During the Easter break earlier this year I hopped in a car and travelled to the Andalusia region of southern Spain, swapping the cold north of Burgos for sun, sunglasses and the slightest of tans…
First stop was Seville, which is often reported to be one of the best cities in Spain to visit for Easter, or ‘Semana Santa’ celebrations. We stayed in an Airbnb flat in a hipster neighbourhood of the city. Seville was as beautiful as expected with its old, narrow streets, and its stunning cathedral.
One thing you cannot miss out on if you visit Seville is the Alcazar – a palace originally built by the Moors and eventually taken over by the Christian Kings. Exploring it you can see the clear mixture of original Islamic architectural influence with later Christian additions – a common feature of Spanish architecture, particularly in the south.
Tickets are 9.50 euros, and free for students. A great way to spend a morning or afternoon exploring the palace and its beautiful gardens. Expect it to be crowded of course, because it is one of the main tourist destinations of Seville.
The evenings we dedicated to catching the religious processions of Semana Santa. These occur all over Spain, and are elaborate with huge floats depicting the Easter story. It was a very somber affair, more so than I expected as the processions were slow and the accompanying music haunting.
The costumes the people in the processions wear can be very alarming if you;re not expecting them. They obviously look like the KKK, but these costumes have existed in Spain for centuries, and are meant to resemble dunces as the people pent for their sins (which is funny if the KKK took inspiration from dunce outfits…)
Our last stop was the Plaza de Espana which is surrounded by huge gardens. Seville is hugely popular among tourists and travellers and it isn’t hard to see why! With a rich history and the irresistible Spanish vibe of being both fun and relaxed, it can be enjoyed by relaxing, exploring, or indulging! It is more expensive than other Spanish cities, which is a shame, but definitely worth the extra euros if you want a worthwhile trip!