by town in the Provence of Andalucía during the day.
Lets talk about the culture/spanish people for a minute..
Contrary to many misconceptions about the Spanish, they are in fact, genuinely a nice bunch. Out of all the times I’ve visited Spain, I never really had an unpleasant encounter with the Spanish. Although I roughly speak the language (Portuguese is understood well by the Spanish), and even though it is not at all perfect, I feel like they actually appreciate the effort you make into trying your best to communicate with them. Whenever I went into a coffee shop or local bar, I was always kindly greeted by a simply ‘Hola’ or ‘Buenos Dias’ , that really helps you feel less like an oddball. One thing that I also noticed is that contrary to more southern cities in Spain like Gibraltar, Marbella, etc, most of the people form Seville don’t talk English to you, not because they don’t want to, it’s purely because most of them really can’t speak the language, either they haven’t learnt it in school, as in some areas it is not common to teach english through out the whole schooling years. Its very important to familiarise yourself with the very basic greetings in Spanish. This way they will see you are putting an effort to make yourself understood.
Here, I’ve put together a few very basic sentences that will help you feel a bit more comfortable and ready for your next trip!
Hello – Holá!
Good Morning – Buenos Dias
How are you? – Todo bien? / Cómo está?
Have a nice day – Tenga un buen dia!
Coffe with milk – Cafe con leche
Please – Porfavor
Can i see the menu? – Puedo ver el menú?
How much does it cost? – Cuanto custa esto?
You’re welcome – De nada
Thank you – Gracias
Good bye – Adiós!
Oh man, and the food!
The diet in Spain is known to be one of the healthiest across the planet. And understandably so. You may ask yourself: But, how can I get myself and my partner looking more like the extremely sexy and never ageing couple Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem? Well, get yourself into this country, you will know what I’m talking about. The combination of fresh fruits (famous seville oranges), seafood (scrumptious traditional squid and tuna) , veggies, olive (oil), and some many other amazing super delicious foods, widely loved by the mediterranean culture, are known to help you sustain a healthy and long life.
Contrary to many beliefs, the Spanish don’t drink Sangria like we drink water. Sangria is very common for tourists, for the Spanish, they can occasionally enjoy it on hot summer days, but of course, the perks of being a tourist, where else to have a yummy jug of pure Spanish Sangria than in this amazing city. I’ve without a doubt had the best sangria I’ve ever tasted here, in a secluded little bar, tucked away in a narrow little street, without a tourist in sight.
In my next article, ill be sharing with you which are the best places to be visited while you’re spending time in Seville.
Of course, how could you visit Seville without indulging in a smooth glass of wine (or maybe a sherry), and those mouth watering tapas you will find from a cover of a magazine. I do know that in Seville they are very fond on their wine, the majority of their sparkling wines are quite sweet and fruity, characteristic of southern Spanish wines.
And not to mention the fantastic nightlife..
As you may know, the Spanish way of life isn’t as fast paced as the rest of Europe, but that doesn’t mean at all that they don’t know how to party. They normally start their night by eating quite late, and when I say late, I mean it. The last time I went out in Seville, in the middle of August, we had gotten back to the apartment after a few rounds of cocktails and exploring the traditional bars just on the outskirts of the city centre, we must have got back around 1am. And as I looked out the window down to one of the narrow streets we were staying at, just opposite the famous cathedral, the restaurant was completely full of locals, still enjoying their dinner, with no bothers and disturbs, until they would get up and leave around 1:30 to invade another bar down the road, where the live music (not too loud as not to disturb other residents) was still up and running, dancing the night away, it included a bit of any type of music really.. jazz, folk, reggae..
If you’re brave enough to go for a bit of a spicy adventure, there are many cocktails bars with live music that you’ll be sure to join the locals in a little ‘tipsy’ flamenco dancing, the local boys will be sure to help you out with all the steps 😉
I must say, my first ever experience of entering into Seville at the age of 18, was truly an experience. Driving into the city on a hot summers day was, (and I’m not going to lie guys), rather chaotic, so if you’re seeking to experience a stress free vacation, I really suggest flying there and getting a bus/taxi straight into the old town. Otherwise, try not to drive into the city during high traffic hours!
But to be honest, while writing this article, I really couldn’t find any huge negatives about this place, it really is a breath taking city, that has been widely underestimated compared to other larger cities in Europe. It truly is the ‘jewel of Andalucía’.
In my next article I’ll be posting up some of the bets places to visit in Seville, from Restaurants to Palaces! Be sure to check it out