March 13, 2015

in Europe, Kaitlin McCuskey, Spain, Spring 2015

Granada was one city that I heard from ten people or more I HAD to visit. Now having visited it I agree. It’s a little late but here’s my take on the pomegranate city.

Barrio del Albaicín:

The oldest most ornate part of the city of Granada. Be wary for the streets were designed as a defensive maneuver so only the inhabitants knew how to navigate them. Everyone was really paranoid back then apparently. The streets also lended another deterrent for trespassers in way of the material it was made of; oddly placed dagger cobblestone. I kid you not it’s cobblestone that pierces the tender bottoms of your feet. The houses within the white walled city (painted white to keep the houses cool in the sauna hot summers) were of two types – Arabic or Spanish design. The Arabs believed that their home life was private and built there homes in this way with gigantic walls surrounding their home or a walled off city. On the other hand the Spanish design preyed on viewing their neighbors every move and had many windows facing the streets. The clash was interesting to see.


Mirador de San Nicolás:

The breathtaking view of the Alhambra backdropped with the Sierra Nevada Mountains is enhanced by the hippies guitar melodies, even the rain didn’t retract from the view.


Santa Isabel La Real:

This is a convent or a monastery (don’t know the difference but I am a devout catholic I swear) where the nuns NEVER have contact with the outside world. I don’t know the logistics with food supply and waste removal but that’s not important. The important thing is they all have a knack for pastry making. It started with the nuns making sweets as a way of thanking their sponsors for providing money for them to survive in the convent but now that isn’t necessary, it’s kind of a “mini business.” Alejandro our guide said this, not me! Anyway they only way to get it is saying “something about pregnancy” and the nun says “be pregnant without sin” (clearly learning a lot here in Sevilla). Then there’s a menu of assorted goodies. We got some dank lemon muffins (don’t really know if it was a muffin but I gave up sweets for lent so to me it was a muffin).

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Alhambra y Generalife:

This is the main squeeze in Granada. A Muslim fortress that is actually a mini city. Some highlights are the textiles found throughout it. Even a type A-Bish person like myself cannot fathom how someone can be so detailed oriented with all the tile work. It was absurd. Muslims equate nature with god and therefore the fountain or pond features are very common. There’s a certain portion of the house only for the royal family and in particular the “mistresses” of the king. I swear I stepped into a Game of Thrones scene.

The fortress had three zones and the king rode everywhere to get there. It’s amazing these people were so tiny. I just don’t get it. When the clouds cleared later that afternoon we saw the entire city which was breathtaking. After taking 1056 pictures we descended and left the Alhambra.

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Best part of the trip is the fact that in Granada if you order a drink you get a tapa with it. SO if you don’t believe in heaven this could be another alternative for you. Oh and these lovely ladies were a blast.


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