About SpottingHistory

What Is It?

SpottingHistory.com is an independent site to provide reliable traveling tips to historic sites and sights all around the world. The site is made by individuals interested in history and historic places all around the world. The purpose is to provide an easy-use, map-based service to help people find interesting places to visit on their journeys.

How To Use It?

The The main page displays you the top 200 most interesting (based on views and user rating) sites in the current map area. When you browse or zoom the map, sites will be updated dynamically. When you zoom in, you will always see more and more complete list of all historic sites in map area.

On the right hand (below the map on mobile devices) you will see list of topmost interesting sites in the present map area. If you click any site link you will see the overview window. You can take a look at photos of selected attraction by clicking them. If you want to see more information about selected site, just click the Read More link at the bottom of info window. It will open a complete description of the selected site. Show on Map button correspondingly zooms and centers map to the selected site.

On the description page you will see all information of the selected attraction. You can also comment the site to help other people to decide where to visit or not.

Top Sights page shows the editor's picks of interesting historic sights for example in a city of region.

Tags page helps you to find all sites tagged with a specific tag, like Top Historic Sites in Helsinki.

Historical Periods gives you information of specific historical period in a selected country and lists the most interesting sites from that period.

City Guides comprise the all historic sites in a specific city.

Terms of Use

SpottingHistory.com uses photo material loaded from Flickr or Wikimedia Commons. In every case we respect copyrights and all photos are always showed with adequate copyright information. If you want SpottingHistory.com not to use your photos in previously mentioned web services, please contact us using the form below and we will remove links. No photos or thumbnails are copied or stored into SpottingHistory.com servers, only imagelinks via service provider API's. If you upload new site, the photos you can select to be shown on the site page are automatically allowed for commercial use.

All map icons are downloaded from the Map Icons Collection. We thank Nicolas Mollet for this great service helping us to develop SpottingHistory.com.

Feedback

If you have any questions, new ideas or you just wish to tell what rocks/sucks, please do not hesitate to contact us using the form below. We would be also very thankful if you notify us about any problems you encounter when using this site.


Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Mosque–Cathedral of Córdoba

The Mosque–Cathedral of Córdoba, also known as the Great Mosque of Córdoba and the Mezquita is regarded as one of the most accomplished monuments of Moorish architecture.

According to a traditional account, a small Visigoth church, the Catholic Basilica of Saint Vincent of Lérins, originally stood on the site. In 784 Abd al-Rahman I ordered construction of the Great Mosque, which was considerably expanded by later Muslim rulers. The mosque underwent numerous subsequent changes: Abd al-Rahman II ordered a new minaret, while in 961 Al-Hakam II enlarged the building and enriched the Mihrab. The last of such reforms was carried out by Almanzor in 987. It was connected to the Caliph"s palace by a raised walkway, mosques within the palaces being the tradition for previous Islamic rulers – as well as Christian Kings who built their palaces adjacent to churches. The Mezquita reached its current dimensions in 987 with the completion of the outer naves and courtyard.

In 1236, Córdoba was conquered by King Ferdinand III of Castile, and the centre of the mosque was converted into a Catholic cathedral. Alfonso X oversaw the construction of the Villaviciosa Chapel and the Royal Chapel within the mosque. The kings who followed added further Christian features, such as King Henry II rebuilding the chapel in the 14th century. The minaret of the mosque was also converted to the bell tower of the cathedral. It was adorned with Santiago de Compostela"s captured cathedral bells. Following a windstorm in 1589, the former minaret was further reinforced by encasing it within a new structure.

The most significant alteration was the building of a Renaissance cathedral nave in the middle of the expansive structure. The insertion was constructed by permission of Charles V, king of Castile and Aragon. Artisans and architects continued to add to the existing structure until the late 18th century.

Architecture

The building"s floor plan is seen to be parallel to some of the earliest mosques built from the very beginning of Islam. It had a rectangular prayer hall with aisles arranged perpendicular to the qibla, the direction towards which Muslims pray. The prayer hall was large and flat, with timber ceilings held up by arches of horseshoe-like appearance.

In planning the mosque, the architects incorporated a number of Roman columns with choice capitals. Some of the columns were already in the Gothic structure; others were sent from various regions of Iberia as presents from the governors of provinces. Ivory, jasper, porphyry, gold, silver, copper, and brass were used in the decorations. Marvellous mosaics and azulejos were designed. Later, the immense temple embodied all the styles of Morisco architecture into one composition.

The building is most notable for its arcaded hypostyle hall, with 856 columns of jasper, onyx, marble, granite and porphyry. These were made from pieces of the Roman temple that had occupied the site previously, as well as other Roman buildings, such as the Mérida amphitheatre. The double arches were an innovation, permitting higher ceilings than would otherwise be possible with relatively low columns. The double arches consist of a lower horseshoe arch and an upper semi-circular arch.