- Monuments and Memorials, Museums, Tours Type
- Less than 1 hour Time to Spend
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The Guadalquivir River once served as the main waterway to southern Spain and Seville was one of the region's primary ports. Naturally a port with that much influence needed protection from ships trying to enter the claimed territory of the Almohad Dynasty (a 13th century Muslim Caliphate that once ruled northern Africa and southern Spain). The 12-sided Torre del Oro tower — situated on the edge of the Guadalquivir — was once linked by a large chain to its sister structure across the river to stop ships from sailing into the port.
The once gold-tiled tower — which has also served as a military watchtower and a prison — is now home to a small naval museum, the Museo Náutico. The museum highlights the Torre del Oro's maritime past and the role it played in New World imports and discovery. Some travelers were turned off by the nearly 100-step climb to reach the observation deck, but many recent visitors say it's worth the trek. "Be prepared for some climbing and you will not be disappointed," one satisfied TripAdvisor reviewer said.
You can tour the museum and the rest of the building from 9:30 a.m. to 6:45 p.m. Monday through Friday. On Saturdays and Sundays the museum doesn't open until 10:30 a.m. Entry into the tower costs €3 EUR (about $4 USD), but it's free on Mondays. The Torre del Oro sits in El Arenal about a mile west of the city center.
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