Espartinas, a town of haciendas and the cradle of bullfighting
Surrounded by farmhouses and haciendas, Espartinas is located in the heart of the Aljarafe region. A town with deep Marian devotion and bullfighting tradition where you will enjoy the kindness of its people. Its history revolves around the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Loreto, an ancient Roman town called Lauretum (laurel). Today, the temple of this Patron Saint of Espartinas is a must-see. You will discover its legend, and gain insight into the importance of this sacred place for the people of Espartinas.
The passion for bullfighting can be felt in every corner of Espartinas. It has a bullfighting school, club and Plaza de Toros, considered the second most important in the province of Seville. Two great bullfighters were born here, Espartaco father and son, who gave their home town worldwide fame. It is also the birthplace of renowned artists such as the flamenco singers Juanito Valderrama and Dolores Abril.
Food is another attraction in Espartinas. The menudo (tripe stew), cola de toro (oxtail stew) and bacalao a la tinaja are some of the typical local dishes. And, of course, Tortas Gaviño, a crisp flatbread made with oil or butter, the Espartinas product par excellence since the 19th century.
Visit Espartinas and discover a town with its own distinctive identity in the heart of the Aljarafe.
Getting to Espartinas
By car, take the A-49 motorway from Seville, and then take exit A-8062 to Gines. Once in this town, take the A-8076 road until your destination.
If you go by bus, take the M-168 Seville-Benacazón or the M-166 Seville-Sanlúcar La Mayor lines from Plaza de Armas Bus Station. Both stop at Espartinas.
On the other hand, if you are travelling by train, once in Seville, take the C5 commuter line and get off at Salteras. From here, take the M105 bus and get off at Gines, from where you should take the M-102 bus to Espartinas.
The best way to explore Espartinas is on foot while enjoying the typically good weather. There is a taxi service available if you want to tour the haciendas on the outskirts of town. You can also hike along the Ríopudio Green Corridor and take in the fresh air of the Aljarafe countryside.
Reasons to visit
- Do you want to enjoy some quiet days? You can find peace and harmony, surrounded by nature, at the guest house run by the nuns of the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Loreto.
- Don’t miss the procession of Our Lady of Loreto, the Patron Saint of Aljarafe, on the 8th of September. An Air Force F10 squadron flies over Espartinas, showering the statue of Virgin Mary with petals, as she is also the Patron Saint of the Air Force.
- Visit the traditional Espartinas haciendas or estates, including Tablante, Mejina, Los Remedios, El Visir and El Cortijuelo.
- Enjoy the Mosto Festival in February, or all year round, in Espartinas’ Loreto, Patacabra and Peinado wineries.
- Take a guided tour to see how Tortas Gaviño, a local product, is made.
- Buy a rosca de pan in one of many bakeries in San Blas and have it blessed in a church as all locals do.
- See how people prepare for the pilgrimage to El Rocío in May.
- If you are a bullfighting aficionado, visit the School, Club and Plaza de Toros in Espartinas, which wonderful mementoes of Espartaco father and son.
- Try the menudo espartinero or cola de toro, two traditional dishes you will love.
What to see
To discover the essence of Espartinas, you should first visit its haciendas, which bring to mind the historic villas that surrounded the town. There are still a few in the town, including the 16th century Nuestra Señora de Los Remedios Hacienda. It currently belongs to the Town Hall and can be visited without restrictions. The outhouses and beautiful gardens are still present today.
The Hacienda is home to the Museum of Imagery. It recreates an old religious sculpture workshop like those that existed during Spain’s Golden Age. Moreover, works by different contemporary creators of sacred art are exhibited each month.
The House of the Nuns is another Hacienda located in the city centre. It is now the largest civic and cultural centre in town open to the public. You will love the central courtyard, decorated with mill wheels and earthenware jars used to store oil that are still buried.
The Asunción Church is only a two-minute walk away. The main Mudejar-style church in the town, well worth a visit if you want to learn more about local religious art. However, you should visit the Sacramental Confraternity House, if wish to gain greater insight. The ornaments and items used to dress the two main sculptures of Holy Week are kept here. Don’t also forget to visit the El Rocío Confraternity House, whose silver float is an impressive work of art.
The history of the town is also linked to the winemaking tradition. It is worth tasting some of the wines and mosto made in local wineries such as Patacabra, Peinado or Loreto. The latter is located in the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Loreto, the most important place in Espartinas. Located on the outskirts of the town, this heritage site of enormous value for the whole Aljarafe region has been declared a Site of Cultural Interest. It consists of a Franciscan convent, a hacienda converted into a guest house and a defensive tower known as Torre Mocha. The site dates back to Roman times and is now the most important landmark for the people of Espartinas.
To finish, take a walk around the Plaza de Toros, where the Bullfighting School is located. You will be able to see this town’s passion for the so-called ‘National Festival’.
Places to visit
- Nuestra Señora de Loreto Convent and Hacienda
- Imagery Museum School
- Patacabra Winery
- Espartinas Bullfighting Ring, newly built and the second largest in the province of Seville
- House of the Nuns
- El Rocío Confraternity House
- Sacramental Confraternity House
Espartinas, located in the Aljarafe region, is about 14 kilometres from Seville. It is surrounded by several farmhouses and estates, scattered randomly across the natural surroundings. The Ríopudio River flows through part of the municipal district.
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