At its 8:30 am opening, I was at the cathedral, which is named la Mezquita, here in Córdoba. It is totally different from any of the numerous cathedrals that i have previously seen in Spain. First the total area is probably 5 times that of the normal cathedral. This is because it started out at a mosque around the year 800. The original ceiling is also flat and not nearly as high as one might think. After Ferdinand and Isabella's successful reconquista, it was converted to a Christian cathedral, with the center part razed and a much higher building made for the cathedral part. It's hard to describe, and hard to get good photos in the generally dim interior lighting, but I hope my photos can convey some of the sense of the place. I also visited the Jewish synagogue, a much more modest building that is maybe 30 by 50 feet. It is significant because it is one of only three Jewish synagogues n Spain dating to the Middle Ages. I also visited the Alcazar, the former Muslim fortress converted to a living quarters by Ferdinand and Isabella. Aside from the buildings, the formal gardens were imposing. One can see that in a hot climate like Cordoba (it was 88 degrees today in mid October), cool, shaded gardens are a necessity. I also walked across the Roman bridge, found the track of the Camino Mozarbe, visited the Museum of Fine Art (which had a nice interactive display of Federico Lorca's 'Pequeño vals vienés'. Tomorrow, I am headed back to Madrid for two days.
Part of the original mosque in the Mezquita
The center part that was added to make the Mezquita into a cathedral.
When they added the cathedral arches, they did not always line up with the mosque arches.
View from the Puente Romano back towards the Mezquita.
View from the Rio Guadalquiver of the Puente Romano and the Mezquita.
Waymarking symbol for the Camino Mozarbe to Santiago.
A view of the gardens in the Alcazar.
Another view of the gardens in the Alcazar.