Although not as well-known as its famous neighbours (Seville, Granada and Malaga), Cordoba is at the heart of Andalucía and borders all three of these better-known provinces!
The Moors weren’t mistaken when they chose to make the province of Cordoba the centre of the known world in the 8th century. And even in the 21st century, Cordoba continues to play a key role in the life of Spain, representing a crossroads for Spain’s modern infrastructure. High-speed trains (called AVEs) transport people to and from Madrid, Seville, Valencia and Malaga. Yet the province has a ‘sleepy’ feel to it and has yet to succumb to an invasion of overseas visitors and ex-pats, unlike, it might be said, Malaga, Seville and Granada!
Although Cordoba is only a 55-minute train ride from the coast, 45 minutes away from Seville and less than two hours by train from Madrid, once you’re here it’s quite easy to feel that you are far from the hurly-burly of 21st century life. Whether you live in one of the many towns and villages that dot the landscape of the province, or are resident in the provincial capital, Cordoba City, there is a feeling of having the best of both worlds: old-world charm and 21st-century convenience.
Although many foreign nationals resident in Spain would cite the weather as a major attraction of life here, the climate in Cordoba is not for the faint-hearted! Yes, winters are short and relatively mild. However, long, hot summers can start in March and go on till November, and temperatures in the high 40s are standard throughout July and August!
Although there isn’t much in the way of industry, agriculture sustains rural areas, and olive oil production is a major contributor to the local economy. In towns, villages and cities, the service industries, especially tourism, dominate and there is considerable demand for language classes.
Gastronomically-speaking, there are few places in Spain which can equal what Cordoba can offer. The ready availability of fresh local produce all year long means that you can always enjoy the best food whether you eat out or at home. Food, wine and other staples are still available at remarkably attractive prices and many teachers who choose to live here claim to enjoy a much better quality of life than they would if they lived ‘back home’.
So … sunshine, good food, wine, history, culture, and charm! What’s not to like?