Spain & Portugal Travel Part VIII: Granada

January 30, 2019 by
Filed under: Spain & Portugal 

Spain & Portugal Travel VIII: Granada

Granada

Day 8     Monday, 29 October 2018

On this day, we were going to visit some historical sites in the outskirt of Granada City.

Map showing the location of Granada in Spain

Map showing the location of Granada in Spain

Ramon, a Granada tour guide

In the morning, we left Hotel Macia Condor in Granada City and headed to a hilly region known as Alhambra on the outskirts of the city.

Ramon brought us to a historical site known as Alhambra Complex.

Ramon, a Granada tour guide

Ramon, a Granada tour guide

Alhambra Complex in Granada, Spain

Alhambra Complex consists of three main parts, i.e. Alcazaba Fortress, Generalife Garden and Generalife Summer Palace.

Diagram showing the Alhambra Complex in Granada

Diagram showing the Alhambra Complex in Granada, Spain

Alhambra Complex Visit

Our tour-manager, Jeff Lee, bought tickets for us to enter Alhambra Complex. Then we f0llowed the guide and walked for several minutes to a fortress, Alcazaba Fortress,  built during the Muslim rule(1230-1492).

Entrance to Alhambra Complex

Entrance to Alhambra Complex

Part of Alcazaba Fortress wall

On the way to Alcazaba Fortress, we saw part of the fortress wall on a high ground.

Part of Alcazaba Fortress wall, Alhambra Complex

Part of Alcazaba Fortress wall, Alhambra Complex, Granada

Tower of Justice, the main entrance to Alcazaba Fortress

To reach Alcazaba Fortress, we entered the main entrance to the fortress known as Tower of Justice.

Tower of Justice, the main entrance to Alcazaba Fortress

Tower of Justice, the main entrance to Alcazaba Fortress, Alhambra Complex, Granada

Charles V Palace

While walking to the fortress, we stopped at a palace, Charles V Palace.

Tour group walking to Charles V Palace, Alhambra Complex

Tour group walking to Charles V Palace, Alhambra Complex, Granada

Charles V Palace was built for a Holy Roman Emperor, Charles V(1500-1558), in the 15th. Century. But he had no chance to stay at the palace as it was completed in the 20th. Century.

The palace now houses two museums, viz., Museum of Alhambra and Museum of Fine Arts of the Nasrid Dynasty(1230-1492)

Palace of Charles V

Palace of Charles V(1500-1558) was built in the 15th. Century and completed in the 20th. Century. No monarchs had ever stayed at the palace as its construction was not completed until the late 20th. Century.

There is a circular courtyard in the centre of Palace of Charles V.

A circular courtyard in the centre of Palace of Charles V

Palace of Charles V has a circular courtyard in its centre.

Alcazaba Fortress

Then we walked on and, finally, we arrived at Alcazaba Fortress.

The fortress located on a small plateau overlooking Albaicin City is large and its facade has two tall, majestic-looking towers.

It was built in the 13th. Century by the Muslim rulers who made it as a military stronghold and their residence, too.

Facade of Alcazaba Fortress

Facade of Alcazaba Fortress with two large, tall towers, Alhambra Comples

Wide Ramparts and Tall Watch-Towers

The ramparts of the fortress are wide and a few watch-towers are very high.

There were some soldiers in one of them watching the visitors below, while we were there.

Wide rampart and Tall Towers of Alcazaba Fortress

Wide rampart of Alcazaba Fortress in the foreground and the tallest watch-tower of the fortress in the background

Tallest watch-tower of Alcazaba Fortress

Tallest watch-tower of Alcazaba Fortress, Alhambra Complex, Granada, Spain

Writer and wife at Alcazaba Fortress

While my wife and I, together with our tourmates were at the fortress, we were awe-stricken by its immense size.

Besides, the sights of the Albaicin City, agricultural land and the Sierra Nevada mountain range seen in the distance from Alcazaba Fortress were breathtaking.

Writer and wife at Alcazaba Fortress

Writer and wife at Alcazaba Fortress on 29 October 2018

Breathtaking Sights from Alcazaba Fortress

Albaicin District

Albaicin District as seen from Alcazaba Fortress in Alhambra Complex

Albaicin’s agricultural land

Albaicin’s agricultural land in the distance as seen from Alcazaba Fortress in Alhambra Complex

Sierra Nevada Mountain Range

Sierra Nevada, a mountain range in the distance as seen from Alcazaba Fortress. The highest peak is Mulhacen(3479 metres).

