26 de March de 2023

Jewish Quarter Santa Cruz in Seville: A must-see in Seville

Seville's Old Judería is a very old neighborhood that was originally inhabited by Jews. They were expelled from the city in 1481, but they left their mark on Sevillian culture.

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Jewish Quarter of Seville

Located in Seville's historical heart, the Jewish Quarter, known as Barrio Santa Cruz, is a testament to the city's rich and varied heritage, once home to Spain's largest Jewish community. Today, it stands as Seville's vibrant tourist hub, enchanting visitors with its labyrinth of white houses, narrow streets, and picturesque alleyways that evoke tales from a bygone era. The area's blend of historical significance and cultural vibrancy, accentuated by colorful facades and blooming flowers, offers a captivating experience. Beyond its charm, the neighborhood is a place where history meets legend, making every corner a discovery and turning a simple stroll into a journey through time.

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The Barrio de Santa Cruz: Enchanted Place.

Protected from the walls of the Real Alcázar, the famous Jewish Quarter of Santa Cruz (Seville's Old Juderia) is a labyrinth of streets, beautiful houses, flowery courtyards all year round, perfect squares, crossroads leading to the magnificent Jardines de Murillo or the famous Mateos Gago street but also to Santa Maria street. And if you come to Seville for several days to visit Royal Alcázar and Cathedral and to take the time to explore the city, also take the time to stroll through the streets of this neighborhood full of myths.

Seville is full of legends of the Sephardic people and their historical past, and you can still feel the weight of history in its streets. It is important to note that the Mudejar church of Santa Cruz, as a synagogue, was demolished in 1811 under French occupation to build the current Plaza de Santa Cruz.

Because with its narrow winding streets, partly covered with buildings and its bright white houses, the Barrio Santa Cruz, which is right next to the Alcázar Palace, gives the impression of a medieval city center and has always been one of the most popular tourist attractions in Seville.

Private visit to the Santa Cruz neighborhood


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The Jewish community of Seville

The names of its streets remind us of the Sephardic past: Judíos, Levíes, Agua, Doncella, Vida were the names of the streets as early as the 13th century, when some 5,000 Jews lived in the city, around five percent of the total population. .

"Islamic Al-Andalus was the true heyday of the Jews in Seville. The small merchants were mainly Jews," history teachers often explain.

The Jewish community of Seville lived for centuries in an open city, and it was not until the Christian conquest that the ghetto was born.

A small remnant of the wall surrounding the Jewish quarter remains, and two of the city's four synagogues have been converted into churches: San Bartolomé and Santa María la Blanca.

The great era of Jewish life in Seville goes back a long time. Although King Ferdinand III respected religious freedom after the conquest of Seville in 1248, and his epitaph in Seville Cathedral is written in Latin, Spanish, Arabic and Hebrew, a good hundred years later tolerance ended in June In 1391, the first bloody conflict took place in Seville.

The Jewish community never recovered from the conflict of 1391.

Even before the Catholic Monarchs issued the edict of expulsion of the Jews in 1492, there were practically no Jewish families left in Seville. It was not until 400 years later that the first Jews settled in the city again.

The parish seat was transferred to the current church, which was previously occupied by the convent of the clergy of the Holy Spirit on Mateos Gago street, and as has already been said, the Jewish Quarter of Santa Cruz is characterized by the presence of the Alcázar.

Also, for the 1929 exposition, the Barrio de Santa Cruz was remodeled .

Today, after all these reforms, the old town has become a place of great beauty and is the favorite place for many Sevillians to walk. It is true that like the Alcázar or the Cathedral, the Santa Cruz neighborhood is a must-see during your stay in Seville .

What to see in Barrio de Santa Cruz?

There are many things to see in the Jewish quarter. So many hidden courtyards, so many churches and small streets.

