And for Cordoba this is a must. In less than a day you can enjoy a city of a thousand shades that even under the culinary side does not joke.
Tips for visiting Cordoba
- 10 Curiosities about this beautiful Andalusian city
- Where to eat and sleep in Cordoba
Tour to visit the city?
To better discover the beautiful Cordoba, for a tour (including tickets and entrance fees) in English. I assure you that the best way is to do it through a guide which explains all the characteristics of this city (which are not few).
If, on the other hand, you want something cheaper, there is also the option to try a FREE TOUR of Cordoba.
You will surely want see the famous Mezquita. Again, the guided tour is almost mandatory. It is such a complex monument that visiting it alone will not allow you to understand it. At this link you can see what is included in the tour of the Mezquita of Cordoba, in this case tour in Your Language including also the Alcazar.
What to see in Cordoba?
Let me start by telling you what it is an extremely quiet city. I happened to wander around the historic center of Cordoba at one in the morning and I swear to you that I did not perceive the slightest sensation of fear even though the city center is made up of narrow streets.
Like all Spanish cities and even more Andalusian ones it was dominated by a myriad of peoples each of which has left historical-artistic evidence of its passage.
Usually Cordoba is half of a day trip from Seville and in my opinion this is a mistake. Follow my advice and plan your itinerary to sleep at least one night in the city. If you get the chance the best hotel you can find is theHotel Hospes Palacio del Bailio , it's a bit expensive, I admit, but it's something unique. I'll tell you more about it in the post on Where to eat and where to sleep in Cordoba. A cheaper alternative might be to choose one holiday home on Hundredrooms.com, maybe, why not, to be able to sleep right in the center.
To stay on the culinary theme, the city's "main course" is undoubtedly the exceptional Mezquita of Cordoba, to surely follow the Alcazar (Visit the Alcazar with this free cancellation tour ), the Roman bridge over the Guadalquivir, the Palacio di Viana, the Plaza de la Corredera. On all the tourist "attractions" you can find more information on the website of Cordoba Tourism.
The Mosque of Cordoba (or Mezquita)
This mosque is unmissable, you have to see it. IS the cathedral of Cordoba and is still called Mezquita precisely because in the past it was a mosque. With the passing of the centuries and the dominations, the powerful have always used the mosque of Cordoba to manifest their power and to do this they enlarged it to highlight their greatness. The Cathedral of Cordoba cannot be missing among the things to see in Cordoba, indeed I would say that it is just THE THING and for this I have written a special post.
Read also: Mezquita of Cordoba, visit a magical cathedral
Choose a tour to visit the Cathedral of Cordoba -> tour with guided tour and free cancellation
The Mosque of Cordoba it has been the subject of four extensions towards the river, in reality the fourth extension was not towards the river but simply next to the third because otherwise they would have ended up too close to the banks. The various architectural styles inside are mixed.
With the Christian reconquest the mosque comes turned into a church as it still is. The main entrance is the Puerta del Perdòn in Mudejar style, which leads to the Patio de Los Naranjos, the courtyard of the orange trees.
From it you enter the first part of the old mosque where you can see it the Mihrab that is the prayer niche linked to the Islamic world oriented towards Mecca.
Inside the Mosque it is important to pay attention to how the columns inside the cathedral are different from each other. The reason is that the material used for the construction of the Mosque of Cordoba was from recovery material coming from ancient Roman temples. The columns were of different heights and for this reason a base was placed at the foot of each column to ensure that they all reached the same height.
La visiting the Mezquita in Cordoba will take you a long time. I would consider at least an hour and a half to be able to see it calmly and be able to appreciate it. Also pay attention to the details such as some writings engraved in some columns. They are said to be the signatures of those who worked on the mosque extensions.
Finally, pay attention to the center of the mosque where the choir stands and thus the centerpiece of the Christian cathedral.
La light inside the entire cathedral it is very soft precisely because it is linked to its nature as a mosque.
I believe that the Cathedral of Cordoba falls with flying colors among the 100 things to see at least once in a lifetime, it is truly fascinating.
Timetables: from Monday to Saturday it is open from 10.00 to 18.00 while on Sundays and holidays from 8.30 to 11.30 and from 15.00 to 19.00. I forgot that it is also possible to climb the bell tower (2 €) and in this case there is a climb every 30 minutes starting from 9.30 until 13.30 and from 16.00 to 18.30.
