Our trip did not start very well, I forgot to buy the train tickets online before we left Canada. We arrive in Madrid and took a taxi to the train station and with my luck, no places for us, the only seats in Cordoba were at night. With the jet lag and already visit Madrid last year, we look pretty tired. It’s a good thing we found a hotel that let us stay for a few hours so we can sleep.
I found a small hotel on a small street and close to everything. From there you can walk to all the interesting sites, the train station, and all the stores or boutiques.
The coffee shop is all over and also restaurants.
Córdoba was once the premier city in the Western World, the greatest metropolis west of Constantinople, and the seat of Europe’s first university. Today, there’s a modern commercial center, but we love strolling the town’s ancient cobblestone streets, looking at all the little stores or boutiques, peeking through the gates for glimpses of lush flowers and beautiful tiled fountains. This place is amazing, so much to see.
The fact that you can find a fountain in the middle of the city surrounded by flowers and flanked by old city walls and gates is something magical.
I like to get up early and walk areas with fewer tourists or no people (too early for them) and take photos. After, good breakfast to start the day, because you are going to walk a lot.
I love this, Sunday, all the grandmothers wear their beautiful outfits with a pearl necklace and having lunch with their grandkids. I was amazed by how many teenagers were with their grandparents.
Alcazar de Los Reyes Cristiano
This marvelous royal compound has had a long and complicated history.
The gardens, courtyards, baths, and the largest library in Western Europe were all added.
After Córdoba fell to the Christian forces in the 13th century it became a palace and the seat of the Castilian Royal Court. Later it was the headquarters of the inquisition for three centuries.
So as you can tell there’s a lot to discover! The gardens alone sprawl across 55,000 square meters and were originally fed by the great Albolafia waterwheel that helped channel water from the Guadalquivir River.
The 5 Euro entrance fee is well worth it for the beautiful ornamental gardens and fountain. Terrific Roman mosaics on display and excellent views from the towers over Cordoba city.
Do climb up if you can for some magnificent view.
Ideal photo opportunity when not too many peoples.
El Zoco in Jewish Quarter
We stumbled across El Zoco while walking in the Jewish Quarter North and west of the Grand Mosque is the city’s Jewish quarter, which retains the street plan it had as a ghetto hundreds of years ago.
The little alley leads into the courtyard – definitely worth a look.
El Zoco is small but very interesting and worth looking at.
Many artisans both display and create their works in this place. From Fans to Leather etc., other studios had more leather goods, ceramics, tiles, jewelry and accessories, silver, and bags.
This is a beautiful artisan market.
I love the geraniums, wall-flowers in the white patio. In the 21st century, it’s quite a posh part of the city, home to the Calleja de las Flores (little street of flowers), and true to its name it’s fragrant and colorful at any time of year
The other reason to stop here is the traditional patio-style courtyard. Cordoba is famous for its patios. The arched passageways of the upper balcony levels are wrapped around all four sides of the cobbled courtyard. There’s a garden pond and the whitewashed walls are covered in blue hanging pots of flowers, with splashes of geranium color.
Plaza de la Corredera
After walking through Córdoba’s exotic ruins and the old city, here’s a reminder that you’re still in Spain.
This plaza reminded me of Plaza Mayor in Madrid in some ways. It’s a huge rectangular space, surrounded by 4 storied buildings. At ground level, the square is bordered on all four sides by a series of uniform arches and covered galleries or arcades in a faded red and yellow.
This quadrangular enclosed square is one of the biggest Andalusia and also unusual for this region. Beneath the beautiful arcades, there are several tapas bars and cafés for relaxation and cooling off. Excellent lunch.
A few market stalls were selling antique-like odds and ends and some fun straw bags.
For many years the city’s bullfights were held right here and then it was the site of the city’s food market. Now it’s a very nice meeting point and where cultural events are held.
At one end, you can see the Vivienda del Corregidor (Chief Magistrate’s House), built in the 1580s. The basement was used as a prison right up until 1821, then was sold and became a hats factory than a market. We strolled through lunchtime on the weekday, it was very busy.
Roman Bridge/Calahorra Tower
Walking at the bottom of one of those little streets you will find the bridge and the tower. It’s close to Los Reyes Christiano, but because we left the same way we came in, we did not know it was so close!! We found that out the next day.
The panoramas are postcard-worthy, whether you’re on the south bank viewing the Calahorra Tower and 16 arches with the Great Mosque in the background or making the exciting crossing of the old city.
