The charm of Seville, Andalusia’s sunny capital, lies in its exquisite Moorish architecture-cobbled streets lined with graceful ogee arches, ceramic murals, and vivid, vivid colour. It’s the first thing that hits you as you arrive into the city, besides the tangy aroma of ripened oranges and the intense heat (yes, even in October- I am seriously considering emigrating). To truly appreciate this exquisite mudéjar architecture, you must visit the Alcázar, an extravagant royal palace that crowns the heart of the city. Sprawled alongside the magnificent cathedral, this is an endlessly unfolding treasure trove of opulent patios and courtyards within courtyards that transport you back in time. Originally a Moorish fortress built in the 10thcentury, the present-day Alcázar boasts Gothic, Baroque and Renaissance ingredients added over the centuries by various royal decrees. Huge would be an understatement-it is unbelievably vast, a labyrinthine network of different cultural influences, almost a city in itself. We definitely did not leave ourselves enough time tocover the whole palace- an entire day could easily be passed just wandering the stunning pavilions and sumptuous, sunken gardens. This is a palace in a truly legendary sense- no surprises, then, that it doubled as the Kingof Jerusalem’s court in the Ridley Scott film Kingdom of Heaven. Don’t let the long queues put you off- Seville may be famous for its fiery flamenco, but a trip to the city really is incomplete without stepping through the palace’s main Lion’s Gate into Spain’s rich Moorish past.