Actualizado: 17 sept 2019

A fantastic example of Historical Urban Landscape is my city: Cordoba, the city of the three cultures. Cordoba is a mix of different cultures and this historical wealth did that was declared World Heritage in 1985. This city is situated in a privileged place with the Guadalquivir River, and in the bank of it there is a place called the “Sotos de la Albolafia” a natural monument (according to the Junta de Andalucia’s definitions).

The historical center of Cordoba now comprises the streets surrounding the monuments and all the parcels of land around these, together with all the blocks of houses, called Juderia declared in 1994 W.H. site, around the mosque-cathedral (declared W.H. site in 1985). This area extends to the bank of the Guadalquivir River with the Roman Bridge and the Calahorra Tower, the Alcazar de los Reyes Cristianos and San Basilio quarter. The heritage that we can find in this area is a show of the different cultures that have coexisted here.

In 2013, Córdoba had another important event: “La fiesta de los Patios” declared Intangible World Heritage. This fiesta is celebrated for 12 days in the beginning of May. The patio houses are communal or individual house with a shared patio located in the city’s historical quarters principally in San Basilio quarter.

Patio is a peculiar cultural space with a particular architecture and abundant blooming plants, where, during the fiesta inhabitants freely welcome all visitors to admire their beauty and the skill involved in their creation. In the patios is usual to see people singing, flamenco guitar playing and dancing, other example of World Heritage, because Flamenco was declared Intangible World Heritage in 2010. In this area we can find a lot of restaurants with traditional food where people can eat many different dishes such as Salmorejo, Rabo de Toro, Pastel Cordobes, etc, that form part of the Mediterranean Diet (declared Intangible World Heritage in 2013). Thus in the same quarter we can find five World Heritages: the Mezquita, historical center, Fiesta de los Patios, Flamenco and Mediterranean Diet.

In the Guadalquivir River there is an area, called “Sotos de la Albolafia”, that was declared natural monument in 2001, because there are a great variety if the bird life and ducks (one called “Malvasia” is endangered). The protected area is the space between the Roman Bridge and the San Rafael Bridge. The city hall has a project for the urban tract of the Guadalquivir River: to build a pier that will allow people to practice sports and recreation activities in the river. Beside, in the banks of the river there are 3 ancient mills (San Antonio, de Enmedio and Albolafia) where sometimes there are performances and expositions.

In my opinion, Cordoba is a fantastic example of Historical Urban Landscape, because beside all this, a lot of festival, events and performances (Holy Week, Guitar Festival, Equestrian Show..) have a “stage” that is this ancient and historical center, which in the middle age was a “capital” with one million inhabitants of the Omeyas’ Caliphate and a beacon of culture for this “side of the world”.

For all this, I think that Cordoba is an example of the city where the spatial organizations of heritage to include the community, the social and cultural relations, and the tangible and intangible dimensions related to cultural diversity and local identity, and where there are present at the sometime the historical, the cultural and the environment values making the whole city a site of outstanding universal value!

#Cordoba #CulturalLandscape #WorldHeritage

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