Church Turned Mosque Turned Cathedral

After a chill day we wanted to get our site seeing in so we started pretty early and headed straight to the Mezquita (mosque-cathedral). We expected it to be nice but it blew us away. The first part of the Cathedral dates back more than 1400 years and has been added onto multiple times both as a Mosque and then again as a Cathedral again. It really is unlike any building we have seen in pictures or in real life. It has these beautiful rows of candy cane painted double archways thoughout with the Cathedral pretty much in the middle of the entire building. You could tell just from the pillars and the way they were tilted how long this building has been standing. The marble floors slanting in areas and you couldn’t really tell if it was on purpose or not. Our son was occupied just running up and down the slanted floors. It was a place you felt you had to speak quietly, not only for Religious reasons but because the sounds echoed throughout. We wanted to climb the tower (pretty small one) but again were turned away due to pre-bookings (so if you go to Cordoba and want to climb up a small tower, check online for the details in advance. We spent a few hours there and we wanted to get to the Alcazar de los Reyes Cristianos before heading home.

The children were in good spirits so we walked over and checked it out pretty quickly. It is nice enough but after seeing the Alcazar in Sevilla maybe we were a bit spoiled. The children enjoyed some of the centuries old water fountains as the cold water was refreshing in the heat. We took a quick climb up this tower and were treated with an amazing view of the surrounding area of Cordoba. It was worth the 2.50 Euros just for the view.  Bonus – Our son kept his head out of the iron bars when observing the fish this go around.

On the walk home we got lucky and stumbled upon this tiny market (Los Patios de la Marquesa) with 12 tapas restaurants and patios in it. Much different than the markets we have seen but very nice inside and we think there is even a small festival built around the patios in Cordoba since. We swung in there for some authentic Spanish chicken teriyaki from one of the stands with a few cold beers. Across the street there was a nice lady selling some Cordoban wine we treated ourselves to a few bottles of Pedro Ximenez Sherry wine and some chocolate that pairs well. We took the Jewish Quarter route home and enjoyed the quiet streets.

For dinner we went to a restaurant called La Tinaja Córdoba recommended by our host. It was pretty good and would have had a great view if it wasn’t for the large garbage bins blocking part of the river. The kids were not happy this day and even though our son had room to roam free it was just one of those nights where eating out would have been better if it were opposite day. We had some Avocado Hummus, Flamenqùin  and their version of Patatas Bravas. Hummus was on point and so was the service. All of the good tables were reserved and we were there for over an hour and a half, lot of stiffs in Cordoba that night.

We had a long day the next day with a drive to Ubeda and then fitting the entire city into one day so we packed our things and called it an early night.

Cordoba can be done in 2 days if not 1. But part of the fun for us was taking our time. We read a lot of people saying Toledo could be done in a day and we felt we could have stayed there 3 nights easily. The smaller towns of Spain and Portugal seem to be the ones we have enjoyed the most so far. Cordoba was a delightful city. Very friendly and welcoming and the historic buildings, Jewish Quarter and the Mezquita were something else. Skip the Salmorejo, seriously.

Pro Tip 17 – Dinner with two toddlers is a challenge. Bring supplies and make it into a game. The more tools you have to occupy them the less scenes you will create.