Spain has fascinating places that you can visit. Cordoba is one of the holiday destinations that one should have on top of their list. It is a city located in the southern Spanish region of Andalusia. The town is a major Islamic center, and it is known for the large mosque.
This shows it is a historic center that has a lot to reveal. The best way to explore the region is by visiting Cordoba. It’s a place to bring your family, college, or even friends to discover, relax and unwind.
In this article, we are going to look into some of the best activities you can do while in town. It includes the place to stay, eat, and even other activities that you will enjoy.
Things to do in Cordoba
The historical monument was built under the Castilian rule between the 13th and 14th centuries. This was done under the orders of King Alfonso XI in 1328. It is one of the fantastic sites that you have to visit when in Cordoba. The exterior and interior designs are remarkable.
The outdoors are located within the four towers. These are Homanje, Inquisicion, Paloma, and Leones. There is also the Alcazar’s gardens, which presents an ideal place to relax and stroll. The garden has a fountain, orange trees, flowers, and fish ponds. This makes the environment serene.
You can check out their time and ticket fees here.
The interior of the Alcazar also has some of the amazing places for you and your family to explore. This includes the Mosaics hall, the courtyard of the women and the Moriscos, the reception hall, and the royal baths. These are sections that one must visit when in the Christian Monarch. The walls have a lot of history that awaits you to discover.
2. Roman bridge of Cordoba
Did you know that the bridge was featured in the famous Tv series Game of Thrones? This was in season 5 of the series. If you are a fan of the series, then you won’t miss a chance to see the famous bridge.
The bridge was constructed in the 1st century B.C. This was to replace the wooden bridge that was initially used to cross to the Guadalquivir River. It covers 247 meters, and it’s 9 meters wide. Later in the 17th century, the famous statue of St. Raphael was placed in the middle of the Roman Bridge. Over the years, the bridge has been restored to ensure it stands to date. The extensive restoration was done in 2006.
Crossing the river gives you a magical experience that one can relate to making it unforgettable. It’s the ideal place to be during the evening when the sun is setting. This is because of the stones which are absorbing the golden rays from the sunset. It gives the bridge a unique beauty that the cameras can only explain. Therefore ensure you tag along with your phones.
3. Mosque-Cathedral of Cordoba
The construction of the building started in 784 and it was completed in the 16th century. The famous Abd al-Rahamal the First ordered the development of the mosque. The building was then shared among the Muslims and the Christians until 782. This is why it is known as the mosque-cathedral.
However, in 1236 the mosque was converted to a cathedral during Reconquista. Today the building is a Roman Catholic Church and has been declared a UNESCO world heritage site.
When you look at the architectural design it is unique. The building has incorporated designs from both cultures making it beautiful. As you enter the building you will see horseshoe arches and two-tone brick are remarkable. The interior of the church is magical as well. From the high ceiling and well-crafted walls, you must visit the cathedral to explore and learn more about the iconic building. You will need a whole day to explore the mosque-cathedral. Therefore ensure you tag along with your camera to capture every moment.
4. Torre De Calahorra
It is also known as the Calahorra tower, which is a fortified gate that was declared a historical monument in 1931. The structure was constructed by the Almohad Caliphate during the Muslim era.
Today the tour houses the Museum of Al-Andalus, where you can learn the history of the land. At the facility, you will learn the three different religions which are the Jews, Christians, and Muslims. This enables you to understand the beliefs and practices of the people.
Check ticket price here.
After that, you can head to the top and enjoy the panoramic view of the bridge and the Guadalquivir River. The cool air is refreshing which helps you to relax your body mind and soul. While the kids are enjoying the view from the top, you can admire the craftsmanship of the tower. It shows how talented the people were at that time before evolution.
The iconic building was built by Add-ar-Rahman III between the years 912 – 961. It is one of the most beautiful places to explore in Cordoba. The facility is located on the west of the peaceful town, which was the capital of the Caliphate.
The Median took 25 years to be completed. However, it was stacked by the North African Berbers during the civil war. This was after 65year of the building standing up to 1911 when it was destroyed.
After the war, the restoration process was started, and the ruins were excavated. But, this was not enough since only 10 percent of the building has been restored.
This covered 112 hectares which were a section of the building. This included the service quarters, two aristocratic residences, among others. The great garden spaces are an ideal spot to relax with your family or friends. The paved gardens are perfect for strolling on.
6. Palacio de Viana
This is another historical landmark that you and the kids will enjoy exploring. It is an artistic garden that has become a major tourist attraction site in town. This is because of the 12 magnificent courtyards, which are a must-see site.
The museum of the Courtyards was established in the 14th century. The building was owned by a Spanish Family who later donated it to the Cajasur bank. The institution later opened it to the public in the ’80s, where the people were given a chance to explore the beautiful gardens.
Each of the gardens has a different theme that will blow your mind. If you’re in love with art, then this is the place for you. You will get inspired and even start looking at art with a different eye. There is also a collection of paintings, tapestries, and ancient dishes waiting for you.
