The Mosque-Cathedral of Córdoba is the most important monument in the entire Islamic West and one of the most amazing in the world, and is located very close to Vitium Córdoba
Its history summarizes the complete evolution of the Umayyad style in Spain, as well as the Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque styles of Christian construction, a true mix of culture and architecture.
It is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1984 and one of the most popular attractions in Spain.
A little bit of history in the Cathedral of Córdoba
The Mosque-Cathedral of Córdoba, also known as the Great Mosque of Córdoba or Mezquita de Córdoba, is an Islamic mosque that was converted into a Christian cathedral in the 13th century. It was originally built in the year 785 by Abd ar-Rahman.
Traditional history held that the building occupied the site of the Hispano-Roman Basilica of San Vicente Mártir. According to this account, the Muslim conquerors had reclaimed the basilica for their worship, reforming it and reusing some of its materials.
The mosque was the object of extensions during the Emirate and the Caliphate of Córdoba. It came to cover an area of 23,400 square meters, making it the second largest mosque in the world in terms of surface area, behind that of Mecca, and only surpassed in the 16th century by the Blue Mosque (1588).
In 1238, after the Christian conquest of the city, it was consecrated as the cathedral of the diocese with the episcopal ordination of its first bishop, Lope de Fitero. In 1523, under the direction of the architects Hernán Ruiz, el Viejo and his son, his plateresque Renaissance cruciform basilica was built.
Today this entire complex constitutes the most important monument in Córdoba, and also of all Andalusian architecture, together with the Alhambra, as well as the most emblematic of Hispano-Muslim Umayyad art.
What to see inside the Cordoba Mosque?
The great Mosque consists of two areas, one outside and one inside, the porticoed courtyard or sahn, where the minaret stands (under the Renaissance tower), the only intervention by Abd al-Rahman III, and the prayer room or haram. The interior space is arranged on a concert of columns and two-tone arcades with a great chromatic effect.
Outside the monument
Before visiting the interior of the Mosque of Córdoba, it is best to go around it and discover its 4 façades in which the different doors stand out, as well as some elements such as the Virgen de los Faroles on the north façade or the balconies on the south façade.
Once inside the walls and located in the northern area of the Mosque of Córdoba and measuring 130 meters long by 50 meters wide, is the ablutions patio.
It owes its name to the 98 orange trees that have been planted since the 18th century and communicates with the outside through 6 doors.
Other elements that can be seen in the Patio de los Naranjos of the Mosque of Córdoba are the Santa María fountain, built in the second half of the 17th century, and the Cinnamon fountain from 1752, which owes its name to a tree that was planted right next to it.
Inside, there are five zones into which the enclosure is divided, each corresponding to the different extensions carried out.
Doors of Al Hakam II in Mosque of Cordoba
You can find these old doors on the west façade, in its southernmost part, next to the monument known as the Triumph of San Rafael, almost in front of the Roman Bridge of Córdoba.
Door of Forgiveness in Mosque of Córdoba
When you visit us in Córdoba and go to this Mosque, you will surely enter through the Puerta del Perdón into the large landscaped space that precedes it, the so-called Patio de los Naranjos.
Patio de los Naranjos in Mosque of Córdoba
Once you access the interior of the walled enclosure through the aforementioned Puerta del Perdón, or through one of the other two available doors, you will find yourself in the Patio de los Naranjos.
It is a large patio where you can see almost one hundred orange trees in rows that were planted in the 17th century.
Remains of old Visigothic church in Mezquita de Córdoba
Very close to the entrance on the right side you will see a railing on the ground that delimits a hole covered by a window, where some archaeological excavations are shown.
Where the first Christian reconstruction was carried out when Fernando III of Castile conquered Córdoba in 1236 and the Muslim mosque was consecrated as a Christian cathedral.
In this walk through the monument you will still be able to see the Gothic-style architectural structure of said first “church” whose main altar occupied the place of the original antechamber of the first mihrab that the mosque had.
This corner currently has the name of Villaviciosa Chapel.
Christian Basilica in Mezquita de Córdoba
One aspect that will surprise you when visiting the old mosque is that in the center of the huge building is a large Renaissance-style basilica.
Hipóstila Hall, one of the places to see in the Mosque of Córdoba
Once used as a prayer room and made up of 11 naves perpendicular to the quibla wall, articulated through a module of superimposed arches, part of it has now disappeared after being used in part to build the chapels that were later attached to the walls due to the extensions and reforms that the old Mosque suffered.
Plan your visit
The best thing is to have this visit well planned, you can decide the day and time and buy tickets online.
The schedule of the Mosque of Córdoba is:
- From March to October:
- Monday to Saturday from 10am to 7pm
- Sundays and holidays from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and from 3:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
- From November to February it is the same schedule, but it closes at 18pm.
The price of the Mosque of Cordoba is:
- General Admission: 11 euros
- Reduced Ticket: 9 euros (People over 65, students from 15 to 26 and Youth Card holders)
- Reduced Ticket: 6 euros (Children from 10 to 14 years old, disabled up to 64% and members of a large family)
- Reduced Ticket: 4 euros (Members of large families (children from 10 to 14 years old))
Free: Those born and/or residing in the Diocese of Córdoba, under 10 years of age, holders of the “Andalucía Junta 65” card and people with disabilities of more than 64% with a companion.
How to get from Vitium Córdoba
And you already know that our Vitium Córdoba (insert the link) is only a 5-minute walk from this beautiful monument, just ask at reception which direction to take and our staff will tell you