Constantina, nature and history in the Seville’s Sierra Morena
Whether you are passionate about outdoor sports, or curious about discovering the town’s history, Constantina has plenty to offer. Nestled in a valley within the Sierra Norte Natural Park, the town is characterised by its white houses, stately mansions and castle, declared a Site of Cultural Interest in 1985.
The Paseo de la Alameda is always bustling with people and has a lively atmosphere. Here you can enjoy the town’s excellent cuisine, based on local game meats, cured meats and wild mushrooms. If you are looking for something different, try battered frogs’ legs, a local delicacy. For dessert, visit the Convent of the Jerónimas to try their speciality: handmade chocolate nougat.
Anise and cherry liqueurs are also traditional here. Visit the town’s two distilleries to learn how these drinks from the Seville’s Sierra Morena are made. Make Constantina your next must-visit destination. You will be amazed by the town’s beauty, heritage, culinary variety and natural surroundings.
Getting to Constantina
If you arrive from Seville by car, head towards Carmona on the A-4, then take the turn towards Lora del Río A-457. Then, look for the A-455 exit to Constantina.
If you go by train, take the line that connects Seville with Mérida, which stops at Cazalla de la Sierra/Constantina station. If you decide to go by bus, buses are running regularly to Constantina throughout the day from Plaza de Armas station in Seville.
To find out about the town’s historical heritage, the best option is to stroll through its streets. The Sierra Norte Natural Park offers a wide variety of sports activities. These include hiking, biking, fishing, climbing, etc.
Reasons to visit
- Visit Constantina’s Arab Castle, declared a Site of Cultural Interest in 1985 and take in the unique views of Constantina from the monument to the Sacred Heart.
- Get to know the Seville’s Sierra Morena at the El Robledo Visitor Centre and discover the local flora at the Botanical Garden.
- In November, don’t miss the Mycological Days, where you’ll learn all about the vast world of mushrooms.
- Be bold and try frogs’ legs, one of Constantina’s signature dishes.
- Try the cherry liqueur at Destilerías Constantina or the traditional anise from La Violetera.
- Sample the cured meats made in Constantina, and the organic olive oil from Cooperativa Virgen del Robledo.
- If you are a nature lover, climb up to the Cerro del Hierro Natural Monument, located between the towns of Constantina and San Nicolás del Puerto.
What to see
Strolling through the streets of Constantina is a real delight. Lined with stately homes, some are in the Mudejar style, and others are Neoclassical. The old town was declared a Site of Historic-Artistic Interest in 2004. Leisurely wander through the Barrio de la Morería, which still boasts its original Arabic architecture. Climb up to the Castle and the monument to the Sacred Heart, a sculpture of Jesus blessing the town.
Constantina has other interesting religious buildings, such as the Church of San Juan de Dios Hospital, the Shrine to Nuestro Padre Jesús, and the most important of them all, the Santa María de la Encarnación Parish Church. The church tower can be seen from afar and will be the first thing you see as you approach. Continue discovering unique corners of this town such as the Cloister of the former Convent of Tardón. It has a Renaissance courtyard that was part of this religious building’s hospital and today is a community centre.
On the outskirts of Constantina is a fascinating monument called ‘La Carlina’. It is today a monastery and guesthouse with a curious history. Originally, it was a humble farmhouse. It was bought in the 1950s by León Degrelle, a Belgian soldier and member of the Nazi party, who lived here in exile after World War II and converted the house into an impressive palace. Today, it is run by nuns of the Convent of the Jerónimas who offer travellers accommodation and spiritual retreat. They are also famous for their artisanal cakes, pastries and chocolate nougat.
Another interesting building in Constantina is the Los Pozos de la Nieve (ice store), which gets its name from the ice that formed naturally in its wells. The ice was removed at night and transported by beasts of burden to Seville to be sold. Now totally refurbished, this rural hotel has lovely rooms.
However, this town’s most significant attraction is its natural surroundings, as it sits in the heart of the Sierra Norte Natural Park. Go to the El Robledo Visitor Centre where you can enjoy the enticing aroma of the mountain range, and learn about the local flora in the Botanical Garden. Enjoy an outdoor sport or activity in this unique area. For an unforgettable experience, explore Constantina’s various routes, including Castañares, Jurdana, Cerro del Hierro, and Molino del Corcho.
Places to visit
- Chapel of San Juan de Dios Hospital, formerly the Hospital de Caridad Chapel, and today a retirement home run by the Mercedarian Sisters
- Constantina Castle and monument to the Sacred Heart (1954)
- Shrine to Nuestra Señora Robledo
- Shrine to Nuestro Padre Jesús
- Santa María de la Encarnación Parish Church
- Los Pozos de la Nieve
- La Concepción Church
- Santa Clara Convent, where only the façade remains
- Former convent hospice of Tardón, where the cloister still stands
- Nuestra Señora de Los Angeles Convent-Guesthouse, ‘La Carlina’
- The Moorish Quarter
- Plaza de Toros
- The Gurugú House, which is now the Idente Missionaries’ residence in Constantina
- Ruins of the Shrine to Nuestra Señora de la Hiedra, on the outskirts of the town. Only the outer enclosure remains. Don’t miss the El Chorrillo route to see the old Chorrillo Fountain that supplied water to local residents.
- Los Castañares, la Jurdana, Cerro del Hierro, Molino del Corcho routes
- El Robledo Visitor Centre
Constantina is a town located in the Sierra Morena, about 87 kilometres from Seville. Nestled in a valley surrounded by lush hills, Constantina is part of the Sierra Norte Natural Park, and home to the famous Cerro del Hierro Natural Monument.
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