Córdoba, Spain, is one of the most fascinating cities of Andalusia. It is considered to be a city-break destination for those in Seville and Granada due to its proximity.
However, the city features some outstanding features, from the Mosque-Cathedral to the unique Feria de Los Patios; there is just so much to take in when you visit this city. This article will take you through everything you need to know about Córdoba, Spain.
If you are planning on visiting Andalusia, there is an array of things you can do and see during your stay. Touring Cordóba for a day or two is sufficient for discovering one of the most beautiful old towns that Andalusia has to offer and enjoy some of the most prestigious monuments.
This medieval city offers so much, making it a perfect destination for anyone visiting the region for an extended period. However, if you have a limited amount of time, you should not miss some scenic and famous places while visiting this hidden gem in the south of Spain.
Here are the top attractions and what to see in Córdoba, Spain, in one day:
- Visit the Mosque-Cathedral.
- Experience a patio walking tour.
- Enjoy a 3-hour Terrace and Local Tapas Gastronomic tour.
- Visit the Jewish Quarter.
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Things to know before visiting Córdoba, Spain
Where is Córdoba in Spain?
Before visiting, you need to know where Córdoba is located. The city of Córdoba is located in southern Spain, and it is the capital of the Cordóba Province. This city in Andalusia is the third most populous municipality after Sevilla and Malaga and the 11th across all of Spain.
Weather for Córdoba, Spain, around the year
Córdoba features short, arid, moist, and mostly clear summers.
Its winter seasons on the other hand are often cold and partly cloudy.
Throughout the year, temperatures in Córdoba vary from 39 degrees Fahrenheit to 98 degrees Fahrenheit (4-37 degrees Celsius).
Rarely does the city experience temperatures below 30 degrees Fahrenheit (-1 Celsius) or over 105 degrees Fahrenheit (40 Celsius).
The climate in Córdoba, Spain
Córdoba features a warm and temperate climate.
The city experiences more rainfall during the winter seasons than in summer. This makes it a perfect vacation destination.
When is the best time to visit Córdoba?
Usually, the best time to visit this old city is during the summer seasons, from June to mid-September. This is when you will have a chance to visit monuments and enjoy the sunny weather.
17 Best things to do in Córdoba, Spain
Córdoba is known for its array of activities and historical places to visit. There is just so much for you to enjoy in this old city, from picturesque places to a modern waterpark.
With that said, here are some of the best things to do in Córdoba, Spain:
Visit the Mosque-Cathedral
Also referred to as Mezquita, the Mosque-Cathedral of Córdoba is, without a doubt, the emblematic monument of the city and the most beautiful monument in the city.
The mosque was constructed in 785 by a Muslim Emir on the ruins of a church, and it has been embellished and enlarged over the centuries. As a result, it is now considered an exemplary example of Islamic art in the country, thanks to its outstanding beauty.
Following the Christian conquest, a cathedral was built at the center of the mosque. This led to a spectacular architectural mix with incredible columns inside and endless white and red arcades. The structure is undoubtedly the best monument in Córdoba.
Patio de los Naranjos
This is the former Caliphate courtyard of ablutions that gave way to the Christian courtyard.
It features rectangular patterns of orange trees set in irrigation channels and a circular stone for every tree.
The courtyard has served various functions in different historical stages. After being an ablution site, it was converted to an important area for Catholic ceremonies.
Alcázar de los Reyes Cristianos
If you are planning on visiting Córdoba, the Alcázar de los Reyes Cristianos is a must-see monument. The monument housed the Catholic kings and was also used as a headquarters for the Holy Office in the inquisition. During this period, the monument was transformed into a prison.
When you go up the four towers of Alcazar, you will find a top-notch panorama view over Córdoba to enjoy. As you go downstairs, you can visit the inside of Alcazar and have a look at its mosaic salon, Moorish patio, and royal baths.
You will also have a chance to enjoy its beautiful gardens. It features significant large paths lined with orange trees and unique fountains with a pond at the center. The visit to the garden is a refreshing and relaxing retreat, making it the perfect place to take a break in the peaceful shade.
To access the Jewish Quarter of Córdoba, you will have to go through Almodovar Gate, surrounded by high walls and battlements. The gate marks the entry to La Judería, the Jewish Quarter of Córdoba.
While here, you can stroll through typical Andalusian streets fitted with flower-filled balconies and whitewashed facades. You should not miss La Calleja de las Flores, the most famous alley in Córdoba that leads to an incredible view of the Mosque-Cathedral.
