Sevilla | Spain Adventures 3/3
I will say, Sevilla was the city I was most excited about for our Spanish trek because this is where my mom lived when she studied abroad her junior year of college. Growing up, I have heard countless stories about Mom’s time in Sevilla and the various adventures she went on from there. Before leaving the states, Mom actually sent me a google maps that had her apartment and school pinned and while we were walking through the streets of Sevilla, I was able to see her street and where I was in relation to her house and school. So so cool!!
Once again, we drove from Madrid to Sevilla, but luckily this bus ride was a tad bit shorter. After six or seven hours and two pit stops, we made it to our hotel, H10 Corregidor in Sevilla. Though the rooms were small and tighty, I did really enjoy staying in this quaint hotel.
For our first night in Sevilla, we stopped by La Plaza de España on our way to dinner. The plaza is just so gorgeous! Once again, I wish I could’ve explored it further via a nice long run, but we can save that for another time. We ate dinner outside at a little cafe on Avenida de la Constitución which is across the street from the Fuente fe Hispalis, a beautiful fountain in the city, and the cafe was located on the end my mom’s old street. After dinner, we walked to El Arenal to watch a Flamenco show. I will admit, I didn’t care too much to see one, however, I am so glad I did and I ended up really enjoying it! For starters, Flamenco is something that has always been brought up in my Spanish classes, but it was so neat to actually go and a traditional one in Spain. By seeing it in person, you really can grasp the feeling and emotion behind the dancers. Also, apparently, when living in Spain, mom went to the exact same Flamenco place and even brought her family there when they came to visit!
Unfortunately, because the way the travel was broken down, we had one full day in Sevilla rather than two, but that jus means I will have to come back to continue exploring! We began our first and final day in Sevilla with breakfast at the hotel, per usual. Although it was a bit different than what I am used to, breakfast at H10 was quite lovely. Afterwards, we made our way to Real Alcázar de Sevilla, the royal palace. This palace has been around since the 10th century—insane. The unique architecture, bright colors, and intricate tile work that covers the palace is truly unlike anything I have seen before. We spent some time strolling through the palace grounds and obviously taking lots of pictures.
Side note, in Sevilla, orange trees line the streets everywhere. They were planted so the oranges would create a natural fragrance when the wind blew, therefore the streets would ideally always smell good. At Real Alcázar, orange trees cover the palace grounds. Mads and I managed to pick one from a tree, but honestly, they were pretty bitter.
Anyway, we later headed over to the Cathedral which is truly is such a neat building. Everyone independently explored the Cathedral. A couple of friends and I even walked up to the top of the bell tower to catch a killer view of the city and the top of the Cathedral.
After a relaxing, long lunch, we made our way to La Plaza del Toros for a tour of the bullfighting arena. Similar to the Flamenco show, bullfighting is easy to write off when you have to read an article about it in Spanish class, but once I found myself standing in the middle of the arena, on the same dirt in which the bullfighting takes place, the idea of it all really got to me. Nevertheless, I found it very interesting to listen to our tour guide speak which such passion on bullfighting and the art and culture behind it all.
We then strolled back to our hotel only for a smaller group of us to venture back out to do some Sevilla shopping! We only had about an hour, but we made a dent in both Bershka and Bimba y Lola. For our final dinner in Spain (big tears), we went to a lovely traditional Spanish dinner of purely tapas. Our trip leaders actually partnered us with our ‘dates’ which was a fun twist. Everyone really did enjoy a long dinner with loads of food. On our way back from dinner, some of us stopped at an open gelato shop and got the biggest size gelato just so we could use up our last bit of euros. Oh how I miss it!!
That night, I, along with a few others never actually went to bed. Madelyn and I managed to keep each other wide awake through the excessive amount of delirious laughter. At 3:30am, we all left our hotel, hopped on our bus, and I conked out for the entire 6 hour bus ride back to Madrid. We got to the Madrid airport and got on our nine hour flight to Philadelphia at 1:00pm. Thankfully, the flight was fairly empty and so the amazing flight attendant moved the majority of us around so we had a bit more room. Madelyn and I ended up sharing a row of four seats, so we each got an aisle seat with plenty of room in between to sleep! We flew from 1:00pm to 9:00pm Spain time, but landed in Philly at about 3:00pm their time. We had a 5 hour layover in Philly, where I had one of the best tasting Smashburgers. Lol. Towards the end of our layover, the time change really started kicking in, but I forced myself to stay wide awake. Once we got on our flight to Houston around 9:00 pm Philly time, I fell asleep so quickly. And before we knew it, we were back in Houston!!
That concludes my Spain adventures (at least for the time being)!! Overall, my experience in Spain is truly one of my coolest memories. Not only did I love exploring each and every city, but I loved the group of students I was surrounded by (as you can probably tell by the pictures) and all of the chaperones. I hope you enjoyed reading about our activities! Cheers to more adventures!!