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Sevilla/University/Son/Parents Visit Yes or NO?

Sevilla/University/Son/Parents Visit Yes or NO?

Old Aug 26th, 1999, 06:40 PM
  #1  
ET
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Sevilla/University/Son/Parents Visit Yes or NO?

Never have traveled Spain however, my son leaves in two weeks for the University of Sevilla. I have heard it is beautiful. I think my son would enjoy a visit from us. Has anyone ever done this? If so, where did you stay? Did you travel outside of Sevilla?
How long is long enough. When is the best time to travel there? Food....any great restaurants? My son is fluent, but neither my husband or I speak Spanish. Will this present a problem.
Thank you for any and all info.
 
Old Aug 27th, 1999, 06:40 AM
  #2  
kristi
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While I can't speak for your son and whether he'd appreciate a visit, I can tell you that Spain is a lovely country well worth a visit. Perhaps in addition to visiting your son, you could also see some of the other wonderful cities in Southern Spain.

We were in Seville for several days (total trip was 12 days) last September and the weather was beautiful, warm and sunny the whole time we were there. I'm not sure how long it stays warm, perhaps someone else can help with that.

Seville has a lot of lovely sites to visit, the Alcazar, the cathedral, Plaza de Espana. Lots of people catch a flamenco show while they are in Seville. Seville is also close enough to several other cities in Spain that you can also visit Granada (highly recommend visiting the Alhambra there), Cordova,and Madrid by high speed AVE trains (about 2 1/2 hours to Madrid) and I believe there are also numerous day trips from Seville to most of those places although I thought it was better and less expensive to travel on our own.

Neither my husband nor I speak Spanish beyond the bare minimum phrases and didn't find it to be a problem in the larger cities.

I don't have any specific restaurant recommendations, but we found great food all over Spain. Make sure you try paella, a saffron/rice dish, and try a tapas bar where they serve smaller appetizer portions of food. If you're a fan of calamari, they also served that in abundance.

Hope this is helpful!
 
Old Aug 27th, 1999, 10:38 AM
  #3  
amy
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YES! GO TO SPAIN!! Sevilla is beautiful, and is close to tons of wonderful cities in southern Spain that you can day trip to via bus/train or car.(I second the idea to go to Granada!)
Plus, hotels are very very affordable (well I'm from Boston so anything less than 200$ a night is affordable for me) but you can stay in a 4 or 5 star hotel and pay 150 a night. I have stayed in those, as well as 1 stars, which you can get for 30-50$ a night. Many of them are quaint, owned by an older couple, and very clean. There are lots of options, particularly if you are there off season, which I am guessing you probably will (late Sept/Oct?). Book ahead, of course. There are any number of guide books and web sites that list hotels, with their star ratings. Keep in mind that "hostal" in spanish is not usually a youth hostel. It is less expensive than a hotel, but usually has private rooms (not dorms). Hospedejes (I think I spelled that wrong) are the cheapest/least desireable.
Hope all this helps. By the way,
Spanish is helpful, but I didn't speak any and was traveling alone. A phrase book will get you through any situation.
 
Old Aug 27th, 1999, 12:02 PM
  #4  
Jeanie
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When I studied abroad I was lucky enough to have my parents come visit me. They came in the middle of the semester (your son will probably not have the most rigorous class schedule while in Europe). It was good timing because they could bring me all sorts of american things that i was missing, summer clothes, etc. Plus by that time I was a more experienced traveler. We traveled around Eastern Europe and Austria (I was in Vienna) together. It was a lot of fun and I think they are really glad they came too.
While this post has nothing to do with sevilla, I felt like I had to put my two cents in. Sevilla is a beautiful city, you will love it.
 
Old Aug 28th, 1999, 04:33 AM
  #5  
ET
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WOW! Thanks for the info. I can't wait to go. Believe it or not I have never been anywhere in Europe. Of course, my husband and two sons have been abroad many times but I have been too busy being a MOM. I hate to intrude on my sons but I am getting the feeling he wants us to visit. I am so encouraged to go and it honestly sounds like a wonderful place to visit. I confess however, Spain would not have been my first choice. So I really do appreciate all the positive comments. I am going. I think we will go in either November or March. Not quite sure.
Again, many thanks for your responses. I'm going to Spain!
 
