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Cordoba Patios Festival – A Burst of Colour in Southern Spain

Cordoba Patios Festival – A Burst of Colour in Southern Spain

Cordoba Patios Festival is one of the most colourful events in the Spanish calendar. Taking place in one of the most photogenic cities in Spain. Cordoba. Every month of May the city blooms with plantpots crammed into each corner.

The next Patios of Cordoba festival is on from Monday 4th to Sunday 17th May 2020

Cordoba Patios

If you are planning to visit Cordoba before or after that date, don´t worry as this springtime tradition can be witnessed throughout the year.  Since being declared UNESCO Cultural Heritage in 2012, many patios are open to visitors every day.

The most accesible ones are in the Alcazar Viejo district. Buy a ticket with details of which patios are open for visiting.

Cordoba Patios Spain by piccavey

Plantpots & Flowers

These beautiful Andalusian Patios which you can now visit most of the year are  close to the Alcazar de los Reyes Catolicos on San Basilio street. The group of neighbours have each patio clearly marked with a sign outside. When I visited I saw 7 different houses on the route.

The entrance fee was a few euros per person and was well worth it.

Cordoba Patios Spain by piccavey

Patios de Cordoba

While walking around these colourful Andalusian homes I try to imagine all the work involved. Lots of watering, deadheading and replacing faded plants. Each display has so many individual plants and decorative elements. With the hot temperatures in Cordoba each summertime this really is a labour of love.

Cordoba Patios Spain by piccavey

The Cordoba Patios remind me of the Crosses of May, another floral festival celebrated in Granada and Cordoba each Spring.

Andalusian Tradition

The patios aren’t just about the flowers and plant pots. They are also about local traditions and customs. Often yo

Cordoba Patios Spain by piccavey

u can see local ceramics, baskets or tools decorating the walls too. Agricultural gadgets or old kitchen implements may be displayed alongside the plantpots.

Cordoba patios are popular here due to the building style. Many years ago the large population of the city and growth in a short space of time made space become a premium. So families lived in these buildings and shared the patio, the central courtyard.

As they didnt have gardens or alot of space, they used the walls to decorate them and also to have a cooler space with the plants and flowers refreshing the area.

Visiting the Patios

At first it seems odd knocking on the door and asking to be let into the house of a stranger. But it´s soon clear that the people doing this have a passion for their home, the tradition and for the festival. I was very happy to see these Cordoba Patios. The photos don´t quite seem to do them justice.

When you see these spaces in real life they are much more of impact.

Of course if you do visit when the Patio festival is one expect long queues at each patio before you can go in to see.

Cordoba Patios Spain by piccavey Palacio Viana

Palacio de Viana

Another way to see Cordoba Patios is to head over to the Palacio de Viana. This grand home has 12 patios and a garden. Located at the top of the city, close to Cuesta de  Bailio, this fits in neatly with the Patio and garden theme. A 16th Century building with a layout completely planned around the outdoor spaces.

All the rooms of the house look out onto a garden or patio. It is an adorable space to enjoy while you are in Cordoba.

Book Patios of Viana Ticket

There are two entrance tickets, one is just the gardens and patios. (as above) The other combined ticket allows you to see the inside of the house too. The Palacio de Viana patios are packed full of fountains, trees, plants and flowers.

If you are a green fingers I´m sure you´ll enjoy this visit.

Cordoba Patios Spain Palacio de Viana

Floral Displays

This vertical garden pictured above was a stunning curtain of tiny blue flowers. It was actually a little too big to fit into the shot. Vertical gardens seem to be a new trend in gardening now but they have actually been around for sometime.

Cordoba years ago wanted to use all the space to grow plants making sure that the temperatures inside the building were kept cooler.  Moving upwards with features like these was a clear plan to keep the freshness in these patio gardens.

Cordoba Patios Spain Palacio de Viana

Jardin de la Reja

This garden with this delicate water feature reminded me of a similar fountain in Granada´s Generalife. This garden above is called Jardin de la Reja. While here you could  hear the peaceful sound of the trickling water and the birds in the trees.

Its such a soothing space, its difficult to imagine that you are in the city centre.

Cordoba Patios Spain Palacio de Viana

Inside the Palacio de Viana

The visit to inside of the house was a guided tour. It was scheduled just as we had arrived. The house has tapestries, fine arts, chandeliers and old books from centuries ago in it´s library. Some of the rooms inside reminded me of Chatsworth House in Derbyshire as the time period of some of the furniture was a similar.

