A word of advice before planning your trip to Cordoba, don’t plan for a Monday because everything is closed apart from the Mezquita and the Bell Tower. All museums, palaces and places of interest are closed.
We arrived in Cordoba mid-afternoon on Sunday, it was stiflingly hot, Gloria and Alan booked into their hotel opposite the Mesquita and we booked into our Aire close to the old city walls.
It was very busy around the Mesquita so we gave that a miss and walked over the Puente Romano the old Roman bridge that crosses the Rio Guadalquiver and with views back to the Mesquita and where also the old Roman arch and monument are also situated at the foot of the bridge.
We wandered through the old town and passed through the Plaza las Tendilas, before arriving at the Plaza de la Corredera, ringed by balconied apartments and formerly the site of public spectacles; Cordoba’s Roman circus, horse races and then bull fights and Inquistion burnings! There is a daily food market held there from 8am to 2.30 pm Monday to Saturday.
We continued on to Plaza del Potro and had some good food and wine at La Alqueria before heading back to our beds.
The following morning, Monday, we decided to meet at the Mezquita and get our tickets for 10.00 when it opened. The queue was really long and as we had previously read that you can enter the Mesquita for free from 830-9.30 am we decided to come back the following day and do this (after all it saves €11 each) and so headed for the Alcazar de los Reyes Christianos and this is when we found out that all places of interest were closed on a Monday!
We ventured into the Juderia, the old Jewish quarter west and north of the Mezquita, a maze of narrow streets, small squares and patios and also filled with plenty of souvenir shops, quite handy really as I had promised to buy Lois and Dexter some castanets!
Duly purchased we stopped at an enclosed patio for coffee and a slice of Cordobean cake, a bit like an apple pie. So much walking makes you very hungry and thirsty so after another small meander we stopped for a beer before stepping it out up to the top of the Bell Tower for magnificent views of the Mezquita, Cordoba and the surrounding vista.
Time for more refreshments in the Patio Cordobese, bit of tapas, sangria and wine for some but for me a fanta limon! Quick stop for an ice-cream before heading off for another Siesta until we met up again later to see the Flamenco show at El Cardenal that we had pre-booked back in the UK. The show was amazing, authentic Andulucian flamenco dance, guitar and singing and one that I would highly recommend going to see.
The following morning we met at the Mezquita at 8.30, together with other like-minded tourists out to save €11 each, and went inside this awesome and spacious building with its striped arches and central cathedral. It was a really good time to visit as it is not so busy however, the central cathedral area was cordoned off and I am pretty sure that when I had previously visited and paid the entrance fee, that you were able to fully see and appreciate this area of the Mesquita.
Our final site to visit was the Alcazar de los Reyes Christianos, a fort-cum-palace. There is not a lot to see inside the building apart from displays of Roman mosaics, dug up from the Plaza de la Corredera in 1950s and a tower that you can climb however, the real enjoyment is the terraced gardens, full of fish ponds, fountains orange trees and flowers.
We left Cordoba around mid-day and are now in Seville for another few days of walking our legs off!