The area features a serene environment, and it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, featuring most of Córdoba’s historical monuments. Moreover, it is here where you will have a chance to see Córdoba’s main attractions, including Alcazar.
The synagogue in the Jewish quarter is the only one in Andalusia and the third most well-preserved synagogue in the country. Though it is relatively small, the synagogue is worth visiting, especially its main hall with top-notch stucco decorations.
The synagogue was used as a temple before the expulsion of Jews. It was then converted into a hospital and then a school before becoming a national monument in the 19th century. The monument is free to enter for all European Union citizens.
Palacio de Viana
Palacio de Viana became one of Córdoba’s main tourist attractions after being declared a National Historical-Artistic Monument and Artistic Garden. It features 12 outstanding courtyards, hence its nickname, the Museum of the Courtyards.
This area features five centuries of history. With connections to Roman and Arabian traditions, the courtyards are a perfect representation of history and are well worth visiting.
The Guadalquivir is the second-longest river in Spain and the fifth-longest river in the Iberian Peninsula.
In fact, it is the only great navigable river in Spain, playing a significant role in the growth and development of Córdoba. Defenses, sieges as well as conquests have been fought in this river, and crossings and exploits have been forged from the river’s shores.
Due to this, it is considered a central jewel of Andalusia, making a visit definitely worthwhile.
Roman Bridge of Córdoba
The Roman Bridge of Córdoba is another must-see monument ideal for taking incredible shots of Córdoba, particularly at sunset.
The unique and complex shape of the bridge over the Guadalquivir river, along with an incredible view of the mosque-cathedral, is undoubtedly the most beautiful view of this old city.
Constructed in the 1st century BC, this was the only bridge in Córdoba for about 20 centuries, and it was the main entryway into the city.
Crossing over the bridge will take you over Calahorra Tower, another must-see monument.
When you come to the end of the Roman Bridge, you will encounter Calahorra Tower. A defensive tower designed during the Muslim era. It was declared a national monument after being used as a prison and a school.
Nowadays, the tower houses the museum of Al-Andalus and it indicates the coexistence of Muslims, Jews, and Christians.
Also referred to as Madinat Al-Zahra, this is a fortified palace-city on the outskirts of Córdoba.
In 2018, Medina Azahara was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
This magnificent city-palace was designed for Abd-al Rahman III at Sierra Morena mountains. The city was designed on three terraces and surrounded by a city wall and a Royal Castle located at the top and middle levels.
Plaza de la Corredera & Plaza de las Tendillas
Plaza de la Corredera is by far the most famous square in the city.
It features a rectangular shape, and its design recalls classic Plaza Mayor of Castile; however, it is the only square in Andalusia fitted with such features. As a result, the square has been used as a gathering area for markets, parties, bullfights, and executions for centuries.
Nowadays, Plaza de las Tendillas is a well-known area in the city to relax and enjoy a drink or have lunch on the terraces. It also features a market where you can purchase fresh produce.
The Archaeological Museum in Córdoba, Spain, houses one of the most impressive archaeological museums in the country.
It has been designed to preserve, research and display archaeological remains in Córdoba from prehistoric times to the Arabic rule period known as Al-Andalus.
Here, you will have a chance to better understand the complex history of Córdoba.
Patios de Córdoba
The “Patios de Córdoba” festival is one of the most famous attractions in this old city, which is held every year in May.
The focus of this festival is on the residents of the city who own patios full of beautiful flowers giving off a fantastic smell.
The patios are open to the public, allowing everyone to visit them.
If you are into flowers, you do not want to miss this festival during your visit to Córdoba.
Calleja de las Flores
This is a narrow alley that you must see while in Córdoba.
To have an unobstructed view, you should consider visiting the area early in the morning or late in the evening.
Here, you will have a chance to see some of the prettiest and most colorful houses with beautiful flower-filled balconies.
The area is famous among tourists thanks to its picturesque houses.
The temple is located near Plaza de las Tendillas and in front of the town hall. It features an impressive design thanks to its unique dimensions.
This monument does not feature a guided visit; you will have to settle for viewing the mighty columns from the streets. Nevertheless, it is worth visiting as it is situated between the two most famous squares in the city.
Aquasierra is one of the largest waterparks in Spain.
Located in Córdoba, this waterpark was designed and opened in 1990 and has been improved constantly.
