Seville Snapshots: Pasaje de Miguel Mañara

Remember learning idioms as a kid? Trying not to laugh when thinking about looking at a horse in the mouth, or having it come straight from another horse’s mouth? My kids have been trying their best to describe, with their limited English, what the meaning of “when the cat’s away, the mice will play,” and it doesn’t help that their teacher shares the same name.

Of all the idioms I use, both in English and Spanish, “A Picture is Worth 1000 words” is perhaps the truest. My mind makes mental snapshots on the daily, drinking in what I see around me. A horse-drawn carriage drinking water at a fountain. Ready, aim…click. Solemn Semana Santa processions, a black-cloaked nazareno looking at me with piercing, passionate eyes. Click. Seville is a city whose worldly delights can make immaculate photos, so part of my new project will be to show off this place through photos that bring to mind far more than 1000 words. I’ll try and limit it to 100, though.

The key to appreciating Seville is to look up. Looking up provides a glimpse of the martins circling over the buttresses of the cathedral, affords a whiff of jasmine or azahar, allows you to trip over the uneven concrete of a city whose history precedes it. Looking up means snapping a photo of the tiled underbelly of a balcony, catching glimpses of life for the thick-skinned sevillanos. Without this vista, the city is what it is – touristy, full of souvenir shops along Avenida de la Constitución. But just looking up, to the shuttered windows of the old quarter, the preserved minaret towers, now replaced with bells, and the blue sky that is ever-present in the Andalusian capital, makes the city as romantic as its mantra claims. No me ha dejado, not with views like these. Photo taken from Pasaje de Miguel Mañara.

If you’d like to participate with your photos from Spain and Seville, please send me an email at sunshineandsiestas @ with your name, short description of the photo, and any bio or links directing you back to your own blog, Facebook page or twitter. Don’t forget to follow Sunshine and Siestas on its new Facebook page!

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About Cat Gaa

As a beef-loving Chicago girl living amongst pigs, bullfighters, and a whole lotta canis, Cat Gaa writes about expat life in Seville, Spain. When not cavorting with adorable Spanish grandpas or struggling with Spanish prepositions, she works in higher education at an American university in Madrid and freelances with other publications, like Rough Guides and The Spain Scoop.


  1. I agree that looking up’s key to really appreciating Spain’s beauty. I love looking up in Zamora to see the storks, who always build their nests in the church towers.

  2. Good idea- I’m sure I can find something suitable. Off to checkout your FB page.

  3. @Kaley: Castilla is such a lovely place for looking up!! Can’t wait to go back.
    @Jo: would love to have you!! Send me whatever you’ve got!

  4. I may take you up on the photo offer. :-) Got more than a few gems waiting to be used.

  5. I loved Seville when I went there it is such a beautiful place with a lovely old town.

    • Completely agreed! I’m still amazed at how overwhelmed I can get by the striking buildings and beautiful people! Have you seen the controversy with the new skyscraped that’s going up? UNESO is threatening to blacklist Seville from their list of historic places!!

  6. I’ll be showing some a friend Sevilla in July. I love how every part of Spain has it’s own food culture/traditions. I’m still loyal to Barcelona – as long as you make it off Las Ramblas!

  7. Yes, Seville is certainly an incredibly photogenic city, and when you’ve been living anywhere for some time, it’s easy to walk along without looking around you and appreciating it. You would love the cathedral rooftop tour, which I posted about recently, as that actually takes you up where you’re looking, if you see what I mean. Golondrinas are swallows, sparrows are gorriónes – just though I’d mention it!

    • Hi Fiona! Have been enjpying all of your summer and Jubillee pics. Yes, Shawn reminded me about the difference between the two birds, and I thought I had changed it. Will check again.

      As for the tour, I had heard about, just can’t find the time now! Hoping to get in contact with my boyfriend’s uncle, who works in the Delegación with the tourism office.

  8. roamingtheworld says:

    Love your new photographic series! Such a photogenic city!

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