I recommend that you spend a morning or an afternoon with us and see what the beautiful neighborhood has to offer you, but above all an incomparable feeling of fullness, you can also sit on the benches under the orange trees to rest, sneak through the alleys to reach to the Venerable Hospital; a Hospital built in 1675 by the monks as a residence and hospital in the middle of the Barrio de Santa Cruz . The construction of the building was completed in 1697 under the direction of the architect Leonardo de Figueroa. There is also a church in honor of San Fernando.

This church is beautiful. You will be able to see great masterpieces such as the altarpiece, magnificent statues, paintings full of lights... perform the work of Diego Velázquez, one of the most important painters of the Spanish Golden Age... Nowadays, there is an exhibition open to the public and if you like painting, we can organize a private visit to the museum of fine arts.

Video right of its author

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El Barrio de Santa Cruz, the adored

Exploring the Charm of El Barrio de Santa Cruz

El Barrio de Santa Cruz is undoubtedly Seville's best-loved neighbourhood, captivating visitors with its romantic ambiance and labyrinthine streets. It's not only the most touristy area in the city but also a place where you can easily lose yourself in its enchanting corners if not accompanied by someone who knows their way. As the sun sets, the area reveals its vibrant nightlife, beloved by locals and visitors alike.

The neighbourhood truly comes alive at night, resembling an open-air museum with its illuminated streets and historical buildings. It's always a pleasure to wander here, particularly in the evening when the crowds dissipate and a serene atmosphere prevails. Walking along the walls of the Alcázar, one of Seville's most historic sites, offers a unique journey through time.

Continuing your stroll, you'll enter the Murillo Gardens, a lush sanctuary that marks the transition from the ancient to the modern parts of the city. These gardens serve as a peaceful retreat with their shaded pathways and floral scents mingling in the air. Nearby, the fashionable boulevards beckon with their chic cafes and shops, leading you towards the beautiful Plaza de Santa Cruz. This iconic square, once the heart of the old Jewish quarter, is now a symbol of the neighborhood's rich history and cultural heritage.

In Plaza de Santa Cruz, you can admire the intricate wrought iron cross that stands at its center, surrounded by orange trees and historic buildings. This spot offers a perfect pause to reflect on the deep historical layers and vibrant culture that define El Barrio de Santa Cruz. Whether you're exploring during the bustling daytime or the tranquil night, this neighbourhood never fails to impress with its timeless charm and lively spirit.

Eating in the Barrio de Santa Cruz

The best restaurants in Barrio Santa Cruz

Seville is undoubtedly one of the hottest cities in Europe, so visiting it in spring or summer requires frequent stops to cool off ;) This is a very good excuse to stop and enjoy the good food offered by the local Jewish quarter.

In the streets of the Judería, there are excellent restaurants or bars for a good romantic lunch or dinner or to try the famous Sevillian tapas . And you will see that the Jewish quarter is filled with a multitude of bars and restaurants, ranging from the most elegant in the city to the local bars established over several generations. Scattered throughout the neighborhood, some of them can be found in t´échapper... However, you can start your search to find your favorite place by walking down Calle Mateos Gago, near the Cathedral of Seville (if you want to know more about this magnificent temple, click here ). This very trendy street is full of tapas bars and restaurants that lead to the center of the Santa Cruz neighborhood: the locals say: that you have to have some tapas in each bar and follow the route!

In any case, we leave you our list of favorites to enjoy Andalusian cuisine:

  • Restaurante Oriza, Street San Fernando 41.
  • La Azotea, Street Mateos Gago 8.
  • El 3 de Oro, Street Sta. Maria the White 34.
  • Bodega Santa Cruz, Street Rodrigo Caro 1.
  • Las Teresas, Street Sta. Street Theresa 2.
  • Pelayo Bar de Tapas, Street de Placentines 25.
  • San Marco, Street Mesón del Moro 6.
  • El Pasaje, Street Ximénez de Enciso 33.
  • Taberna Belmonte, Street Mateos Gago 24.
  • Peko Peko, Street Sta. Maria the White 20.
  • Bar Catalina, Paseo de Catalina de Ribera 4.
  • La Tapatería, Street Sta. Maria the White 7.
  • Flores Gourmet, Street San Pablo 24.
  • Cervecería Las Columnas, Street Rodrigo Caro 1.
  • La Cueva, Street Rodrigo Caro 18.
  • L'Oca Giuliva, Street Mateos Gago 9.
  • La Bartola, Street San José 24.
  • La Sacristía Tapas, Street Mateos Gago 18.
  • Meson Don Raimundo, Street Argote de Molina 26.

