For centuries southern Spain was ruled by the Moors, a group of Muslims from North Africa, and over the years their culture, religion, architecture and more spread throughout their empire. Alhambra in Granada is one of the finest examples of Islamic architecture around and wandering its numerous palaces, courtyards and gardens is a mesmerising affair as intricate geometrical designs, carvings and ostentatious decorations greet you wherever you look. Simply spectacular, the royal complex needs to be seen to be believed and exploring all of Alhambra’s amazing sights will live long in the memory. Let’s take a look at what you just to have to see on your visit to Granada.
Located on top of a hill in the centre of the city, Alhambra is a massive place with a plethora of great things for you to see and do and visitors are sure to love all of its astounding sights. Its huge ruddy walls form an intimidating barricade around the old sultans’ palaces and the citadel’s fortifications date back to the thirteenth century. Known as Alcazaba, this section is also home to a watchtower which offers up breathtaking views over the city below it and the Sierra Nevada mountain range off in the distance.
Within the defensive walls, the Palace of Charles V is just one of the delightful buildings that you have to visit although this one is actually Renaissance in style as it was built after the Christians took back control of Granada in 1492. A spectacular circular courtyard lies at its heart and it also hosts the Museum of Fine Arts which has so many amazing artworks on display and there are lots of great paintings and sculptures for you to check out.
Among the many highlights on offer are the stunning Palacios Nazaries which are absolutely incredible to wander around. Various palaces make up this part of Alhambra and the architecture on show is simply breathtaking for all of the intricate designs that coat every surface. Beautiful pools and courtyards are interspersed amongst the many halls and rooms while fountains and ornamented columns only add to the grandeur and elegance on display. Islamic geometric designs are scattered about and symbolism features heavily as various carvings and motifs draw on lessons and beliefs from the Quran.
With an airy and spacious feel to the palaces, the lush gardens of Generalife perfectly complement the atmosphere and ambience about the place. As it used to act at the summer residence for the Moorish rulers, the landscaped pathways, flowerbeds and fountains are relaxing to explore and really are beautiful to behold. A lovey palace looks out over the gardens and ambling peacefully about the grounds you feel as if you have stepped back in time as you pass elegant archways and arabesque coated colonnades.
While Alhambra and all of its marvels is indeed bewitching to explore, no visit to Granada would be complete without stopping by the Mirador de San Nicolas. Located on a hilltop lying across a small valley from Alhambra, this viewpoint is the best place from which to gaze upon the royal complex and sunsets here are particularly stunning as the fading sun paints the ruddy walls in delightful hues of soft orange and vivid reds. The perfect way to end your trip to Alhambra; this view will certainly live long in the memory.
Source: Alex S.
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