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Seville in One Day: See the Best of Andalucia's Capital in Under 24 Hours

Is it possible to see Seville in one day? Our Seville day trip itinerary will guide you to see the best of the city in under 24 hours!

By Liza S. | Updated 11 Jul 2024 | Seville | Cities | Login to add to YOUR Favourites Favourites Icon or Read Later

This article has been visited 412 times Seville Historic Centre Seville Historic Centre

Seville Historic Centre

Welcome to your express guide to Seville, tailored for those with just one day to visit the vibrant heart of Andalucia. In our guide to Seville in one day, we'll show you how to capture the essence of Seville in under 24 hours.

Whether you're marvelling at the architectural splendour of the Royal Alcázar, wandering through the charming alleys of Barrio Santa Cruz, or enjoying the serene beauty of Plaza de España, our one-day Seville itinerary ensures you don't miss out on what this enchanting city has to offer.

We’ve packed in practical tips on getting around, where to eat, and how to make the most of your limited time. By the end of your day in Seville, you'll have a taste of its rich history, culture, and culinary delights, leaving you longing to return.

Let’s embark on this day trip adventure and discover the best of Seville!

Is One Day in Seville Enough?

Alright, so you're planning to hit Seville for just a day. Is it enough?

Well, that depends on what you're after. If your goal is to tick off a few of the big-ticket items like the Royal Alcázar, Seville Cathedral, and a quick stroll through the Plaza de España, then yes, you can make a day in Seville quite impactful. You’ll get a snapshot of its rich history and vibrant culture, and certainly, some great photos and memories to take back.

But here’s the thing – in my opinion, Seville isn’t just a checklist destination. It’s a city brimming with history, art, and hidden gems that really come to life when you have more time to explore. With just one day, you'll likely only scratch the surface of this Andalucian treasure.

Seville is a city that lends itself to leisurely exploration. It’s the kind of place where you stumble upon a street flamenco performance or find yourself sipping coffee in a quaint plaza, feeling the pulse of the city.

If you truly have limited time, then a day is enough to say you’ve been to Seville and seen its highlights. But to really feel like you’ve experienced it? That takes a bit more time. Even staying the night and having 2 days in Seville can give you a richer experience!

Consider your one day in Seville a sampler plate – it's likely you'll want to come back for the full meal! Seville has a way of making visitors plan their next trip back before the first one is even over.

Getting to Seville

Plaza de España in Seville Plaza de España in Seville

Plaza de España in Seville

Seville is well-connected and easily accessible through various modes of transport. Here's what you need to know to make your journey to Seville as smooth as possible.

By Plane

Seville Airport (SVQ) is the main gateway to arrive by air. It serves both international and domestic flights. The airport itself isn’t very big and only has basic amenities.

The airport is about 30 minutes from the city centre and there’s an airport bus (Line EA) that runs regularly from the airport to the city. The fare is €4 one-way. Taxis and ride-hailing services are also available for a faster, more convenient way to get to the city centre.

By Train

The main train station in Seville is Santa Justa Railway Station. The city is served by high-speed AVE trains that connect it to other major Spanish cities such as Madrid and Malaga. The AVE trains from Madrid take around 2.5 hours, making Seville a viable day trip from Madrid.

For your reference, here are some estimated travel times by train to Seville:

  • From Malaga: Around 1 hour and 55 minutes to 2 hours and 30 minutes
  • From Granada: Approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes
  • From Cadiz: About 1 hour and 45 minutes to 2 hours

I love taking trains in Andalucia as they’re fast, comfortable, and drop you in the heart of the city when you arrive. For a day trip to Seville, I highly recommend taking the train.

It’s a good idea to book your train tickets in advance to secure the ideal schedule for your day as well as the best prices. Renfe (the Spanish railway company) typically releases tickets up to 90 days in advance.

By Bus

Buses arrive at the Plaza de Armas Bus Station in Seville.

This option is generally the most budget-friendly, with longer travel times compared to trains. For example, a bus journey from Madrid takes about 6 hours. The trade-off for the lower cost is less comfort and longer travel durations.

Approximate travel times to Seville by bus:

  • From Malaga: About 2 hours and 45 minutes to 3 hours
  • From Granada: Around 3 hours
  • From Cadiz: Typically takes about 2 hours and 30 minutes

Taking a bus to Seville can be a good option if you’re coming from a smaller city or town in Andalucia.

