The Bicycle in Seville (Daily Transport or Weekend Tour)
Seville’s terrain makes it one of the top ten places to cycle in Europe. The city provides wide bike lanes often located up near the sidewalks and off the streets. Even the bridges over the Guadalquivir River offer easy access. Along with the flat terrain, there is a municipal bike rental service, SEVici that is available in all eleven districts in the city. The city with its designated bike paths and flat terrain encourages the use of this transportation and an increase in private cycling services and tourism packages that include the hotel plus bike rental. As a TEFL student you can enjoy cycling to and from school using the SEVici system. Seville has an amazing mass transportation system with cycling being an excellent choice to travel about the city.
River and Bridges
The Guadalquivir River separates many of the barrios from the center of Seville. There are nine bridges in Seville that allow cycles to flow from one barrio to another. Starting from the north end of the city, you can cross a smaller foot bridge called “Parasela de San Jerónimo” that leads directly to a large, beautiful park, “El Alamillo”. Each bridge connects to different barrios and sections of the city center. The next bridge is the Puente del Alamillo followed by the Puente de la Barqueta, the Pasarela de la Cartuja, Puente Cacharro, Puente de San Isabel II (The Triana Bridge), Puente de San Telmo, Puente de Los Remedios y Puente de Las Delícias. It is extraordinary that the city plan ensures large green colored bike paths that wind throughout the entire city.
Along both sides of the river runs a wide lane for both walking and cycling. You can take a beautiful ride down both sides of the river enjoying the many activities on the river as well as weekend festivals and events. This area is safe and spacious. It offers everyone a very active outdoor option for exercise or just an easy stroll.
Historically, Seville has been at the forefront of cycling as a prominent mode of daily transportation since the twentieth century. Seville is part of a European Union initiative to design more bike friendly opportunities and promote the use of the bicycle as a form of daily transportation. As reported by Sevilla World, an online magazine, “In 2011 Seville reached 72,000 daily cyclists.” Also that same year, Seville was chosen to host the annual Cyclists’ Federation Velo-city Conference. This conference brings together those involved in policy, promotion and the provision of cycling facilities and programs.
Seville now has 75 miles of segregated lanes, with other routes radiating out from the loop around the old town. It also has a municipal bike hire scheme similar like those in Paris and London, called SEVici, with 2,500 bikes and 250 docking stations. There are 250 Stations altogether spread out across the whole city every 300 meters approximately. In every Parking Station you will find an interactive point that will let you purchase a subscription, select a bike, etc., and several Bike Posts that lock and unlock the bikes. The System lets you take a bike in any Parking Station of the city and return it in any other one. This system is devised to work continuously 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. There is a main terminal system that lets you select a bike, pay for a short term ride, read instructions and acquaint yourself with the map of docking stations.
The real deal is the annual long subscription of 33,33 euros or 39,33 euros that includes insurance for using the SEVici system. This is much better than paying 13,33 euros for a daily short term subscription. These fees cover the first thirty minutes. The challenge is to find your next docking station within the thirty minutes. If it takes you longer you will be charged a euro or two for the delay. This is not a common occurrence but it does happen. Just pull out your map and you can locate other stations within 300 meters. The SEVici information was retrieved from their website http://en.sevici.es, p. “How Does It Work?”. Take advantage of this inexpensive way to travel about Seville when studying abroad with TEFL International Seville.
The bicycle touring industry has flourished in the recent decade with the construction of paths connecting many of the historical sites around the city. These touring companies provide the bikes and a host of hourly and daily trips. Seville is geographically located near mountains as well as rivers and oceans thus there is a plethora of trips available to anyone who wants to take a longer trip. Cycling with a guide and other cyclists is not only a healthier touring option but also a kinesthetic option. Cycling brings you so much closer to the actual surroundings. You are not looking at the scenery from a window. You are cycling through the streets of the pueblos and the roads of the countryside.
Plan to try a bike while in Seville. If you are unsure of rider safety, join a tour. On a cycle you are able to cover more area in less time than on foot.