2 days in Cordoba, Spain – plus the top 6 things to do

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A day trip to Cordoba is a popular excursion for those visiting the region of Andalusia in southern Spain. While many people choose to stay in Seville and take the train to Cordoba for one day, we chose to spend 2 days in Cordoba before continuing on to Ronda. The extra day gave us more time to truly appreciate this historic and beautiful Spanish city. Our 2-day itinerary for Cordoba allows for ample opportunity to explore the city, relax on one of Cordoba’s famous patios, and even partake in an afternoon siesta if you choose. So to help you plan your own trip, we’re laying out all the top things to do in Cordoba, Spain in 2 days and we’re sharing our complete 2-day Cordoba itinerary.

How to get to Cordoba from Seville

We visited Cordoba as part of a 2-week trip across Spain, Portugal, and Morocco. We gave ourselves 2 days in Cordoba because we were traveling with kids. If visiting Cordoba with kids, you’ll want to give yourself more time, because as every parent knows, kids do things at their own pace. 🙂 

As I mentioned earlier, we arrived in Cordoba by train from Seville. There are numerous trains each day that go from Santa Justa Station in Seville to Cordoba. You can choose between the high speed direct route, which will takes roughly 45 minutes or a regional train that makes more frequent stops that will take about an hour and a half. There are also bus routes from Seville to Cordoba, and of course some people choose to rent a car in Spain and drive instead.  

From the train station in Cordoba it is roughly a 20 minute walk to the tourist areas and to many of the popular hotels in Cordoba.

How to make the most out of two days in Cordoba, Spain

To make the most out of 2 days in Cordoba, you’ll want to get an early start. That may mean taking an early train from Seville. Cordoba, Spain gets extremely hot, especially during the summer months. So you’ll want to explore in the morning hours and at night. We visited in the month of July and temperatures were over 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 Celcius)! Most businesses were closed for several hours during the afternoon. This is quite common in Spain, even when it isn’t hot, since most people take part in an afternoon siesta or time of rest and relaxation. The streets of Cordoba were completely empty during the afternoons. If you can stand the heat, this is a great time to take photos without other tourists in them. Otherwise, you can do as the Spaniards do and take a nap, or go sit somewhere, have a cold sangria, and take a break from the heat!

child walking down an empty street in Cordoba
If you decided to spend at least 2 days in Cordoba, you’ll have plenty of time to wander the streets when they are empty.

2 day itinerary for Cordoba

If you have two days in Cordoba, Spain here is a great itinerary to follow that gives you plenty of time at all the major attractions in Cordoba as well as an opportunity to relax and enjoy the atmosphere of this beautiful Spanish town.

Day 1 

  • Arrive in Cordoba
  • Leave luggage at hotel
  • Roam the streets of the Jewish Quarter
  • Photos at Calle de las  Flores
  • Lunch on a patio restaurant
  • Visit the Roman Temple
  • Check into hotel for a siesta
  • Dinner and shopping near the Roman Bridge

Day 2

  • Visit Mezquita / Mosque of Cordoba
  • Breakfast/brunch on a patio
  • Cross the Roman Bridge
  • Alcazar of the Christian Monarchs
  • Lunch near the alcazar
  • Palacio de Viana
  • Siesta
  • Dinner and shopping near mosque

Top things to do in Cordoba, Spain in two days

If you follow our Cordoba itinerary above, here are the top attractions you’ll see during your two days in Cordoba, Spain. 

Calle de las Flores (Street of Flowers)

One of the most photographed places in all of Cordoba, Calle de las Flores, or Street of Flowers, is a narrow alleyway lined with bright blue vases of flowers. It is a stop on every guided walking tour of Cordoba, and should be a stop on your Cordoba itinerary, as well. To get the best photo, walk through the alleyway and take a photo from the small plaza looking back through the alley. Doing so gives you a lovely view of a yellow bell tower through the narrow alley.

Calle de las flores, one of the most popular photo spots in Cordoba

BOOK A GUIDED WALKING TOUR OF THE PATIOS IN CORDOBA HERE.

Templo Romano (Roman Temple)

The Roman Temple in Cordoba is a site we stumbled upon while walking to the mosque. The ruins are surrounded by buildings and weren’t discovered until the 1950s during an expansion of the Cordoba City Hall. There isn’t much left of the temple. In fact, the foundation and a few pillars are about that remain. But given it’s position surrounded by modern buildings, it’s unique to see the old and the new right next to each other. 

Roman Temple in Cordoba, one of the lesser visited attractions in Cordoba

Roman Bridge

The Roman Bridge, in the heart of the historic center of Cordoba, is one of the prettiest bridges in all of Spain, if not all of Europe. Stretching across the Guadalquivir River from Torre de Calahorra to the area right outside the grand mosque, this famous bridge dates back to the first century BC! Of course, it has been through frequent reconstruction over the centuries, but its Roman architecture and 16 arches over the river remain. You’ll definitely want to cross the bridge to see Torre de Calahorra. The fortified gate to the historic center is a great photo opportunity in and of itself.

Roman Bridge, - a must-visit on any Cordoba day trip or 1 or 2 day Cordoba itinerary

Mosque of Cordoba / Mezquita

The mosque of Cordoba, also known as the cathedral of Cordoba or Mezquita, is by far the top attraction in Cordoba. It was once an Islamic mosque but was later converted to a Catholic church. Construction of the mosque dates back to the late 700s. The architecture is quite impressive, especially considering the history and how long ago it was built. Its main prayer hall consists of 856 Moorish columns connected by alternating red and white striped arches. Keep reading below for a tip on how to tour the Cordoba mosque for free!

the prayer hall inside the mosque of Cordoba - one of the top things to do in Cordoba Spain in 2 days.
Inside the prayer hall at the mosque of Cordoba.

