We have just returned from a 5 week vacation to Spain and Portugal, and needless to say, we had a wonderful time.
We started off on April 14th in Madrid. It was freezing cold, much to our surprise. Spring came late to Spain this year. We spent two days in Madrid in order to overcome any jet lag before heading off to other parts of Spain.
Despite the cold, we had a lot of fun walking around Madrid those first two days.
Plaza Mayor, Spain's main plaza
The Royal Palace
Some of Madrid's beautiful architecture
We then hopped on a train and headed to Cordoba, where the medieval town and the mosque of the Moors is preserved.
Spain is loaded with olive trees and we passed field after field of them on our way to Cordoba.
The mosque at Cordoba is amazing. The Muslim architecture and art is absolutely beautiful. A Christian church was constructed inside the mosque after the re-conquest. Too bad. But, you can still get the idea of what the mosque looked like when it was in its pure form.
|One of the former entrances to the mosque|
|Inside the mosque at Cordoba|
|The Maghreb inside the mosque|
|The mosque is huge. It was built to accommodate more then 40,000 worshipers.|
|Long vistas down the aisles of the mosque|
|After the light airiness of the Muslim architecture and design, this seemed heavy and oppressive.|
|Old wall with one of the old city gates|
|Bridge across the river with Roman foundations|
|Medieval streets festooned with flowers|
|Alcazar - castle/fort of the Christian Kings in Cordoba|
|The beautiful gardens of the Alcazar|
While we were in Cordoba, the weather started to gradually get warmer. Our next stop - Sevilla, where we started to enjoy the Spanish outdoor cafe life.