If you've planned your trip to Spain to include just Barcelona and Andalusia, you have the small matter of approximately 800km separating the two destinations. It's advised to break up this journey with a few days in Madrid. But if that doesn't interest you, you're in luck: the high-speed AVE train will carry you straight to Andalusia in around four-and-a-half hours, with Cordoba the first stop on the way.
There are a variety of transport options to get from Barcelona to Cordoba via public and private transport, so choose the one that best fits your budget and comfort level.
Cordoba is the best connected of all the cities in Andalusia: it takes just four-and-a-half hours to get from Barcelona to Cordoba by direct high-speed AVE train. For this reason, Cordoba makes a good base for exploring the whole of Andalusia (it's also better placed for exploring Seville and Granada than any other city in the region). The cost of a ticket is typically around $100.00.
The seats on the train are comfortable, with a rack above for luggage, and often outlets to charge electronics. Onboard you'll find a small cafeteria area that offers hot and cold sandwiches, salads, and snacks. Alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks are also available for purchase.
The bus from Barcelona to Cordoba takes a lot longer by train and is only a little cheaper. The coach gets you from Barcelona to Cordoba in 14 hours and costs around $80.00. You can book online and print out your e-ticket at home.
Driving from Barcelona to Cordoba takes about nine hours, going via Valencia. The major car rental agencies all have offices in Barcelona, but be sure to book ahead to reserve a vehicle. It is also vital to understand and follow the rules of the road in Spain.
A few key points to keep in mind: Parking a car next to a yellow line is not allowed—and it will probably result in the car getting towed by the local authorities. Always wear a seat belt, and the use of mobile phones while driving is prohibited.
Remember to bring your driver's license and always inspect a rental car before signing any documents.
Another good option for getting from Barcelona to Cordoba is on a guided tour. Viator.com has a five-day tour of Cordoba, Granada, and Seville with a short stop in Toledo.
The tour picks you up in Barcelona and takes you by bus to all the sights (including the Alhambra in Granada) and drops you off in Madrid at the end of your five days. Four nights of three- or four-star accommodation is included, as is breakfast and dinner/lunch on four of the five days. A great benefit of a guided tour is you won't have to worry at all about logistics and can simply sit back and enjoy the views of the Spanish countryside.