Entrance fee (2020): Adult 11 euros - Child 6 euros - Under 10 years free.
RECOMMENDED: the guided tour completely in your language , it is necessary to discover the Mezquita with someone who explains it well because it is very fascinating.
Bell tower: 2 euro.
The Roman bridge over the Guadalquivir river
Your visit to Cordoba it continues and after you have enjoyed the whole Mosque of Cordoba for good, exit the cathedral and go to the back of the building. A view awaits you that you never expected. In front of you you will see the Arc de Triomphe and immediately behind the Roman bridge over the Guadalquivir.
The bridge is very beautiful and the landscape is also fantastic. The hills of the Cordoba district open up on the horizon and you can see how urbanization drops drastically just a few steps from the city. Another peculiarity of the stretch of river is that it was once navigable up to that point and the ships came directly from the sea via Seville.
The Alcazar de los Reyes Cristianos (Alcazar of Cordoba) with its gardens
Not far from the Cathedral, along the river you can reach theAlcazar of Cordoba. From the standout military physiognomy it has very high and thick walls. The interiors of the Alcazar are beautiful but if you have already seen the one in Seville you may have a different perception. Surely the Alcazar of Cordoba is to be counted among the one with the most beautiful gardens. The pools have beautiful water features created with fountains and the plants and flowers are divinely kept. It is a pleasure to take a walk.
Timetables: on Mondays it is closed and on Saturday it is open from 9.30 to 18.00. Sundays and holidays from 8.45am to 14.45pm. All other days from 8.30 to 20.45.
Costs (2020): Adult 5 euros - Up to 13 years Free - Students up to 26 years 2,5 euros
If you want to visit the Alcázar in the best way, I recommend the complete tour of the Mosque and the Alcàzar .
The Plaza de la Corredera
This square is not far from the reconstructed Roman Temple. Follow the Plaza Major of Madrid and it is the only square with a rectangular base in Andalusia. This was the site of bullfights before they took on their current form and rules. Inside this square there are numerous bars and clubs and in the evening it is very lively.
The Jewish quarter of Cordoba: La juderia
Like many other Spanish cities, the Jewish presence was very strong.
Today the Jewish quarter of Cordoba is represented by many narrow streets with the walls of all white houses and many more flowered balconies so much so that in this neighborhood you can find the most characteristic alley or the Callejon de las Flores. From this alley you can see many flowers and above all the bell tower of the Mosque of Cordoba.
Inside the Jewish quarter there is a splendid fourteenth-century synagogue and also the statue of Mosé Maimonides, a Jewish philosopher and doctor. I take this opportunity to tell you to take the picture by touching the feet of this statue, a sideboard like "Juliet's Tetta from Verona".
Discovering the history of the Jewish quarter of Cordoba was very interesting. Going around the alleys without anyone explaining things to you is complicated and certainly not very satisfying. A guided tour, as it was in my case, it gives you a lot of information and anecdotes that you would not find in the guides. This is why I wanted to recommend two tours that could be for you and that I want to recommend to better appreciate this district of Cordoba:
The Viana Palace
During your visit to Cordoba you cannot miss the Viana palace. It is a very luxurious palace with an infinite number of patios, to be precise they are 14 each different from the other. This is the perfect place to admire the patios for which Cordoba is famous. Between the 15th and 20th centuries the Palazzo di Viana had 18 owners, all noble families.
Inside the Viana palace you can see the objects of the time and how the house was furnished. Obviously it is a representation of the glitz of the era. In 1980 the Palazzo di Viana was declared a national monument of historical and artistic interest.
Discover the Viana palace -> book the tour here (free cancellation)
Timetables: closed on Mondays, from Tuesday to Saturday from 10.00 to 19.00, on Sundays and holidays from 10.00 to 15.00. In July and August, it closes at 15.00pm.
Costs (2020): Full visit 10 euros - Only patios 5 euros - Under 10s Free.
Well, now that you've read this post that answers your thirst for culture, now read the post on "10 curiosities to know”To visit Cordoba.
In conclusion: visiting Cordoba in one day is possible, but if you have the opportunity to carve out even more than one day you will be able to enjoy this splendid city to the fullest by being able to dedicate a little more time to the various patios.