Address: 14001 Córdoba, Spain
7. Plaza de la Corredera
This is the town’s most famous square, also known as “Corredera Square.” It has served as a place where the locals gather. This could be because of events such as parties, bullfights, market days, or executions. This was in the past today; the square is used as a market place and concert venue.
The Castilian plaza was constructed in the late 1600s. This was done by an architect known as Antonio Ramos Valdes. It measures 113 meters by 55. It marks a perfect spot to escape the summer heat and relax during the day with your family.
8. Plaza de las Tendillas
Have you explored the town during the summer and heat is too much to bare? Then Plaza de las Tendillas is the chill spot for you and your family to relax and escape the heat. The Tendillas is a square that has a spacious space where one can relax and watch the day fade away. It has a water jet and fountains, which makes it a peaceful and safe place.
Additionally, there are restaurants and bars. This is where you and your loved one can have a meal and catch up on the day’s activities. Plaza is part of the Cordoba nightlife. In the evening, most couples head to square under the moonlight and admire the fountain. Once the fountain is illuminated with the Andalusian, you will be rendered speechless.
9. Bodegas Mezquita (Cespedes)
If you are looking for a place to dine with your family? A place that is peaceful and has some of the most exquisite dishes, Bodegas Mezquita is the perfect restaurant. They prepare local cuisines, Spanish, and Mediterranean dishes.
On the other hand, if you are a vegetarian, there is no need to worry since the restaurant has got you covered. For wine lovers, there is also wine tasting and even olive oil tasting. Plus, there are sessions where you will be taught how to make “Cordoban” which is the favorite dish.
10. Puerta de Almodóvar
This refers to the only surviving gate out of the nine that were built by Abd ar-Rahman. The structure that you see today is a result of the Christians who restored the structure in the 14th century. It is an opening in the walls located on the west side of the town.
The gate was built on sandstone, though, during the restoration some improvements were made. This was to ensure that it is stable. Next to the gate, there is a bronze sculpture of the famous philosopher known as Cordoba Lucio Anne Seneca. This shows how much history the wall has. The gate gives you a chance to explore the old city.
Once you are through the gates walking along the street parallel, you will be taking a trip down the memory lane. This path will lead you all the way to the statue of the philosopher.
The beautiful pond you see today is a result of the renovation done by Mayor Antonio Guzman. He commissioned the transformation of the old stream to a pond. There are guided tours that are being offered to ensure you explore all the hidden places. Therefore ensure you sign up for the tour.
11. Roman temple of Cordoba
These are the ruins of the Roman temple that are still standing to date. It is found in front of the town hall. The remains were discovered in the 1950s when the hall was being expanded. The temple construction started in the 1st century and continued during the reign of Emperor Claudius.
However, the temple was not completed until the reign of Domitian. Though the temple underwent various renovations during the 2nd century. The temple was closed in the 4th century because of the persecution of pagans.
Only a section of the building can be seen, which shows the craftsmanship that was put in place to ensure the temple is unique. Today part of the temple has been taken and placed in various archeological museums in the city. No guided tours are being offered, which gives you a chance to explore the temple in depth.
12. Municipal Park Zoo
Your vacations are not complete without visiting the zoo in town. Though it is not big, it has a lot to offer you and your family. The zoo was opened in 1967, and later, it was closed for seven years. During this time, constructions were being done to meet the new laws passed in 2003. In 2006 the park’s gates were opened to the public. Now it becomes a center for protection, conservation study, and reproduction of endangered species.
The zoo has 200 different species and a beautiful garden where you can stroll and unwind. It is an ideal place to bring the kids during the tour. They will be able to learn about the various species that are endangered and how to protect them.
Address: Av Linneo, s/n, 14071 Córdoba, Spain
13. Museo Arqueologico de Cordoba
The museum is located in the old palace of the Paez de Castillejo which was constructed in 1868. The facility was later declared a historical monument in 1962. The museum has been undergoing renovations, and the government made a decision to do it in phases in 2018 February.
The museum is in three courtyards and eight halls. It displays archeological pieces and various artworks. Various sculptures are also showcased in the facility which will blow your mind away.
The amazing thing is the basement that showcases the archeological remains of the Roman Theater in Colonia Patricia Corduba. The museum is the perfect place to learn the history of the land and the ways of the people.
14. Hammam Al Andalus
Now, this is the place one heads to after exploring the town and requires some me time. This will help you to relax because of the massages and the soothing waters. At the Hammam is an Arabian bath that is located in the Alhambra Palace.
There are thermal baths and even steam rooms that help in relaxing your nerves. After the bath, you can go for a relaxation massage that takes 15 to 45 minutes. This is the kind of vacation one dreams of, and Hammam offers you a chance to experience this.
Though there were hundreds of facilities around the town, they were demolished due to their dodgy image. But lucky you, there is one that is still operational. If you are a couple and look for time to relax and unwind, this is the place to come to. You will leave feeling lighter and rejuvenated as well.
