In January we took our oldest Grandson on a trip to southern Spain to celebrate his upcoming high school graduation. Coming from the midwest US, most folks think of warm weather beach vacations during the winter. We wanted to do something with more culture and history – southern Spain in January was a perfect choice. Mild weather, no crowds, mostly sunshine, tons of extremely interesting history and culture – AND fantastic food.
There are so many things to blog about – but let’s start with some history in Córdoba. Córdoba was originally a Roman settlement taken over by the Visigoths and then taken by Muslim armies in the eighth century. The Caliphate of Córdoba encompassed most of the Iberian peninsula and was likely the largest city in Europe in the 10th century. It was recaptured by Christian forces in 1236.
No visit to Córdoba is complete without visiting the Mezquita (Mosque-Cathedral) and the Alcázar. The amazing Mezquita will be the subject of an upcoming blog – for now let’s focus on the Alcázar.
The Alcázar had been around for 200 years before the monarchs Isabella and Ferdinand used it for one of the first permanent tribunal of the Spanish Inquisition. In addition it was the used as headquarters for the campaign against the last remaining (at that time) Moorish kingdom on the peninsula which was the Nasrids in Granada. After about 10 years, their campaign succeeded in 1492 – the same year the monarchs met Christopher Columbus in the Alcázar as he prepared his first voyage to what we now know was the Americas.
A visit to Southern Spain should be on everyone’s bucket list. Please let us know if we can help make your travel dreams come true.