What to do in Andalusia

Posted By on September 13, 2014

The Casa de Sefarad, the museum of Jewish culture. :: AYTO DE CRDOBA

In the foothills of the Sierra Morena, bathed by the waters of the Guadalquivir river, glitters one of the most beautiful jewels of Andaluca. Cordoba and its enormous cultural legacy reminds us of the different peoples which have lived in the city and which turned it into a highly privileged place, marked by the presence of four great civilisations - Roman, Islamic, Jewish and Christian.

The city is testimony of greater past times not because it presents a shabby down at heel facade nowadays but because history recalls that it was once capital of the grandest empires, such as that of the Omeya caliphate.

However, while it is precisely that, its Moorish era, and that of its birth, the Roman epoch, which delineates its streets, the Cordoba that we know today would not be as we see it without the Sephardic culture left by the Jews. The mixture of different religions who lived side by side - Jewish, Muslim and Christian - created the unique city.

It was during the times of Al-ndalus when the Jewish inhabited an area still known as La Judera. Its irregular cobbled streets are some of those most sought out by tourists, who find in its corners the soul of a culture capable of captivating all of the senses.

For this very reason Cordoba is ideal to host the XV edition of the European Day of Jewish Culture which also takes place in a number of other cities and this year takes the theme, Women in Judaism.

This initiative was launched in France in 1996 and since then has grown, spreading with each year to more cities with a more extensive programme. In Europe the day is celebrated on September 14th, in countries as distinct as Austria, Bulgaria, Italy and Portugal. Also participating are the 24 cities which are part of the network of Jewish quarters in Spain, such as (in Andaluca) Cordoba, Lucena, Seville and Jan, with others further afield like Toledo, Barcelona and Valencia.

In the case of Cordoba, the programme goes beyond just one day with the second consecutive edition of the Otoo Sefard, whichbegins today and will continue until Sunday September 28th - more than two weeks to enjoy the city and its Jewish culture and history.

Jos Antonio Nieto, mayor of Cordoba, doesnt hesitate to point out that we have become the city with the biggest celebration of this kind. And there is no reason to doubt him because the programme offers an endless amount of possibilities to discover Jewish traditions and the traces left in Cordoba.

La Judera, part of the citys historic centre which is a Unesco World Heritage site, is home to two main attractions, the Synagogue and the Casa de Sefarad.

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What to do in Andalusia

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