While in Aquasierra, you will have a chance to enjoy modern amenities and possibly one of the best leisure time experiences of your life.
Hammam Al Andalus
The only Arab baths in Spain are located in the historical city of Córdoba. The Arab Bath, Hammam Al Andalus, features a free 90-minute tour taking you through three unique baths.
The thermal differences in the water provide relaxation as well as enhancing your blood circulation. You can also find a steam room here, as well as a resting room, with tea and an aromas corner where you can choose a relaxing scent to accompany your massage.
Where to stay in Córdoba, Spain?
Staying for longer than a day in Córdoba?
Try one of these luxury hotels, some of the best hotels in town.
Hotel Hospes Palacio del Bailío
Córdoba is known for having some of the best hotels in Spain, and the Hotel Hospes Palacio del Bailío is designed to prove just that. This hotel is equipped with an interior Roman bath and an outdoor swimming pool situated in an oasis of fruit trees along with aromatic plants.
This hotel offers exquisite taste, and its rooms have elegant and bright designs that are sure to enhance your stay.
Balcón De Córdoba
The Balcón De Córdoba is another top hotel located in Córdoba, Spain.
The hotel incorporates raised balconies giving you a one-of-a-kind view over the city. The hotel’s rooms have a charming appearance allowing you to rest fully while discovering the treasures this ancient city has to provide.
Patio del Posadero
This is a typical Cordovan patio often referred to as Hotel Boutique & Breakfast, and it is best described as an ancient XV century restored house with a few rooms. Each room has an exclusive design and comes with a tasting breakfast made from homemade cordovan products.
In this hotel, you will have a chance to enjoy an exclusive view of the city, making it a perfect place to stay when you want to escape the hustle and bustle of the center.
Las Casas de la Judería
Located in the Old Jewish Quarter, the Las Casas de la Judería is another sleek hotel where you may consider spending the night while exploring Córdoba. The hotel offers rooms equipped with traditional décor, which maintains the original features of the building.
Here, you will have access to a rooftop swimming pool, spa, as well as traditional Andalusian patios. Guests should expect to have an incredible time while staying here.
If you prefer renting an entire home or apartment, then you should consider renting an Airbnb.
In Córdoba, you are guaranteed to find a range of Airbnbs to best suit your needs and fit within your budget. This makes it relatively easy to find accommodation while touring through this ancient city.
Best restaurants and where to eat in Córdoba, Spain
Regadera is one of the best places to try out Spanish food in Córdoba.
The restaurant carefully selects each ingredient and creates some of the best Spanish dishes. If you love Spanish cuisine, then you should consider visiting Regadera for the best experience.
Located at the foot of the Mosque-Cathedral, Bodegas Mezquita is another top Spanish restaurant.
The restaurant is located in a perfect environment to enjoy your dinner or lunch with authentic Córdoba products.
A Mortero 3
Everything about this restaurant is fantastic, from the staff to the food.
You will not be disappointed visiting and you are guaranteed to feast on some top-notch and authentic regional food at very affordable rates.
Taberna Casa Pedro Ximénez
This Cordovan restaurant is another excellent choice.
As a foodie, trying new cuisines is undoubtedly one of the best experiences, and at Taberna Casa Pedro Ximénez, you are sure to find a similar experience.
The food here is delicious and will leave you craving for more.
Spanish cuisine is undoubtedly one of the best globally, and there is no perfect place to experience it better than at Noor Restaurant in Córdoba, Spain.
The restaurant features a décor influenced by Andalusia’s Moorish heritage. The cuisine here is an inspiration for modern culinary techniques, aroma, flavor, and the subtleties of dishes from the past.
Is Córdoba worth visiting?
Córdoba, Spain, is one of the most incredible and most beautiful Andalusian cities worth visiting. There are relatively few regions within Europe that offer more than what Córdoba can.
If you can travel to visit this impressive town you will clearly understand why this ancient city is considered one of the best getaways from the big cities of Granada and Seville.
As you can see, Córdoba should be near the top of your Spain travel itinerary.
Córdoba was once a Medieval European powerhouse, and upon your visit, you should expect to have the time of your life.
Offering something for everyone, from incredible architectural designs to picturesque places and top-notch cuisine, Córdoba is definitely worth adding to your bucket list.
Now we hope you have found this article beneficial as you plan your trip to this fantastic medieval city in Spain.