My first trip to Europe was when Doug and I went on a 3-week getaway to Spain. We flew to Barcelona and then took trains to Valencia, Granada, Torremolinos, Seville, and Madrid. Once we were in Madrid, we met up with my teenage kids, who had flown in from Los Angeles and Doug’s brother who was the art director for a production of La Boheme at the Teatro Real Opera House.
You can read more about our trip to Spain here
Spain is one of my favorite countries. There’s something incredibly magical about it and it’s steeped in fascinating history. The art alone is amazing. Spain is the home of whimsical Gaudi architecture, the romantic and violent paintings of Goya, El Greco’s dramatic art, and the wild and colorful eccentricities of Picasso and Dali.
I’m also enamored with the laid back, party-like atmosphere that seems to go on all day long and well into the night. I wouldn’t mind spending afternoons at tapas bars drinking wine and getting to know the locals.
The images in the galleries below were taken in Granada, Spain which is part of Andalucía in the South. It was under the rule of the Moors from the 8th to the 15th century and its Arabic past is well evident.
Photos of The Alhambra and Granada, Spain
You can’t go to Granada without visiting the opulent Alhambra. It began as a small fortress in 889 AD and was converted into a palace for the Moorish emir Mohammed ben Al-Ahmar of the Emirate of Granada in the mid 13th century. It’s intricate design and stunning beauty remains to this day.
The complex has been called the “pearl in an emerald” by poets of the era. It overlooks the city and caves of Sacromonte where you can enjoy traditional food and Zambra, a variation of flamenco performed by the Roma who have resided there for centuries. I regret we didn’t have enough time to sit in a cave and soak it all in.
The Granada Cathedral is another impressive structure built in the Renaissance and Baroque style. It dates back to 1523.
There are 93 Spanish Paradores (historic hotels) in Spain and the Parador de Granada is the most popular with tourists. It’s located within the Alhambra compound. Constructed between 1332 – 1354, it was originally a Mosque and later a convent. Kings, queens, and many other dignitaries have been received there.
To view my Granada, Spain Travel Photo Gallery FULL SIZE, click on any of the individual images below.