Wednesday, November 9, 2022

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Alhambra, The Red Fortress With Outstanding Architectural Works

Alhambra, a fortress in Granada, Spain, was built during the Nasrid Dynasty of the Sultan Ibn al-Ahmar. A fortified citadel, it has 23 towers and four gates. Inside you can find houses, mosques, garrisons, bathrooms, a foundry and magnificent palaces  the Comares and the Lion Court complexes. These are the true jewels of an imposing structure. The architecture is undoubtedly the most successful example of Islamic art outside the Muslim area.

Ever since it was built, Alhambra had truly memorable moments, and their memory remained. After being turned into a fortress in the eleventh century, Alhambra was rebuilt; walls and towers were added to it, being completed in 1238. He who dealt with the real architectural work, Ibn al-Ahmar Nasrid, tried to bring between the city walls as much greenery as he could. The water was flowing through an ingenious system of irrigation from Darro, Alhambra being full of fountains and small pools.

The main entrance is the Granadas Gate, covered with three arches built in 1536 by the King Carlos V. After you pass the gate you reach the fortress, whose observation tower is very impressive in size. Inside there is the Plaza de Armas (the Arms Square) and near the Nasrid Palaces, composed of three distinct structures. The first one is Mexuar, where administrative and legal decisions were taken. Inside this building, a special altar oriented towards Mecca, called Mihrab, can be found. Between Mexuar and Serrallo, the Old Courthouse can be found.

The Serrallo Palace, which was the residence of the sultans, built to be liked by Yusuf I, opens onto the Patio of Myrtles, where everything is centered on a large pool. The walls here are decorated with Arabic lyrics. The silence is overwhelming.

The Court of the Lions is for most of the people the highlight of their visit to the Alhambra. Here are 142 marble columns decorated with carvings of palm leaves, and the fountain is in turn decorated with beautiful lyrics. The Kings Hall is one of the most mysterious due to the effect caused by all the shadows, arches and low light, giving the impression of an overwhelming geometry. The Sultan's personal room has an impressive balcony, offering a beautiful view.

On the way to the gardens full of vegetation and lush plants, the Nasrid's summer residence can be reached, a symbol of the Islamic faith, a paradise which is fresh and green.

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