5 Must See Places in Cordoba, Day Trip from Seville, Spain
Cordoba was an important Roman city in the middle ages and it still has the reputation of being important in the map for tourists of Spain. Cordoba is an amazing compact place with major sightseeing sites within walking distance of each other. You can easily plan to spend just a day here and yet cover the major sites. We did exactly that. We were there on a day’s trip from Seville. The 5 must see places in Cordoba are marked in the map and a short description on each follows the map.
5 Must See Places in Cordoba
1. Mezquita (Great Mosque), Cordoba
Without any doubt this is the outstanding monument of Cordoba. It has the unique distinction of being the only religious place which houses the temple of another religion. The double arched painted in stripes of white and red, some 800 of them makes a mesmerizing sight. Before being Mosque (VIII, IX and X centuries), it was a Visigoth temple and prior to that a Roman Temple. Later the place became Christianized 1236, during El-Rey Fernando III Kingdom. Most probably this was also a Mozarabic and Jewish place. The tower here was renovated in XVI and XVIII century, during Carlos V’s reign. Mezquita and the area including it included were declared a World Heritage site by UNESCO in 1994. The Cathedral inside the mosque is equally fascinating. Mezquita definitely tops the list of must see places in Cordoba, Spain.
Tour time: 2hrs
Tickets are available at counter at site and not online.
Adults – 8euros, Children 10 to 14 4euros, children below 10 free.
2. Jewish Quarters and Synagogue, Cordoba
People actually stay here. This Jewish Quarters is an exciting mesh of narrow streets, far less commercialized than the area outside it. Most striking factor is the flower decked patios of this area. In the month of May, competitions are held as to who can put up the most beautiful patio laden with flowers. There are 2 important must see sights here:
- the 15th-century Mudéjar-style synagogue at the center of the quarter
- the Casa de Sefarad (House of Spanish Jews) museum
Both sights are on the Calle Judíos street.
Time to tour: If you can tour the place without getting confused or lost in the narrow lanes you can complete this tour in one hour. But for a relaxed tour with a halt for coffee to sit back and soak in the beauty of patios 2hours would be ideal.
From Tuesday to Saturday 09:00 to 19:30
Closing days: Monday
Weekend from 09:00 to 15:30
Closed: 1 May.
EU members: Admission free
3. Alcázar de los Reyes Cristianos (Castle of the Christian Monarchs), Cordoba
This is the castle of Christian Monarchs built in 1328 by Alfonso XI. Alcázar de los Reyes Cristianos served as the headquarters of Spanish Inquisition for almost 300 years. Worth seeing inside are the 3 towers: Tower of Lions, Tower of River, and Tower of Allegiance. There are ‘not to miss’ intricate and beautifully restored Roman mosaics. It was declared a historical site. The Arabian style gardens here have wide variety of plants, palm trees, cypresses, orange and lemon, trees to be seen which overlook stone fountains and large ponds. A good combination of history and beauty!
May and June- 10.00h -14.00h 17.30-18.30h
July and August- 08.30h -14.30h
September to 14th October- 10.00h – 14.00h 17.30h -18.30h
15th Oct to 30th April: 10.00h – 14.00h and 16.30-18.30h
Moorish bridge has its foundations of the Roman Bridge which existed since 1st century BC. It is made over the River Guadalquivir. Most striking factor are the arches, two of them are believed to be original ones. The length is around 250m; you can walk across to Tower of La Calahorra.
Time – Take a leisurely walk across the wide bridge.
5. Tower of La Calahorra, Cordoba
Cross the Roman Bridge over to south of Cordoba to visit the Tower of La Calahorra. This gate was originally built by the Moors and extensively restored by adding a third cylindrical shaped tower connecting the outer two by King Enrique II of Castile in 1369. This was done to defend the city from attack by his brother Pedro I the Cruel from the South. Later the monument was used a prison and then surprisingly as a girl’s school in 19th century.
Noteworthy here is the fascinating museum which is educational with audio visual presentations which vividly depict how life was in Cordoba around the 10th Century AD when three cultures lived side by side Christianity, Muslim and Judaism. The Roman Bridge and the surrounding area in 2007 were awarded the EU prize for cultural heritage “Europa Nostra” in 2014.
Summer (May to September) 10.00 to 14.00 and 16.30 to 20.30
Winter (October to March) 10.00 to 18.00
Entrance: 4.50 euro, reduced 3.00 euro