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Cathedral, Giralda, and Alcázar (3:05 p.m. 02/22/08)

We have been up since 9:00 a.m. (2:00 a.m. Central Time). We started today off by wandering around the Barrio Santa Cruz (Jewish Quarter). Some of the buildings are so close to one another that they call them "kissing buildings". Both pedestrians and cars zip through the very narrow passages. However, some are so narrow that cars cannot fit. We stopped off at a cafe for breakfast...a chocolate filled croissant. We headed off to the Cathedral and the Giralda Bell Tower. The Cathedral is the third largest in Europe and houses what they claim to be Christopher Columbus' remains (the Dominican Republic makes the same claim). The climb to the top of the bell tower provided some pretty unique views of the city. Next we went to the Alcázar. It is a palace built in the 10th century by the Moors. It is the oldest royal palace in use in Europe. The tile work was amazing and made me feel like I was in Arabian Nights (or Morocco in Epcot). There are orange trees everywhere around here. We had lunch at an outdoor restaurant. I had paella. It was really good and very filling. We are back in the hotel and we made a couple of quick calls home. We are going to watch Flamenco tonight...we might head out again shortly and do some more exploring.