5 Easy Trips To Soak Up Sunny Andalucía

by Stacy Moreno

Seville, Spain is the capital and largest city of Spain’s southernmost region. It is a popular destination for study abroad, known for its sunny days, delicious paella, and great architecture. But it is made an even better location for an international education by the area around it. The well established transport system allows easy and quick travel throughout the area. If you have a short stay, limited income, or want to get the most for your time, this list of nearby excursions should satisfy your desires.

Cadiz, Andalucia, Spain.
Cadiz, Andalucia, Spain. Photo Courtesy of Kaitlin Powers.

It is perfect for any student who wants to maximize their study abroad program to truly soak in the magnificence of not only this beautiful city but the whole region. So pack your bags for Seville but be ready for much more. With this list of five short trips from the city students are sure to experience all of sunny Andalucía.

1. Cádiz

Cádiz is a magnificent old city situated on the western coast of Spain and less than 80 miles from Seville. The city offers beautiful architecture and a plaza full of events and entertainment year round. The more familiar sights for visitors include the Cádiz Cathedral, the Monument to the Constitution of 1812, the Castillo de Santa Catalina, and the many plazas in Old Town such as the Plaza de las Flores. The beaches are also popular, especially La Playa de la Victoria.

2. Jerez de la Frontera

Jerez is just 23 miles north of Cádiz so it easy to plan a little and see both in one trip! The city is known for its Sherry, a wine made from white grapes that originated in the area. A quick day trip may include a tour of the sherry bodega. This quaint city offers you a quiet day away from the hustle of Seville, and has a very unique character and history.

3. Córdoba

Take a trip inland to Córdoba which is just 45 minutes northwest of Seville by public transportation. It makes for a wonderful day or weekend excursion. Similar to Seville, the city will astound you with the fusion of various cultures and religions that have ruled over the area and are still present. One well known site is the Mosque and Cathedral of Córdoba. Construction commenced in the 8th century and it is considered one of the most impressive examples of Renaissance and Moorish architecture in the world. Also see an ancient Roman bridge and take the self-guided tour of the Museo Vivo de Al-Andalus, an audio and visual museum located in a tower. The history of the Moorish rule of this city is seen throughout the Old Town, plazas, and much of the standing architecture.

4. Granada

Granada will leave you in awe as it sits majestically at the foot of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. There are many beautiful things to see and explore within this city, but don’t miss The Alhambra. It was first constructed as a fortress, but later turned into a palace and its architecture is yet another wonderful example of the Moorish influence on the southern region of Spain. The palace gardens were designed to be an image of paradise and it seems the designers were successful. They include a staircase handrail that has carved waterways throughout it so guests descend alongside cascading water.

5. Costa del Sol

This western coastal region, whose name means coast of the sun, is breathtaking and includes many seaside cities so enjoy more than just one weekend getaway there. Nerja, on the eastern most side, is a few hours away from Seville by bus or car and well worth the time. Las Cuevas de Nerja, or Caves of Nerja, is a series of caverns that stretches over three miles. Concerts and other events are held within the caves creating a truly unique venue. Head above ground and find many miles of beautiful blue beaches. The old quarter is picturesque, with stark white buildings and mountainous terrain along a backdrop of blue ocean.

Another popular city along the Costa del Sol is Marbella. La Plaza de los Naranjos is a great place to start because it embodies the old town atmosphere and offers easy access to visitor information. Marbella is more known than other coastal cities and is considered a resort town with many options for dining, shopping, and beach life. After one weekend in this region, you’ll be in a hurry to schedule another!