Weekend in Seville in Mar 2023: Day 2 – Morning in Seville
We didn’t turn the light off until about 11:30pm and I slept through til about 4:30am. Vick did much better than me, waking at something like 7:30am.
Having done our Starbucks homework, we knew there were three Starbucks in the locality, so we headed out at about 8:15am. Today we visited the store at Puerta Jerez, just passed Real Alcazar.
It was a lovely walk through the city. Every turn there’s something new to look at and admire. Seville is a clean and tidy place which mixes the old and the new so well.
It was a bit chilly. The weather forecast suggested it was about 10 deg c, but the sun was out without a cloud in the sky. It was also really quiet. The only people we came across were restaurant owners opening up.
We had plans for Mon and Tues, so our plan for today was not to have a plan as such! It was a bit of a chilling day and it would allow us all to take in Seville and discover some places in and around the city.
Starbucks was clean and the staff spoke decent English; certainly better than our Spanish anyway. They were a bit light on content, so I asked for mine to be topped up and I got a drip of cold milk added. Bizarre!
We sat in the store and enjoyed our drinks.
We reflected on the story of why Seville’s streets are so narrow. It gets so hot in the summer here, that if the streets are narrow, then it reduces the amount of hot sun that hits can reach the ground.
We walked back to the hotel for breakfast, avoiding the many horse-drawn carriages which were heading into the city to tempt tourists into parting with their cash.
More amazing views of the city however, as the temperature slowing increased on our walk back and we encountered more people out and about.
Breakfast was a very pleasant affair. Unfortunately, we ended up sitting in the room with the buffet, rather than sitting outside in the courtyard. Andrew had been able to secure a table for four and we came down to join him.
But the food was incredible. A plate of fresh fruit salad was at each seat. Toast was presented in a bread basket. Cappuccinos were ordered and consumed.
The buffet contained a mixture of hot food (bacon, sausage, eggs and tomato) together with some amazingly attractive looking pastries and cakes. Most of which we did well to ignore…
Having discussed our options for the morning, we concluded that a visit to the Seville Museum of Fine Arts may be a nice one to start with, located at Plaza del Museo.
Andrew and Sam were keen to visit; we were easy to please and there was an artists’ marketplace outside. It turned out to be a really interesting visit.
Along the way we came across more attractive buildings and more places to eat! All of which we stored in our memories just in case we needed a half-decent restaurant for tapas.
We came across a large metal frame on legs with concrete blocks on the top. There were a number of well-built guys hanging around, drinking beer and having photos taken in front of this contraption.
Really odd. It got odder as you can see in a short video of the events that unfolded.
Having googled it, it was all about Semana Santa (Holy Week). Although Holy Week is an important festival throughout the Catholic world, the celebrations in Seville are thought to be the largest and most elaborate.
The celebrations are organised by religious groups, each of which organizes one of the processions (typically about 40 during the course of the week). Each carry the statues of the Christ and the Virgin to the Cathedral to be blessed.
The floats with the statues are seriously heavy, and also very valuable. These floats are carried by blokes, often through narrow streets and around tight corners.
The blokes have rolled up towels on their heads (purpose-built headgear) to protect them from the weight of the float.
Those guys are called Costaleros, and for a couple of months beforehand they can be found practising their routes with floats weighted with sandbags and concrete blocks.
That explains it! Link to Wikipedia.
After looking around the artists’ marketplace, Andrew and Sam went into the museum and we wandered around looking for a coffee place outside in the sun. We failed miserably and ended up back at the museum.
After a coffee and water at a local cafe, we headed off to find some lunch.
On the way to the open-top city bus stop, we stumbled across El Patio, which offered some amazing tapas and some unusual seating areas.
We found an table half-way up some stairs and decided what we wanted. Vick went to order but came across a rude server who couldn’t speak English! So things didn’t quite go the way we hoped.
The food that was provided was tasty, and we weren’t going to starve. It left a little bit of a sour taste in the mouth due to the pain that Vick had to go through.
There would be better times in the afternoon.
The Keevils and Vick had purchased tickets for the open-top city bus tour, which I didn’t really fancy.
So they headed off to the bus stop and I wandered back to the hotel for a snooze!
Follow the whole story here: Weekend in Seville in Mar 2023