|| Andalusia | seville
Seville - Cathedral and Giralda
The Gothic cathedral of Seville combines Islamic and Christian architecture. In the 12th century, there was a mosque where the cathedral stands now. Two elements of mosque, the exquisite minaret and Patio de los Naranjos, the open courtyard, were incorporated into the cathedral. The minaret became a bell tower, the Giralda, topped with a bronze weather vane (giraldillo). Seville Cathedral and the Giralda are a "must-see" on any visit to Sevilla with kids.
|Tip: For details of what to see with kids, read our blog post "Seville Cathedral and La Giralda."
|Cathedral (Catedral) –The Seville Cathedral is the largest Gothic church in the world, and the monumental interior is ornamented with massive gold and silver altarpieces, stained glass windows, painted chubby cherubs, lacy tracery in high Gothic ceilings.
|Tomb of Christopher Columbus – Kids will naturally gravitate to this impressive monument four kings (representing the four kingdoms of Leon, Castile, Aragon and Navarre) carrying a big coffin. Columbus got around – he was was first buried in Seville, but then reburied in Santo Domingo, then Cuba, and later returned to Seville.
|Sacristy and Treasury – Both the Main Sacristry and Treasury are full of gold and silver treasures – reliquaries (with sacred relics), crosses, rosaries, chalices. The most impressive item in the Treasury is the Crown of the Virgen de los Reyes, covered with precious stones, diamonds, and pearls, one of the angels is a single pearl!
|Capilla Mayor – In the center of the cathedral is the richest altarpiece in the world, 45 different scenes from life of Virgin Mary and Christ, covered in gold. In the center is a lovely silver statue of Mary and the baby Jesus, and right above, a nativity scene. Tip: Bring binoculars, as the altar is some distance away.
Giralda – Climb up the tower on a series of ramps that go up and up. On the way up, stop to see exhibits, old bells and clocks, simple tools used to construct this spectacular building, an original medieval door with Islamic detail. From the top there are panoramic views of the city and Gothic details of the cathedral rooftop.
|Patio de los Naranjos – A quiet peaceful courtyard with fountains and orange trees, and bronze gateway with Arabic script. The Patio de los Naranjos and the Giralda are the two remaining parts of the medieval mosque, integrated with the Gothic cathedral.
|Tip: Ticket to Seville cathedral includes the Giralda tower and Patio de los Naranjos.
Horse carriage rides – In the plazas around the cathedral, pick up a horse carriage ride. It's great fun to ride in a horse-drawn carriage around the old city, it feels like another era. Perhaps because there are so many carriages, you always hear horses clip-clopping through the streets, it's a wonderful sound and something kids don't normally hear.