Summer ghost towns of southern Spain

In the Real Alcazar Gardens
In the Real Alcázar gardens | Art by Todd Berman

We’ve found that half of Spain is on vacation, and another one-quarter of it is under construction. After an overnight stopover in Córdoba – where we wandered amongst poorly lit by still imposing columns, hundreds in number and Moorish in design – we head to Seville for more adventures in southern Spain.

Seville, where so many of our friends stayed for their collegiate study-abroad programs, is a bit of a ghost town. Outside of the hood called Barrio Santa Cruz, where 20-somethings go to drink heavily and eat deep-fried tapa, and Calle Sierpes, a street that’s protected from the stunning Spanish sun by Coca-Cola sponsored towering…sails…awnings (we don’t quite have a word for it in the English language) so that shopping can continue through high-noon – outside these areas, there are few people around.

Thankfully, you can spend an entire day in Real Alcázar and we do. This royal palace is a three-dimensional lesson in pre-Franco Spanish history, and like so much of Spain, raises more questions for us than it answers.