15. Visiting the Royal Stables of Cordoba
This gives you a chance to bond with your family, friend or even colleges on a whole different level when horse riding. The stable sits on land that belongs to the Alcazar. It was established in 1570 by King Felipe. He loved horses, and that is why he began the stable. There are also horse shows that you can attend on Wednesday, Friday and weekends.
You can buy tickets here.
How to get to Cordoba from nearby cities?
There are various means that one can use to reach the peaceful town. You can either use a train, car, or airplane from nearby towns. Here is a guide on the various modes of transportation and the routes they take
· Road: This is one of the oldest means of transport that is being used to date. To get to Cordoba via road here is how to go about it. There is the A-4 Andalusia motorway, which takes you to Madrid and Seville.
This particular path shall bring you to Cordoba directly; no turns to be taken. At the same time, there is the N-432 road, which connects Cordoba and Granada. If you are from Granada, you will have to use the N-432 road. On the other hand, if you are coming to the city from Malaga, you will use the A-45 road. It connects Cordoba with Malaga.
· Train: This is another means of transport that has proved to be reliable in Spain. It is the best and the fastest means to get to Cordoba. The high-speed train connects the town with Madrid. Hence if you are coming from Madrid to Cordoba, it will take you one hour and forty minutes.
If you are coming from Malaga heading to town, it takes you 50 minutes. On the other hand, if one is coming from Barcelona, it will take 4 hours, 40 minutes to reach the city. Additionally, if an individual is from Valencia heading to Cordoba takes 3 hours and from Seville takes 40 minutes only.
· Airplane: if you are not traveling using the toad or train, then air transport is the best. Though it is a bit expensive, you will save a few extra minutes. There is the Cordoba airport which is situated six kilometers away from the city. What you should know is that the airport is made for private flights only. The airport is three kilometers away from Malaga, Seville, Granada, and Jerez.
Other activities in Cordoba
There are various activities that you can enjoy when in town. Here are some more that you might consider adding to your to-do list.
· Jewish Quarter
History is something we cannot run away from, and the best way to experience it is by learning it fast-hand. The street dates back to hundreds of years ago before the Jews were expelled from Spain. Here the community thrived and lived in the neighborhood.
Today the Streets have their homes decorated with flowers. This makes the Jewish quarters to become vibrant and alive again. Though they were chased away, their presence is still felt today. Three synagogues are found in the city where they worshipped.
· Attend the Feria De Cordoba festival
This is an event that dates back to the 13th century. It is mostly held in the last week of May. During the festival, various people come together and raise different tents. They are set at the fairground on the southern side of the town.
At the tents, people come together to eat, drink and socialize from the afternoon to dawn the next day. There are also classical dances, fireworks, equestrian shows, fairground rides, among others. Therefore if you are lucky to be in town at this time, then you and your family will have an experience worthwhile.
Best Places to Stay in Cordoba
Accommodation is an important part when it comes to traveling to a new place. This is something one cannot rush through. You need a place where you and your family are safe and comfortable. Here are some of the places where you can stay during your tour.
· Hosteria Lineros 38
The hotel is located a few meters from Juderia and the Mesquita. It has a massage facility and a reception that works round the clock. There is free WiFi access and a flat-screen in your room to ensure you remain connected to the rest of the world. Plus, the facility offers traditional cuisines which you will find tasty. There is ample parking, and pets are allowed. This shall cost you $ 49- $ 98 per night, depending on the package you choose.
· Hotel Maestre
It is located in Cordoba old town, which is a few meters from the spectacular Mezquita Mosque. They have a 24-hour reception service, and the room has WiFi and Satellite TV. Each of the rooms comes with a safe and private bathroom. Some restaurants are only 5 minutes away from the hotel. The Maestre offers private parking, and pets are allowed. This will cost you $49 per night.
Best Places to Eat in Cordoba
These are the places where you can dine with your family or friends. Their meals are tantalizing.
The restaurant is situated in ample Venus, and it’s very welcoming with the flower decoration.
They specialize in Mediterranean Cuisines. There are background music and candles that are lit to create a romantic environment. This makes it an ideal place to bring your family or spouse.
The hotel is located inside the Jewish district, and it was opened back in the 1970s. The restaurant has grown to become one of the most visited restaurants in town. They specialize in grilled meat. For meat lovers, this is the place to have your meals. They offer charcoal-grilled Alberian pork. This particular dish is accompanied by green pepper and Arab style red sauces, which gives it a favor.
Holidays or vacations are the best times that we all look forward to. However, the problems start when you want to plan. This includes the place to go, what to do, and the places to visit. There is also the issue of where to stay and the best place to eat. One of the best places for you to explore is Cordoba in Spain. It has one of the most beautiful places to visit. Therefore this article will guide you on the things to do and where to stay or eat. Hence making your vacation stress free.