After the cool, dark interior of the cathedral, climbing the spiralling ramp up to the top of the Giralda, you feel a bit like Simba in The Lion King, blinking afresh at each window, waiting for your eyes to adjust to the bright Andalusian sky. An alternative to rehashing a classic children’s movie, there is a feat of travel to accomplish by attempting to dig out your sunglasses without dropping your camera down the side of the largest cathedral in Europe.
When climbing up the tower, there are periodic interruptions to what would otherwise be a rather tedious climb. They have some small exhibitions on the history of the tower as part of a Moorish mosque, see the orange grove below, a typical feature of (former) Mosques in this region. There are also displays on how the bells at the top were lifted to their place, archaeological evidence, etc.
On the way to the top, there are also windows from which you can view over the top of the cathedral getting spectacular views of the architectural construction of the building. And you can make friends with the permanent residents of the cathedral.
As cool as climbing the tower is, the views from the top are what you really came here for.
It is nice to be back on the ground though!
Filed under Spain, Travel
After spending the better part of some days walking around the cathedral, spending time in the square near it (marvelling at the statue of Pope John Paul II !!) and seeing the silhouette of the cathedral everywhere we went, we joined the queue and went inside.
The architecture is massive. The ceiling seems so far above your head that you almost feel like you’re outside except that it’s cool and dark whereas outside it is neither of those things.
The stained glass windows are really cool, continuing the tradition of ‘presenting’ the church in the window to a higher power with clear references to the reconquest of Spain where the Moors and Islam was chased out of Christian Spain.
However, I’m really just assuming that this is the case based on the history behind similar windows. The audio guide would have probably confirmed or denied this, but I consistently refuse to buy or to listen to audio guides. (They really annoy me and make other people walk around like zombies.)
One of the coolest things was the grave of Christopher Colombus. Well, in theory, they’re not totally sure where he is actually buried, but I think Seville won the argument on the basis of a really cool tomb.
After viewing the gorgeous architecture, it was time to climb the Giralda.