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The Charm of Seville

By Sally Ferguson - Wed 18th Dec 2013

While Spain offers its visitors a proliferation of exciting cities to explore, there are few as beloved as Seville. Located in southern Spain to the southeast of Portugal, this provincial capital stands proud surrounded by Gibraltar, Malaga and Cordoba. Not only is Seville the center of government and parliament in the Autonomous Community of Andalucia, but is also home to over 700,000 inhabitants, which is almost half of the whole province’s population.

While there are numerous attractions to visit in Seville, some of the most popular are :

* The Metropol Parasol

* The Giralda Tower

* The University of Seville

Standing at 28 meters high and covering an enormous 5000 square meters, the Metropol Parasol is one of Seville’s most striking attractions. Composed entirely of timber which has been carved into a concave hooded shape, this structure almost seems reminiscent of a giant waffle! Since its completion in 2011, it has become a hub of social activity to both locals and tourists, providing a number of amenities such as restaurants and bars, all enclosed inside its winding walls. Despite facing some criticism from those who believe the Metropol Parasol is essentially an eyesore, the majority appreciate the remarkable appearance of this unique and intricately assembled building.

Another of Seville’s most popular attractions is the Giralda Tower. The city’s majestic bell tower is one of the most famous in the world and has come to be an iconic symbol of Seville. Built by Moorish settlers between 1184 and 1197, it was originally constructed as a minaret but later adapted to its current function as a bell tower. Situated alongside the magnificent Seville Cathedral and stretching skywards to approximately 100 meters, the Giralda Tower is a vantage point from which to view the rest of the city, as well as a compelling reminder of Seville’s rich history.

Seville is also home to perhaps the city’s best known feature: The University of Seville. The institution, which is one of Spain’s largest universities, was founded in 1502 and has pride of place in the heart of the city. With some of the most beautiful buildings constructing the campus, the Geography, Philology and History departments are located in a grand baroque-style building which was erected in the 18th Century. What’s more, the cultural importance of the University of Seville, as well as the city’s impressive historical background, makes Seville an ideal place to learn Spanish. This elegant city will no doubt inspire students in their pursuit of perfecting their language skills.

From its breathtaking historic architecture to its quirky modern features, Seville is a city with an alluring charm which captivates its visitors year after year.

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