Sep 1, 2015

Wordless - 345

Inviting your captions and titles on my wordless moments. 

 (Shot taken in Lisbon, Portugal.)

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Thank you very much dear friends for all your lovely comments in my previous post. Few of your comments here:

1. Talk about getting behind on one's paperwork! by Roger Owen Green
2. Now you see me, now you don't. by Rajesh Asarpota 
3. Speed demon by Sue
4. Marching against odds by P.N. Subramanian 
5. One moment I was dancing, and the next, I was frozen! by Sreesha Divakaran 

Wordless Wednesday, Outdoor Wednesday,   ABC Wednesday (H for Hook), Saturday Snapshot , Weekly Topshot , Silent Sunday, Wednesday Around the World


Souvenirs from Cordoba, Spain

So what did I get as reminder of my great experience in Cordoba?

What to buy: 

Souvenirs are plenty and it was not easy choosing just a couple of items to bring back home. Key rings and postcards, you will find them in plenty, Cordoba souvenir shops are stuffed with ‘flamenco dance’ associated stuffs. Clothes, hats, fans are available in different sizes, colors and prices. Locally made guitars are a big sought after item by music lovers and guitarists. Then there are plenty of stuffs and accessories made of leather, stuffs like wall ornaments, bracelets and more.

But what impressed me most were their art on local glazed pottery and their silver jewelry. The ceramic stuffs had such amazing designs and colors. Many of them had the red and white arches of Mezquita made on them.

Silver jewelry through glass pane. Sorry for the reflections.
A hair pin, many centuries old, this was a display piece i n a Jewish museum there.

I picked up these.

Our World Tuesday 

Aug 30, 2015

5 Must See Places in Cordoba, Spain

Cordoba was an important Roman city in the middle ages and it still has the reputation of being important in the map for tourists of Spain. Cordoba is an amazing compact place with major sightseeing sites within walking distance of each other. You can easily plan to spend just a day here and yet cover the major sites. We did exactly that. We were there on a day’s trip from Seville. The 5 must see places of interests are marked in the map and a short description on each follows the map.

1. Mezquita (Great Mosque)

Without any doubt this is the outstanding monument of Cordoba. It has the unique distinction of being the only religious place which houses the temple of another religion. The double arched painted in stripes of white and red, some 800 of them makes a mesmerizing sight. Before being Mosque (VIII, IX and X centuries), it was a Visigoth temple and prior to that a Roman Temple. The place became Christianized 1236, during El-Rey Fernando III Kingdom. Most probably was also a Mozarabic and Jewish place to be. The tower (in the picture) was renovated in XVI and XVIII century, during Carlos V’s reign. This monument and the area including it included were declared a World Heritage site by UNESCO in 1994. The Cathedral inside the mosque is equally fascinating.
Tour time: 2hrs
Tickets are available at counter at site and not online.
Adults – 8euros, Children 10 to 14 4euros, children below 10 free.

2. Jewish Quarters and Synagogue

People actually stay here. This Jewish Quarters is an exciting mesh of narrow streets, far less commercialized than the area outside it. The most striking factor is the flower decked patios of this area. In the month of May, competitions are held as to who can put up the most beautiful patio laden with flowers. There are 2 important must see sights here: the 15th-century Mudéjar-style synagogue at the center of the quarter and the Casa de Sefarad (House of Spanish Jews) museum; both sights are on the Calle Judíos street.
 Time to tour: If you can tour the place without getting confused or lost in the narrow lanes you can complete this tour in one hour, for a relaxed tour with a halt for coffee to sit back and soak in the beauty of patios 2hours would be ideal.
Opening times: From Tuesday to Saturday 09:00 to 19:30
Closing days: Monday Weekend from 09:00 to 15:30 Closed: 1 May.
Ticket Prices General: €0.30
EU members: Admission free

3. Alcázar de los Reyes Cristianos (Castle of the Christian Monarchs)

This is the castle of Christian Monarchs built in 1328 by Alfonso XI. This served as the headquarters of Spanish Inquisition for almost 300 years. Worth seeing inside are the 3 towers: Tower of Lions, Tower of River, and Tower of Allegiance. There are ‘not to miss’ intricate and beautifully restored Roman mosaics. It was declared a Historical The Arabian style gardens here have wide variety of plants, palm trees, cypresses, orange and lemon, trees to be seen which overlook stone fountains and large ponds. A good combination of history and beauty!
Opening Times:
May and June- 10.00h -14.00h  17.30-18.30h
July and August- 08.30h -14.30h
September to 14th October- 10.00h – 14.00h 17.30h -18.30h
15th Oct to 30th April: 10.00h – 14.00h and 16.30-18.30h
Mondays Closed
Entrance: €1.87
Fridays Free

4. Puente Romano (Roman Bridge)

This Moorish bridge was built on the foundations of the Roman Bridge which existed since 1st century BC. It is made over the River Guadalquivir. The most striking factor are the arches, two of them are believed to be original ones. The length is around 250m; you can walk across to Tower of La Calahorra.
Time. Take a leisurely walk across the wide bridge.

5. Tower of La Calahorra

Cross the Roman Bridge over to south of Cordoba to visit the Tower of La Calahorra. This gate was originally built by the Moors and extensively restored by adding a third cylindrical shaped tower connecting the outer two by King Enrique II of Castile in 1369. This was done to defend the city from attack by his brother Pedro I the Cruel from the South. Later the monument was used a prison and then surprisingly as a girl’s school in 19th century. Noteworthy here is the fascinating museum which is educational with audio visual presentations which vividly depict how life was in Cordoba around the 10th Century AD when three cultures lived side by side Christianity, Muslim and Judaism. The Roman Bridge and the surrounding area in 2007 were awarded the EU prize for cultural heritage "Europa Nostra" in 2014.
Opening Times
Summer (May to September) 10.00 to 14.00 and 16.30 to 20.30
Winter (October to March) 10.00 to 18.00
Entrance: 4.50 euro, reduced 3.00 euro

Aug 29, 2015

Faces of India - 228

I saw the tourist framing herself for a pic by her friend. Seeing her framed so well I knew half my job of taking a pic was done, I immediately clicked the moment. The pic was taken at Adalaj Step well, Ahmadabad.

Faces of India, a series through which I intend to portray the various characters of my country whom I met during my travels. See more here


Aug 28, 2015

Seville Cathedral, Spain

Seville Cathedral was declared World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1987. This was built on the site of grand Almohad Mosque in the years 1402 – 1506. It was hard to capture the cathedral and its bell tower (Giralda) in the same frame. Giralda (ht. 105m) was the minaret of the mosque that existed there. This was constructed between the years 1184 to 1198. The cathedral is also famous as burial place of Christopher Columbus.

This is the 3rd largest church in the world. Unfortunately, five years after its completion, one of the main pillars collapsed and the dome was almost completely destroyed. The recovery works ended in 1519. In 1888, due to an earthquake, the dome collapsed again and all precious items under the dome was crushed beyond recovery.

Seville Cathedral has 15 doors in its 4 facades. This is the Door of Conception in north facade, which is kept closed except on festival days

General tickets 8euros, students 3euros.

Opening hours: 
Winter (September to June): Mondays 11:00 to 15:30; Tuesdays to Saturdays 11:00 to 17:00; Sundays 14:30 to 18:30 (mass takes place in the morning)
Summer (July & August): Mondays 9:30 to 14:30; Tuesdays to Saturdays 9:30 to 16:30; Sundays 14:30 to 18:30pm (mass takes place in the morning)

Seville Streets 

Following are some Seville street shots.

This one is for Saturday Critters

SkyWatch Friday