Planning to use public transportation to get to Seville? I like using a comparison tool like Omio which allows me to compare schedules, travel times, and prices.

Simply input your travel dates below to get started.

By Car

Driving to Seville offers the most flexibility, ideal for those who prefer to explore at their own pace. The good news is that renting a car in Spain can be quite affordable and it can be cost-effective if you’re travelling in a group.

Having a car is also ideal if you intend to visit the pueblos blancos in Andalucia after stopping by Seville.

Here are some approximate travel times to Seville by car:

  • From Madrid: About 5 hours
  • From Malaga: Just over 2 hours, depending on traffic
  • From Granada: Approximately 2 hours and 45 minutes under normal traffic conditions
  • From Cadiz: Roughly a 1 hour and 30 minutes drive

The primary challenge with driving is navigating and parking in Seville, as spaces can be limited and costly. A useful tip is to park outside the city centre and then use public transport or walk to the historic centre for your visit.

Travel Tip: Renting a car gives you the ultimate freedom to explore Andalucia at your own pace. Click here to compare car rental prices. (You’ll be surprised at how affordable it is in Spain!)

Getting Around Seville

Once you arrive in Seville, getting around the city is a breeze.

Seville’s historic centre is compact and most of the main attractions are within walking distance of each other. In fact, all the places on our suggested one-day Seville itinerary are all walkable.

Walking is not only convenient but also allows you to soak in the city's vibrant atmosphere, stumble upon hidden gems, and enjoy the beautiful architecture up close. Comfortable footwear is a must.

To get from the train/bus station to the historic centre, taking a bus is the cheapest option. Take Bus Line 32 directly to Plaza del Duque in the city centre which takes about 15 minutes. A taxi would be a bit faster (10 minutes) and costs €8-10. Ride-hailing services like Uber are also an option and can be convenient.

On a Seville day trip, you may also enjoy the tram which is ideal for short hops in the city centre. The T1 line runs from the San Bernardo railway station to Plaza Nueva, passing close to several key attractions such as the Cathedral and Real Alcazar.

Want to explore on a bike? Seville is one of Spain’s most bike-friendly cities, with over 170 kilometres of bike lanes. You can rent a bike for the day from various locations. The city also has a public bike-sharing program, Sevici, which is convenient for short rides.

Seville in One Day: What to See and Do for an Unforgettable Day Trip

There’s so much to see and do in Seville but on a day trip, it's important to set realistic expectations about what you can see and do in such a limited time.

In our suggested one-day Seville itinerary, we’re covering the city’s top 4 attractions: Real Alcázar de Sevilla, the Seville Cathedral, Barrio Santa Cruz, and Plaza de España. We’ll also offer suggestions for lunch as well as how to spend the evening in Seville, if you have more time.

This itinerary works best if this is going to be your first visit to Seville. If you’re a returning visitor, I recommend checking out our list of the top things to do in Seville and creating your own itinerary based on the sites you’re most interested in visiting.

As with any suggested itinerary, you may want to tweak it slightly to fit your preferences or omit a place or two if you prefer a slower pace to your day.

Royal Alcázar of Seville (Real Alcázar de Sevilla)

Entrance to the Real Alcázar de Sevilla Entrance to the Real Alcázar de Sevilla

Entrance to the Real Alcázar de Sevilla

As you start your Seville day trip, the Real Alcázar is an unmissable first stop.

This royal palace is a stunning testament to Seville's layered history, showcasing a blend of Moorish, Renaissance, and Baroque styles. Originally developed by Moorish Muslim kings, the Alcázar is among the oldest palaces still in use in Europe and is a designated UNESCO World Heritage site.

The Royal Alcázar is not just a historical monument but a living piece of art. Each corner of the palace tells a different story, reflecting the various cultures that have flourished in Seville over centuries. The intricate Mudéjar architecture, lush gardens, and ornate courtyards offer a serene and almost mystical experience.

It’s a place where history, art, and culture converge, making it a must-visit for anyone interested in Andalucia’s rich heritage.

