Part 21: Sevilla Day 3: Plaza Espania and Catedral de Sevilla


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The Trip

After our night at the Flamenco club, we had a slow start.  Our plan was visit the Plaza Espania and the Cathedral de Sevilla.

The Photos

The photos below are what we saw.

We decided walk to Plaza Espania.  Our first stop was the Rio Guadalquivir channel just south of the hotel.  From one of the bridges that crosses the river, we could see tour boats, kayakers and other small boats.  The large building was not marked on our maps, but is clearly a recent addition to the Sevilla skyline.

Springtime brings out the flowers (and the sneezes).  These trees produced beautiful purple blossoms.

The bougainvillea was in bloom as well with a massive array of great flowers.

A modern sculpture near the waterfront.

One of the bridges that crosses the Rio Guadalquivir.

A spiral walkway that goes from street level to the river level.

This is the "Torre del Oro" which is a tower that was used to monitor ship traffic on the river.

On the other side of the Rio Guadalquivir were modern buildings with signage for some of the iconic companies.  Cruzcampo is a local beer, Tio Pepe is a kind of sherry and Diario de Sevilla is the local daily newspaper.

On the river-front walkway was a tile map of the south west portion of Spain.

From the river walk, we crossed the main street over to the Plaza Espania.  In the roundabout, we passed this large fountain.

Plaza Espania (yep, I know it should have a tilde over the n but my keyboard is not worthy) is huge.  There were boatloads of folks walking around.  Note the horse drawn carriage and the Segways.

A substantial portion of the plaza had stone inlays with colored cobbles.

There was a canal that circled a portion of the plaza with boats for rent; one of the bridges that cross the canal is visible in the lower part of the photo above.  The buildings houses government offices and has intricate tile walls in the alcoves.

Note the Moorish influence in the tile above the arch.

The ceiling over the walkways had ornate tile inlays.

The towers at either end of the plaza were tall and ornate with multiple domes and walkways.

We left the plaza and headed toward the cathedral.  Along the boulevard we passed another interesting fountain.

This setup is interesting.  The trolley appears to be battery powered.  When it pulls into the stops, it raises its connector and connects to the power grid and charges the batteries while stopped.  Then the connector is retracted and the trolley rolls on to the next station using batter power.

A view of only a small portion of the Catedral de Sevilla.  The Catedral de Sevilla is claimed to be the largest Gothic cathedral in the world and the 3rd largest cathedral of any style after the Vatican and St. Paul's in London.  This is a big, big structure.

The entrance to the cathedral had a replica of the statue that is on the top of the tower at the cathedral.

The entrance to the cathedral had ornate carvings in the Gothic style.  The column of carvings to the left of center in the photo above were gargoyles.

The cathedral allowed photos, but no flashes.  So, the low light made photos problematic.  There were a number of good stained glass panels, but photographing them was challenging due to the high contrast.  The glass was detailed.

The columns that supported the arches were really huge, easy to judge size using Steve as a comparison.

The arches were over 100 feet tall, but the low light made photos challenging.  The carvings on the ceiling were very intricate.  Note the different colors of the arches.  This was due to the fact that different kinds of lights were used (halogen vs. LED) and they have different color temperatures.  Digital cameras are quite sensitive to such things, resulting in the different yellow versus white colors.

This wall was very busy with lots of things going on.  Plenty of polished marble and gold gilt.

The carvings on the wall were very ornate, but not as detailed as some of the art we saw in the Alcazar.

The carvings that surrounded the organ were large and detailed.  This was a huge organ which, of course, is always very popular with the ladies.

More nice stained glass windows.

This altar was remarkable and huge.

The cathedral had nice stained glass, but not the "best ever".  That honor, in my opinion, goes to some of the Gothic cathedrals in France.  That said, the carvings around the window were spectacular.

This altar was very ornate.  The level of detail is incredible.

If this is similar to most cathedrals, this coffin likely has the corpse of a dead bishop.

These fellows, along with two more in the rear, are bearing a litter with the body of Christopher Columbus.  Each of the bearers has a "team shirt" that carries the symbol of each of the regions of Spain.

The main tower of the Cathedral is massive.  Look carefully and you can see heads near the bells.  This tower was the minaret when the town was under Moorish rule thus explaining the detailed geometric patterns in the brick.

How small are the streets in Sevilla?  Check out this city trash truck and you will have your answer.

Plaza Espania is a great place to visit.  It is large and open with plenty to see.  It is popular with the locals and tourists alike.  The Catedral de Sevilla is a one-of-a-kind place and is a must-see if you are in the area.

Tomorrow, we head to the Sevilla Feria (fair).  For good or bad we "on-sited" another event, so we would be remiss if we did not check it out.

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