I'll warn you right away that these are going to be long posts, not too much text but loads of photos. I was so impressed by the Alhambra that I want to show you each wall, each pillar, every single window or tiles or detailing.
So for the next three weeks or so, I'll only be talking about this historic monument.
The Alhambra was so called because of its reddish walls (in Arabic, («qa'lat al-Hamra'» means Red Castle). It is located on top of the hill al-Sabika, on the left bank of the river Darro, to the west of the city of Granada and in front of the neighbourhoods of the Albaicin and of the Alcazaba.
The Alhambra is located on a strategic point, with a view over the whole city and the meadow (la Vega), and this fact leads to believe that other buildings were already on that site before the Muslims arrived. The complex is surrounded by ramparts and has an irregular shape. It limits with the valley of the river Darro on its northern side, with the valley of al-Sabika on its southern side and with the street Cuesta del Rey Chico on the eastern side. The Cuesta del Rey Chico is also the border between the neighbourhood of the Albaicin and the gardens of the Generalife, located on top of the Hill of the Sun (Cerro del Sol).
The first historical documents known about the Alhambra date from the 9th century and they refer to Sawwar ben Hamdun who, in the year 889, had to seek refuge in the Alcazaba, a fortress, and had to repair it due to the civil fights that were destroying the Caliphate of Cordoba, to which Granada then belonged. This site subsequently started to be extended and populated, although not yet as much as it would be later on, because the Ziri kings established their residence on the hill of the Albaicin.
All these images are clicked by me, so I would truly appreciate if you dont use or misuse them. I didn't have time to mark them.
Now these images are even before you reach the main palace.
Look at the detailing of these windows.
The Wine Gate (Puerta del Vino) is supposed to be one of the oldest constructions of the Alhambra, it could date from the period of Mohammed II. Today it is isolated within the Square of the Cisterns (Plaza de los Aljibes) although it was possibly part of a group of constructions that enclosed this square.
On the back façade visitors may admire an arch with scallop with polychrome brick decoration. On the arch there is a lintel with voussoirs, which gives support to the second body, where the twin balcony is and on the crossing of its arch is the coat of arms of the Nasrid kings and the following text «Only God is Victor».
We spent the whole day here, so these are just the images of the entrance for you *smiles*