St. Mary Church, Alhambra

Later, we left Alcazaba Fortress, passed  Charles V Palace again and came across a small Roman Catholic church, St. Mary Church. It was built on a demolished mosque site in the 15th. Century

St. Mary Church

St. Mary Church was built on the site of Alhambra’s Grand Mosque in the 15th. Century.

Ruins of Living Quarters for Soldiers

Further down the road from St. Mary Church, we saw a place where remains of the living quarters for soldiers during the Muslim rule were preserved.

Remains of living quarters for soldiers

Remains of living quarters for soldiers during the Muslim rule in Alhambra Complex, Granada

Generalife Garden

Soon, we came to another part of the Alhambra Complex, i.e. Generalife Garden.

It was created in the 13th. Century during the Moorish or Muslim rule.

The garden is shady and cooling, and its trees are neatly trimmed.

It is a garden that is well-taken care of.

Entrance to Generalife Garden

Entrance to Generalife Garden in Alhambra Complex that was created in the 13th. Century during the Moorish rule.

Manicured Generalife Garden

Generalife Garden is well taken care of.

Sight of plants in Generalife Garden

Walking and enjoying the sight of plants in Generalife Garden

Part of Alhambra Complex

As we were walking away from the garden to the Summer Palace of Generalife, we saw the part of Alhambra Complex where we had visited Alcazaba Fortress, Charles V Palace and St. Mary Church.

Part of Alhambra Complex

Part of Alhambra Complex seen from Generalife

Summer Palace of Generalife

Soon we arrived at the Summer Palace which was for the Muslim rulers during the Nasrid Dynasty (1230-1492).

To enter the palace, we walked up a narrow stairway and saw a garden in front of the building.

Entrance of Summer Palace of Generalife

Entrance of Summer Palace of Generalife

Long Garden and Islamic Calligraphy

The garden is long with walls round it. In the middle, there is a long rectangular pond with small fountains. On the inner walls of the porch of the palace, Islamic calligraphy has been written.

Summer Palace of Generalife

A summer palace for the Muslim kings in Generalife, Alhambra Complex, Granada

Islamic Calligraphy

Islamic calligraphy on the inner walls of the summer palace of Generalife

Shady Path in Generalife

Later, we left the Summer Palace of Generalife, walked along a shady path and exited the Alhambra Complex at a gate where a road went down to Albaicin City.

Shady Path in Generalife

Shady path in Generalife, Alhambra Complex, Granada

Exit Gate of Alhambra Complex

Exit gate of Alhambra Complex, Granada, to the road down to Albaicin Town

Albaicin Town

As we were walking down the curved, narrow and steep road from the gate to Albaicin Town, we noted that three storeyed old buildings were on both sides of the road.

Albaicin Town was inhabited by the Moors during the Nasrid Dynasty(1230-1492). It still has some of the Moorish features, e.g. narrow, winding roads, Moorish buildings and traditional trades.

Narrow, Winding Road

Narrow, winding road down to Albaicin Town, Granada

Busy Albaicin Town

Albaicin was declared as a UNESCO World heritage site in 1984.

Some of the streets in the town are wide and busy.

A Typical Street in Albaicin Town

A typical street in Albaicin Town, Granada

A Busy Street

A busy street in Albaicin Town, Granada

Estrella Oriental Restaurant, Granada

In the afternoon, we left Albaicin Town and went to Granada Old Town to have lunch at a Chinese restaurant known as Estrella Oriental Restaurant.

Estrella Oriental Restaurant, a Chinese restaurant in Granada Old Town, Spain

Some food served at Estrella Oriental Restaurant, Granada

Fried Chicken

Fried Chicken

Fish Fillets

Fish fillets with vegetables

Slices of Cucunber

Slices of cucumber

Fried Egg

Fried egg

Hotel Port Elche, Alicante

After the delicious lunch, we left Granada and travelled 350 km east for 4 hours to Alicante. When we arrived at Alicante , we at Hotel Port Elche for a night.

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Tour group staying at Hotel Port Elche in Alicante on 29 October 2018

Next Destination

Our next destination on the following day, Tuesday, 30 October 2018, would be Valencia. It is 165 km in the north-east and the travelling time would be 2 hours.

Previous(Cordoba) / Home / Next(Valencia)

Places visited during Spain & Portugal Tour(22 Oct-02 Nov 2018):

Toledo   Madrid   Salamanca   Porto   Lisbon   Seville   Cordobo  Granada   Valencia   Barcelona

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