In upper Alhambra, we saw the ruins of the Palacio De Los Abencerrajes and an irrigation project.
There was a quick shopping break in a courtyard, where we saw a taracea ( wood inlay) demonstration. We also found an "American Hotel".
Emperor Charles V started the construction of his palace in 1527 and it's considered the most important Renaissance style building in Spain. Here are some the exterior shots of his palace.
Just inside, we found ourselves in the middle of this magnificent colosseum-esque patio, now used for live entertainment.
We walked through the Court of Myrtles. I must confess, that I was certain that The Alhambra was a filming location for Dorne in HBO's Game of Thrones. I was close, but not accurate. Apparently, The Alhambra was considered, but ultimately, they shot at The Alcazar of Seville, which looks very similar and is nearby.
We visited the most magnificent room in the palace, The Hall of the Ambassadors, aka; The Throne Room. This was where all of the official business was conducted. As a History lover, I geeked out a bit when I learned that this was where King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella met with Christopher Columbus to confirm their support of his exploration to the West Indies.
The picture of the roped off ground, shows the original tile work that is being protected from foot traffic.
We ended with my favorite part of the tour, The Patio of the Lions. Named for its lion themed water fountain, the perimeter of the patio was filled with ornate alcoves, including one with a stained-glass ceiling.
A few more shots as we left The Alhambra and headed to our lunch destination.
Lunch was at the Hotel Alixares, located just a short walk from the entrance to The Alhambra. Nothing seemed like a short distance in the heat. We were all happy to sit inside and enjoy a glass of wine with lunch.
At the Hotel Alixares, we were ushered into a large banquet room, which had a multi-table buffet. The buffet included both hot and cold courses, with traditional entrees, like Paella. This was my only meal in Spain and I throughly enjoyed it. I tried to sample a little bit of everything. Luckily, the buffet included several options for my mother-in-law, who is vegetarian. The Hotel Alixares must do a good trade with tour groups, as we were not the only tour enjoying the buffet lunch.
If you're headed to the region, make sure to put The Alhambra on your itinerary. It was magnificent, filled with historic importance and I've never had a similar experience. The Alhambra was a highlight of our vacation and a must-see.