Highlights of the Royal Alcazar include Patio de las Doncellas (a perfect example of Mudéjar architecture with its stunning plasterwork and arches) and Salón de Embajadores (known for its impressive dome ceiling representing the universe). And don’t miss the gardens of the Alcázar: Spread over several acres, they’re a gorgeous mix of Moorish, Renaissance, and English traditions.

Aim to visit early in the morning to avoid crowds. The palace opens at 9:30 am and, as this is one of the city’s top attractions, it always attracts large crowds. On a day trip to Seville, it’s best to book your tickets in advance to avoid long queues and wasting time in line. Allocate at least 2 hours for your visit to fully explore and appreciate the palace and gardens.

You may also want to consider a guided tour of the palace to fully appreciate the historical context and hidden details of the palace.

Seville Cathedral and La Giralda

After the Royal Alcázar, a visit to the Seville Cathedral, with its iconic bell tower, La Giralda, is a natural next step. This magnificent cathedral, officially known as the Cathedral of Saint Mary of the See, is a marvel of Gothic architecture and is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The Seville Cathedral stands on the former site of a grand mosque built in the 12th century during the Almohad dynasty. After the conquest of Seville by the Christians, the mosque was converted into a cathedral. Over the centuries, it underwent various expansions and renovations, resulting in its current grandeur.

The sheer size and architectural splendour of Seville Cathedral make it a must-visit. It houses an impressive collection of art and is the final resting place of Christopher Columbus. The interiors are filled with works of art, gold and silverware, and countless historical artefacts. The main altar, with its intricate wood carvings depicting scenes from the life of Christ, is a masterpiece of craftsmanship.

Originally built as a minaret for the mosque, La Giralda is now the cathedral's bell tower and one of Seville's most recognizable landmarks. Climbing to the top of La Giralda offers panoramic views of the city, making it a worthwhile endeavour.

The cathedral usually opens at 11:00 am, making a visit here just-in-time after the Alcazar. By visiting earlier in the day, you can avoid some of the crowds that come later on. Allow at least 1 hour for your visit, including time to climb La Giralda.

Like the Real Alcazar, the Seville Cathedral is very popular so it’s advisable to buy your tickets in advance. This combined ticket to the Real Alcazar and Seville Cathedral could also be a good option if you’d also like access to the tourist hop-on-hop-off bus.

Another option to tick both the Alcazar and the Cathedral off your list is to take a 3-hour tour that includes both monuments. This is a time-efficient way to visit these two top attractions while learning more about their history, architecture, and interesting stories.

Lunch in the Seville Historic Centre

As midday approaches in Seville, it’s time to indulge in the city’s renowned culinary scene. A day trip to Seville wouldn’t be complete without experiencing its gastronomic delights, particularly its famous tapas.

Seville is the birthplace of tapas, and there’s no better way to sample a variety of Andalucian flavours than by hopping between tapas bars. In the city centre, you’ll find an array of options ranging from traditional taverns to modern gastro bars.

  • Barrio Santa Cruz: This area, close to the Cathedral, is a great place to start. Look for spots like Las Teresas or Bodega Santa Cruz for classic tapas.
  • Calle Mateos Gago: Lined with tapas bars, this street offers a lively atmosphere and a wide selection of dishes.
  • El Arenal: For a more local feel, head to El Arenal neighbourhood, where you can enjoy tapas at places like Taberna Coloniales.

Be sure to try local specialities like 'jamón ibérico', 'salmorejo', and 'espinacas con garbanzos'.

While lunchtime in Seville typically starts later, around 2:00 pm, most restaurants in the historic centre are open for lunch before then. Don’t hesitate to try different bars. Part of the fun is exploring and tasting a bit of everything. Calle Mateo Gago is a great option if you’d like to tapas-hop!

Insider Tip: Order ‘tapas’ for small portions or ‘raciones’ for larger ones to share.

Barrio Santa Cruz

Barrio Santa Cruz Barrio Santa Cruz

Barrio Santa Cruz

Post-lunch, a leisurely stroll through Barrio Santa Cruz, the old Jewish quarter of Seville, is a delightful way to digest and delve deeper into the city's history.

This charming neighbourhood is a labyrinth of narrow streets, whitewashed houses, and hidden plazas, each corner brimming with stories and picturesque scenes.

