The Alcazaba of the Alhambra

On the way to the Alcazaba we passed this horseshoe arch, a Moorish architectural innovation that allowed a greater height than the semicircular arch used by the Greeks and Romans. From the bottom of the reddish arch, the horseshoe arch widens before narrowing to form the arch. Resembling a prayer niche in a mosque, the horseshoe arch symbolizes a door to Mecca or paradise.

horseshoe arch
horseshoe arch

Here’s the entrance to the Alcazaba, the fortress protecting the Alhambra. The trees with the deep pink flowers are cercis siliquastrum, related to California’s cercis occidentalis. Both have profuse pink flowers in the spring.

cercis siliquastrum and alcazaba
cercis siliquastrum and alcazaba

The Alcazaba, with extensive walls and towers, has a commanding position above Granda.

Alcazaba above Granada
Alcazaba above Granada

Despite being in southern Spain, the Sierra Nevada Mountains have snow due their high elevation, up to 3400 m. Sierra Nevada means snowy mountain range.

Sierra Nevada Mountains
Sierra Nevada Mountains

From the Alcazaba we went to the Palacios Nazaries.


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I enjoy travel, art, food, photography, nature, California native plants, history, and yoga. I am a retired software engineer. The gravatar is a Nuttall's woodpecker that visited our backyard.

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