Is the neighborhood of Santa Cruz, Seville, dangerous at night?

There is no definitive answer to this question, as it depends largely on personal experiences and opinions. However, some people may consider Santa Cruz dangerous because of the lack of lighting in certain areas. It is always best to be aware of your surroundings and travel in a group whenever possible when visiting any unfamiliar area.

Where is the Barrio de Santa Cruz?

Map of the Santa Cruz neighborhood in Seville

How to Reach Barrio de Santa Cruz, Seville

The Barrio de Santa Cruz is a historic neighborhood located in the heart of Seville, Spain. It's known for its narrow, winding streets, charming plazas, and whitewashed houses adorned with colorful flowers. Here's how you can reach the Barrio de Santa Cruz from different points in Seville:

1. From Seville Cathedral (Catedral de Sevilla)

The Barrio de Santa Cruz is just a short walk from the Seville Cathedral. Head southeast towards Calle Alemanes and continue onto Calle Mateos Gago. This street will lead you directly into the heart of the Barrio de Santa Cruz.

2. From Seville Alcazar (Real Alcázar de Sevilla)

The Barrio de Santa Cruz is adjacent to the Seville Alcazar. Exit the Alcazar and walk along Calle Patio de Banderas. Turn left onto Calle Rodrigo Caro, and you'll find yourself in the Barrio de Santa Cruz.

3. From Plaza de España

The Barrio de Santa Cruz is about a 15-minute walk from Plaza de España. Head east towards Avenida de Isabel la Católica and continue onto Calle San Fernando. Turn right onto Calle Imagen, then left onto Calle Regina, and you'll reach the Barrio de Santa Cruz.

4. From Seville Santa Justa Train Station (Estación de Sevilla Santa Justa)

The Barrio de Santa Cruz is approximately 2.5 kilometers (1.5 miles) from the train station. You can walk, take a taxi, or use public transportation. If you prefer to walk, head southwest towards Avenida de Kansas City and continue onto Calle Luis de Morales. Turn right onto Calle Resolana, then left onto Calle San Luis. Continue onto Calle Santa María la Blanca, and you'll arrive at the Barrio de Santa Cruz.

Alternatively, you can take bus C3 or C4 from the train station and get off at the "Puerta de Jerez" stop. From there, it's a 10-minute walk to the Barrio de Santa Cruz.

5. From Prado de San Sebastián Bus Station (Estación de Autobuses Plaza de Armas)

The Barrio de Santa Cruz is about 1.5 kilometers (0.9 miles) from the bus station. You can walk, take a taxi, or use public transportation. If you choose to walk, head southeast towards Calle San Jacinto and continue onto Calle Feria. Turn right onto Calle Correduría, then left onto Calle Mateos Gago, which will lead you into the Barrio de Santa Cruz.

Alternatively, you can take bus C3 or C4 from the bus station and get off at the "Puerta de Jerez" stop. From there, it's a 10-minute walk to the Barrio de Santa Cruz.

In summary, the Barrio de Santa Cruz is centrally located and easily accessible from various points in Seville, either by walking or using public transportation.

One Day in Santa Cruz, Seville

Morning: Start with Historic Sites

09:00 AM: Breakfast at a Local Café
Begin your day with breakfast in one of the quaint cafes in Santa Cruz. Enjoy a typical Andalusian breakfast with fresh orange juice, coffee, and toast with tomato and olive oil.