Palacio de Viana Cordoba Patios Spain.png

Some of the delicate furnishings or glass chandeliers were quite extravagant and eye catching. Find out more on the website: Palacio de Viana:

Cordoba Patios Spain Hotel Selu

Staying in Cordoba

On this trip to Cordoba I stayed at Hotel Selu A three star hotel close to the Victoria Gardens. In the commercial area and just a short walk to the Juderia. This was a practical hotel for families and comfortable. For the quality of the rooms the price was very reasonable.

Recently refurbished in Early 2018 this hotel was comfortable and quiet. Situated on Calle Eduardo Dato this is a 500 metre walk to the Juderia and main tourist area. Yet as it is located in the commercial area with the shops and market on the doorstep, this is a handy location for your Cordoba City break.

Also the bus to Medina Azahara leaves from Glorieta Cruz Roja which is also very close by.

You may also like to check out my guide to Restaurants in Cordoba

Hotel Selu Cordoba


This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click through and make a purchase, I will receive a small commission. All thoughts, feelings and opinions shared on this blog and in this post are my own.

  1. Mark says:

    Thanks a lot for this article, it looks great. I was amazed at what a great destination Cordoba is not only the patios but the Mezquita and Medina Azahara as well. Amazingly we were there about the same time, visiting the same spots and we have written an article as well ! Keep up the good work.

    • Molly says:

      I have written this article, another one about where to eat around Cordoba and still have one final article to write about the main monuments and historic sites
      Cordoba has so much to offer and is wonderful in springtime!

  2. Barry O Leary says:

    Such a great post on Cordoba. I’ve been a few times, as it’s just up the road from us in Seville. It’s one of my favourite places to stroll about and really take in the Spanish culture and way of life. I’d love to live there fir a while and really get to know the place. I’ve heard flamenco is superb there too, any ideas about that?



    • Molly says:

      Cordoba is an adorable place to wander..
      the Flamenco sounds good at the Arab Baths but I havent been myself
      I would also like to see the Horse show sometime too..


  3. Visiting Córdoba – says:

    […] Good map of old Córdoba: Images of the Tower of Calahorra and the Gardens of the Alcázar de los Reyes Cristianos from:,_Andalusia Images from Julio Romero de Torres from: See some fine pictures of Cordoban patios in […]

  4. Tunai says:

    I will be in Cordoba in mid-June this year. How long does it take to see the 7 patios and what are the opening hours? And how long to see the 12 patios in Palacio de Viana? Was the heat a problem? Thanks very much!

    • Molly says:

      Hello, the Patios of the Alcazar Viejo are open Mondays and Wednesdays to Saturday 10:00 til 2pm and 5pm to 8pm (they are closed on Tuesdays) In June I would allow 2 hours for the Palacio de Viana visit and 2 hours for the Patios in the Alcazar Viejo. This depends on how long you spend in each and if you stop to take a lot of photos of course. The heat in June will be high but July and August are much worse. Avoid walking around from 1pm until 6pm if possible. Stay in the shade during this time or somewhere air conditioned. Always remember to wear plenty of suncream and a hat. Enjoy!

  5. […] are adorned to participate in a competition as original as colorful. It’s the Festival of Cordoban Patios, one of the city’s most beloved popular fiestas and which allows visitors to enter into the […]

  6. robin says:

    The crowds at the festival don’t sound too appealing but the patios certainly are. Either way, LOVE Cordoba!

  7. John Kramer says:

    Great article Molly! I didn’t go this year and really regretted it. My colleagues did and produced this fantastic video – – hope you like it!

  8. Paddy Waller says:

    Great stuff Molly and lovely photos..what a city and once had one of the best(and weirdest) road trips ever to Cordoba…I must write a post about it..

  9. Lorna says:

    Another great blog post of our fabulous city 🙂 Thanks Molly!

  10. Sue Sharpe says:

    Beautiful piece, Molly! I really should get myself over to Córdoba more often!
    (I do want that kitchen!)

  11. Mo says:

    I absolutely adore this Molly! I had wondered how they managed to water plants so high up. The blue plant pots look fabulous against the white too. Thanks for a lovely article.

    • Molly says:

      It was great to speak to the owners on a quiet morning, to get an insight into the patios. When the festival is on they are queuing down the road…

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