Why Cordoba’s Culture And Entertainment Is Inviting More Visitors

Cordoba, a World Heritage site, is also a Mecca of great architectural finds. Because of its rich history, it has a number of religious monuments and other structures that will surely leave you at awe. You would really love taking photos of them all.

Religious Structures

The Mosque-Cathedral with the buildings and streets that are surrounding it has been named as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1994. In its different sections, you will be able to see the Omeyan style of the building. While in other parts you will also see the different styles of Renaissance, Gothic and Baroque incorporated. The building served as a Mosque at one point in time and a Church in another time. The most notable feature about the Mosque-Cathedral is the huge arches that comprised of red and white columns. These were made up of marble, onyx, jasper, and granite. Try to get there around 9 am when the entry is free (at 10 am it is 8 euros) and before tour groups pour in. You can find the Mezquita at Calle Cardenal Herrero.

The Synagogue that was built by an architect in 1315 Isaac Moheb follows the Mudejar style. This is another great architectural edifice in Cordoba that you shouldn’t miss. In entire Spain, it is one of the most preserved Medieval Synagogues. Just 2 blocks west of the Mezquita, you will be astounded by its exquisite interior design. You can access this Hebrew temple through a street called “Los Judios”. Aside from the Mudejar-style plant patterns that are decorated all over its main hall, the Synagogue also has three arches that are filled with decorative plasterwork in the women’s tribune. You can experience all of this for as low as 0, 30 Euros. The Synagogue is available from Tuesdays to Fridays. Córdoba’s old Jewish quarter (Juderia in Spanish) consists of a fascinating network of narrow lanes, more atmospheric and less commercialized. The Quarter is the best-known part of Cordoba’s historic center, which was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1984. Also known as Barrio Blanco (White Quarter), it is located within Barrio Judeo and you can enter there as you go on foot. Another great thing about this spot is that entry is free.

Other Monuments

The other monuments in Cordoba that you will be in awe of its architecture are the Royal Stables with its sandstone pillar-supported vaulted ceiling that can provide entertainment for the whole family in a stunning monumental setting. It is a part of the Alcazar fortress at Calle Caballerizas Reales. The pure-bred Andalusian horses and their skilled riders showcase a delightful Equestrian Show. Admission is free but if you want to marvel at their shows, there is a fee of 15 Euros.

The Castle of Christian Monarchs with its solid defensive walls and its fortress that is almost rectangular shaped beholds one of the most beautiful gardens of Andalusia. Take time to gaze at the third-century Roman sarcophagus, with its reflections on life and death. You can locate this castle at Calle Caballerizas Reales. Enter the castle at its reduced price of 2, 25 Euros. For your kids, it is absolutely free.

The Medina Azahara (City of the Caliphs) is a magnificent and mysterious palace built at the foot of the Sierra Morena, spills down over three terraces with the caliph’s palace-city on the highest terrace overlooking what would have been the court and town. Get to see the exulted palace-city at 1, 50 Euros.

The Calahorra Tower houses the Institute for Dialogue between Cultures. This fascinating museum is particularly educational with audiovisual 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. Come learn in this museum within a Moorish fortress at a price of 4, 50 Euros. There are special discounts for senior citizens, students, and children below 8 years of age. The tower museum is built in Puente Romano and is open for tourists every day.

Festivals

Cordoba, being a city that is rich in culture, has a lot of festivals that are celebrated all the year-round. From the religious festivals that have become a tradition to Cordoba to the modern festivals that attract a multitude of tourists, these festivals are truly a thing to experience.

Religious and Traditional Festivals

The Carnival. Singers dress up in comparsas and parade the city’s streets then go to the Grand Theatre to showcase their talent in singing comic pieces. There is also a parade that can be participated by the public and it too is done throughout the city’s streets. This is celebrated annually on the second fortnight of the month of February.

Holy WeekThis is observed annually and a venue where Christians can publicly pronounce their faith. Processions are done in the city’s streets and during this time the city is unusually solemn.

The May Crosses. Celebrated at the start of May, this festival includes the competition on the best flower-adorned crosses and also the Battle of the Flowers which is for the best flower-decorated floats.

Modern Festivals

The White Night of Flamenco. This is celebrated for one whole night every June. Different artists like Jose Merce, El Pele, and Miguel Poveda perform at different streets and squares throughout the city. It is considered as the largest Flamenco event in the world with 200,00 people attending just in the first year.

Nights of Charm. Every July and August, Cordoba holds this festival which is a celebration of the rich culture of the city. All the nights of these two months are filled with theatre, music and dance performances as well as other artistic events.

