Alhambra is one of the most famous locations in all of Spain and, indeed, the world! Its stunning architecture and rich history make it a beacon for tourists from all over to come to every year. But how much do you really know about this stunning place? Here are ten amazing facts about Alhambra!
1. What is Alhambra?
Alhambra is a classical fortress and palace rolled into one – based over in Granada, in Andalusia. It remains one of the world’s best-known pieces of Islamic monumental architecture. It’s played host to visiting Muslims by way of it being a mosque, and has hosted hammams, or public baths.
2. When was Alhambra built?
The palace was built all the way back in the 13th Century! The building was added to the area by the Nasrid dynasty, who collectively believed that the spot was perfect for defending the region from attacks!
3. It was not always used as a Mosque.
Alhambra actually became a Christian court back in 1492 when the Catholic Monarchs conquered Granada. Therefore, the Mosque at the palace was converted into a Church.
4. It’s been carefully restored.
The palace was neglected for centuries. It was only at the beginning of 1828 that architect José Contreras finally made restoration efforts. The restoration was continued by his son and even his grandson after him!
5. A perfect view!
As mentioned above, the location of the building was very strategic to protect the inhabitants from attacks – from high up on al-Sabika Hill. And, as you can imagine, it offers an incredible view of the land below!
6. Who were the builders?
The Emir Muslims of Spain built Alhambra. That is why, once inside, you will find Islamic architecture – and you will also be able to see the Grand Mosque and the Arabian Baths for yourself.
7. What is the red castle?
As you may realize, the name Alhambra is of Arabic origin. It is said to mean the “red castle” or the “red one”. Since the area was built in and around red soil, it’s a perfect name!
8. Be there on time!
Since Alhambra is by far Granada’s best-known landmark, it gets quite a few tourists every year. But that is no excuse for tardiness! In fact, even if you have already purchased your ticket, you will be denied access if you show up late to your time slot. Most people suggest arriving at least an hour earlier to beat the long queues and ensure you get in!
9. Lots of water to watch for!
The palace is well known for its stunning water features! Some of the most beautiful spots include fountains, reflecting pools, acequia, and water tanks.
10. Who were Ferdinand and Isabella?
The first Europeans to ever live in the palace were King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella. They then began a European rule that lasted for over 800 years! During their time in the palace, they added Renaissance touches to the architecture and oversaw even more structures to the area.
FAQs about Alhambra
What is Alhambra famous for?
The Alhambra is famous for its incredible history, stunning architecture, and beautiful location. It is most famous for being the most well-known monument of Islamic origin worldwide!
Is Alhambra one of the Seven Wonders of the World?
As you might already have guessed, thanks to its incredible architecture and placing, Alhambra is indeed considered to be one of the seven Wonders of the Modern World! So, what are you waiting for? Go visit it as soon as you can!
Is Alhambra worth visiting?
Yes, Alhambra is definitely worth visiting - for its history, its design, and its incredible vantage point in the area.
Do you know any fun facts about Alhambra? Share them in the comments below!