Wednesday, 31 January 2018

Granada, Spain (Eurostars Washington Irving) 

Was up early and down for breakfast so I will be ready and on time for my visit to the Alhambra today. Enjoyed my stay so far at this hotel and the room is very quiet at night. I like the peace and quiet.

I had a slight problem finding my way to the Alhambra. The castle complex is expansive, even thought it is located across the street from the hotel. But I eventually, after a wrong turn, got in. Now,  where to go first. I wasn’t 100% sure what I had access to, but with confidence, I walked to the Alcazaba, the fortified part of the complex. It was at the other end of the Alhambra, but along the way I got an idea of the size of the place and things I’d like to see later. (The map below shows the layout of “La Alhambra”.

The Alcazaba has great views of Granada and took several pictures while there. I actually went through it twice because there was a lot to see. It is about 50% intact, but the primary walls still look solid. The view of the city and the nearby gardens were the best part.

Snow in the Sierra Nevada mountains above Granada

From there I went over to the Nazrid Palaces, a short distance away. While walking over there, I saw the Alhambra cats – who seemed to be well-fed. They knew that tourists would share food with them.

After entering the palaces (since there are several bundled together) and not knowing what to expect, I went in for the tour. Thankfully I had an audio guide which helped me understand what I was looking at. This was the palace where the early Moorish royalty lived – and the artwork just went on and on throughout the palace. Seemed that every square inch (or centimeter) was covered with something to look at. I took a lot of pictures. Definitely, the architecture and art (everywhere!) is something to be seen in person.

I wondered why the hotel where I’m staying was named “Eurostars Washington Irving. He wrote about the Alhambra, Christopher Columbus, and the Moors. He also served as the U.S. ambassador to Spain. Who knew?

Charles V palace was next – though there wasn’t too much to see. Charles V never lived here, but it was still very interesting to walk through those areas open to the public. The open courtyard was fun to look at, with the two tiers of columns surrounding this area. Inside the palace, we could walk through the Alhambra museum and see many artifacts that have been preserved for study and viewing. (No pictures were allowed.)

What Knockers? (Thinking of “Young Frankenstein”.)

After that, I just wandered around and inspected what I could. After three hours of the Alhambra I was done. There was so much to see. Would like to know what it is like to be someone who could look at exhibits like this for hours on end. For me, I wanted to pick up a snack then take my afternoon siesta.

Alhambra is a mixture of cultures. Definitely a little bit of everything.

Not sure what the below plants are called. It made an interesting picture.

After my nap I posted an update to my blog then went down into the city to find something to eat for dinner. Ended up at Burger King again. I went by a number of restaurants, but just wanted something familiar. On my way to hail a taxi, I saw an interesting display of painted lamp figures in a nearby plaza. Thought it made a great picture.

After I returned to my room, I had a chance to talk with my cousin Donna. We’re making plans to visit our attorney in Hood River when I come for a visit in March. Though, we have so much to see in Hood River, we’re probably going to make two trips while I’m back.

I’ve staring to watch the Friends TV series on Netflix. I wasn’t a regular watcher of the series so it will be mostly new for me. Fun to watch them talk on cordless phones. We have come a long way.

Tomorrow, I’ll visit the Granada Cathedral and the nearby Royal Chapel. Then walk around the city some more.



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