Alhambra, Granada

4.5 out of 5 stars 217 Reviews

Calle Real s/n 902 441 221

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  • Alhambra
    by Claudiki
  • Front Entrance to the Alhambra
    Front Entrance to the Alhambra
    by TooTallFinn24
  • View From Top of the Watch Tower
    View From Top of the Watch Tower
    by TooTallFinn24
  • Danalia's Profile Photo

    The Alhambra

    by Danalia Updated Jan 10, 2011
    The Alhambra  in Granada, Spain
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    The Alhambra in Granada is really one of the most artful places I was at in Spain.
    It's a tour when you can see and take some impressive fotos .
    The Grenadian people, speaks their Spanish very fast, maybe more then any other city in Andalucia. Still, like most of Spanish people they are great people, and even though they don't speak English, they will kindly guide you to where ever you need to go.

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  • Aitana's Profile Photo

    Alhambra

    by Aitana Updated Nov 10, 2010

    4 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Generalife
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    There are so many tips and so much information about the Alhambra that it seems to me superfluous to write an informative tip as I have nothing new to offer. I’ll just write my impressions from my last visit, in August 2010.

    We went up early by bus. As we had the city pass we skipped the queue. As soon as we entered, went to the Generalife (pics 1 & 2). The paths were humid and fresh and walking among the hedges and parterres was a pleasure. There weren’t many people there at that time. From the Generalife there are superb views of the Albaicin and Sacromonte.

    Then we went down, walking slowly, and visited the baths, the church that once was the cathedral and some shops that occupy old houses of the complex, also with rich decoration.
    We went to the Alcazaba (pic 3). By then the sun was quite high and it was already very hot. There are nice views of the city and the Alhambra.

    Next visit was the jewel of the day: the Nasrid Palaces (pic 4). After queuing for a while, we entered in the palaces. The first rooms were too crowded, as hundreds of people had just come in, but anyway we enjoyed the details of the architecture and the decoration of the palaces. There are so many rooms and corners, yards with fountains, balconies covered by latticework… One cannot help thinking that the kings of Granada, surrounded by so much luxury, softened and gave up the fight against the advance of the Christian kingdoms, and when those kingdoms finally united, the fall of Granada was unavoidable.

    Our last stop was the Palace of Carlos V (pic 5), who ordered its construction when he visited the Alhambra after his wedding with Isabel de Portugal in 1526. It is a curious building: the plan is square and the interior patio is circular. A Renaissance palace in the middle of a complex of Arabic palaces, fortresses and gardens. The building houses two museums: Museo de Bellas Artes de Granada (Fine Arts Museum) and Alhambra Museum.

    http://www.alhambra-patronato.es/index.php
    http://www.alhambra.org/esp/index.asp?secc=/alhambra/informacion/museos

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  • MM212's Profile Photo

    la Alhambra

    by MM212 Updated Oct 21, 2010

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Alhambra Against la Sierra Nevada - Feb 05
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    La Alhambra, the jewel of Andalucía and a true architectural marvel, is a fortified complex of residential palaces and other edifices built between the 13th and 15th centuries by the Nasrid dynasty. Al-Hamra, its name in Arabic, means "la roja" or "the red one", referring to the reddish coloured stones from which the complex was built. The beauty of its Islamic architecture is amplified by the scenic backdrop of the snow-capped mountains of la Sierra Nevada, along with the strategic views over the city of Granada. It is said that the grandeur of Alhambra was a deliberate attempt to mask the declining power of the Moorish rulers in the face of the advancing Catholic Monarchs (los Reyes Católicos) from the north. Following the takeover by los Reyes Católicos, the complex remained in use by the city's new rulers who subsequently made architectural modifications to suit their taste and lifestyle. Most important of those are the Renaissance-style Palacio Carlos V and Iglesia Santa María, built on the site of the Alhambra's mosque. To visit Andalucía without seeing Alhambra is unforgivable!!!!

    Specific structures of Alhambra are described under separate tips on this page. For additional photos, check out the travelogue: "la Alhambra."

