Saturday, August 6, 2011

Eurotrip2011: Day 35

Albufeira - Seville

Eager to see the back of the Algarve, we set off early to Seville. We were soon at our hotel, checked in and rearing to see the sights of the city. We walked towards town and, after about 15 minutes, a little tapas bar/restaurant caught our eye - La Cava del Europa (Sta. Maria la Blanca, 40Seville). Readers, if you are ever in Seville, please promise me that you'll try this little gem! We were thrilled with every dish set down before us. Ingredients were fresh and flavoursome, the ambiance was laid back and the cost was very reasonable. Personal highlights included the pork cheek and the prawn ravioli - yum!

This meal really set the tone of Seville for me and the city quickly became my favourite stop of our entire trip. I was shattered that we couldn't stay longer, but I know that Seville is somewhere special and a return trip for my beloved and I is definitely on the cards. We do have a honeymoon coming up, don't we?! ;)

Next on the itinerary was a visit to the city's cathedral - one of my favourite religious sites we visited during the trip, thanks to its historical significance (the resting place of Christopher Columbus...or is it?) and its enormous proportions. 

A climb up the Giralda (formerly a minaret that has been converted into a bell tower) involved 34 flights of stairs, but the views were well worth the effort.

Next, it was time to visit the well known Alcázar of Seville, originally a Moorish fort and then a royal palace. The gardens were beautiful, but the entry fee was slightly steep in my opinion - 8.50.  

After a wander around the sizeable palace, my beloved and I split from our travel companions and headed straight for an ice-creamery - Crema Catalana for me. We then spent time exploring the centre of town, which had an incredible buzz about it (and oh so many Spanish shoe shops!). The energy of the place was contagious and I'm sure we were wandering around with big, goofy grins on our faces! 

Hungry from a day of walking, we headed to El Patio San Eloy Taverna (c/ San Eloy 9Seville) - another incredible eatery. Far too much food was ordered - an "Iberian assortment" with ham, cheese, pork loin, chorizo, spiced sausage and black pudding; and a "7 mixed cold tapas" plate. 

The meats were soft, intense and downright delicious. In fact, this was one of the best meals I ate during our entire time away. Despite the sizeable portions (and clear over-ordering on our part!), my beloved and I polished off every last morsel on both plates and washed it down with a few drinks. We sat and digested for some time, enjoying watching the staff chat among themselves and serve patrons.

As we ambled (okay, maybe make that "waddled"!) back towards our hotel, we couldn't help but stop to enjoy the balmy, late-Spring evening and the tunes of a very talented Flamenco guitarist. 

Moving on, we got lost (literally!) in the maze of alleyways in the city and then stumbled upon a little place serving churros. Yes, yes, I know they're typically a breakfast dish in Spain, but who am I to resist such goodness?! ;)

At a rather late hour (for us, at least!) we finally made it back to the hotel, bursting with happiness after such a wonderful day. Seville, you haven't seen the last of Georgia! 

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