10:00 AM: Visit the Seville Cathedral
Start your sightseeing at the Seville Cathedral, the largest Gothic cathedral in the world. Spend some time admiring its stunning architecture, and don't miss climbing the Giralda tower for panoramic views of the city.

11:30 AM: Explore the Real Alcázar
Just next to the Cathedral is the Real Alcázar, a royal palace originally developed by Moorish Muslim kings. It is renowned for its stunning blend of architectural styles and beautiful gardens. Make sure to book your ticket in advance to avoid long lines.

Early Afternoon: Stroll and Lunch

01:00 PM: Lunch at a Local Tapas Bar
Enjoy a leisurely lunch at one of Santa Cruz's tapas bars. Try local specialties like gazpacho, jamón ibérico, and local cheeses.

02:30 PM: Walk Through the Murillo Gardens
After lunch, take a relaxing stroll through the Murillo Gardens. These gardens are adjacent to the walls of the Alcázar and offer a serene environment to digest and unwind.

Late Afternoon: Discover Hidden Gems

03:30 PM: Discover Callejón del Agua
Explore the Callejón del Agua, a narrow alley running along the walls of the Alcázar. This shaded lane is one of the most picturesque spots in the neighborhood.

04:15 PM: Visit the Hospital de los Venerables
Head to the Hospital de los Venerables, a beautifully restored 17th-century building that now serves as a center for art and culture, often hosting exhibitions and cultural events.

Evening: Leisure and Cultural Immersion

05:00 PM: Explore Plaza de Santa Cruz
Spend some time in the Plaza de Santa Cruz, where you can relax and enjoy the atmosphere of this historic square, which is particularly beautiful in the late afternoon light.

06:00 PM: Early Dinner in Santa Cruz
Have an early dinner in one of the neighborhood’s charming restaurants. Opt for a place with outdoor seating to enjoy the ambiance of the historic district.

07:30 PM: Evening Walk and Flamenco Show
After dinner, take a leisurely evening walk through the winding streets of Santa Cruz. Cap off your day with a visit to a local tablao for a flamenco show, immersing yourself in this passionate and quintessentially Andalusian art form.

In the surroundings of the old town you can also visit:

  • Seville Cathedral
  • El Royal Alcázar
  • India Archives
  • The Murillo Gardens
  • Take a relaxing walk to the Arab Baths of the Santa Cruz
  • The Murillo Museum
  • The street Agua
  • Pilate's House
  • Plaza Virgen de Los Reyes (very good place to take pictures)

PETIT PALACE SANTA CRUZ: BEST HOTEL BOUTIQUE HOTEL IN THE SANTA CRUZ NEIGHBOURHOOD OF SEVILLA

The Hotel Boutique Petit Palace Santa Cruz is a charming, 4-star boutique hotel nestled in the historic Santa Cruz neighborhood, once the old Jewish quarter of Sevilla. Close to the city's most iconic landmarks like the Cathedral, Giralda, and the Reales Alcázares, this is the **ideal accommodation** for families, couples, friends, and even pets, as it is a pet-friendly hotel. With its distinctive blend of history and modern comfort, this 16th-century palace house offers an authentic Andalusian experience.

Check the rooms at Petit Palace Santa Cruz

 rooms at Petit Palace Santa Cruz
 rooms at Petit Palace Santa Cruz
 rooms at Petit Palace Santa Cruz
rooms at Petit Palace Santa Cruz

Image via Booking Petit Palace

1. An Architectural Gem

This building is declared a Cultural Heritage Site, boasting a 16th-century **palace house** with an outdoor patio adorned with a Renaissance coffered ceiling, Sevillian ceramics, and Genoese columns. Inside, you'll find a Roman column from the 1st century and a 16th-century cistern that reflect the hotel's historic roots. Every corner of this establishment tells a unique story.

