Real Alcázar – The Seville Alcázar is an Impressive Mudéjar Palace:
One of the most impressive sights in Seville, and certainly one of the more visited royal residences, is the famous Reales Alcázares de Sevilla (Royal Alcázars of Seville). The Seville Alcázar is a series of palaces, patios, apartments and halls with some of the finest examples of Mudéjar architecture and decoration in Spain.
Pedro I’s Seville Alcázar
The Seville Alcázar was built in 1364 on the orders of Pedro I, also known as Pedro the Cruel. It was built on the site that was previously the palace grounds of the city’s Moorish rulers. Pedro I brought in Moorish craftsmen from Granada and Toledo to build his royal residence in Mudéjar style. Later monarchs added their own influences to the Alcázar resulting in a structure with combined elements of Mudéjar, Gothic, Baroque and many other architectural styles. The upper levels of the Alcázar are still used by the Spanish royal family as their official Seville residence.
Visiting the Alcázar
To truly appreciate the exquisite architecture of the Alcázar, you would need to spend half a day here. The Alcázar is filled with awe-inspiring carved wooden ceilings – inlaid and featuring gold leaf, plasterwork, glazed tiles and equally stunning tapestries. We visited on a tour which went a bit too quickly and we couldn’t turn our head left and right fast enough to take in all the features of the royal palace, let alone trying to remember everything that we saw.
Be sure not to miss:
- the eye-catching Puerta del León on Plaza Triunfo
- the Patio de la Montería where the court met before hunting expeditions
- the Patio de las Munecas
- the Patio de las Doncellas (Courtyard of the Maidens) – a reference to the legend that the Moors demanded 100 virgins every year as a tribute from christian kingdoms in Iberia.
- the magnificent gold-gilded dome of the Salon de Embajadores
The exterior is equally impressive with serene gardens that provide an oasis in this hectic Spanish city. The new garden section houses a fascinating mixture of English and Moorish styles. The Pool of Mercury and the Doña María de Padilla baths are other highlights that must be included on your Alcázar visit.
The visit to the Seville Alcázar was a highlight of our trip to the Andalucian capital as it gave us the opportunity to see the finest of Mudéjar architecture. But it definitely needed a longer visit than the one that we had.
Mon – Sun: 09:30 – 19:00 (Closed on Jan 1st and 6th, Good Friday and December 25th)
Real Alcazar de Sevilla
Patio de Banderas s/n. 41004 – Sevilla
Map of Seville: