Seville

Seville

In 1519 Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan set sail from Seville with a fleet of five naos (carracks or carvel-built wooden sailing ships) to find the Molluca spice islands, in modern-day Indonesia. Three years later, only one of his naos returned, the Nao Victoria, captained by Juan Sebastian Elcano – Magellan had been killed in a conflict in the Philippines.

Located in Barrio Santa Cruz, in a pretty square with orange trees, the 17th-century baroque hospital was built to care for elderly, impoverished and infirm priests. It is now used as an art gallery, notably about Velazquez, and is a peaceful place in this area which receives many visitors.

Andalucia is justifiably famous for its excellent gastronomic scene. Using first-class ingredients grown throughout the region and caught along its extensive coastline, such as jamon iberico, tomatoes and prawns, cutting-edge dishes are prepared and presented with typically Spanish flair and innovation. Seville is home of the tapas, where this world-renowned sociable small dish for sharing was invented.

As a city where most people live in small apartments, and which enjoys mild to hot temperatures all year round, people spend plenty of time out and about in the street at night. In the summer, temperatures don't start to fall until the early hours, so life is lived outdoors even more.

According to legend, Sevilla was founded by Hercules and its origins are linked with the Tartessian civilisation. Called Hispalis under the Romans and Isbiliya by the Moors, the high point in its history was following the discovery of America in 1492, when wealth flooded in from the "New World". For all its important monuments and fascinating history, Sevilla is universally famous for being a joyous town.

As the capital of Andalucia, Seville has a wealth of history, culture and gastronomy to offer. From Roman and Moorish delights to contemporary architecture and interactive museums, you'll have plenty to keep you busy on your visit to La Hispalense.

Whether you're visiting for Semana Santa - in which case beware, as many of these places are closed that week - or Feria, or another time, here is our list of top 10 of things to see and do in Sevilla.

For many visitors to Seville, flamenco is one of its greatest treasures. People flock to the many tablaos (flamenco bars) and flamenco shows to see a little of this Andalucían culture while visiting the city. Without a doubt, flamenco is one of the wonders of Southern Spain and after you have been to one of the many flamenco shows that are on offer in the city, you may just want to further your education on the subject.

Like most new mothers, I am writing this in a few precious snatched moments of liberty. In my case, they are afforded by Baby Einstein DVDs, themed confections of classical music, glove puppets and plastic toys. My baby is entranced by them, gurgling and chuckling with delight at the little red cars and yellow birds.

Ten rides, including Fast River, black hole and foam slides; little kids’ pool. Jacuzzi and lake with waterfall will appeal to parents, as will VIP area: shady pergola on lawn with table, chairs, sunloungers, and some drinks, for a steep 35 euros. Three restaurants offering standard fare - pizza, burger and ice-cream – plus barbeque.

As experienced by Tom Cruise´s daughter Suri, when he hired it exclusively for the day for her, while filming Knight and Day in Seville in 2009. Isla Mágica amusement park is located in the original '92 Expo site, on the Isla Cartuja – north-west of the city centre, across the Puente Barqueta.