Day: April 14, 2008

Here is the entrance…

April 13

Here is the entrance salon to the fabulous Palacio Nazaries, the main attraction in a tour of the Alhambra. The inset is a blowup of the designs around the ceiling.

‘The Alhambra, from the Arabic al-gala’at al-hamra (red castle) was a fortress from the 9th century.’ The 13th and 14th century Nasrid emirs added the palace complex and an adjoining small town. The Christian conquest of the 15th century brought with it some major redecorating.

‘In the 18th century the Alhambra was abandoned to thieves and beggars.’

The Indian woman here…

The Indian woman here and I were line-mates and hence had a nice hour to chat. We visited the Palace together and she was letting me listen to her audio tour in every room.

Cynthia, get this, the audio tour was some guy reading from Washington Irving’s book!

‘In 1870 the Alhambra was declared a national monument as a result of the huge interest stirred by Romantic writers such as Washington Irving, who wrote the entrancing Tales of the Alhambra in the Palacio Nazaries during his brief stay in the 1820s. Since then the Alhambra has been salvaged and very heavily restored.’

Plenty of arches too….

Plenty of arches too. This style of decorative surface is molded stucco. That’s what Lonely Planet says and that’s what it looks like although we don’t think of stucco looking like this!

What’s This?! Oh…

What’s This?! Oh No?! Where Are The Lions?? And Where Is the Fountain?! Bummer. The postcard picture and it’s gone, under renovation. Oh well.

This is the ‘Patio de los Leones, with its marble fountains channeling water through the mouths of 12 marble lions. The palace symbolizes the Islamic paradise which is divided into four parts by rivers (represented by water channels meeting at the fountain).

**You’ll like this…from my correspondent at fodors: http://www.jgonzalezbueno.com/galerias/alhambra/grandes/Patio-de-los-Leones–72–x-.jpg**

Just plain more….

Just plain more.

You might have noticed all the glazed tile-work in varying designs which make up a ubiquitous selection of postcards.

Another cool thing, you can touch everything! I think, as LP mentioned it its opening paragraphs, the whole complex has been very heavily restored and I think there is probably just not a lot of original materials left, so you can touch it all you want and they’ll just fix it again.

As you walk from…

As you walk from the Alhambra into the Generalife you pass by this area of hedge-rooms!

Guess what. It’s tomorrow now, I had a nice day of last minute get-it-all sightseeing and guess what…I forgot to leave! I was supposed to leave today! Now I have to hurry directly to Fez and catch Gibraltar on the way back. I have to just shake my head!

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