Well after the 4 1/2 hour bus ride there (Completely fine because I of course didn't go out the night before) Granada turned out to be quite the place. The first afternoon we did a walking tour of the city where we wandered the albayzin. This is the old quarter of Granada where the houses of the original city are located. We learned (Way too much history everywhere we go) That the Alhambra is a city itself. Inside the walls was were the royal family lived as well as the palace workers, home to some 2,000 people. As we walked around we were really able to get some great views of the Alhambra Palace, the best being from St. Nicholas up on the hill. Although there were a lot of people here, many Spanish making fun of the tourist trying to get the best pictures possible... yes I was definitely one of them! We then relaxed a little bit and had a draft. What is really amazing about Andalucia is their tapas. Now, we have our own tapas in Alicante, but down there the tapas are amazing! With one beer you get a mini meal, the more you order at a restraunt the larger the portions that come out are. Probably for the best that I'm not studying there because I could see myself gaining some weight from the food.
That night was a pretty low key night, wandered around the city with some of the USAC folk where we saw the Tetrias (Tea Houses). This is a a great town for some great food. Being so close to the tip of Spain, Granada still has a large Arabic population. One food in particular is the Kebap. Heaven on earth lemme tell you. I may have had it for 3 of my meals while in Granada... NBD. If only I would be able to get these lovely food items in Chico and I'd be set!
On Saturday the group headed up to the Alhambra where we were split into groups with different tour guides. Pretty amazing stuff. For those of you who aren't familiar with Spain's history, do yourself a favor and wiki the Alhmabra and get the synops of the place. We walked around and first saw the Generalife, which was the gardens of the Alhambra city. We roamed the grounds and eventually made our way to the Alcazaba or the fortress of the Alhambra. This view from the top of the hill allowed us to see the whole of Granada including the Sacrament, or the gypsy area.
From there we finally entered the the palaces at the Alhambra. After the many years of neglect the wear on the building can be seen in most locations. There is only 1 of the original doors left from the complex. The acute detail that the can be seen within the palace was pretty amazing. The time within the area was great look into Spain's past and the 700 years of Moorish control.
On the way out of the Alhambra I was even blessed and cursed by a gypsy... but that's another story in itself. Ask me individually if you want the full story. But here's the part you've been waiting for... PICTURES!
Chico friends with La Alhambra in the background
Cathedral of Granada
Almost like I'm home with the almond blossums
Fountains for DAYS
Frieds from USAC
Karelli and myself with out great tourguide Imma