Don’t miss the enchanting Plaza de Doña Elvira, known for its Andalucian tiles, fragrant orange trees, and traditional Sevillian houses adorned with colourful flower pots. This square is a perfect spot for capturing the essence of Barrio Santa Cruz in photos and taking a moment to relax on one of its many benches.

As you wander through the winding streets, make sure to pass by Callejón del Agua. This narrow alley runs along the outer wall of the Alcázar and offers a peaceful walk shaded by overhanging plants. It’s a cool respite on warm days and provides glimpses of the Alcázar's gardens.

Another highlight of Santa Cruz is Hospital de los Venerables, a 17th-century building originally serving as a residence for elderly priests. Today, it houses the Centro Velázquez, a museum dedicated to the famous Spanish painter. The highlight here is the beautifully restored baroque church and its sun-drenched courtyard.

Plaza de España

On the way to our next stop on your Seville day trip, exit Santa Cruz via the Murillo Gardens. It’s a lovely garden to stroll in and the trees will offer some shade against the hot Andalucian sun.

From here, it’s about a 15-minute walk to your next destination: the iconic Plaza de España.This architectural wonder, built for the Ibero-American Exposition of 1929, is a symbol of the city’s cultural and artistic grandeur.

Designed by architect Aníbal González as a showcase of Spain’s industry and technology exhibits, Plaza de España is a stunning example of Renaissance Revival architecture in Spain, blending elements from the Renaissance and Moorish styles. Its main building is semi-circular in shape, symbolising Spain embracing its former American territories.

The central building is adorned with intricate tiles and ornate balconies and is used for government offices. Around the plaza, each Spanish province is represented by a colourful tiled alcove with a painted scene and a map. These alcoves are a popular spot for photographs.

Four bridges representing the four ancient kingdoms of Spain cross over the plaza’s small canal. In the warmer months, you can rent a rowboat to paddle along this canal, offering a unique perspective of the plaza.

There are often street performers and musicians around the plaza, adding to the lively atmosphere. It’s a perfect place to relax, enjoy the ambiance, and take in the views.

Plaza de España is sure to be one of the highlights of your Seville day trip!

The Guadalquivir River and Torre del Oro

After soaking in the grandeur of Plaza de España, pass through the lush Parque de Maria Luisa and take a relaxing walk along the Guadalquivir River, leading to the iconic Torre del Oro. This riverside stroll is a perfect way to experience Seville’s scenic beauty and historical significance.

The Guadalquivir River, which flows through Seville, has been a vital part of the city's history, playing a key role in trade and exploration. Walking along its banks offers a serene experience, with beautiful views of the city and a chance to see Seville from a different perspective. The promenade is lined with trees and benches, making it an ideal route for a leisurely walk or a sunset viewing.

As you stroll along the river, you’ll come across the Torre del Oro, a 13th-century military watchtower that highlights the maritime importance of Seville during the Age of Discovery.. Its name, meaning 'Tower of Gold', comes from its golden reflection on the river. Today, it houses a maritime museum, detailing the naval history of Seville.

If you want, climbing to the top of Torre del Oro offers panoramic views of the river and the city.

The riverside is particularly beautiful during the early evening when the setting sun casts a golden hue over the water and the city. Along the river, there are several cafes and terraces where you can stop for a drink and enjoy the riverside ambiance.

If this is all the time you have on your Seville day trip, then it’s a lovely and relaxing way to end off your day… especially with a beautiful sunset over the river!

If You Have the Evening in Seville…

Still have time in Seville? Let’s keep going and enjoy more of the city as the sun sets.

Seville’s culinary scene thrives in the evening. For an early dinner, consider dining in one of the city's traditional restaurants or tapas bars. Areas like El Arenal, Barrio Santa Cruz, and further north around the Alameda de Hércules offer a plethora of dining options.

Try local specialties like ‘carrillada’ (pork cheek), ‘rabo de toro’ (oxtail stew), and of course, a variety of tapas. Pair your meal with a glass of local wine or sherry for a truly Andalucian dining experience.

If time permits, I also highly recommend catching a flamenco show. This passionate and expressive dance form, integral to Andalucian culture, is a must-see in Seville.

