How to Beat The Lines in Seville

This blog post was originally posted on July 23, 2015, and was updated on February 23, 2017.

Who wants to waste valuable sightseeing (and eating!) time stuck in a queue?

Most visitors come to Seville with the aim of seeing two main monuments – the Seville Cathedral and the Royal Alcazar Palace. Any other smaller museums and monuments are a bonus. But there is one big problem, especially in hot weather – the queues! Queuing for an hour in 40-degree temperatures is no one’s idea of a good time, so here are some tips on how to beat the lines in Seville.

Here are Devour Seville's handy guide to how to beat the lines in Seville!

Photo credit: Albert, Text overlay: Devour Spain.

Seville Cathedral

The good news is there is a way to beat the lines at Seville’s Cathedral, a little loophole in the system, and one that works. When you buy the ticket to Seville’s Cathedral, the ticket is a combined ticket for both the Cathedral and the Church of El Salvador, Seville’s second largest church which is also worth a look.

The thing is, while beautiful in its own right, the Church of El Salvador is a lot less popular. This means you can visit the Church of El Salvador first, purchase your ticket as a combined ticket for both monuments (make sure you specify you want the combined ticket, as entrance to just the Church is cheaper), then head over to the Cathedral and stroll past the long entrance queue straight to the door with your already purchased ticket. Not a bad trick at all!

Address: Avenida de la Constitución, S/N (Cathedral) Plaza del Salvador (Church of El Salvador)
Price: 9 euros

Hours Cathedral: Monday, 11:00-15:30; Tuesday to Saturday, 11:00-17:00; Sunday, 14:30-18:00.
Hours Church of El Salvador: July & Aug: Monday to Saturday, 9:30-16:00; Sept to June: Monday to Saturday: 11:00-17:00; Year-round: Sunday, 14:30-18:00.

The cathedral is one of Seville's most popular landmarks
Seville’s Cathedral – Photo Credit: Nigel’s Europe & beyond

Royal Alcazar Palace

It used to be that queues were not so long or frequent at the Seville Alcazar, but nowadays the Royal Alcazar is Seville’s other great monument, with lines to match! Long gone are the days that this spectacular monument was a hidden gem– partially to blame for the series you may have heard of called Game of Thrones — which uses the Alcazar quite a bit in filming!

Especially later in the day, you will often find a queue. Not really surprising, given that from January to June this year, the Alcazar experienced a record number of visitors, nearly 13% more than the same period the previous year.

Luckily, the Alcazar lines are easily skipped– especially if you book tickets in advance on the website, where for a service fee of 1 euro, you can buy your tickets ahead of time. 1 euro well spent, we say! This is especially useful if you wish to visit the Upper Royal Quarters of the Alcazar.

These are the reception rooms and common areas that are still used today by the Spanish Royal family when they visit Seville, and access to this area is only by a strictly limited audio guided, security escorted tour, that operates only during the mornings. We really recommend this additional visit inside the Alcazar as it really adds context to the current use of the building.

Another option for visiting Seville’s Royal Alcazar is by booking a tour with us! We offer a guided tour of Seville’s Royal Alcazar followed by a tapas tour of Seville’s Jewish quarter, the Santa Cruz neighborhood. By visiting the Alcazar with an official guide, you’ll gain insight into this incredible monument and also be able to see all of the Game of Thrones locations– if that’s your thing!

The Alcazar is one of Seville's most spectacular sights!
Inside Seville’s Alcazar Palace – Photo Credit: JohnPickenPhoto

Address: Patio de Banderas S/N
Price: 9.50 euros (general visit) + 4.50 euros (upper quarter) + 1 euro (online booking fee)

Hours: April to Sept: Monday to Sunday, 9.30-19:00; Oct to March: Monday to Sunday, 9:30 – 17:00.

If you want to experience the best of Seville, why not combine a fully guided tour of the Alcazar Palace with a delicious tapas crawl through the Jewish Quarter of Seville? All of this in the company of one of our passionate, local experts. Certainly sounds good to us, check out more details on one of our most exciting new products here!

37 Comment

  1. Great tip about the Church of El Salvador. Saved us an hour in a hot queue today.

  2. Vivian Wong says: Reply

    Hi I’ve just come across your post during my research for an upcoming trip in March and this has been one of the more helpful posts! I’m having trouble prebooking Alcazar tickets on their website though. I had similar problems with online booking for the night tour of the Cordoba Mezquita although I’m now told by their staff that they are only open for advanced booking a month in advance. Is there a similar rule for Alcazar, would you know? I would very much like to see the Upper Royal Quarters.

