Located in a privileged setting, the Doñana National Park, Pilas is a town in the province of Seville with deep-rooted traditions. Halfway between Huelva and Seville, one can sense the local people’s devotion to the Virgen del Rocío. Its Confraternity is the second oldest one to make the pilgrimage to Almonte.
The devotion to the Virgen del Rocío is so intense that they even have a replica of this sculpture. It is carried in procession on the last day of June during the Feria de Junio. However, the one tradition that is typical of this town is the ‘Las Carreritas’, declared a Festival of National Tourist Interest. It takes place on Easter Sunday and is very popular in the region. If you wish to learn more about this festival, come and experience it. It is sure to amaze you.
As for its cuisine, sample the tostón con bacalao and a stew known as la comida made with chickpeas and beans. These are the two typical dishes of Pilas, as are the table olives and tarta de cuña de chocolate. All you have to do is come and discover it for yourself. What are you waiting for?
If travelling by car from Seville, take the A-49 motorway until exit 16 towards Benacazón. Continue along the A-473 and at Aznalcázar enter the A-474 that will take you to your destination.
This town does not have a train station, but you can get there by the M-169 bus line from the Plaza de Armas Bus Station in Seville.
Stroll through Pilas’ old town centre. Bring your bike, go hiking or horse riding and explore the beautiful surroundings of Doñana National Park.
Start your tour of monuments at the Plaza de Belén, in the town’s centre, where the Town Hall is located. This square is home to the Shrine to Belén, whose main altar was built over the 11th-century Almohad Qubba. The sculptures of Our Lady of Bethlehem, the town’s patron saint, and the Gothic style Apostle St James are stunning.
Head to calle Alfonso X El Sabio to see the Torres de Molino that belonged to the town’s olive-growing haciendas. Today, they are part of the urban landscape. Continue your walk through Pilas and enjoy its lovely streets. Do not miss the stately houses, including that of Juan de la Rosa, Marqués de la Motilla Hacienda or Don Pedro. The first two are privately owned and closed to the public. The latter is today a Historical Archive.
Another religious building is Santa María la Mayor Church on Calle Párroco Vicente Moya. The central altarpiece is presided over by the Virgin Mary, for whom the temple is named.
This 15th-century artwork was made by an anonymous artist. However, the most beloved sculpture is the Baby Jesus carried in procession during ‘Las Carreritas’ on Easter Sunday. It was made by the sculptor Juan Martínez Montañés.
Pilas Municipal Park is an ideal place to stroll and relax. It has over 100 plant species, including aromatic plants. It also boasts a beautiful entrance and a replica of the Alhambra’s lion fountain, as well as two lakes and a stream.
If you wish to enjoy Pilas’ natural surroundings, explore a trail through Doñana National Park.
Pilas is located 33 kilometres from Seville in the Guadalquivir-Doñana tourist region. Its municipal district is nestled between the Aljarafe to the northeast and the Bajo Guadalquivir marshlands to the south. It is also part of Doñana National Park, a protected area.