Casa de la Memoria is a popular and reputable spot for flamenco and has daily shows at 7.30pm. For an earlier show, Seville's Flamenco Dance Museum puts up a fantastic show and they have a 5.00pm timeslot. These flamenco shows do sell out as the venues are fairly small so if you’re keen to experience it, be sure to book your tickets in advance!

Seville in One Day: Recommended Activities & Tours

To ensure your day trip in Seville goes smoothly, it’s a good idea to book your entrance tickets and/or tours to popular attractions in advance.

Here are our top recommended activities and tours for one day in Seville:

Seville Day Trip: Guided Tours

Prefer to sit back, relax, and let someone else handle all the logistics of visiting Seville in one day? Then a guided tour is the best way to go!

Practical Tips for a Seville Day Trip

To ensure your day trip to Seville is as enjoyable and hassle-free as possible, here are some practical tips.

  • Begin your day early to make the most of your time in the city! For instance, if you’re visiting the Real Alcazar on your own, be there when it opens at 9.30am.
  • Pre-book tickets for popular attractions like the Royal Alcázar and Seville Cathedral to avoid long queues. This is especially important if you're visiting during peak tourist seasons.
  • Seville can get quite hot, especially from late spring to early autumn. Carry a water bottle to stay hydrated throughout the day.
  • Wear comfortable shoes as you’ll be doing a lot of walking. Also, remember to carry a hat and sunscreen for protection against the sun.
  • Keep in mind that lunch in Seville is typically later than in many other places (around 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm). Plan your itinerary accordingly. There are also some restaurants in the historic centre that serve lunch early.
  • Some shops and smaller businesses may close in the early afternoon for siesta. Plan your shopping around these hours.
  • Public toilets are not as common in Seville. Cafes and restaurants are your best bet, but it's courteous to make a small purchase.
  • While many places accept credit cards, having some cash is useful, especially at smaller shops or for tips.
  • As with any popular tourist destination, be vigilant about your personal belongings to avoid pickpockets, especially in crowded areas.

Seville in One Day: Final Thoughts

And just like that, your whirlwind day in Seville comes to a close!

If you're feeling like there's so much more to see and do, you're not alone – Seville has a way of doing that to people. From the majestic Alcázar to the lively streets of Barrio Santa Cruz and those tasty tapas stops, it's been quite the day, hasn't it?

Remember, Seville isn't just a checklist of sights; it's an experience. Maybe it was the intricate tilework that caught your eye, the flamenco rhythms that moved your soul, or just the way the sun hit the cobblestones – whatever it was, these are the moments that make travel so special.

Don't be surprised if you find yourself daydreaming about coming back for more. Seville has that 'moreish' quality, after all. So, as you head home, think of this not as a goodbye, but a 'see you later'. After all, there’s always more to explore in this Andalucian gem.

Buen viaje and may your next Andalucian adventure be just around the corner!

More on Seville

Have more time to spend in Seville? See our Seville 2-day itinerary and Seville 3-day itinerary.

You may also like to read our other articles on Seville to help plan your visit:

Recommended Spain Travel Resources

Travelling to/around Spain and need some help? Here are our favourite travel resources.

We usually use to look for hotels or apartment rentals. Lots of choice & you can unlock more discounts with their Genius loyalty programme!

To research transportation options around Spain, we like using Omio. It’s an easy way to compare different modes of transport and prices in one place.

Renting a car gives you the ultimate freedom to explore Andalucia at your own pace. Click here to compare car rental prices. (You’ll be surprised at how affordable it is in Spain!)

For last-minute holiday deals, check out Expedia UK.

Looking for things to do? Viator has a huge catalog of activities and tours across many cities in Spain. We also love Get Your Guide!

Guruwalk is our favourite platform to find the best free walking tours in a city.

For money transfers or spending overseas in foreign currency, Wise is our favorite borderless banking service (we love their debit card that's without fees!).

Travel insurance is a must to protect against emergencies and unexpected incidents. Get a quote from SafetyWing here.

For an easy way to stay connected on the road, get an eSim from Airalo. It's affordable and, best of all, you'll be connected the moment you arrive!

Note: This article may contain affiliate/compensated links. That means that if you book through our link, we may earn a small commission (at no extra cost to you). For full information, please see our disclaimer here.

Museums and Galleries in Seville