Travel through Spain to explore the heritage, history, and culture of Al-Andalus, the Islamic Andalusia of the 8th-15th centuries. Marvel at unique sites such as the Alhambra in Granada and the Great Mosque of Cordoba, and visit charming villages far from the usual tourist paths. Consider four Routes of the Al-Andalus Legacy, all certified Cultural Routes of the Council of Europe.
An adventure of the spirit from Cordoba to Granada, this route through 24 towns is a pleasure for the senses beyond a history lesson.
Cordoba at its zenith was a dazzling light that made other Western cities pale in comparison. Granada was seen as a decadently refined civilization on the brink of destruction. It was the final city that the Catholic monarchs reclaimed in 1492; today, it still has distinctly Moorish aspects. Granada’s culinary delights, artisanal crafts, and cityscape all bear the imprint of its rich and glorious history.
This route follows the 1829 journey of the American Romantic writer Washington Irving, who was fascinated by the richness of the Moorish civilization in Spain.
The route runs along the main trading route between the southern Christian territories and the Nasrid kingdom of Granada. It unites the capitals of the two traditional regions of Lower and Upper Andalusia; the plains of Campiña and Vega; and 23 municipalities with an extraordinary wealth of landscapes, heritage, towns and cities rich in historical, and legendary and literary allusions.
This route takes you deep into the history of the ancient kingdom of Granada, which was ruled by the Nasrid dynasty from the 13th-15th centuries.
The remains of fortifications and castles located along the route recall the territorial struggles between Muslims and Christians that took place in the area. It starts in the town of Navas de Tolosa, passes through Úbeda, Baeza and Jaén, and ends in Granada. The route crosses through 27 towns, as well as beautiful natural areas such as the Sierra Morena, Sierra Magina and the Sierra de Cazorla y Segura.
From the 11th-13th century, the Almoravids and Almohads ruled the territory of Al-Andalus. On this route, discover architectural heritage, mainly of castles and defensive elements. It spans 400 kilometers from Tarifa to Granada via two different branches, one through various towns inland and one along the coast of Malaga and Cadiz. Jerez de la Frontera and Ronda are just two of the 29 towns you will visit during this journey.
Five more routes make up the Routes of the Al-Andalus Legacy, itineraries that, beyond impressive architectural heritage, bring back to life the literature, art, science, graphic arts, gastronomy, fiestas and traditions of Al-Andalus. Eight centuries of coexistence left a profound mark on the land and its people, so the Andalusian legacy is alive and is everywhere.