Santiponce bears witness to the splendour of the first Roman city in Spain, Italica, popularly known as ‘Sevilla la vieja’. Its ruins attest to this city’s power, the birthplace of the emperors Trajan and Hadrian, and a symbol of Rome in Hispania. It is today the finest legacy in Andalusia of its Roman past and only seven kilometres from Seville. Its privileged location in the Aljarafe has made Santiponce the ideal place to live.
The town has another heritage treasure, the San Isidoro del Campo Monastery, around which the current town was founded. In the Middle Ages, Santiponce was located on the banks of the River Guadalquivir, where Seville’s Olympic Stadium now stands. Continuous floods caused the population to shelter in the Monastery, leading to the construction of the new Santiponce that exists today.
If you wish to find out more about this thousand-year-old town, come and live the essence of this unique spot, where the past has contributed to its current greatness.
If you go from Seville by car, take the SE-30 ring road towards Mérida until exit 808 and then enter the N-630 until your destination.
By train, take line C5 from Santa Justa Station in Seville and get off at Valencina-Santiponce. You can then take a taxi to your destination.
If you decide to take the bus, get on the M-170A line from Plaza de Armas Bus Station in Seville, which stops at Santiponce.
Santiponce is a walking-friendly town. Given its small size, it is easy to explore on foot or, if you prefer, by bike.
Santiponce’s most iconic attraction is Italica’s Archaeological Site. Book a guided tour to gain deeper insight into the greatness of this ancient city, a symbol of Rome in Hispania. You will experience one of few well-preserved Roman amphitheatres in Spain, and walk among the former streets of this city, admiring splendid mosaics, temples and thermal baths.
Pay attention to the details as you explore ancient Italica. Each engraved stone has an interesting story or a unique significance that will help you understand the daily life of that period.
After learning about Santiponce’s Roman past, head to the Gothic-Mudejar San Isidoro del Campo Monastery, Europe’s southernmost Cistercian convent. Enjoy the works of art that decorate its walls, including the valuable altarpiece by the baroque master Juan Martínez Montañés. This Monastery was the first monument in the province of Seville to be declared a Historic-Artistic Site.
The Monastery took its name from San Isidoro, as legend has it that he was buried here until his remains were transferred to the Leon’s Collegiate Church in 1063. The Conquistador of Mexico, Hernán Cortés, was also buried here, although he now rests in the Aztec country.
Another remarkable place to visit is the Fernando Marmolejo Municipal Museum, the goldsmith of Seville. The replicas of the Tartessian Lebrija candelabra and Seville’s Almohad keys are among the chief works of art he donated. The Augustus Roman Theatre, another civil monument to Italica’s splendour, can be found near the museum.
To round-off your visit, sample the local cuisine in one of the restaurants. Allow yourself the luxury of enjoying thrush rice, a typical Santiponce dish. You will surely want to return another day for more.
Santiponce is 9 kilometres from Seville, within its metropolitan area, in the Aljarafe region. The municipality is built over the ruins of the ancient Roman city of Italica. It is part of the Silver Route and the Roman Baetica Route.