After a nice 2.5 hr flight, we finally stepped foot on Spanish soil and were immediately shocked by the heat. At about 105 degrees at 8:30 pm we were definitely in for a hot week. Unlike Rome’s humidity, Spain was more of a dry heat which was welcomed after spending the last 3 days constantly sweating. Don’t get me wrong- it was hot. But it wasn’t a heat that had you constantly feeling wet and sticky and sweaty- at least not right away. Once we got to the hostel and all checked in it was around 10:30 and just about everything around us was closed, so we went to a small restaurant at the corner of the street. There we got our first experience of authentic Spanish sangria and tapas! The sangria was fruity, refreshing and delicious, with a hint of cinnamon in it, which isn’t always found in sangria we get in the US. For tapas we tried cola de toro (bulls tail)- it had a great flavor, and came as a deep fried ball, crispy on the outside and somewhat of a mushy mix of tails meat and a few other things to make the filling- it was yummy, but the texture made me hesitant on whether I’d ever try it again. Additionally we had pork meatballs, which were juicy and definitely one of my favorites, tortilla de potata (basically potato pie without a crust) and gambas rebozadas (deep fried shrimp) which were all also pretty yummy! After dinner we treated ourselves to a little ice cream before heading to bed.
The next day, we got up with planes to see the Real Alcazar de Sevilla and the Catedral de Sevilla. It was already hot out but luckily the alcazar was a mixture in walking outside and inside. The alcazar was amazing, surrounded by a wall of stone, looking almost mid-evil on the outside, but on the inside looking more middle-eastern with beautiful mosaics, arch filled rooms and large gardens spanning 2/3 of the property. We didn’t really have breakfast other than croissants so we ran out of steam after being at the alcazar for a few hours. We found a great restaurant for lunch where we enjoyed paella for the first time! YUM. It was delicious, season well and tasting like seafood but not fishy at all, just full of flavor. The seafood paella we ordered had shrimp, octopus, squid and clams and I would definitely eat it again! We also cooled off with some free sangria (used to convince us to eat there). After lunch we made the hike back to the hotel and I promptly passed out for about an hour and a half.
Unfortunately the cathedral was closed by the time we made it back that way so we walked around town and went to the Plaza de España (Spanish square). It was equally breathtaking as we approached the square which was hidden from the outside. Inside we found a huge building adorned with flags, a great water fall in front and a small “moat” going in front of the building, resulting in bridges leading up to the buildings steps. The intricacy of the tiles used to decorate the bridges and parts of the building were equally beautiful.
After walking around and just wandering, we grabbed a few snacks (including a bowls of instant spicy ramen which I am now still carrying around 3 days later), and I proceeded to eat a whole bag of chips. Not saying that’s the reason we weren’t hungry for dinner, but between the chips, Anna’s wafers and our paella, we didn’t get dinner that night.
After a nice nights sleep we hit our last stop in Sevilla, the cathedral. The Cathedral of Sevilla is absolutely gorgeous from the outside, looking almost like a big castle as it is HUGE and extremely detailed on the outside. Luckily we were able to make it inside for a while before we had to rush to the train station! Needless to say, the inside was just as detailed as the outside and definitely worth the look. Huge shoutout to Europe for also providing great student discounts (at most places)!
- Alcazar de Sevilla
- Plaza de España
- Catedral de Sevilla
- I love love love Spanish and I am so happy I am getting to use it! Definitely a little rusty, but it feels good to try and use my Spanish and get a little better and more comfortable each day!
- My feet are a mixture of tan and dirt. Ew.
- I truly can’t wait to hopefully have the opportunity to visit Spain when it’s not over a hundred degrees from 10 am-10 pm. Even better all restaurants are closed from like 2-8 cause they know it’s hot too. Sweet.
- After 3 weeks, I finally actually know our departure date… it’s not Thursday or Wednesday. Or the 28th. Oops- sorry mom and dad!
- Anna still has blisters on her feet. Moleskin- if you need a poster child, I found her.
Next stop: Córdoba