Old Aug 28th, 1999, 04:40 AM
  #6  
Maira
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A two-week trip either in October, November (Thanksgiving?), March or April (Easter?) would be a good plan in my opinion. The airfare is cheaper, the sights are less crowded, and the weather still good. Jeanie made a really good point about bringing stuff for your son from the States and also at a time when he has become more familiar with the surroundings. Holy week (17-23 April, 2000) is off for most schools in Spain, so that could be a good time to visit.

As far as hotels, there are many recommendations on this forum. Do a Search and you'll find plenty of ideas. I stayed at Hotel Regina, across the street from where the World Fair took place in 1992. I loved it but I would had stayed closer to the main sights area. La Casa de la Juderia is frequently praised on this forum.

As far as sights, the Cathedral is magnificent, the Archives of the Indies (next to the Cathedral) have an excellent museum of the Spanish expeditions to the New World. La Giralda (quite a hike to the top; great views!). The Jewish Quarter very interesting and lively. Barrio Santa Cruz; the esence of Seville. Like Kristi mentioned, take the opportunity to explore other cities. Ronda is lovely, the Rock of Gibraltar is impressive, the Roman Ruins of Italica are impressive (the Roman Emperors Trajan and Hadrian were born in Italica, northwest of Seville). Also try to visit Huelva, East of seville on the coast. This is the spot from where Columbus departed and they have an excellent exhibit (renovated in 1992). While in Huelva don't miss a visit to the Monastery of La Rabida. This is the place where Columbus stayed with his son Diego while trying to raise $$$$ for his trip. Queen Isabella's confessor and good friend, Father Antonio Marchena, lived in this Monastery as well and thought Columbus idea had merit. He arranged a meeting between them. The Monastery has an excellent museum displaying relics of Columbus, the room where the meetings took place and where all the agreements were signed, etc... BTW, driving in Spain is very easy.

Hope this helps.
 
Old Aug 29th, 1999, 07:47 AM
  #7  
Courtney
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I highly recommend that you take advantage of the opportunity to visit Sevilla and other parts of the Andalucia region of Spain. My husband and I just moved to Andalucia from San Diego last May and we love it. Sevilla is a beautiful city with its Alcazar (Moorish-style palace), huge cathedral, and lovely Barrio de Santa Cruz (winding, cobblestone streets with geranium-filled wrought-iron balconies). Granada is also in Andalucia and I liked it even better than Sevilla. Granada is in the foothills of the Sierras home of the world-famous Alhambra, Cathedral where Isabel and Ferdinand are buried, and the old Arab Quarter. The region is also home of the "ruta de los pueblos blancos" (white hill towns). There are nearly 20 of these towns but my favorites are Arcos De La Frontera, Ronda, and Grazalema. These towns are normally built on steep hill sides for protection and are surrounded by beautiful olive and sunflower fields. I would recommend getting an car to explore. Jerez De La Frontera is a town about 1 1/2 hours south of Sevilla. It is known for it's Andalusian horses and there are fabulous horse shows every week (Tuesdays, I think). The town is also known for it's sherry and many of the local bodegas offer tours with generous sherry tastings. If you're a beach person, the Costa De La Luz and Costa De Sol are nearby as well. The culture in southern Spain is very festive, there are always fairs, religious festivals, bullfights, and flamenco events to be found. I can send you a list of the major festivals in Andalucia if you send a message to my E-mail address. The best time to go to Andalucia is end of September/October or March/April/May. May is probably the best month because there are lot of festivals (e.g horse festival in Jerez, patio festival in Cordoba), the temperature is very nice, and the hills are green. It gets REALLY hot in the summer, especially in-land. In June, July, and August, the in-land temperatures can exceed 100 degrees with no breeze and air-conditioning is not commonplace. I don't have any advice on places to stay - we normally take daytrips from our house. You won't have any problems getting around without speaking Spanish. Many Spanish people speak English and "sign language" works wonders. Hope this helps.

