Monday, 19 May 2014

The Seville Cathedral

The Seville Cathedral has a long history. During Muslim rule a mosque stood in its place which boasted a minaret, the Giralda (read about the tower here). After the Catholic kings, Ferdinand and Isabella took back the city from the Moors they did to the mosque the same thing they had been ordering all over Spain, destroyed it and built a Christian church over it. In Seville however they were even more ambitious, they wanted a cathedral that is the biggest in the world. At that time they achieved their goal and even now the church is amongst the ‘big ones’, only St. Peter’s in Rome and St. Paul’s in London are bigger.

The first impressions are usually that of awe when people look at it from the outside. I would urge you to take a closer look here. Look at the tower which is centuries older than the rest of the cathedral. You see how precise and solid it looks, a monument that can stand the attack of time and the elements. Now look at the huge grey blocks that make up the walls of the church. Even though this part was built much later it looks much more worn. One side was built by the Muslims who were educated and knowledgeable, the scientists, and the other was built by people who chopped heads and exiled everybody based on their religious views.

When the Kings commissioned the Cathedral in 1401 their intention was to demonstrate their power, pride and wealth with it. The construction however didn’t go so well, the dome collapsed a few times. Due to this it was only finished completely in 1903.

When you step inside the Cathedral its sheer size takes your breath away. Everything is huge here. It’s worth getting the audio guide (4 euros) to listen to all the interesting details.

There are many famous art works here but the most popular attraction here is the tomb of Christopher Columbus.

The main altar is famous for being the biggest altar in Europe. On it you can follow the life of Jesus on the small parts.

There are other, smaller rooms which also worth exploring.

At the end of your tour you will be lead to an amazing orange interior garden, the ‘Patio de los Naranjos’. Watch your step as the Muslim way of leading the water can be treacherous.

At the time of writing the entrance to the Cathedral cost 8 euros. The opening hours are not continuous so better check the timetable before you go. You can find more information about the Cathedral here:

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