K nown for its steamy-hot summers, mild winters and sultry operatic gypsy heroine Carmen, Seville is a bijou city whose fabulous food, extraordinary Mudejar, Gothic and Renaissance architecture, and exotic flamenco rhythms never fail to charm and seduce. History oozes through its very pores, with ancient Moorish walls, Roman ruins and Baroque churches at every turn. For a more authentic experience, head to boho Macarena or tile-and-gypsy quarter Triana.
Then, after dusk, head up the rooftops to admire the largest Gothic cathedral in the world and its Moorish-Christian tower from a terrace bar. F iona Flores Watson, our resident expert, offers her top tips on the hottest places to eat, drink and stay this season.
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The big, airy space lined with pretty blue and yellow tiles is the perfect spot for cod, honey and lemon fritters. Two large patios in a 18th-century former palace are edged with wood-floored rooms with quirky touches. The stunning rooftop pool and excellent restaurant add to the allure. Explore the gardens, home to peacocks, pavilions and pools. Look familiar? Note: entry is free on Monday afternoons. The basilica's scale is jaw-dropping, with a metre-plus high nave and 80 chapels. Be sure to climb up the Giralda belltower, formerly the minaret of the mosque which stood here, for fabulous views over Barrio Santa Cruz.
Lookout for the statue of architect Anibal Gonzalez, gazing at his creation. Then slide into a cosy booth for a crab taco or rice with duck and mushrooms.
H ead over the river to the bohemiam, sailor and ceramic tile neighbourhood of Triana. Saunter down calle Pureza to Seville's oldest parish church, Santa Ana , built in Look out for the painting of Santa Rufina and Santa Justa, Christian martyrs who were potters from Triana; the city's patron saints, they're pictured with the Giralda, which they saved from an earthquake, according to local legend. You might even see a neighbour joining in spontaneously, in the true spirit of flamenco. Have a beer you get one with your ticket and tapas overlooking the river.
A gin-tonic will give you the Dutch courage you need. With lamps bearing crowns and regal beds, you could say it's fit for a king or queen. It's also one of only two five-star Gran Lujo hotels in the city, and offers on-site cooking courses and wine tastings. T riana House is an uber-chic hotel with an Art Deco vibe, located in trendy yet down-to-earth Triana.
Clever extras include a stylish booklet with well-chosen tips on where to eat and shop. T he great-value Alminar is a small hotel hidden away on a winding alley in the warren of the Santa Cruz Old Town, only yards away from the Cathedral and La Giralda. The shop is handily located next to Centro Ceramica Triana, a factory-turned-museum about the craft. Embrace any wet days by slipping into the wellies and going in search of puddles.
Small world play opens up a world of possibilities — use miniature items to create an inviting scene which your child will love to explore. This activity is wonderful for building imagination as children chatter away with their characters and imagine them having real life adventures. Use paintbrushes to create elaborate masterpieces on the paths, trees and ground around your home. Encourage your little one to become more familiar with numbers by collecting items from outside and then counting and lining them up below numbers one to ten. Nature offers some of the best art supplies around.
Collect as many resources as you can find and use them to create a beautiful collage. Make use of the natural resources around you and use them to add interesting texture and smells to playdough. Collect leaves from the garden then place them underneath a piece of paper on a flat surface — rub over them using a crayon to reveal the rich textures beneath.
Lay hula hoops on the ground and encourage the children to jump from one to the other, on one leg and two legs. Collect sticks and leaves and use them to create different shapes on the ground — a square with a triangle on top looks like a house.
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Experiment with different shapes to see what your inventors can create. Create instruments out of anything you can find in the garden. You could even create your own music station using old tins and pieces of wood suspended from a tree or bush. Collect leaves, seeds, flowers, pebbles, anything that catches your eye in the garden.
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Fill a tub with water and place the items in the water before freezing. How does the ice feel? The calm and systematic process of creating a circular mandala using natural elements will calm even the most energetic child. Collect sticks from outside and use them to create beautiful natural stars to give as gifts at Christmas. Where has mummy owl gone? And will she be home in time for breakfast? The wonderful story of three little owl babies who wake up to a mystery will have your little ones gripped.jordants.org/components/expression/malattia-di-parkinson-e-parkinsonismi-italian-edition.php
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Tell the story outside and use the trees and the leaves as props in your tale. You could also outline the shape of a shadow using sticks, leaves and grass.
Just be sure to work fast before the shadows move! Does this need any explanation? Playing in the garden develops a wide range of skills including creativity, fine motor skills and an understanding of weight, pressure and balance. Hold a hula hoop up in the air and encourage your little one to throw a bean bag through the middle.
Squirt dots of paint on the paper, place the cotton pads on top, and let the children take turns to splat different circles with the mallet! For more inspiration for play and learning, join our Naturally Learning community and receive a monthly email packed with ideas. Try different techniques — splashing, flicking, smoothly painting… 2.
Digging for treasure Collect together a few small objects and bury them in a sandpit or a small box filled with soil. Bake with mud Use old pots, pans and cutlery and cook up some delicious mud cakes using mud, seasoned with flowers, stones, leaves and seeds. Make fairy soup Collect leaves, petals, seeds and grass from outside and mix them together into a small bowl of water. Lie on the ground and look for shapes in the clouds Look up and watch the clouds blowing across the sky — what shapes can you see?
Draw shapes in the dirt with sticks Use sticks to draw shapes in the dirt — fun and a great way to encourage early writing skills. Hunt for mini beasts Look high, look low and see what little beasts you can find in the garden and around your neighbourhood. Make a mobile Not the kind that needs wifi and four bars… the kind that blows in the wind, produces the sounds of nature and looks beautiful. Hide and seek Play a traditional game of hide and seek using the natural environment.
Noughts and crosses Paint Os and Xs on pebbles then play noughts and crosses, using a homemade board — sticks can be used to make a simple grid. Building with mud bricks Create your own building bricks using mud. Plant something Whether you used seeds, cuttings or fully grown plants moved from somewhere else in the garden, this activity will provide enjoying for months to come as you check back to monitor progress if your plants.
Tell the story of the Gruffalo One of our favourite books at Naturally Learning, The Gruffalo tells the story of an adventurous little mouse, who uses his brain to outwit the many creatures who are hoping to eat him for their tea! Use the story as inspiration for your own woodland adventure.
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Which one is missing? Roll down a hill No explanation required — find a hill, lie on your side at the top and roll! Make tree spirits These are easy to make using homemade clay — give your child a small ball of air-drying clay and work with them to create expressive tree spirits.