Beyond the magnificent Moorish Alhambra, visitors will find a distinctive cuisine and a charming city that was once home to celebrated writers and artists.
Like Agra, India, and the Taj Mahal, the Andalusian city of Granada in southern Spain is so well known for a single monument — the Alhambra, a walled fortress housing magnificent 13th- to 15th-century Moorish palaces and gardens — that the city itself is sometimes overlooked. With more than two million visitors descending on the Alhambra, a Unesco World Heritage site, every year, the city’s tourism industry had settled into a somewhat formulaic routine of shuttling visitors in and out of the city in about 24 hours. But recently some other ancient structures have been restored, and the region’s distinctive gastronomy has come into its own.
Every year, Clooney and his best pal Rande Gerber take a weeklong bike trip, and twins notwithstanding, and according to Gerber this year is no different. Here’s a preview of their next jaunt.
He’s one of Hollywood’s best known faces—so how does superstar George Clooney keep a low profile on holiday?
The two-time Oscar winner is perhaps the subject of twice the normal scrutiny, now that he and wife Amal are proud parents of twins. Fortunately, Clooney has already found the perfect way to stay under the radar: When he needs to escape the smell of diapers and baby food, the 56-year-old can pull on a motorcycle helmet and dark glasses and head for the highway.
Riding alongside with him on long summer trips for the past few summers has been longtime friend Rande Gerber.
Everyone loves travelling and in a world with high-quality cameras tucked into our pockets in the form of smartphones, it’s remarkably quick and easy to take photos of our adventures.
You only need to take a quick look at Instagram to see how popular the famous landmarks are from around the world. People everywhere are happily snapping and uploading for all to see.
Noticing a trend, Sony’s Mobile division set about carrying out some research to see just which places people loved the most. Its aim being to help show that you don’t just have to take the same boring clichéd snaps that everyone else does – whether that’s meditating at the Taj Mahal or pushing the Leaning Tower of Pisa.
The data also shows that people tend to take photos from the three same angles of most of the landmarks.
The Alhambra is a palace, fortress and garden complex in Granada, high in the mountains of Southern Spain. High on a hilltop, it is surrounded by the snow capped majestic Sierra Nevada mountains in Andalusia. The original structure was a small Roman fortress (the Romans got everywhere) but its ruins were renovated and rebuilt in the mid 13th century by the Moorish emir Mohammed ben Al-Ahmar of the Emirate of Granada. The result was a complex of palaces fit for Islamic royalty.
It was converted into a royal palace in 1333 by Yusuf I Sultan of Granada, and the site became the Royal Court of Ferdinand and Isabella, where Christopher Columbus received royal endorsement for his expedition.
Nine architectural monuments, two natural monuments and a monument pictorial are the twelve treasures of Spain.
The Twelve Treasures of Spain is a list of twelve sites deemed to be of great historical and cultural value to the Kingdom of Spain. A poll was conducted via mobile phones and the internet to choose the sites which became the Twelve Treasures of Spain. The list includes architectural and natural monuments drawn from all corners of Spain.
12. Guggenheim Museum Bilbao
The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao is a contemporary and modern art museum located in Bilbao, Spain. The museum was opened on October 18, 1997 and its unique architectural design made it a popular example of contemporary architecture. The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao is one of the largest museums in the country and covers an area of 350,000 square feet.
Offering history and culture as well as quality food and wine, Granada was named one of TripAdvisor’s rising destinations for 2016.
When it comes to cultural fusion, it’s tough to top Granada, Spain. The city is a cross section of time and history that dates back more than 1,000 years. Today it is a thriving center of culture, history, architecture, food and wine as well as a must-visit destination in Spain.
What strikes travelers most about Granada is its undeniable Moorish soul. In fact, it was the last city to be taken back by Catholics in 1492. Everything in the city — from the food, city planning and design — has been influenced by the Moors, and Albaycin, the city’s old town, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Leaving the beautiful city of Ronda, there was one place on our visit to Southern Spain that I knew we had to find a way to fit into our travel plans and that place was The Alhambra.
For ages I’d been obsessed with The Alhambra and when I knew we’d be near enough to drive to it, it was pretty much a no brainer. Even photos alone, show you why this place has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage site!
And so, in something of a long winded journey, we drove from Ronda, past the general vicinity of the airport (where we would need to head to later that evening) and on to Granada.
Andalusia is a unique region in Spain, like no other part of the country. A Spain vacation which includes Andalusia can offer a glimpse into a colourful and vibrant historical era.
Andalusia may be known as the “home of the Flamenco,” but its real legacy is the mixture of cultural influences left by 3 religions – Islam, Christianity, and Judaism. Conveniently situated within the same geographical region of Southern Spain, there are three Andalusian cities worth visiting individually. The Moors from North Africa, who ruled this part of Spain from the 8th to the 15th century, greatly influenced the architecture and the character of the cities of Granada, Seville, and Cordoba, as did the period of the ruling Catholic Conquistadors who followed. Visiting these cities on Spain tours is like taking a stroll through history, while soaking up the sunny ambience.
Separate from the city of Granada in Spain, the famous Alhambra palace and all that it contains have been a star attraction of the region for centuries. It was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1984. Here are some Alhambra palace secrets revealed:
It’s the world’s only still existing medieval Muslim palace. There are other Muslim palaces, but none are as old as the Alhambra which was built starting in the 1300’s. According to Travel + Leisure, people from Granada are very proud of the Alhambra and their city. Every guest is brought to the Alhambra.
It took four generations of Arab rulers to build the Alhambra. The Nasrid Dynasty, which lasted from 1232 to 1492, marked the last period of Muslim rulers in Spain.
Spain has an impressive 45 locations listed as Unesco World Heritage sites for their cultural significance or natural beauty, including some that are entire towns. Here’s a look at some of the most stunning.
Alcalá de Henares – university and historic precinct
Located just 35km northeast of Madrid, Alcalá de Henares was awarded the title of World Heritage site for its beautiful city centre and university in 1998. The city is the world’s first planned university city and thus a model for other university towns worldwide.
The Alhambra fortress is the former residence of the Moorish emirs who ruled this part of Spain in the 13th and 14th centuries. A rich example of Moorish architecture with impressive gardens and stunning views across the city of Granada, it’s Spain’s most visited tourist site.