As soon as we decided to spend our winter vacation in the Andalusia region of Spain with a base camp in Seville. I immediately started planning the trip to the Royal Alcazar. We were lucky to get a hotel in the heart of the downtown area and just a few yards from the gate of the lion entrance to the palace.
Sevilla and a lot of Andalusian region of Spain benefit from the combination of the Moorish; Mediterranean and European influences which are evident in its architecture and makes this part of Spain one of the most romantic; vibrant and beautiful places I have ever visited. The attention to detail of the palace space cannot be described in words - every tile; every ceiling; even the garden layout takes your breath away and in all the spaces we visited in this region, the Royal Alcazar stands in a class all by itself.
From the Puerta de Leon (Gate of the lion entrance), it was evident this was not going to be like any other historical site we have visited. The site of the palace was previously a Roman settlement that was used by the Visigoths as a fortress at some point and later conquered by the Arab who transformed the space. Many additions and renovations later, we get to enjoy the spectacular space.
A few tips to keep in mind if you are planning a trip: go early because it is one of the top spots in Sevilla and it gets packed at certain times; plan to spend a couple of hours to get the most out of the visit; take cash because when we visited we could not pay the entrance fee with cards; have a snack and water handy - there is a lot of ground to cover and you don't want to miss out on anything because you get peckish; wear comfortable shoes and be camera ready (every corner - even the ceiling) is photograph worthy.
It was a challenge to put down my camera to enjoy the moment. I wanted to capture every detail of what made me fall in love with space. There is so much to see and experience so my one plea to you is to explore every turn and space that is open - you will not be disappointed. In every space you walk through - don't forget to look up because the ceiling work in this place is breathtaking ; make sure to explore the garden and the grounds - the main water feature has a simple elegance that I cannot describe; the garden layout with peacocks roaming the maze is something out of a storybook. Don't miss out on the top floors, the tiled stairways along will captivate you and the views from the top floors of the grounds and gardens should not be missed and the top floor spaces hold more wonder.