Theaters

If you haven’t seen a live theatre performance, it’s about time that you do. If you want to see live acts and awe-inspiring stage place and performances aside from the ones you see in the movies, then you should visit Cordoba’s opera or theatre houses. The performing arts of Cordoba will never cease to amaze you with their talent.

If you want to have the best seats ahead of everyone else in the theatres, then you should view the schedule of the different shows and events that you would want to attend to. You can check it personally and visit the theatre houses, you can check it out online or you can read about in local publications, posters, and advertisements so that you’d have an idea of the date, performance and showtimes ahead. You’d be prepared ahead of time and has tons of time to enjoy yourself knowing that you have a fine seat reserved for you.

The ticket prices vary on the theaters depending on the seat, the set, and the show. The prices also average from the usual 8 € to an astounding 50 €.

•    You can contact UniTicket by phone and the use of a credit card if you want to purchase your ticket through the phone.
•    If you want to check out the theatre in person then you can also consult the ticket windows of the theatres for any possible discounts for these can only be carried out personally and not through UniTicket.
•    If you can’t find time to get your tickets from the ticket box, you can let the concierge of the hotel do it for you. They offer you the service of booking and getting your ticket but it comes with an extra mark upcharge.

The Grand Theatre, one of the grandest and most prestigious theatres of Cordoba at the Gran Capitán 3, Centro is one of the best-known theatres of Cordoba which houses a powerhouse cast of actors. They showcase classical plays, ballets, chamber music, opera, and concerts year-round. The theatre itself is a sight to see with such an enormous, gorgeous and classic interior.

The Multicines Zoco at Plaza de los Califas, Cordoba Conservatorio Superior de Musica
at Calle Angel de Saavedra 1, Teatro Coliseo and the Municipal Theatre, El Ejido are a few of Cordobas theatres. The also feature mainstream and alternative performances, traditional and experimental shows; from musicals to concerts.

Cultural Centers

Cordoba is one of the Spanish cities which have been greatly influenced by the Romans and Moors. They have a rich cultural heritage unique to them compared to the other Spanish countries. Cordoban’s value their culture greatly and take in efforts to preserve this. They pride themselves with their colorful history and rich culture.

A look back on Cordoba’s history, Cordoba has been founded in Roman times and even went to be one of Europe’s countries that have reached a million inhabitants. It was the capital of Andalusia (Al-Andalus) and center and culture of learning, well thought-out to be Islamic Spain’s, spiritual heart.

Gathered around the magnificent Mosque, one of the biggest in Spain, Cordoba’s streets tell of its history lined through the stones, walls and cobbled streets. Even a few of the preserved buildings tell their own stories to curious tourists. You will see significant traces of the different cultures and religions which have left their mark in Cordoba.Catedral (Mezquita) de Córdoba in España

These cultural ways are reflected in its many notable structures and distinctive designs, also not to mention the warren of paved streets lined with orange trees and some of the most amiable squares you will find in all of Andalucía.

Here are some of the great cultural centers in Cordoba, which are must-sees for people like you, who are considering going to this great city:

Of course; your first stop should be the Mosque or Mezquita itself. It is a mix of both Muslim and Spanish architecture which is more ways than one, reflects the city’s colorful history. In the 15th century when the Moors were overthrown from Córdoba, the Christian rulers who replaced them tore out the Mosque’s center and in turn built a cathedral within the main prayer hall. It’s like seeing two types of churches in one spectacular site. Always look out and about when you reach the interior and take note of the details, you will see both Islamic architectures in contrast with the cathedral.

The entrance to the Mosque itself will cost roughly about €8.00 per person, however, entrance is free of charge between 8:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. on Mondays, don’t miss out on this great deal and one of a kind opportunity to explore the largest Mosque of Spain.

Another great cultural center is the Alcázar de Los Reyes Cristianos, a castle-fortress built on the site by the Christian Monarchs in place of the former Moorish fortress. The architecture is built with Islamic preference; however, it still retains it’s Moorsigh influenced gardens and Arab baths. It is located at the Northern end of the Puente Romano.

Music

Spain is a country filled with arts and music. Wherever you turn, you can always hear a tune, a hum from the people around you or nod your head to the beat of Spain’s wonderful music. With its own uniqueness when it comes to their music and music industry, you’re in for a musical ride.

Cordoba is no less different from any of the countries of Spain when it comes to the music scene; jump and groove to the beat of the Cordobans. From the canteens, bars, sidewalks, streets to its spectacular festivals; music is essentiality with the Cordobans’ culture.

