We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
The latest reviews. The lowest prices. The perfect place to shop for hotels.

“Fascinating”

Archaeological Ensemble of Madinat Al-Zahra
Book In Advance
More Info
$26.18*
and up
Medina Azahara Tour from Cordoba
Ranked #9 of 137 things to do in Cordoba
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: Monday Closed
Barcelona, Spain
Level Contributor
72 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
“Fascinating”
Reviewed January 12, 2014

We went here on our last morning in Córdoba on a guided tour with Córdoba Visión. We had a great guide (Arturo) who really brought the tour alive with his humorous and well-informed commentary. We didn't really have enough time to visit the museum so may have to go back there at some time in the future! A fascinating glimpse into the history and architecture of this region.

Visited January 2014
Helpful?
Thank Lizzispain
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

1,752 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    942
    572
    175
    39
    24
Date | Rating
  • Arabic first
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Greek first
  • Indonesian first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Norwegian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Looe, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
217 reviews
84 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 124 helpful votes
“Well worth the short (8km) trip from the city of Cordoba”
Reviewed November 27, 2013

This site has a fantastic museum, starting with a great auditorium film about the site and how it worked in the 11th century. Very interesting (and with English subtitles). The museum has a good exhibition, and a view over the excavated site. This was once city of 12000 people, built in just 10 years in the C11th. And was sacked after just 85 years, not discovered again unlit the early C20th. After visiting the museum there is a bus to take you to the site itself. A really great visit.

Visited November 2013
Helpful?
Thank LooeMan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
62 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 67 helpful votes
“Wonderful museum, issues with user experience.”
Reviewed November 23, 2013

Before visiting this amazing site, you really need to know HOW to get the most out of your visit. We have been here three times now, and have only just learnt, and we’d like to pass our tips on to you.

On our first visit, some years ago, there was no museum. We drove right up to the archeological site and enjoyed it immensely - particularly the Caliphs' Court which gave the most stunning impression of a palace that was richer by far than the more theatrical Alhambra.

On our second visit, we took a friend to try to recreate the pleasure of the first visit. We were short of time, and so decided to miss out the museum and go straight to the site. But as others have noted, the Caliphs' Court is now off limits. This, together with the un-helpfulness of the staff and the difficulties put in the way of people wanting to visit the site prompted us to write a very critical review here.

So on our third visit, we began to get it right, we first, made sure we had enough time (three hours). Then on arrival, we went straight to the museum. The building itself is very beautiful and intelligently designed to serve its users. The introductory video is excellent. It runs through the day: if you’ve missed the start, it is worth waiting: you can visit the (quite good) shop. The books on sale are mainly in Spanish; (if you want to browse a superb collection of books on the period and the culture, go the Granada Science museum. It has an absolutely stunning international bookshop).

The Museum itself has a remarkable collection, beautifully organised to explain the city and its culture to the visitor. They use much of the same well made computer generated material. What is tragic is the desperately poor quality of the translation of explanatory captions into English. Don’t miss either going upstairs to the viewing gallery that lets you get a glimpse of the location in which the city was built, or the going around the corridors that overlook the museum’s conservation area and physical archives.

So, make enough time, put the emphasis of your visit on the Museum and prepare to be patient with the surly un-helpfulness of the transport to the site and the staff.

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
6 Thank Quentar_people
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney
Level Contributor
51 reviews
31 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
“not many muslims left in Spain, just amazing Islamic remains”
Reviewed November 3, 2013

The museum is an incredible piece of design and really explains and educates very well. But in some ways this site was more amazing when I visited it 5 years ago before the museum was built.

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
Thank SydneyKath
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
.
Level Contributor
35 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Amazing presentation & Museum brings the site to life! A shame the main bits of the Archaeological site are closed off”
Reviewed October 31, 2013

I was just as impressed by this museum, the presentation and the site as I was when I first visited it. However it's a shame the main sites of the excavation including the Caliphs court are closed off for ongoing work.

Also, the Madina Az-Zahra bus previously would give a guide booklet for the site and show a video touching on the history of the place. The booklet and the video are not provided now which I think takes a bit away from the whole experience.

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Bilal_96
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Archaeological Ensemble of Madinat Al-Zahra also viewed

 
Cordoba, Province of Cordoba
Cordoba, Province of Cordoba
 

Been to Archaeological Ensemble of Madinat Al-Zahra? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing