Why Spain? Why Seville?
Spain is the perfect place to improve your Spanish for personal and professional use while immersing yourself in the Andalucian lifestyle. Whether you are going into medical, non-profit, legal, environmental or international fields, the skills you will gain from living in Spain will prove to be a useful tool in the future. Spain’s rich culture and history add to the dynamics of the language and give you the chance to explore new paths for your own adventure.
Andalusia is known for an abundance of joy (alegria) and spontaneity. Andalusians tend to have a sunny disposition and an infectious sense of humor. They enjoy life to the fullest and you will too!
Seville has a charm that you have to experience for yourself. Walking along the river under the palm trees and stopping for tapas on a sunny afternoon, or sitting in one of the many public gardens and watching the horse carriages go by, are just a few of the many irresistible allures of the city.
The city of Seville goes back to the 8th century BCE. The Greeks and the Romans called it “Hispalis,” the Moors, “Isbiliya,” from which its current name is believed to derive.
It gained great prosperity following the exploration of the “New World,” when its harbor on the Guadalquivir River became the gateway between Castile and the Americas.
It is the final resting place of Christopher Columbus.
Here too, you can see the Moorish influence on the city.
Spain has an abundant and diverse food culture that is best known around the world for “tapas,” the tasty snacks served with drinks in the afternoon. Tapas originated as pieces of bread used to cover a drink to keep flies out. Andalucia is particularly known for its olives (aceitunas), Iberian ham (jamón ibérico), gazpacho, seafood (mariscos), Spanish omelette (tortilla de patatas), and sherry (jerez).
Seville is a beautiful city that perfectly combines the old and the new, and nowhere is this better achieved than in its architecture.
One of Seville’s jewels is the Catedral de Sevilla, the largest Medieval Gothic cathedral in the world, with its famous Giralda, a magnificent Mohammedan minaret. Nearby is the Real Alcázar de Sevilla, a royal palace that dates back to the 14th century. The Archivo General de Indias, a 16th-century building located next to the Alcazar and the Cathedral, houses the most important collection of documents related to the trade between Spain and the Americas. Catedral de Sevilla, Real Alcázar de Sevilla and Archivo General de Indias are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
More recent, but equally significant, are the main building of the University of Seville and the adjacent Hotel Alfonso XIII, one of the many beautiful edifices that were commissioned for the World Fair of 1929. All of these sites are located under 20 minutes’ walking distance from the JYS student center.
A little farther away, but still within walking distance, is the Metropol Parasol complex, which includes Roman ruins in the basement, a fresh-produce market at ground level, and, above it, the largest wooden structure in the world, designed by the German architect Jüergen Mayer-Hermann and completed in 2011.
Feria de Abril (originally a cattle fair) is marked by six days of folkloric dance (Sevillanas) and music, food, and elegant horse-drawn carriages and riders in gallant costumes.
Semana Santa processions have been taking place since the 15th century.
The rest of the year, the city is alive with all sorts of cultural activities: flamenco dance and song, opera, plays, concerts and exhibits. So, no matter when you study in Seville, you will never be bored!