The Jewel of Granada: Alhambra

Even though I hadn't slept much I still rose up as soon as the alarm went off. The excitement of what was coming just gave me full energy!

Finally this is happening! I was so excited that I forgot to eat breakfast! Today wasn't going to be an ordinary day. Today, I'll be visiting one of the most beautiful buildings in the world!

In my previous post, I told you how much I was looking forward to visit the medieval fortress Alhambra. I have been dreaming about it since I don't know when. The beauty and rich history of this place really gave me goosebumps!

By the bus stop I met some Italians who were also on their way to Alhambra. Apparently this wasn't their first time so I trusted them when they told me not to get off at one bus stop that I should have gotten off. I should've trusted my own instincts and gone to the Pavilion straight. The funny part was that they weren't going to the tour, but I was and being on time was very important, otherwise you weren't allowed to enter! Luckily I was only five minutes away and ran off to the meeting point. Heels hitting the ground in deternment and regular rhythm, slightly angrily.

I usually avoid guiding tours, because I consider them too touristy. This time I definitely wanted the tour because I wanted to know everything about this magical place!

First of all you see my red nose. It's partly because I'm related to Rudolf the Reindeer. Well actually, Granada is quite cold with only a few degrees! Stupid me, I left my winter jacket and gloves in Fuengirola thinking that Granada wouldn't be much colder! Surprisingly, two hour distance can have drastic temperature changes.

As you see, my layered outfit served me well and you could definitely play the "spot the Finn"-game haha

Alhambra means in Arabic "the red". Maybe red for passion, I don't know why it got that name. What I do know is that this is the only medieval palace that has remained intact until today. It has gone through many challenges since 14th century, the French bombs being one of them.

What is truly fascinating are the intricate details of the garden and the palace! The mosaic figures are all handmade and the picture in the left lower corner is the dome shaped ceiling with thousands and thousands of wooden pieces that have been put there one by one! The guide shared some amazing stories and it was really interesting to listen!

One story is quite funny, but scary at the same time.

Have you ever dated a jealous guy? If you have, then this might (should!!) beat all of them. The guide told us that a man of high power used to live in this palace in medieval times and he saw hiw wife talking to some other man. He couldn't see who it was, but somehow he knew that he was one of the soldiers or workers and invited all of them for dinner, whereby he cruelly killed them all. Doesn't that sound crazy??

Anyways, funny how this story is stuck in my mind considering that there are more interesting facts than a jealous historical person haha. The exact details are forgotten, but you got the main picture.

Interestig how Arabs didn't used to have gardens like the usual Western style, instead they had their gardens inside the palace somehow. Typically, with fountains and pools. What was so magical were the reflections on the water surfaces. Every single detail in this huge complex has been designed with great precision. During this time there was advanced science and poetry. I need to study more about the subject how it was back then, because it's really interesting! I'd like to know also in more detail how the Spanish music has been influenced by the moors.

There are many parts in this complex. The guiding tour was three hours long and I really didn't notice the time fly by! From red nose to a warmer day, happened all in three hours. Here is the view over Alhambra from the Generalife garden. It was funny how the tour guide empasized on how to pronounce Generalife. It's not like general and life pronounced together, instead with the right Spanish pronunciation.

When the tour finished I bumped into the Italians that had led me the wrong way and they asked me if everything was ok. I can imagine why, I was really disappointed in them in the morning haha

I don't want to spoil any details here, but all I can say is that Alhambra is a must visit-place! Do pay attention that the amount of visitors allowed to the palace is restricted so get your ticket a few weeks in advance if you want to get in! I was lucky because it was low season and I booked a couple of days before. On their website you can get the tickets!

It's not very easy to navigate in it, for example I couldn't find the price of simple entrance tickets without the tour (what the Italians had). Myself, I wanted the whole package so I even bought myself a spa visit that came with the package. More about the Arab baths in another post! It was totally awesome!!

This visit intrigued me so and I want to come back here again! Any questions about Alhambra? Write me in the comment section below!

Take care!




Emma Engström,
So beautiful!! <3