2. An Unbeatable Location

The Petit Palace Santa Cruz is located at 18 Muñoz y Pabón Street, right in the heart of Santa Cruz. From the hotel, guests can walk to Sevilla's key attractions, including the Cathedral, Giralda Tower, Pilatos House, and Murillo Gardens. The vibrant shopping district is also nearby, with exclusive stores along Cuna, Rioja, and Sierpes streets. Discover a hidden maze of narrow alleys, plazas, and charming landmarks around every corner in this neighborhood.

3. Pet-Friendly Services

Bringing your furry companion? The Petit Palace Santa Cruz warmly welcomes pets. Choose any room to accommodate your four-legged friend, complete with a comfortable bed, a bowl, and quality pet food. With minimal vehicular traffic in the area, you can easily stroll to nearby Murillo Gardens, which offers a peaceful environment for walking your pet amidst lush gazebos, fountains, and ceramics.

4. Exceptional Amenities

This boutique hotel prioritizes comfort with services like complimentary bicycles, MIFI, Wi-Fi, and late check-out on Sundays and Mondays. The spacious, well-equipped rooms accommodate up to 6 guests, each featuring contemporary decor, cozy mattresses, and impeccable cleanliness. Enjoy a healthy buffet breakfast in a quaint Andalusian courtyard, a 24-hour reception, and friendly staff to assist you throughout your stay.

5. Food and Beverage Service

The breakfast at Petit Palace Santa Cruz is a delight, featuring a cosy indoor dining area and a beautiful open-air courtyard. From fresh fruit to baked goods and gluten-free or vegan options, the buffet breakfast has something for everyone. Families can take advantage of highchairs and special tableware, while flexible breakfast hours ensure you start your day at your pace.

  • Historic Palace - Experience history with original Roman columns, 16th-century cistern, and Renaissance architecture.
  • Central Location - Walk to Sevilla's iconic landmarks, shopping, and dining.
  • Pet-Friendly - Accommodations for your furry companion with beds, bowls, and food included.
  • Amenities - Complimentary bikes, MIFI, Wi-Fi, late check-out, and a delicious buffet breakfast.

The Petit Palace Santa Cruz is your boutique getaway in the heart of Sevilla, offering historic charm, modern comfort, and personalized service. Book now to discover an unforgettable Andalusian adventure!

Dive into the magical history of Santa Cruz (Seville's Old Judería)

The Santa Cruz district of Seville is a legendary neighbourhood full of stories. Santa Cruz, a neighbourhood in the city of Seville, is known for its rich history and magical charm. Walking through the narrow streets of Santa Cruz feels like stepping back in time, as you come across centuries-old buildings and hidden squares. It is said that the neighbourhood was once home to a system of secret underground tunnels, used by spies during Moorish times. Santa Cruz is famous for its beautiful courtyards, adorned with colourful tiles and flowers in full bloom, creating a picturesque and charming atmosphere.

Discover the secrets of the Santa Cruz neighbourhood

The Santa Cruz neighbourhood in Seville is known for being one of the most charming and historic places in the city. Walking through the neighbourhood's narrow cobbled streets will transport you to another era, with its white houses adorned with pots of colourful flowers. In the neighbourhood you will find numerous courtyards that are true oases of peace and beauty, where you can relax and enjoy the tranquil atmosphere. Santa Cruz is famous for its legends and mysteries. You'll hear stories of ghosts, lost loves and hidden treasures as you explore the neighbourhood. Every corner has an interesting story to tell, every alley whispers secrets of the past. It is a place where magic and history intertwine, creating a unique and enigmatic atmosphere. If you are a lover of history and culture, you can't miss the Santa Cruz neighbourhood on your next trip to Seville.

Barrio Santa Cruz: conclusion of our article

The Judería de Santa Cruz deserves more than words or a blog article, but your presence during your stay in Seville. It is the only way to understand this beautiful neighborhood and feel its history on your shoulders.

If you want to visit it with a private visit: we are at your disposal to take you there and show you all the history of the Barrio de Santa Cruz.