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Architecture
    • Castles and Palaces

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  • whyyesno's Profile Photo

    buying Alhambra tickets- alternate solution

    by whyyesno Written Jul 20, 2010

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    I finally bought the tickets for Alhambra from this website

    http://www.nazariviajes.com/laalhambradegranada/Alhambraeng.aspx

    They charge 18 euros per ticket instead of 12, but I guess it's worth it. You can't just go to Granada and leave your visit to Alhambra to chance.
    ServiCaixa just wouldn't accept my card... I have no idea why, I use it to book/buy things on the internet all the time.
    Anyway, I finally have the tickets! Yaay, so excited! :)

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    • Architecture

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  • smirnofforiginal's Profile Photo

    The Alhambra : Partal-Portico-Lobby-Piazza

    by smirnofforiginal Written May 7, 2010

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Partal is a group of gardens and around are a good many towers (Ladies, Oratory, Spikes, Magistrate or Oil Lamp, Captive Lady, Kings Daughters, End of the Track, Water Tower, Seven Floors, Captain, Witch and Gate of Justice.

    It doesn't matter which direction you look in - there is just beauty to behold and spectacular views to admire.

    You cannot necessarily get into all of the towers - some may be locked.

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    • Castles and Palaces
    • Historical Travel

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    Introducing the Alhambra

    by smirnofforiginal Written May 7, 2010

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    "Pause on the esplanade of La Sabika and gaze upon your surroundings. The city is a lady whose husband is the hill. She is clasped by the belt of the river, and flowers smile like jewels at her throat... La Sabika is a crown upon the brow of Granada, In which the stars yearn to be studded. And the Alhambra - God watch over it! Is a ruby at the crest of that crown."

    An UNESCO World Heritage Site and definitely on the list of places to see before you die!
    Exotic. Imaginative. Sensual. Romantic. Alluring. Charming. Monumental - The Alhambra has it all!

    Alhambra means red (Arabic). Red castle .."by the light of torches, the reflections of which gave the walls their particular coloration." The Alhambra was built for military purposes but as well as being a fort it was also a city and a palace.

    There is a limit on how many tickets are sold each day. It is possible to purchase online in advance. We were travelling and had no internet access. We made a phone call and were told no more tickets were available in advance and to take our chances by turning up. We got there early (NB it is cold in the morning!), joined a queue that seemed to go on forever and got in. NB if you have a credit card you can use the automated credit card machine - this queue is the fastest moving!

    There are 4 main parts to the Alhambra - Alcazaba, Nasrid Palaces, Partal and Generalife.
    Your ticket for Nasrid Palaces will have a specific time printed. Make sure you go for this time - after your allocated time you will be denied access.

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    • Castles and Palaces
    • Historical Travel

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  • ELear's Profile Photo

    Getting tired

    by ELear Updated Apr 30, 2010

    One point that needs making is that the Alhambra (including the Generalife, etc) covers quite a large area, and if you want to see it all in the time available you're likely to end up having a less than ideal experience. You may decide to skimp on something, or even miss something out, and you'll almost certainly end up knackered, like I did. (I went in immediately after lunch, and came out at closing time, and I didn't look in Charles's palace.) You may well also suffer from the crowds and/or the heat.

    I don't know what advice to give, except to be aware of the problem before you go.

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    • Arts and Culture

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  • Regina1965's Profile Photo

    The Partal Gardens.

    by Regina1965 Updated Jan 19, 2010

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    The Partal Gardens.
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    After visiting the Alhambra palaces the final sight on this tour were the beautiful Partial Gardens with lovely ponds, flowers and all kinds of trees and statues. Absolutely beautiful. In these gardens are Christian-Moorish houses, which are also called Partal houses, and the Ladies' Tower (see my photos).

    I would have liked to sit down there and breathe in this beauty, but we were rushed through here and at one point the "guide" disappeared and we were running to find her, absolutely intolerable when in such a place of interest and beauty.

    There were many people in the garden painting a portrait and relaxing.

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  • Regina1965's Profile Photo

    The Daraxa garden.

    by Regina1965 Updated Jan 19, 2010

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    The Daraxa gardens.
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    The Daraxa garden is a lovely garden bounded by the Hall of the two sisters and the Daraxa Belvedere. In the centre of the garden is a marble fountain, it has been standing there since 1626 when it was moved there from another the Mexuar court (see my tip).

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    The Hall of Two Sisters.

    by Regina1965 Updated Jan 19, 2010

    4 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The amazing cupola.
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    The Hall of two sisters is one of the halls in The Lions´Palace. It has got an extraordinary stalactite dome, breathtaking really, magical like so many other things in Alhambra. Only after I had visited Alhambra did I find out why this hall is called the Hall of the two sisters. It is not what I had thought and seems obvious, but the name derives from the large twin marble slabs set in the flooring flanking a central fountain.

