The only things that remain from the mosque built in the 12th century and replaced by the cathedral are the tower - Giralda - and the adjacent cloister, called Pateo de los Naranjos because it is all planted with orange trees.
The Muslim origins can be clearly seen in one of its doors, called Puerta del Perdon.
This perfect example of Gothic architecture, enriched with the Muslim tower of Giralda and "pateos", it's a cool place in the furnace of Seville, with lots of treasures to justify a long and relaxing visit, with special evidence to Colon's tomb.
Built in the beginning of the 15th century, it is the third largest church in the world, and so beautiful, that I must not waste your time describing some of the beauties that you need to discover locally by yourself, with the help of a good guide.
However, if it means nothing to you, there's another reason to approach it - It is also the central place from where horse ridden carts depart, covering the touristy area in the easiest way to do it.
Kind of a must see here.
A huge building, very majestic, lots to see.
Huge crowd's though :(
This is definatly a place to see. The building itself is awe inspiring, the art works magnificent and the feeling of just being there awesome :)
It Is one of the largest cathedrals in the world, the third, after Saint Peter and Saint Paul's in London. It is a Gothic church, but of Arab origin, its construction started in 1433 and completed in 1507, lower the architect Alonso Martinez. Definitely one of the largest cathedrals in the world, which is not to say one of the most beautiful. Seville Cathedral was built on the remains of the destroyed Great Mosque of Seville. No doubt the intention of the builders was to impress the world with its size, but that effort the spirit and proportions present in other Gothic cathedrals of Europe was lost.
Es una de las catedrales más grandes del mundo, la tercera, después de San Pedro del Vaticano y San Pablo de Londres. Se trata de un templo gótico, aunque de origen árabe, se inicio su construcción en 1433 y terminada en 1507, baja la dirección del arquitecto Alonso Martínez. Sin duda una de las mayores catedrales del mundo, lo cual no quiere decir una de las más bellas. La catedral de Sevilla fue construida sobre los restos de la destruida Gran Mezquita de Sevilla. Sin duda la intención de sus constructores fue impresionar al mundo con su magnitud, pero en ese esfuerzo se perdió el espíritu y las proporciones, presentes en otras catedrales góticas de Europa.
The first building on the site now occupied by the world’s largest Gothic cathedral was a brick-built mosque, dating from the 12th century. The only parts of this which can be seen today are the courtyard, now known as the Orange Tree Courtyard, and the minaret, which forms the lower part of the Giralda bell tower.
In 1248, following the reconquest of Seville, the mosque was consecrated as a cathedral.
Construction of the Gothic Cathedral that we see today took place between 1434 and 1517, starting with the western part. There were further phases of building from 1528-1601 (work to the Royal Chapel, Sacristy and Chapter House); 1648-1758 (the parish church of El Sagrario) and 1825-1928 (three main doors and the south-west corner).
When we visited, the queues for the Cathedral were long, in sharp contrast to the Alcazar. So long, that when we arrived at around 11.30 a.m. we decided to go to the Torre d’Oro instead in the hope that the queue would be shorter later on. When we returned to the cathedral in the early afternoon, there was still a queue, but rather shorter. It took about 20 minutes to reach the ticket office, which was located in gift shop. Tickets cost 8 euro, which included entrance to Iglesia del Salvador. (It’s well worth the short walk to visit this bright pink baroque church, by the way).
Entry to the cathedral proper is via a Musuem of Sevillian art, with exhibits including a particularly grisly sculpted head of John the Baptist.
The interior of the Cathedral is very ornate. There are very many chapels which tend to distract attention from the High Altar, which is some feat, given that it is extravagantly covered with gold leaf.
It was rather depressing to note the tourists queueing up to take selfies using the mirror that has been placed to enable visitors to view the ceiling.
The main construction of Seville without doubt is Catedral de Santa Maria. This Cathedral is the third on size a Christian temple. It concedes only to cathedrals of Sacred Peter's in Rome and Sacred Paul in London. However it is the biggest in the world a Gothic cathedral.
You can watch my 6 min 15 sec Video Sevilla Cathedral out of my Youtube channel or here on VT.
During the Moorish occupation, the Arabs built their main mosque on the grounds where a church was placed. After the reconquest made by Ferdinand III, the Christians built this cathedral on the mosque place, but respecting some parts of this building.
