The best reason to go into the Alcazar is to climb the Tower as it gives very good views, and aslo gives you a better idea of the site of this Castle. There are normally around three flags flying on top of the Tower. From memory they are the Spanish flag, the Andalusian Flag and the flag for Granada.
This picture shows the view from the top of the tower. There are also very good views across into Granada Town too. although these are not shown here.
When you enter the Alhambra, your ticket will take you into to thre separate parts of the Alhambra. The Palace area is the bit everybody wants to see. The Generalife gardens are also very impressive. That leaves the Alcazar (meaning Castle in Spanish). This Alcazar is ruined, and is not really that exciting. Indeed a lot of guidebooks don't even seem to cover it. There seem to be a lot of foundations and a big tower that has seen better days. The attached picture shows this area for completeness sake.
This is the tallest tower in the Alcazaba.To go up,you must to use a interior narrow stairs and it is always crowded of tourists.From here you can see some awesome views of the city and also of Sierra Nevada.
The Alcazaba - a fortified stronghold guarding royal quarters built around two exquisite courtyards. This impressive military fortification goes back to 9th century, and was modified by Muhammad III in 13th century to be his private residence. There are various towers, some with elaborate interiors. From the tower, Torre de la Vela, there is a great view over the town.
Although in ruins today, this fort once offered protection for the thousands of moors that lived within it's walls.
There are wonderful views out to the city of Granada, the Albaycin area and the Sierra Nevada mountains from the Alcazar.
I would recommend spending an hour or so walking around this area - it's steep in some sections but well worth the calories spent!
For more pictures, see my travelogue.
Normally we all leave till the end, and compared to the palaces that we have already seen, it is not as exciting, but it had its importance for the castle as it was the military area.
Some fo the palces to visit are:
Torre del Cubo
Plaza de Armas
Torre de la Vela
Y el Jardín de los Adarves
The views from the towers are incredible, check tourist traps
If you have time you can still walk along the shops and the gardens before heading to Granada city center
The Alcazaba, or fortress, is the oldest part of the Alhambra. The Sultan Alhamar, the founder of the Nasrid dynasty, built it in the mid-13th century after he fled from northern Andalucia and established what was to be the last Moorish stronghold against the Christian crusaders. No doubt a fort was located at this location through much of historic time but the current buildings date back to the 1200's AD. The fort was remodeled by the Moors who added a very long outer wall in which they build the Nasrid Palaces.
The Torre del Homenaje (shown in the picture) was the keep of the Alcazaba and in it the first Nasirid emirs had their apartments. Excavations within the Alcazaba have revealed traces of barracks and a large cistern that date from this early period.
The myrtile court yard (Patio de los Arrayanes) also is a masterpiece of moorish art. It is framed by magnificent carved arches. Comares Tower adjoins to Patio de los Arrayanes.
The Royal Hall has a stalactite dome and a ceiling which is trimmed by the painted leather.
The hall of two sisters is named so because of two stone plates which are in the middle of a hall.
Reached from the Plaza de los Aljibes, remember to have your ticket ready when you go in.
Alcazaba is the oldest part of the Alhambra, climb up the bell tower for great views over the city.
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