After an hour and a half flight from Barcelona, we landed in the afternoon and checked into our hotel, H10 Corregidor Boutique Hotel, situated in La Alameda district. The hotel is a kilometer or less away from Seville’s main attractions, and two minutes away from hip restaurants and a buzzing atmosphere. Over the last decade, La Alameda that surrounds the famous Alameda de Hercules, attracted a different crowd. Real hobos. Now, its boho-esque atmosphere and abundant eats draws a crowd of neo- hipsters who stay up late to either attend a live concert, drink on the many terraces or walk their dogs, sometimes at midnight. It took us one day to adapt to the fiesta driven way of life. We were spending five days in Seville. Who wanted to rush around old landmarks in a locked itinerary that expressed years of war, love and more war? In a deliberate attempt, we planned our site visits over a few days in order to enjoy good company, clear skies, delicious food and skip information overload.
Though I must confess, the neighborhood had no impact on our decision to stay at H10. The truth is, we wanted to be close to a gym and not pay a premium for mediocre European hotels. We took a chance. Every where we ate in and around La Alameda was delicious and total value for money. The streets were colorful and it was easy to get around. By all means, allow yourself one day of confusion, because you do end up circling around the same streets over and over again.
We began our day eating Spanish tomato toast for breakfast at a cafe nearby, then headed out and explored impulsively. We saw how average Sevillians lived against the backdrop of historic architecture that ranged from Baroque to Gothic to Renaissance and impressively Mudejar, that I recently have to come to learn of. Mudejar is the meeting point between Islam and Christianity.
From H10, we walked out into one of the narrow streets and headed towards Plaza Del Duque De La Victoria. Some days, we took a right and walked towards the Guadalquivir River and crossed the Isabelle II Bridge, visiting Mercado De Triana, built over Castle San Jorge, its ruins are scattered around the market. Before crossing the bridge, we were drawn into the more modern Mercado Lonja Del Barranco.
Both riverbanks had different characters that were formed because of the nature of the river in the past; rough waters. Besides, there’s more to Guadalquivir, which comes from the name, Wadi Al Kabir (Big River in Arabic) than its turquoise beauty and being serenaded with a guitarist at sunset on a boat. It was the primary reason Seville existed; something about exclusive trade with the Americas that contributed significantly to Seville’s economy.
We made an impromptu visit to Plaza de Toros de La Real Maestranza, aka, Bull Museum, just in time to get the low down on bull fighting history, art and apparatus from the English speaking tour guide. We left the museum by the backdoor and walked down the shopping district, which eventually led us to Avenue De La Constitucion.
We walked down the Avenue to the Gold Tower. If you want to capture a panoramic view of Seville, and give yourself an education about the rise and decline of Seville’s economy, then pop in. Christopher Columbus wasn’t shy, which leads to my next post about the other wonders of Seville, and why the Italian founder of the Americas who wanted to sail to Japan was buried here.