After a quick ride on the AVE, we stopped in Córdoba. This small town once had over a million residents and boasts a diverse Jewish, Muslim and Christian heritage. There’s a large Jewish Quarter in Córdoba where small ceramic tiles featuring the star of David and other symbols line the streets.
We stopped at the striking Mezquita, one of the largest accomplishments of Moorish architecture in history. Built as a Visigoth Christian church in the 7th century, the structure was later shared by Muslims and Christians before returning to a Catholic church during the Reconquista. These drastic changes can be noted by the design and decoration of the building. There are beautiful, rounded Moorish arches with marble columns and just a short walk away, an altar adorned with frescoes and rose windows of stained glass. Seeing it all is a real treat for any architecture or history enthusiast.
After exploring Córdoba a bit more, we headed to an olive oil factory, where we were greeted by the olive grove’s owner. Upon arrival we saw a 300-year-old olive press which, while no longer in use, stands as as testament to the owner’s philosophy. He told us that the factory is not in the machinery but in the actual olive trees. The harvest takes place in the last three months of the year and he tends to his grove as a doctor would tend to an expecting mother. We then enjoyed an olive oil tasting—and we sure ate our fill of breads and his olive oil infusions.
Later that night, we arrived at the city of Seville! Stay tuned for more on this gorgeous Andalusian destination.
Read more about Michelle’s adventures through Spain by following along on her live blog page.