Crossing the Guadalquivir along this Augustan footbridge is just one of those things every visitor to Córdoba has to do. It dates right back to the 1st century, but the structure today is completely medieval.
This helped earn it a role in Season 5 of the TV show, Game of Thrones.
The Tower of La Calahorra rises at the south of the Roman bridge, the far end from the city center. It was originally an arched gate between two towers.
You also you are able to go on the roof for a spectacular view of the mosque and the city.
Templo Romano: The Ancient Roman Temple
Going down one street, I was amazed to see these Roman columns. Especially after nightfall, when the illuminated columns appear in warm colors, visitors are overwhelmed by their natural beauty. The ruins of the former Roman Temple are, apart from the Roman Bridge, the most considerable heritage of the Roman culture that influenced the entire region two thousand years ago.
So Much To See In The Old Town in Córdoba
Wander In The Old Town in Córdoba
The Old Town Of Córdoba sat Inside The Wall.
We were happy that we stayed within the walls in Cordoba. We when visited Granada for a day, we traveled every day and visited the major sights. Being inside the walls put us within easy walking distance of the sights of the old town.
Instead of planning long days with multiple stops, we casually visited the sights one by one. We saw a lot in the old town in Córdoba even though we did not see everything! Some days we visited the major tourist sites and other days we visited spots that many people missed on day trips.
It is easy to lose yourself there – in a good way! Córdoba has one of the largest old towns in Europe, and it’s protected by UNESCO. This city is famed for its patios, large interior courtyards.
The Bull Museum
Touring around the south of Spain, we had many Andalusian experiences. The main courtyard welcomed us with a statue of a bull and a matador’s head.
We took a one-day trip by train to Granada. From the train station to downtown it is quite a long walk, so time yourself if you have to take the train back.
I wanted to see the Alhambra, but I did not buy the ticket online the day before, (Another thing I did not know ). We visit the outside and around it, beautiful place and huge.
We took the long way to go up at the lower entrance to the park is the Puerta de las Granada’s (Gate of Pomegranates), a massive triumphal arch. You can see only its massive outer walls, towers, and ramparts are left.
Going up, you follow the narrow street where all the little shops are. I was disappointed because every shop is the same style in Morocco.
Granada is a city in southern Spain’s Andalusia region, in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains. It’s known for grand examples of medieval architecture dating to the Moorish occupation, especially the Alhambra. This sprawling hilltop fortress complex encompasses royal palaces, serene patios, and reflecting pools from the Nasrid dynasty, as well as the fountains and orchards of the Generalife gardens.
Hotel San Miguel
Hotel San Miguel
San Zoila,4 14002 Cordoba
(+34 ) 0957 47 58 61
The San Miguel is a nice hotel in a quiet area close to the historic center. The hotel is a quiet, comfortable, and clean hotel. Excellent location just off the central square within easy reach of the main sights.
The room is located around a patio, which gives the hotel a cozy feeling. But no breakfast,
See, all you step outside and you have a lot of choices for a restaurant.
The staff at the front desk were friendly and helpful. We had to arrive late and that was no problem, although I did let them know. At night when you go out, you leave your key at the front desk and they buzz you in.
Free WiFi & Air conditioning.
**Before you head to Granada, get online and book your Alhambra tickets with your Mastercard credit card on the Spanish Ticketmaster site, you can avoid the lines and ensure your spot at this World Heritage site.
**Shopping in Cordoba for clothes is good, good price and fashionable.
**If you are a shoe lover like my sisters, it will be heaven.
**Take a map and discover Cordoba. Everything is so close and so much to see, you can get a bit dizzy lol…Take your time to visit, it is impossible to do Cordoba in 1-2 days.
**Many of the sights in the old town in Córdoba had an admission fee.
**Discover all the little streets. A photographer little secret.
So many beautiful photos! Spain is on my list for the fall and I’m trying to decide where to go!
I love Spain,Cordoba,Barcelona and Madrid are my favorite for the moment. I git more places to visit this year.Fall or spring is good to visit,not so hot lol.
Cordoba is such a beautiful city, often so overlooked by travellers to Andalucia. When I was living in the South of Spain I often went to Cordoba for short breaks. The patios are so unique, especially when the city opens its doors during the Fiesta de Los Patios.
Right now ,I am thinking going to stay for one year in Spain. I love it there :O)
I really enjoyed La Mezquita in Cordoba. Wandering the city at night was magical for me.
Cordoba is one of my favorite cities! The history and the flowers are incredible – you captured it perfectly with your photos! I never made it to Granada though, so I hope I can return to do a day trip as you mentioned.