The hotel didn't have a room big enough for all eight of us so there was an apartment for six and then a little room down the street for two. The kids convinced us that we should take the little room so we were able to have a sweet Valentines date.
::The view from our room
In the morning we went over to have breakfast with the kids and we gave each other Valentines
We checked out of the hotel and put our bags in the car -- the very grumpy garage gentleman was also there bright and early! Then we headed over to the cathedral
When the Christians finally conquered the Moors they wanted to pull out their usual move of tearing down the mosque and building their cathedral on top of it, but the locals protested because the Moors had actually built their mosque on top of on old church and the Christians, still considering it sacred ground, had been secretly worshiping there for the seven or so centuries that the Muslims were in power. How is that for convoluted? But I'm grateful because I love the Moorish architecture! Way better than boring old Visigoth, am I right?
::A lot of the minarets were turned into the bell towers of the new church as is the case here
::A courtyard with orange trees and columns to navigate
::And then we walked in! I was in complete awe! Definitely my favorite cathedral ever. It is called the Mezquita in reference to being mostly still a mosque.
::The boys loved this window into the basement showing old Roman tiles from the original Christian church
::The Catholics just took all of the alcoves and stuck saints in them -- perfect!
::The boys patiently stopping their antics to let me snap their picture
::Seriously, can you stand it?
::Phin really liked all of the gold things.
::But I'll just take these arches, please and thank you
We stayed in there for at least two hours. We would walk for a bit and then sit and look and think. There were a lot of people in there, but it was dim and vast so it was peaceful nonetheless. When we exited it was pouring rain! So we ran over to the Roman Bridge and then went back to our car for some lunch.
::View of Cordoba from the old bridge
Next we drove over to a palace, but we walked right past it, haha! Nothing is ever easy for us. We did find this cool church
Then back to the palace. For some reason, I am always very skeptical of the guide books. I always think they're probably exaggerating about something being awesome so when we got to the palace and were told that there wasn't another tour for an hour, plus it cost more than we thought, we didn't know whether to wait or not. But, I'm so glad we did! It was awesome! They were right. I'll never doubt you again, little guide book.
::I took this picture the first time we walked past, not knowing it was the building we were looking for -- but I loved the color of the blue trim!
::We toured the gardens first -- there were 12 different courtyards that all had different themes. I would be happy with just one, I'm not greedy.
::Orange trees esplanaded (not a word) along the walls
We weren't allowed to take pictures of the inside, but believe me, it was so beautiful and amazing! There was this one little blue bedroom that was absolute perfection! Ella and I are going to try to recreate it someday... if we can remember what it looks like, that is.
And then we made our way back to the car, playing soccer with stray oranges all along the way
We made our way over to Sevilla and arrived in the late afternoon. It took us quite a while to find the apartment and then get our bearings and our dinner so we didn't explore much that day. Hopefully I can get back here tomorrow to knock the next day out!