 
Old Aug 29th, 1999, 07:52 AM
  #8  
maria
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Absolutely, don't miss this opportunity to share the experience your son will be having! My parents visited me while I was in Spain during my Junior year at college and we still talk about the wonderful time we had together travelling (25 years later!!!) together and all the beautiful sights we saw. I am sure that without my being there my parents would not have chosen Spain either, but it was a trip of a lifetime for all of us. Maira definitely highlighted the treasures of Seville and surrounding areas. Use this forum for your planning as their are lots of good travel tips for Seville and other areas of Spain. I think that the November time frame is great as your son will be settled and comfortable and will also enjoy some special parental TLC ...I remember how wonderful it was to enjoy a few upscale restaurant meals with my parents that were not in my student budget! Good Luck! Maria
 
Old Aug 30th, 1999, 08:57 AM
  #9  
frank
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Seville is a mindblower, don't miss the
Alcazar.Food is great & cheap - try the seafood.Only bad things are the heat(known as the "frying pan of Spain")
and car breakins.(ok if you have local plates.)Travel to places outside Seville
is easy by Bus/Train.Try Cadiz!
English is spoken more than it used
to be but you can get by on phrasebook
Spanish - the Spanish are helpful that way.
On the South coast resorts you will find most cafe staff speak english, but you will also find the English & double
prices.
Avoid Easter unless you have a place
to stay,if so, go at Easter, it's their
biggest fiesta.
 
Old Aug 30th, 1999, 09:25 AM
  #10  
s.fowler
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GO!

Just be sure to pick a time when your son can travel with you to Granada.

I had a wonderful week in Sevilla when I visited a friend who was living there doing research for her dissertation. She lived in the barrio Sanat Cruz and it took no time at all to get into the local rhythm
 
Old Aug 30th, 1999, 09:38 AM
  #11  
lisa
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ET: I really hope you go visit your son. Like your son, I studied in Europe one summer (although mine was in England, which is obviously very different but I still think it's relevant for purposes of this discussion). I had never been to Europe before and neither had my mom. When classes were over, my mom flew over to London and met me. It was a wonderful experience and something we reminisce over often. One thing that I really enjoyed, as her daughter, was the sort of role reversal that happened as a result of my becoming somewhat familiar with the country in the time before she arrived. It was kind of fun to meet her at the airport and be an "old hand" at negotiating our way through a foreign country -- the currency, using public transportation, etc. I suspect your son may feel somewhat this way as well and may experience some pride in showing you around his newfound "home." Also, my mom and I then travelled around for several weeks in France, Italy, and Germany together which was a great bonding experience for us. Don't miss this opportunity -- you may never have another chance like this.
 
Old Aug 30th, 1999, 11:22 AM
  #12  
Joyce
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I was in the south of Spain near Sevilla during Jan and Feb. At the end of Feb the weather was lovely, with highs of 70s. I drove most of the time and managed to find my way around alone without speaking Spanish. There's a lot to enjoy in Sevilla, but Granada and the hill towns shouldn't be missed.
Concerning meals, always try to order from the "menu of the day". It usually includes two courses, bread, drinks (even wine, beer or bottled water) and dessert, and costs around $10. The portions are so large that it won't matter if you don't like something you ordered. Also, the local wine is either sherry or rather harsh table wine, but the local women drink it mixed with something like 7up and call it the wine of the summer.
Ask your son to check with a local travel agency concerning hotels. They have a system where you purchase coupons and then can stay in any of the hotels on their list, most of which are 3 or 4 stars hotels. I used them for Granada and for Madrid and the hotels were fine. You can only purchase them from a travel agent within Spain.
 
Old Aug 31st, 1999, 04:36 AM
  #13  
ET
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Thanks again to all of your who responded. We have decided we are definitely going. We will go either in November or March. Right now I am leaning toward March but that could change. I printed out the responses I received and found my son pouring through them. I now am sure he would love a visit. Thank you! Thank you!
 
Old Aug 31st, 1999, 07:59 AM
  #14  
Amy
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I just have one more suggestion! Someone else mentioned it briefly, but if you can, try to go in April during Sevilla's feria (spring fair)... it is an unforgettable experience. Most travel agents should be able to tell you the exact dates. Trust me, it is worth it to arrange your schedule!!
 
Old Aug 31st, 1999, 08:45 AM
  #15  
s.fowler
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And if you do decide to go then RESERVE NOW!
 
Old Sep 28th, 1999, 08:00 PM
  #16  
nancy
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We have a daughter studing at the U of Madrid and after we bought her ticket we bought ours. We are taking the family to visit for 12 days in December. By the way she has a good freind studying at the u of Seville.
 

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