BOOK A GUIDED TOUR OF THE MOSQUE OF CORDOBA HERE.

Alcazar of the Christian Monarchs

One of the most beautiful places in all of Cordoba, the Alcazar of the Christian Monarchs is the perfect photography spot in Cordoba. Not far from the mosque, the medieval fortress served as one of the primary residences for Isabella I of Castile and Ferdinand II of Arago. It is where the Spanish monarchs met with Christopher Columbus before his voyage to the Americas. With pristine gardens and square towers on its four corners, the alcazar is not only picturesque, it is a fascinating, historical place in Spain.

Cordoba Alcazar of the Christian Monarchs garden - one of the prettiest things to see in Cordoba in 2 days
The gardens at the Alcazar of the Christian Monarchs is one of the most beautiful things to see in Cordoba.

BOOK A GUIDED TOUR OF THE ALCAZAR OF THE CHRISTIAN MONARCHS HERE.

Palacio de Viana

Cordoba is known for its lovely, flower-filled interior patios and courtyards. While in Cordoba, I definitely recommend dining at a restaurant with a patio, and possibly even staying in a hotel or apartment with a patio where you can relax during the siesta hours or at night. During your two days in Cordoba, a visit to Palacio de Viana is a great way to spend one afternoon. Roughly a 30 minute walk from the mosque, Palacio de Viana is a palace featuring 12 courtyards, as well as art collections and artifacts in the interior of the palace. These courtyards make for quiet, intimate spots which are perfect for capturing the beauty and unique vibe of Cordoba.

BOOK A GUIDED TOUR OF PALACIO DE VIANA HERE.

Why you should spend more than 1 day in Cordoba

Andalusia, Spain is a region with many micro-communities. While similar in some ways, each community has its own unique atmosphere and ambiance. Despite their proximity, Cordoba has a different feel than Seville or Ronda, which are both about an hour away by train. Cordoba is worth visiting simply for the pretty, historical sites but if you spend at least 2 days in Cordoba, you’ll also have the opportunity to get a real feel for the town and its atmosphere. You’ll also want to spend some time simply roaming the streets of the historic Jewish Quarter and taking pictures of the beautiful area and flower-filled patios.

Things to know if visiting Cordoba with kids

If visiting Cordoba with kids, there are a few things to keep in mind when planning your trip. 

Cordoba with kids - mom and daughter in Cordoba Spain
Visiting Cordoba with kids? Admission to most attractions in Cordoba is free for kids!

Summer in Cordoba, Spain is hot

As I mentioned earlier, we happened to be visiting Cordoba during a massive heatwave. Temperatures were well over 100 degrees Fahrenheit during the peak heat of the day. However, even if you are not visiting during a heatwave, summer in Cordoba is sizzling. It is one of the hottest places in Spain. So, if visiting Cordoba in June, July, or August be prepared for warm temperatures.  

Bring a stroller

I typically recommend a baby carrier for travel or a framed child carrier for toddlers and young children, but trust me when I say, if visiting Cordoba in summer, you do not want a child strapped to you for long periods of time. Even if you have a breathable carrier, the heat is too intense to wear your child. I have never wished I had brought a portable travel stroller more than I did in Cordoba. Unlike some of the other places we visited on our Spain itinerary, Cordoba was relatively flat and easy to navigate with a stroller. 

Plan accordingly to take advantage of free days/times

If visiting Cordoba on a budget, you’ll definitely want to plan ahead to take advantage of the days and times when attractions are free. Here are a few free attractions in Cordoba to keep in mind when planning what days you want to visit. 

Mosque of Cordoba

The mosque of Cordoba is free during the first hour of the day, from 8:30-9:30 a.m. Monday through Saturday. Plan to get there early as people start lining up to get in around 8am, sometimes earlier. For children under the age of 10, entry is free any day or time.

Palacio de Viana

The palace is free on Wednesdays from 2-5 p.m. for all entrants. So if you are lucky enough to visit Cordoba mid-week, make sure to take advantage of this free opportunity and visit the palace and it’s incredible patios.

Flamenco performances

We noticed several advertisements around Cordoba for complimentary flamenco performances during certain hours of the day as a draw to get tourists into their restaurants. We took advantage of one of the shows. While it had flamenco-style live music, there was not a flamenco dancer or performance like we experienced during our 3 days in Seville. Some of the other performances may have flamenco dancers, so be sure to check them out before you go.  

Where to stay in Cordoba, Spain for 2 days

If you decide to spend 2 days in Cordoba, Spain, you’ll want a hotel or apartment near the mosque and all the other major tourist attractions. If arriving at the train station, there are numerous hotels and apartments in varying price ranges that can be found between Avenue de America (where the train station is located) and the mosque. We stayed near Palacio de Vianas, and while it was a pretty, quiet area, the walk to the main attractions in Cordoba was a bit far. A better option might be Hotel NH Collection Amistad Cordoba or Apartmentos los Patios de la Juderia, both of which have incredible reviews and offer beautiful pools which would be perfect during the siesta hours.

Booking.com

Have a question or comment about this 2-day Cordoba itinerary or the top things to do in Cordoba, Spain? We’d love to hear from you and always try to respond to our readers. Leave your thoughts in the comments below.

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