The Alcazar of Seville is one of the most fascinating royal residences in Spain. This is due to the fact that it does not respond to a single project undertaken at a given moment, but rather is the result of numerous construction phases that have taken place throughout its history.
It has been used continuously as a royal palace since its Muslim origins, back in the 10th or 11th century, until today, in which it is still the oldest royal palace in use in Spain and Europe. Throughout its history, the different monarchs who have inhabited here have been adapting the different palaces, courtyards and gardens to the tastes of each era, until configuring the marvelous and diverse complex through which we can walk today.
Although its origin is a set of Muslim palaces, very little remains of this early period of the Alcázar. Most of the palaces that we are going to see correspond to the reforms undertaken in Christian times by:
- Alfonso X the Wise, who built the so-called Gothic Palace in the 13th century.
- Pedro I, called by some the Cruel and by others the Justiciero, who built the wonderful that is the true heart of the Alcázar. It was built in the middle of the 14th century and constitutes the peak of the Mudejar style.
- In the reign of the Catholic Monarchs, the so-called Casa de Contratación was built, of which we will also see some rooms on this side, intended to centralize and organize trade with the Indies, after the discovery of America in 1492.
All this is surrounded by a magnificent set of patios and gardens, which have been added and reformed until very recent times. It must be remembered that a part of the Palace of Pedro I, specifically the upper floor, is still used as the residence of the kings of Spain when they are in Seville.
Thanks to all this, its long history, its beauty and its architecture, the Real Alcázar of Seville was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in December 1987, together with the nearby cathedral and Archivo de Indias.