Cordoba has kept rich its own native tunes and heritage of folk music. Cordoba’s music has evolved all throughout the years from the different civilizations that have settled and contributed to their music and culture. This has given birth to Cordoba’s unique music traditional music.
One of the most unique and best known Cordoba music is one from their six-stringed Cordoba guitar. With careful detail and craftsmanship, each guitar belts out a sweet rhythm and melody.

Other than that, Cordobans also love Flamenco. The tapping and jiving, swaying to the beat are what Cordobans enjoy the most. You get to witness live dances even in their bars, restaurants, and theaters. Never miss this out when in Cordoba and enjoy the music scene. If however, you are not contented just sitting on the sidelines, you can enroll in a Flamenco dance class and perform. From the different Flamenco genres, you can start out from the easiest and basic steps and progress your way to the more complicated moves. Dance schools offer mostly flamenco and Latin dances. At the Academia Hispanica, you will learn more and love flamenco more than ever!

If you want to here some of Cordoba’s top in the contemporary music scene, best go to the stores and buy yourself a CD. You can find one at the malls and even in the centers, there are music stores that cater to Cordoba’s music scene; from contemporary, Latin, acoustics and even native sounds. The Music Bodas at Calle Marruecos is one to go if you want to find instruments, if you are into music and style, then you can choose from a wide variety of musical instruments that suit your style.

With the different influences of music in the Yester civilizations, plus new age music and worldwide influences; it is expected that Cordoba’s music is both traditional and contemporary but with the influences of foreign culture have grown and advanced yet still loved by both the locals and the tourists alike.

Concerts

One great event that you shouldn’t miss when you are in Cordoba is the Festival de la Guitarra de Cordoba or the International guitar festival. This is hosted annually, every July and is a month-long celebration. This is the mother of all concerts and shows and if you want to experience what it would be like to witness a concert in Cordoba, then going to the city in July is what you should do.

Aside from the training program which provides different musical and guitar making courses, the Guitar Festival also incorporates the concerts and shows program during this celebration. This is the part that everyone is waiting for. Performances from artists of different genres like PlaceboPaco de Lucia, Mark Knopfler, Deep Purple, Johnny Winter, and Joe Bonamassa to name a few are the focal point of the event. Great artists that are experts in Flamenco guitar as well as jazz and contemporary guitar participate in the renowned yearly event in Cordoba.

The shows are held in different venues all over the city. Among these venues are the Grand Theatre, the Royal Stables, at the Castle of the Grand Monarchs, and Congress Palace.

These different shows are heavily attended not only by the locals but also from tourists from abroad. Because of the artists that participate in the event, the guitar festival has gained international recognition. This is truly one event that is greatly anticipated during the summertime and one event that you shouldn’t miss.

Restaurants

You can never go wrong with dining in Cordoba, with their exotic and fresh food, spicy flavors and appealing taste and aroma which just fills your stomach and make your content without feeling guilty about your diet.

Savor the delicacies and scrumptious foods of the Cordobans and taste the grand flavors of Cordoba’s finest dishes. You can go to bars, restaurants, and even simple cafeterias if you want to taste their local cuisine.

If you want a sunny luncheon with a pleasing atmosphere, then the Taberna Pepe de la Juderia is the perfect cozy place for you to dine out. It’s a delightful little café located at the old Jewish Quarter not far off Mezquita. The shops’ location at the corner of the sidewalk gives you a glimpse of the streets if you just want to observe the outside activity. The inside of the restaurant has that diner’s feel to it, complete with a Hall-of-Fame, photos, and memorabilia of famous patrons lining its wall.

They pride themselves with great service, all smiles on customers and really prompt service whatever the weather. They offer the tastiest sandwiches with olives and Iberian Ham that just tingles your taste. They also have the favored Flamenquin, both loved by tourists and customers.
If you’re the one to follow the guidebooks of the best restaurants in Cordoba, then this one will surely appear on the list.

The Hotel and Restaurant Vellina at the back of Mezuita, offers you fine dining at it’s best. It has a classic interior owing to the fact that the building is 1600-years-old but with some renovation and refurbished walls and décor, the place is just grand. The place is decorated with huge wine barrels, tile work, and wine storage. As always, with Cordoban hospitality, the service is outstanding but the menu is even of greater significance to the diners. The house specialty is Salmorejo, a cold gazpacho soup with sliced ham and hard-boiled egg and they are always complimented for their great dessert selection.

If you want a comfortable place with a  great view, then the Rincon Bar is the perfect place for you. If you want a hearty meal or just a light snack, then opt for this bar. Rincon means “corner” in Spanish. It’s a lovely place but with just enough space, they have comfortable chairs and low tables with couch-type seats along the sides. From their extensive menu, you cant try out for their “Menu del Dia”, a complete meal set to satisfy your hunger. If you just want some snacks or a quick place to stop by for some refreshments, then, of course, they offer tapas with a beer in their menu.