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    The Lions' Palace and Lions' Court.

    by Regina1965 Updated Jan 19, 2010

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    Lions��Court - no lions.
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    A narrow corridor links the Court of Myrtles with the Lions' Palace and Lions' Court. This palace was built by Muhammed V as private apartments. Belonging to the Lions' Palace are the Hall of Two Sisters, the Ajimeces Hall and the Daraxa Belvedere, the Hall of the Abencerrages with the Harem, the Hall of the Kings and the Mocarabes Hall. This part of Alhambra is breathtaking, the decorations are awesome.

    The Lions' Court is so called due to twelve figures of lions supporting the fountain in its center. While I was visiting suprisingly there were no figures of lions as you can see from the photos, they must have been repairing them. It was disappointing as this fountain is said to be one of the most perfect sample of the Arabic school of sculpture in Granada. But I will be visiting again and hope to see it next time I visit.

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    The Ambassadors´ Hall.

    by Regina1965 Updated Jan 19, 2010

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    The windows in the Ambassadors' Hall.
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    After leaving the Court of the Myrtles and Sala de la Barca you enter The Ambassadors' Hall. It has got 9 apertures in the shape of windows, balconies and doors and is beautifully decorated with glazed mosaic and leaf and flower motis. In the middle there is a roped off floor. It was originally in marble and in the middle there is the Alahmar coat of arms.

    There is excellent view of Granada from The Ambassadors' Hall.

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  • Regina1965's Profile Photo

    The Comares Palace and the Court of the Myrtles.

    by Regina1965 Updated Jan 19, 2010

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    The Court of the Myrtle and the Comares Palace.
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    Next to the Mexuar court is the Comares Palace and the beautiful Court of the Myrtles. The palace is richly decorated and the walls have inscriptions of praise to Allah and Muhammed V. Works on the palace was begun in the reign of Youssef I and continued by Muhammed V.

    The Court of the Myrtles has got a beautiful green pool in the middle of the courtyard with a marble fountain on both sides. The southern gallery has got seven domes and is laced with beautiful interlaced design which is so characteristic of Alhambra.

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  • Regina1965's Profile Photo

    The Mexuar Hall and the Mexuar Court.

    by Regina1965 Updated Jan 19, 2010

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    The Mexuar hall.
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    After visiting the Generalife gardens and the Charles V's Palace we finally arrived at the gate to the Alhambra palace. There were long lines of people waiting to get in. We had to walk through some corridors and then arrived at the first palace, but Alhambra is made up of three separate groups of monuments, the Mexuar, the Comares Palace and the Lions' Palace.

    Parts of the Mexuar have been demolished though and the only remaining vestige is the east wing or the Mexuar Hall. The Mexuar hall was converted into a chapel by the Christians. It is beautiful with 4 decorated columns and mosaic.

    Then the Mexuar court lies between the Mexuar and the Colomares Palace. It has got an open roof and a fountain in the middle.

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    Not even going to try..

    by unaS Updated Jan 4, 2010

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    Carved wall in the Nasrid Palaces
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    I am not even going to try to describe the Alhambra. I have neither the language skills nor the descriptive ability.

    What I do want to mention is that one really should buy tickets in advance on line. The number of tickets sold on the day are limited and the lines are very, very long.

    With my pre-ordered printed out voucher I was able to go into the little side room with the machines that exchange a voucher for a ticket on the spot. There are people there that help with the process. They speak a number of languages, including English. The whole thing took me less than 5 minutes.

    When you get off the bus follow the signs. Don't join the long line. Off to the right is a large glass enclosed room with 10 machines that produce your ticket. You must insert the same credit card that you used to purchase the ticket on the internet.

    Then go out to the *end* of the area and turn right at the gate for the Audio Guide (Euro 3.50). Mine suggested beginning at the Alcazaba, but as I had only 1/2 an hour I chose a short visit to the minor palace instead. Didn't have time to enter the museum. All that I did after the visit to the Nasrid Palaces.

    When ordering your ticket on line be aware that they are very strict about the hour to enter the Nasrid Palaces. Plan your trip so that you have at least an hour between arrival at the site and entry into the Palaces. You can visit the other parts of the Alhambra first or afterward, but do get to the entry of the Nasrid Palaces at least 15 minutes prior to your entry hour, as printed on your ticket.

    The best site to get full information and to purchase your ticket is: http://www.alhambradegranada.org/guias/alhambraEntradas_en.asp
    Read it carefully and follow the links for a trouble free purchase!

    The link for purchasing you ticket directly from caixa is:
    http://www.servicaixa.com/nav/landings/en/mucho_mas/alhambra/alhambra.html

    All my Al Hambra photos here: The Alhambra

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    • Arts and Culture
    • Architecture

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