    1. Jaimie Keating says: Reply

      Hi Vivian,
      Thanks for your kind words about the post. There is no such policy when it comes to reserving tickets at the Alcázar, you should be able to reserve tickets now for a visit in March. I´ve checked the link to their website in this post (https://oberonsaas.com/realalcazarsevilla) and it seems to be working fine. Could it be a browser issue? Perhaps try it from another browser and see if there are any better results.

  3. Mervyn Ang says: Reply

    Hi, 1 question why when I try to book a Alcazar ticket , it ask for a timing pass ln the GENERAL TOUR . I thought it is only when you book Alcazar tickets + CUARTO REAL ALTO

    1. Jaimie Keating says: Reply

      Hey Mervyn! You actually have to give a time for when you’re going to be at the Palace regardless of the type of tour you want to take.

    2. Eve says: Reply

      I’m not wohtry to be in the same forum. ROTFL

  4. jane says: Reply

    I just need the web link please ASAP to book Cathedrahl in Seville on Tuesday 28th March and then Alczar palace Wednesday 29th and then if there is a link for the Mezquita for the Thursday 30th? please let me know soonest
    kind regards
    jane

  5. Jane says: Reply

    Need to book in advance cathedral Seville happy to do the best option to avoid queues..
    Then another day Alcazar
    Please advise where to book going on 27th March

    1. Jaimie Keating says: Reply

      Hi Jane,
      Here are the links to follow to book your tickets in advance,
      http://www.catedraldesevilla.es/
      https://oberonsaas.com/realalcazarsevilla
      Thanks!
      Jaimie

  6. Martijn Dingemans says: Reply

    We want to buy tickets for the Alcazar in Seville, but we can not print them. what shall we do?

    1. Jaimie Keating says: Reply

      Hi, Martijn, It is not necessary to print your tickets, you can show them on a smart phone or tablet. Jaimie

  7. Kathryn says: Reply

    Thank you so much for your excellent blog post – it is very helpful! I was hoping you could help me with a question about the Alcazar Real online tickets. If we have an 11:00 timed entry ticket for the Royal Apartments, how early can we enter the Alcazar complex to look around prior to seeing the apartments? We would like to be there for when they open at 09:30 but cannot find any information on if they will allow us to enter the complex if our ticket for the apartments isn’t until 11:00. Also, if we go early, can we also pick up our audioguides early as well, and is there a time limit for how long you can keep the audioguides? Any guidance would be greatly appreciated. Many thanks!

    1. Jaimie Keating says: Reply

      Hi Kathryn, thanks for reading our blog and for such nice comments. As far as we are aware, it is no problem to enter the complex before you assigned time to visit the living quarters, it certainly was this way previously. With regards the audio guides, you simply collect them when entering the Alzacar and then deposit them when you leave, there is no specific time limit on your use of them, so long as you stay within the normal opening hours, of course. I hope this helps and enjoy your time in Seville.

  8. Mervyn Ang says: Reply

    Hi
    I only have time to spend 1 day at Seville and intend to park at Parking Avenida Roma (expensive), I intend to visit Alcázar of Seville, Iglesia del Salvado, Seville Cathedral & Giralda & Plaza de España. Which place should I visit first? Going to the north to Iglesia del Salvado first or to start off with Alcázar of Seville. Seville Cathedral & Giralda open at 1100 – 1700 & Alcázar of Seville open at 0930 – 1900 . Do you know what is the average hours people spent in Seville Cathedral & Giralda & Alcázar of Seville?

    1. Jaimie Keating says: Reply

      Hi Mervyn,
      While the parking you’ve chosen is a bit more expensive, it is very well located. I think if you head to the Alcazar first to beat the queues (consider booking ahead online to ensure you walk straight in), you can then head to Iglesia del Salvador to make use of the combination ticket that allows you to skip the queue to the Cathedral. Then round off your day in Plaza de España. It’s a jam-packed day but you will enjoy some amazing sights! Each of the main sights requires at least 2 hours, from our experience. You won’t want to leave the gardens in the Alcazar – they’re truly spectacular! Hope this helped!

  9. Mervyn Ang says: Reply

    Thanks for your info, my son would like to visit a spanish bull ring but not fond of watching a bull fight, I heard there is a bullring in Seville, Plaza de toros de la Real Maestranza de Caballería de Sevilla, may I know if it is possible to go to the bullring stand to have a view of the grand bullring arena.

    1. Jaimie Keating says: Reply

      Absolutely, you can do tours of the bullring where they explain a bit of the history of bullfighting and you get to see the arena itself, without seeing an actual bull fight. The visit to the bullring costs 8 euro and there are visits every 20 minutes or so from 9:30 – 21:00, unless there is a celebration on, in which case they stop doing visits at 15:00.

