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  • The Gold and Silver of Seville

    Seville ©Noemí Galera

    Seville ©Noemí Galera/Flickr

     

    The capital of Andalusia is the symbol of classic Spain. 

    Seville is the most Spanish city out of all Spanish cities. Here lie the remains of Cristopher Columbus, it was this amazing place where all the stolen Incan gold was unloaded, here Murillo painted the too joyful faces of saints, and here also lived the imagination of writers like Don Juan. Corridors have a long tradition in the Andalusian capital and this is the only place in Spain where  every Spanish person celebrates Fiesta with lot of color and vibrancy.

    The big show takes place in Semana Santa when 57 catholic priests each one of them wear gigantic saint objects, with holy scenes from the church they belong to the cathedral and back.  The marching is practiced barefooted( with chains at feet and wearing crosses)  with drummers, and the people are also disguised as Inquisitors.

    Reconquista

    Sevilla celebrates even from the Middle Ages the victories of Christians against the Muslims. The Moors were ruled by the Spanish for a half of the millennium until 1248, when they were conquered and mostly killed by King Ferdinand III. ( The Monarch was beatified after death, he expelled 300.000 Muslims and shared their properties like houses and lands between the ones close to him.  Desperate to keep their lands and value, many Moors converted to Christianity their personal belongings to them, taking the risk of being burned alive as heretics.

    Seville ©Juan Cabanillas

    Seville ©Juan Cabanillas/flickr

    Despite the expulsion of Muslims, the Moorish architecture is a trademark for Seville,  well known Minaret Giralda, being visible from a far distance. King Pedro III admired  Moorish architecture and gardens, and because of that, he constructed the Alcazar palace in the center of the city. The spiky arcades, the roof, the hiding gardens makes the Palace a wonderful oriental style building, making a popular tourist destination for visitors.

    Secret Sanctuary ©Bert Kaufmann

    Secret Sanctuary ©Bert Kaufmann/flickr

    The citizens decided  in 1401 to built a church, saying “Let us make a cathedral so big that everybody who encounters will say that we are out of our minds”.  After a while, the cathedral of Santa Maria was finished replacing a former mosque, becoming the third biggest cathedral by size in Europe. With Gothic exterior and a strong renaissance influenced interior, split in 5 naves by a powerful column, the cathedral was the most admired construction in  Seville. It also contains a sarcophagus which says that Cristopher Columbus rests in peace, with 4 statues of rulers with natural size.

    Some say that the explorer is buried in Santo Domingo, the Caribbean. After  the discovering of the New World and the occupation of the Incan empire, Seville has become the wealthiest European city from the 16th to the 17th century. Two times per year a fleet of Galleons were unloading gold and silver. Having an ownership above the commerce with the colonies, the city prospered much more year after year, the population however decreased  because of the expulsion of the Moors, the persecution of Jews and the Black Death in 1349, few people were enjoying the new shining of the city.

    Bullfighting

    In the picturesque district of  Barrio de Santa Cruz the owners improved their homes with beautiful blue glazes. Bullfights were starting to be popular in Seville and forged a passion since the first fight. The first was held in 1750 in Seville, lead by famed toreros and after a time, they built the most beautiful arena in Spain: Plaza del Toros de la Maestranza, that welcomes about 12.500 spectators.

    It is an important part of the big festival called Feria de Abril, which takes place every year in April. The celebrations have about 450 places at Barrio los Remidos.  The most crucial part of the festival is the owners parade  with owners, the locals, dressed up with horses.

    Men – los caballeros – wear short jackets with round black hats

    Ladies- Las senoras and Las Senoritas wears a unique dress with pink flowers in their hair. All the week you can hear and see Flamenco.

    If you are looking for a cheap flight to Seville, you can find it on the site www.travelgrove.com.

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