COPA DEL MUNDO DE ATLETISMO.SEVILLA99 from Jorge Molina Lamothe on Vimeo.
Seville is more than 2,000 years old. The passage of the various people instrumental in its growth has left the city with a distinct personality, and a large and well-preserved historical centre.
The city was known from Roman times as Hispalis. The nearby Roman city of Italica is well-preserved and gives an impression of how Hispalis may have looked in the later Roman period. Existing Roman features in Seville include the remnants of an aqueduct.
After successive conquests of the Roman province of Hispania Baetica by the Vandals and Visigoths, in the 5th and 6th centuries, the city was taken by the Moors in 712 and became an important centre in Muslim Andalusia. It remained under Muslim control, under the authority of the Umayyad, Almoravid and Almohad dynasties, until falling to Fernando III in 1248. The city retains many Moorish features, including large sections of the city wall.
Following the Reconquest, the city's development continued, with the construction of public buildings including churches, many in Mudéjar style. Later, the city experienced another golden age of development brought about by wealth accumulating from the awarding of a monopoly of trade with the Spanish territories in the New World (See Winds in the Age of Sail). After the silting up of the Guadalquivir, the city went into relative economic decline.
Seville's development in the 19th and 20th centuries was characterised by population growth and increasing industrialisation.
Seville fell very quickly to General Franco's troops near the beginning of the Spanish Civil War in 1936 due to its proximity to the invasion force coming from Morocco. After the initial takeover of the city, resistance continued amongst the working class areas for some time, until a series of fierce reprisals took place.
Main city sights
Seville city's cathedral was built from 1401–1519 after the Reconquista on the former site of the city's mosque. It is amongst the largest of all medieval and Gothic cathedrals, in terms of both area and volume. The interior is the longest nave in Spain, and is lavishly decorated, with a large quantity of gold evident. The Cathedral reused some columns and elements from the mosque, and, most famously, the Giralda, originally a minaret, was converted into a bell tower. It is topped with a statue, known locally as El Giraldillo, representing Faith. The tower's interior was built with ramps rather than stairs, to allow the Muezzin and others to ride on horseback to the top.
Torre del Oro
The Alcázar facing the cathedral has developed from the city's old Moorish Palace; construction was begun in 1181 and continued for over 500 years, mainly in Mudéjar style, but also in Renaissance. Its gardens are a blend of Moorish, Andalusian, and Christian traditions.
The Torre del Oro was built by the Almohad dynasty as watchtower and defensive barrier on the river. A chain was strung through the water from the base of the tower to prevent boats from traveling into the river port.
The Town Hall, built in the 16th century in Plateresque Style by Diego de Riaño. The Façade to Plaza Nueva was built in the 19th century in Neoclassical style.
The University of Seville is housed in the original site of the first tobacco factory in Europe, La Antigua Fabrica de Tabacos, a vast 18th century building in Baroque style.
The Plaza de España was built by the architect Aníbal González for the 1929 Exposición Ibero-Americana, and is an outstanding example of Regionalist Architecture, a bizarre and lofty mixture of diverse historic styles and lavishly ornated with typical glazed tiles.
The Fine Arts Museum of Seville is considerated the second museum of spanish art of Spain, it was established as a "Museum to display paintings", in 1835, with objects from convents and monasteries. It is located in the Plaza del Museo.
Parks and gardens
Parque Maria Luisa was built for the 1929 Exposición Ibero-Americana World's Fair, and remains landscaped with attractive monuments and museums.
The Alcázar Gardens, arranged to the back of the palace. They were planted and developed alongside the Alcázar throughout the centuries. Sheltered within the walls of the palace, they are laid out in terraces, and present variations of influences, styles and plants in each sector.
The Gardens of Murillo and the Gardens of Catalina de Ribera: alongside the wall of the Alcázar and next to the district of Santa Cruz.
La Isla Magica, Cartuja Island, a theme park built on the site of the 1992 Universal Exposition of Seville
Other prominent parks and gardens include:
Parque de los Príncipes
Parque del Alamillo
Parque Metropolitano de la Cartuja
Jardines de las Delicias
Jardines de Cristina
Jardines de la Buhaira
Jardines de San Telmo
Jardines del Guadalquivir
Jardines del Valle
Weather averages for Seville airport
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 24
Average high °C (°F) 16
Average low °C (°F) 5
Record low °C (°F) -4
Precipitation mm (inches) 65
The climate of Seville is Mediterranean, with oceanic influences. The annual average temperature is 18.6 °C (65 °F), which makes this city one of the warmest in Europe.
Winters are mild: January is the coolest month, with average maximum temperatures of 15.9 °C (61 °F) and minimum of 4.2 °C (40 °F).
Summers are very warm: July is the warmest month, with average maximum temperatures of 35.3 °C (96 °F) and minimum temperatures of 19.4 °C (67 °F) and every year the temperature exceeds 40 °C (104 °F) on several occasions. The extremes of temperature registered by the weather station at Seville Airport are −5.5 °C (22 °F) on 12 February 1956, and 46.6 °C (116 °F) on 23 July 1995. There is a non-accredited record by the National Institute of Meteorology which is 47.2 °C (117 °F) on 1 August during the 2003 heat wave, according to a weather station (83910 LEZL) located in the southern part of Seville Airport, near the abandoned military zone. This temperature would be one of the highest ever recorded in Spain and Europe.
Precipitation varies from 600 to 800 mm (23.5–31.5 in) per year, concentrated in the period October to April. December is the wettest month, with an average rainfall of 95 millimetres (4 in). On average there are 52 days of rain, 2,898 hours of sun and four days of frost per year.