Nightlife

When in Cordoba, you wouldn’t want to miss out on all the fun, day or night. During the day, you get to visit all the must-see sights and photograph all the way. At night, it’s the time to unwind, socialize and just continue with the fun, Cordoba style. Cordoba night outs are fun, colorful and just to put it simply, party till you drop.

There are a variety of bars, pubs, and restaurants to choose from in Cordoba. You can choose from different locations if you want it to be in the confines of the city where you can hop on bars and clubs. If you are more adventurous, there are also beach parties that you can go to. Then there are the classy bars that offer you fine dining, great wine selection, classical music; where you can just relax but still socialize with others.

They say the real party starts at midnight. As most Cordobans tend to roam around the night, enjoying drinks and tapas, it is a golden opportunity for you to befriend them, it’s best to go out on weekends where there are day-offs for the locals.

Here are a few of Cordoba’s best night out locations:

The Taberna Casa Salinas is one of the oldest and established pubs in Cordoba. Located at Puerto de Almodóvar, this pub has an air of nostalgia for both locals and tourists alike. They offer glasses of sherry, fresh tapas with spicy Andalusian sausages and buckets of olives for good measure. This pub has ran into for a good four decades and still up and running. Sometimes, they stage flamenco shows and that’s something any tourist would want to see.

If you’re the type who wants to dance to the beat of independent music then you can go to Soul at Calle de Alfonso XIII, located near the city hall. Within the vicinity, there are also other clubs that you can go to such as Moloko (Alfaros 29) and la Communa (Calle Caño 1), they offer great food, great music and overall, you get to have a great night.

There is also Soho, located near the river of Calle San Fernando. They play modern and indie music too.

When you get to visit Cordoba during summertime, there is always a buzz around Vial Norte at El Brilliante. If you want to party till dawn then Chinales is the place to go. During summer,  it’s the time where the bars and clubs get to be pretty crowded with all the after school parties, locals and tourists enjoying the food, drinks and social highlights brought about by the summertime heat.

Shopping

Whether you are a shopaholic, window shopper or hunting for bargains and memorabilia, then get ready for the Cordoba shopping spree.

Cordoba is a good shopping city for a spending spree, from cheap buys to posh signature items. The suburban area of downtown Cordoba is the home of the shopping malls. The most active shopping district is at the Mercado Norte, here you will find bargain prices and cheaper goods.

There are also modern shopping malls which are huge and in fact offer you all the varieties of what you would which to find.

The Patio Olmos and Garden Shopping found at the center. The Dinosaurio Mall and Cordoba Shopping located at the northwest and the Nuevo Centro Shopping found westward. Here you will find all sorts of stuff from souvenirs, clothes, jewelry, bags; branded or not; you’ll find it here. You can roam around the malls for endless hours and always find something interesting that you would wish to buy.

If you’re the sophisticated type, there are boutiques that sell designer items from both local and international designers. For those who are more casual then there are shops also to fit your budget without compromising your style.

Here are some helpful Spanish words for shoppers: “liquidacion,” “traspaso,” and “rebajas”, simply means that they are on sale so watch out for these words on the store windows and glasses.

Local arts and crafts are also made available and sold to the public at Paseo de Las Artes, recommended during Saturdays and Sundays. If you’re the one who appreciates the value of art and crafts, then the place to go is the Parque las Heras, especially on the weekends.

You will see here handcrafted accessories, decorations, vases, and paintings; they make great souvenir items and are unique.

At Guemes District, you can do your food shopping for local delicacies like alfajores, sweet hams, honey and of course, tapas. That’s if you want to bring home some of Cordoba’s best foods or if you want to try and cook a delicacy yourself.

There are other shops and malls located at the city square and also the pedestrian malls even after 8 PM. Night markets and shopping is also made available, the prices are much cheaper and you can even bargain for the items that you wish to buy. This is especially true on weekends where the streets are oiled with shoppers going on a spree.

Sports

Cordoba is not only a city for the culturally inclined and history buffs. It is also a place for sports enthusiasts. One of the most popular sports in the city is bullfighting. Other sports like golf and horseback riding are also widely popular all throughout the city.

Bullfighting

Proof of the people of Cordoba’s love for bullfighting is the Bullfight Museum. It includes tributes to the four of the greatest bullfighters in Spain: Rafael Gonzalez is also known as Machaquito, Rafael Guerra is known as Guerrita, Rafael Molina is known as Lagarjito, and Manuel Rodriguez also is known as Manolete.

