The mountain of the Alhambra was already inhabited before roman times. The Nazarite made Granada their capital in 1238 and expanded the fortress to a palace. In 1492 the Spanish kings finished the Reconquista by defeated the Moors. Parts of the Nazarite Palace were demolished, to make way for the Palace of Charles V in 1527. Since 1984 the Alhambra is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The "Generalife" (garden of the Architect) was built by the Nasrid sultans in the 13th century. The Moorish "Gannat al Arif," turned into Generalife under spanish rule. Architect means God, as Creator of all things. The Moors have created this garden as paradise.
Flowershops, Art Deco street-lamps stools, old trees and a fountain in the middle of the square, make the Plaza de Bib-Rambla" that is surrounded by cafés and restaurants, the most beautiful place in the city. In the evening the square is well visited by the locals. The name "Bib-Rambla" originates from a Moorish city gate.
The former caravanserai is the most important Moorish building in the historic center of Granada. You will access the courtyard thru a horseshoe-shaped gatehouse. The two-storey courtyard was later used as coal storage that's how its present name "Corral del Carbon" came from.
The shopping street between "Calle de Reyes Catolicos" and "Calle Oficios" dates back to the ancient silk basar of the Moors. You still get a good impression of the Moorish trade architecture, with its many horseshoe arches and small shops. But he offered goods tend to be more like cheap tourist stuff than oriental treasures.
Plaza Nueva is a small square where the ascent to the Alhambra starts. To the north, you can walk to the "Rio Darro" via Plaza St. Ana. Because every Granada tourist passes by, this square is kind of busy.
After the "Reconquista" in 1492 there were two high courts in Spain. North of the river "Tagus", Valladolid was responsible and to the south, it was Granada since 1505. The "Real Audiencia" was the royal Court of Appeal. After the discovery of America, another court was established in Santo Domingo.
The oldest and most original district of Granada charms the visitors with small, whitewashed houses, which gently nestle on the slope with many beautiful gardens. The former Moorish quarter "Albaicin" became UNESCO World Cultural Heritage in 1994.
The church of "San Nicolas" is nothing special, who comes here want's to enjoy the best view on the Alhambra and the Sierra Nevada. The "Mirador de San Nicolas" is the most beautiful view point in Granadas and the many restaurants with a terrace are always crowded, especially in the evening. You can enjoy the magnificent view for free, from the square in front of the church. Opposite to the church, there is a beautiful Andalusian-style mosque.