Alcazar Real

The Alcázar Real of Seville  © Michelle Chaplow
The Alcázar Real of Seville © Michelle Chaplow

The Alcazar Real - Royal Palace - Seville

Take me to: Hotels near Alcazar Palace

The Alcázar Réal (Royal Palace) of Seville is one of the city’s most enchanting, and most popular, historic monuments. Along with the Cathedral and Archive of the Indies, it is recognised as UNESCO World Heritage.

What and where is the Royal Alcázar of Seville?

The word alcázar actually means fortified palace, and this one is hidden behind castle walls on Plaza del Triunfo opposite the Cathedral.

The Alcázar of Seville is the oldest royal palace still in use in Europe – over 1,000 years of history, from Islamic Isbyllia through medieval Christian and Jewish Seville to present day.

The royal apartments, in the upper part of the palace, are the official residence in the city for the reigning Spanish monarch: the king’s sister, Infanta Elena, held her wedding celebrations here.

The official name is the “Alcázares Reales de Sevilla”, or the Royal Alcázars of Seville, since the palace is essentially a complex consisting of several buildings from different eras. However it is commonly known simply as the Alcázar.

What to see at the Alcázar

Visitors can walk through magnificent salons boasting tiled walls and intricate plasterwork, courtyards with beautiful pools, and delightful gardens; parts of the palace are similarly awe-inspiring as the Alhambra, but on a smaller scale. If some areas looks familiar, that’s because several salons and parts of the garden were used as locations for Game of Thrones.

The most celebrated and recognizable parts of the Alcázar are the façade, the Ambassadors’ Hall and the Patio of the Maidens in the Mudéjar (Islamic-Christian) Palace of King Pedro. But the palace complex has many other secrets to be discovered, so follow our guide to get the best out of this fabulous monument, which is an essential part of any visit to Seville.

History of the Alcázar

The Alcázar is divided into sections dating from a succession of eras, with corresponding architectural styles, according to when they were built or modified; many have been subsequently remodelled.

Moorish (11th-12th century), Gothic (13th century), Mudéjar (14th century), and Renaissance (15th-16th century), as well as some Baroque (17th century) You can also visit the extensive gardens.

A number of colourful and intriguing key historical figures of Spanish history lived at or visited the palace, from the Moorish poet-king Al-Mutamid, to King Pedro I, known as the Cruel (he killed his own brother) or Wise; Christopher Columbus planned his second voyage here with Queen Isabella La Católica, and King Carlos V, the first Holy Roman Emperor, married Isabella of Portugal – a powerful union of two great royal houses. The Dukes of Montpensier, exiles from Republican France, lived in the palace; and artist Sorolla painted its gardens.

FAVOURITE shoot LOCATION

The Alcazar of Seville was used as a location for scenes in Season Five, and Six of the hugely successful HBO TV series, Game of Thrones, standing in for the Water Gardens of Dorne. The palace was also used to shoot the new NBC TV series Emerald City, based on The Wizard of Oz, in late 2015 and broadcast in 2016.

Take me to: Hotels near Alcazar Palace

Google street view of Alcazar entrance near the intersection of Calle Santo Tomas & Calle Miguel Mañara

Destinations

See and Do

Living in Andalucia