The Oranges Courtyard is one of this parts remaining from the Ben Basso's mosque. It was built in the 12th century by the Almohad. Like in all the mosques it was used as anteroom for the mandatory muslim ablutions before entering the praying room.
Currently we join the courtyard by the Gate of Forgiveness where there are some Catholic images. It is said that Saint Peter's one, on the right, has got three hands and if you find out all of them you'll get married!
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This funeral monument keeps the remains of the discover Christopher Columbus. His grave is supported by four figures representing soldiers of the four former Spanish kingdoms (Castile, Leon, Aragon and Navarre). It's placed at the left side of the High Altar and it will be the first sight you'll see if you enter for the tourist tour.
Some years ago the truthfulness of this fact has been proved by DNA exams. Finally we know that the real Columbus is in Seville and in the Dominican Republic too, so his body is in both continents!
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At the right of the Main Altar you can see the Monstrance, where the Host is exposed to the faithful. It's a very big chapel depicting a giant Monstrance like the regular ones in any other Catholic church for adoration of the Host.
This main picture was taken after the Holy Thursday's Mass, while the Cardinal Amigo was about to put the Host there.
In the other pictures I display the other Monstrance, mainly the most famous one. It's the one for procession of the Holy Host during Corpus Christie day, made by the famous sculptor Juan de Arfe. This procession is very popular in Seville and we're one of the few cities to keep it during its traditional day, on Thursday, while the rest of the cities moved the Corpus Christie celebrations to the next Sunday.
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Inside the cathedral we can see beautiful works of art. In the High Altar is the greater altarpiece, considered one of the largest in the world with 27 metres high 18 metres wide. The altar is protected by an impressive golden fence.
To be honest what I don't really like about this Cathedral is the small space for people that can be housed in the main altar. In spite of been the largest Cathedral after Saint Peter, the room for people to attend the Holy Mass is so tiny because the Main Altar and the Chorus are so close.
The H.M. the King Juan Carlos's elder daughter, Infanta Elena, got married here in 1995.
The Gothic central vault above this part has 37 meters high. You can see in the second picture the back side of the choir and one of the organs.
Sundays and holidays 10:00, 11:00, 12:00, 13:00
Link to the next tip: The Cathedral's Monstrance
One of the most important part of the Cathedral for the locals are the one not open for tourism, but just for worship. For sure, you're welcome to enter if you are Catholic and want to have a moment of pray inside, but please don't be too obvious taking pictures in front of everybody.
This is the Royal Chapel, placed on the Cathedral's apse, housing the Virgen de los Reyes (Virgin of the Kings), a 13th century image and patroness of the city. The name of "Royal" come because there is also on this chapel the body of the King Ferdinand III in an urn of silverware. He was the conqueror of the city against the Arabs and its body is said to be incorrupt and he is Saint for the Catholic Church.
Weekdays 8:30, 10:00 (s), 12:00 (s), 12:30 (w), 17:00 (w)
Vespers 17:00 (w)
Sundays and holidays 8:30, 10:00 (s), 17:00 (w), 18:00 (w)
Link to the next tip: Main Altar in the Cathedral
Since its construction, the Cathedral of Seville holds the title of Magna Hispalensis, not only for being one of the greatest Gothic building to ever exist, but also for being one of the most colossal of Christendom. It went declared a national monument in 1928 and granted World Heritage status by UNESCO in 1987. It also has the Guinness Record of the biggest Catholic Cathedral in the world (after Saint Peter in the Vatican)
You can't miss the visit to our main spot in town, full of history and art, but mainly of devotion. Keep in mind that Seville keeps to be a traditional city, attached to its roots and Catholic religion is very popular among the citizens. During the Holy Week (Easter) the Cofradías (Brotherhoods) with a figure of Jesus Christ and the Holy Virgin pass thru the Cathedral during its expiatory parade from its temple.
Mondays 11:00 - 15:30 (16:30 - 18:00, free visit with audioguide booking by mail one week in advance)
Tuesdays to Saturdays 11:00 - 17:00
Sundays 14:30 - 18:00
Summer time (July and August)
Mondays 9:30 - 14:30 (15:30 - 17:00, free visit with audioguide booking by mail one week in advance)
Tuesdays to Saturdays 9:30 - 16:00
Sundays 14:30 - 18:00
Students and retired: 3€
Sevillians, unemployed, children and disabled: Free
Link to the next tip: Virgen de los Reyes chapel in the Cathedral