  10. ANSHUL says: Reply

    Great tip about skipping the line for Seville Cathedral. We saved hours of standing in long queue while it was raining and walked in like a boss!! 🙂
    Thanks.

    1. Jaimie Keating says: Reply

      We’re delighted to hear it, there’s no time for waiting in line, especially when there’s so much food and drink to enjoy in the city!

  11. Flora Tan says: Reply

    How advanced can you reserve for Seville Cathedral? Any English website? Thanks

    1. Hayley Salvo says: Reply

      You can use this website to book tickets in advance – http://www.cubiertasdelacatedral.com/ – but we would recommend buying a combo ticket in person at the Divino Salvador Church in Seville, which allows you to jump the longer line at the Cathedral!

  12. Faye says: Reply

    Hi, this is a great post! I made a booking for the General Tour + CUARTO REAL ALTO on the booking website you suggested just then but the e-ticket that was sent to me said the ticket was for the CUARTO REAL ALTO tour only. I thought that ticket included a general tour of the Alcazar too? Or do I need to buy a separate ticket for that? Thanks

    1. Hayley Salvo says: Reply

      Hi Faye,
      From the booking website, you would select “Events” and choose “General tour + Cuarto Real Alto” then hit the purchase button. From there you will be taken to the next tab to select your date and time. Next, you’ll choose how many ticekts you want and hit the “next” button and finally you’ll be taken to the last tab where you will select if you are buying a general addmission ticket or if you have any applicable discounts (for children, retirees, etc.). On this final tab is where you will see the option “Combined Alcázar + Cuarto Real Alto” which shows a general admission price of 14€. Hope that helps!

      1. Faye says: Reply

        Thanks Hayley! I’m also interested in getting the combined ticket at the Divino Salvador Church – is it open in August though? I couldn’t read their website which was in Spanish. Thanks!

        1. Hayley Salvo says: Reply

          Open in August!

  13. Sheila Wray says: Reply

    Hi
    I see that it is only 2 euros for retired people in The Alcazar. Does this apply to people from all countries or just Spain?

    1. Hayley Salvo says: Reply

      Hi Sheila,
      Any person from any country over the age of 65 can get the retired persons’ discount, with a valid ID!

  14. Sara says: Reply

    Hi, thanks for the information. I have a question about the lines…i have read here that it is more crowded in the afternoon and read someplace else that it is more crowded in the morning…any insight?

    1. Hayley Salvo says: Reply

      Hi Sara,
      If you want to get a real jump on the lines, we’d recommend being the first in line when the monument you wish to visit is just opening!

  15. Katherine Lozinak says: Reply

    Thanks for the great information! I’m trying to buy advance tickets for the cathedral and the date I want are in red. Any reason why?
    http://www.cubiertasdelacatedral.com/calendario-catedral/2017-10

    1. Jaimie Keating says: Reply

      Hi, Katherine. The dates in red may indicate there are no more advanced tickets available for that day. If you head to the Iglesia de Salvador church though you can skip the queue and don’t pay any extra than a normal Cathedral ticket, perhaps that would be the best option if the online site won’t allow you to purchase in advance. Glad to hear you found the info useful, enjoy your trip to the city!

      1. Katherine Lozinak says: Reply

        Thanks!

  16. Gabi says: Reply

    Just checked both options for the palace and the cathedral – work perfecty! We skipped two very long lines. Thank you for the excellent advice!

    1. Jaimie Keating says: Reply

      Hi, Gabi. I’m so happy you were able to make use of the insider info, I hope you enjoyed visiting both monuments!

  17. Jovin says: Reply

    Hi, from the Alcazar website it mentioned that there is free admission on Monday.
    Is the free admission allowed enter the whole palace or only certain sections of the Alcazar
    Therefore if i pay a visit on Monday, shall i still buy the entrance ticket in advance?

    1. Jaimie Keating says: Reply

      Hi, Jovin. The free entry on Mondays only applies to the last opening hour of the Palace. As we are moving to October, the winter hours kick in and so the free hour for the Alcazar is from 16:00-17:00. With the free entrance you can enter all the Palace but you will have just one hour to visit it. You can still reserve a ticket online for the free period in order to skip the queue, just click on the ‘Lunes. Entrada Horario Gratuito’ link on the ticket purchase screen. Enjoy the Alcazar!

  18. Katherine Lozinak says: Reply

    I grab a free tickets for Monday October 9th at 16:00. There were also tickets for 17:00…. If they are letting people in at 17:00 would I be able to stay longer than one hour?

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