The drive from Granada to Cordoba took us through some stunning country as we headed North west into what was a much drier and rougher environment. More hilltop forts and smaller villages until we arrived to the more verdant areas around Cordoba on the River Gualdalquivir.
We were staying at the up-market Hotel NH Amistad which was perfectly located and had off street parking. We were able to walk easily to every sight and be back in for naps at any time which was very handy. The best things was that we were just one bock from the stunningly beautiful Mezquita Mosque and Cathedral, the Alcazar of Cordoba and the ancient Roman bridge that was currently under restoration but is considered the best surviving Roman bridge in the world.
The Mesquite was unlike anything we had ever seen even though from the outside although impressive it was standard courtyard Giralda tower and walls but once inside it was simply breathtaking. The multiple red and white painted arches and the intricately decorated chapels were of such fine detail that it took us three visits to take it all in.
We kept coming across Corpus Christi celebrations on our Spanish sojourn and this was no exception, but this was by far the best with the streets of the procession route laid out with pine tree cutting providing not only a fantastic sight but an amazing smell of pine throughout the town centre. The procession was an array of old and young all dressed up in their finery plus a bizarre way of dressing the very young in a mixture of military uniforms!!! very odd indeed. we positioned ourselves at a cafe and watch the passing parade with great interest and fascination.
Originally the Mesquita was the site of a simple Visigoth christian church but then the Moors built the most magnificent mosque in all of Moorish Spain/Andalucia only to have part of it turned into a Christian church 500 years later. luckily the christian conquers decided to keep the mosque for prosperity and we are so glad they did.
The stunning architecture of the underside of the multiple domes was a sheer delight as every one was individually crafted and decorated to surprise and delight the viewer.
The wall below is my favourite Moorish design and it was on the wall of a small side chapel and dates from the 10th century. the condition is so perfect and the finite details so intricate that i spent a good 30mins in this small space admiring the design and workmanship.
The Alcazar of the first post Moorish rulers of Cordoba was built totally in the Moors style as did most of the constructions for the next 200 hundred years until the crazy inquisition times and the result is a pure delight with lavish gardens and water features in abundance. we enjoyed a Turkish/Moorish Hamman bathhouse treatment and a fabulous;lous meal in their dining room for our last night in this fascinating city.