Bullfighting season in Cordoba starts in May although bullfights also happen in the bullring throughout the entire year. These bullfights are a thing to witness if you are in the city of Cordoba. It will be an experience like no other.

Golf, Horseback Riding and Other Sports

The Club de Campo de Cordoba is the place to be to play golf. As you play in the 18 holed course you can also enjoy the magnificent view of the Sierra Morena mountain ranges. The trails along this mountain range are a spot for another sport that is popular in Cordoba, horseback riding. You can also visit Cordoba’s El Mirador Riding Center which can offer you riding tours on their horses or their ponies.

Fitness

If you are one of those health-conscious individuals and can’t go on a day without exercise, you can still let your muscles do some decent workout in Cordoba. You don’t have to be worried about missing out on your routine because even when you are in Cordoba, you can still stay fit and trim. Cordoba offers a wide variety of gyms and health centers to suit your fitness needs. Burn some calories even when on vacation, let Cordoba help you stay fit.

Fitness Gyms

Exercise is a universal endeavor, even the Cordobans adhere to that. Fitness and health are a part of their lifestyle. The Universal Fitness Center located at Calle de Gema is one of Cordoba’s finest and modern gyms. It is a preferred place both by the locals and tourists themselves, from their amenities and equipment; it is a sure haven for a health buff such as yourself.

You won’t be disappointed by the fitness gyms of Cordoba for they are up-to-date and the equipment is well-taken care of. They have machines for your different exercise needs from light workouts to heavy exercise. They also have instructors that can help you more with your routines and fitness regimen like cardio exercises, muscle toning, aerobics and the like.

These gyms also go from cheap to expensive. For tourists who are just in for a few days, there are inexpensive gyms to choose from to suit your needs. Their services might be a bit cheaper but nonetheless, their facilities are still excellent and conducive to your exercise needs.

Fitness Centers in Hotels

If you want a more convenient stay and don’t have adequate time to explore for gyms, then best go for hotels that have fitness centers within their establishment. The Hotel Cordoba Center for one is a great example; aside from the excellent service, they have a fitness center, swimming pool, sauna, and a solarium all under one roof. Also, the NH Amistad Cordoba has a small gym alongside its many other services and endeavors for their customers. This is a plus for tourists who don’t want to commute and want instant access to start exercising their muscles.

Yoga Classes

For yoga fanatics who are enrolled in a yoga class at their home city, you have don’t have to miss out a class. Cordoba also has yoga centers and instructors to help you out with those poses. The instructors are proficient with English and can carry a class with ease no matter if you are new or not, a foreigner or local.

So when in Cordoba, there is no need to stress out. You can always find a gym that suits your needs so you can stretch out those muscles and do some workouts.

Cinema

If going to movie houses is one of your hobbies, then movie buffs like you will surely enjoy the cinemas in Cordoba. They air a variety of shows of different genres, from the local indies to Hollywood blockbusters.

The movie houses radiate an atmosphere of traditional ambiance from whence they were time-honored workings of conventional theatre construction and were modified to become movie houses. Since modernization came, a greater part of the movie theaters now exhibit huge projection screens and with digital surround sound to give movie buffs the thrill of watching the big screen. Watch a movie in Cordobas two famous movie houses; the Multicines El Arcangel which has Ten screens multi cinema located in El Arcángel Shopping Centre and the Cinesur El Tablero which has fifteen screens in Centro de Ocio El Tablero.

Movie Listings

If you want to be always up-to-date with the latest movies, then keep up with the latest screenings through the local newspapers, you can see the schedules of the shows or any special movie screenings. Check out the move houses too if you have time, posters at the movie entrances will showcase what’s showing, they also have updates of any changes and of course, the schedules from the first to the last full show.

 Cinema Schedules

Movie houses usually open at mall hours, between 9 a.m. or 10 p.m., if you want to be in the last full show then be in at 10-11 p.m. Usually, the movie houses have 4 screenings daily, but oftentimes during Saturdays and Sundays, the time is extended. On the other hand, whenever there are special events, festivals or any other occasion, the movie houses tend to open and start early.

Ticket Prices

With a practical price of 6€, you can enter the movie house and enjoy watching the movies. Tickets can also plunge during holidays.

Where to Get Your Tickets

Getting a ticket from an automated ticket machine on your way to the movie houses are the easiest and most likely most common way to take hold of your ticket.  If however, you don’t like to stand in line and want more suitable means to acquire the desired seat; then opt for a virtual ticket, available online or over the phone. Most of the movie houses are well into technology, they have a site on which you can purchase your ticket as easy and convenient as possible, but prices may vary and of course an added expense on your part.

Sandy

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