The Sevillian colourful neighborhood of Triana has such a strong sense of identity that it is known as the ‘Independent Republic of Triana’ among its neighbours. They are so proud of their roots, that they consider themselves trianeros before sevillanos.
But don’t worry, this doesn’t mean they’re hostile to visitors from outside their home district, but quite the opposite indeed. South of Spain is famous for its warmth and hospitality, and this district is no exception. Locals are proud of where they live and happy to show it off to anyone who ventures to cross the bridge onto their side of town.
Triana, Seville, is located at the west bank of the Guadalquivir River. In spite of the Roman and Muslim influences that can be noticed all over the place, this picturesque neighborhood has managed to retain its own distinct character. Though nowadays is very unlikely to find illustrious bullfighters and passionate flamenco singers and dancers roaming the streets, their marks can still be found in the area, and that is what makes Triana one of the most charming areas in Seville.
Located in a virtual island between two branches of the Guadalquivir River, Triana has long been Seville’s ‘outsider’ enclave, with a tumultuous history shaped by its strong working-class affiliations. Until the 1850s, the district was linked to the rest of the city by a single floating bridge and labeled ‘extramuros’ (outside the walls) by Seville’s authorities, a place where ‘undesirables’ were sent to live. But Triana has successfully managed to put the past behind and become one of Seville’s most fascinating neighbourhoods.
To speak the truth, Triana is not drop-dead spectacular like, for example, the historical center of Seville, with its jaw-dropping Cathedral, Instead, much of the neighbourhood’s beauty lies in its atmosphere, which seduces you slowly. This is our selection on what to see in Triana, Seville.
Your visit to the Triana neighborhood in Seville will likely start by crossing the Isabel II bridge, more widely known as the Triana bridge, from the main part of town. Take advantage of the fabulous photo op and snap a few shots of the view as you make your way across.
Another crossing point is the Puente del Cachorro, which stands out for its peculiar sunshades. On the right side of the bridge, you will be able to observe the Isla de la Cartuja, which hosted the 1992 EXPO and nowadays welcomes the amusement park Isla Mágica.
We definitely recommend starting to discover the neighbourhood with a visit to the 1823 Mercado de Triana. Located right in front of the Puente de Triana, the Market boasts stalls selling all kind of food, flowers, beers, juices, gifts and even a hairdresser. You can also eat there, in any of its 10 bars and restaurants. The modern market was built right on top of the ruins of the former San Jorge Castle, the onetime headquarters of the Spanish Inquisition, where those believed to be heretics were tried, imprisoned, and burned at the stake.
This area, like many in Spain, remains a Catholic stronghold. Some of Seville’s most stunning churches can be found in the Triana neighborhood, like the Gothic-Mudéjar Iglesia de Santa Ana. To get a glimpse of Seville’s lavish Semana Santa (Holy Week) celebrations any day of the year, head to the Sailor’s Chapel to see the Esperanza de Triana, an intricate depiction of the Virgin Mary second only to the Macarena in terms of popularity among sevillanos. As you leave the bridge, look to your right and check out the Capilla del Carmen, a small chapel characterized by its colorful tower. If the style looks familiar, it’s because it was designed by Aníbal González, the brains behind Plaza de España.
This museum and a didactic center are located right in the building where the old pottery factory of Santa Ana used to be. The center recalls the pottery past of Triana and the importance of this craftsmanship for the neighbourhood. The upper floor of the Centre features a permanent exhibition displaying a few tiles belonging to the Plaza de España and the historic ovens used to cook the pottery, as well as a space for cultural activities.
Finally, a stroll through this lively street, which extends between the Puente de Triana and Puente de San Telmo, parallel to the Guadalquivir, should be mandatory. . It takes its name from the river, which was named as such by the Romans, and connects Plaza de Cuba with Plaza del Altozano. Packed with bars, restaurants and terraces, it is an excellent viewpoint to contemplate some of the most famous landmarks of Seville, the Torre del Oro and the splendid Giralda. A couple of tapas-recommendations: La Primera del Puente and El Faro, which also offers fried fish.
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