Granada Spain - Glorious City Of Southern SpainWritten by Linda Plummer
Situated at foot of southerly Sierra Nevada ski resort, Granada is one of most splendid cities of eastern Andalucia.
On its southern side is 103 kms of fabulous Mediterranean coastline, with Costa del Sol and Costa Tropical in close proximity whilst, in between, lies a fertile plain producing exotic fruits.
Granada dates back to prehistoric times and was known as Ilbyr. When Romans colonized southern part of Iberia, they built their own city there, calling it Illibris. The Arabs, invading Peninsula in eighth century, gave city its current name of Granada.
Being last Muslim city of Spain to be reconquered by Christians, Granada has an unmistakable Arab flavor, and Moorish and Christian elements go hand-in-hand.
One of most brilliant jewels of Granada is Alhambra, a series of palaces and gardens built under Nazari Dynasty in fourteenth century. This mighty compound of buildings, including summer palace called Generalife with its beautiful fountains and gardens, stands at foot of Sierra Nevada.
The hill facing Alhambra is old Moorish casbah or medina called Albaicín. One of oldest districts, it has been declared a World Heritage Site, along with Alhambra and Generalife.
Málaga Spain - Birthplace of Pablo PicassoWritten by Linda Plummer
Another lively Andalucian city and capital of popular Costa del Sol Málaga has, in its time, been inhabited by Phoenicians, Greeks, Romans and Moors.
Wide avenues and green spaces abound and, as with other major Spanish cities, it is truly steeped in history and culture.
The Citadel or La Alcazaba (8th-11th centuries) as well as being symbol of Málaga, is one of largest fortresses in Andalucia with and Archaelogoical Museum now located there.
Close by is wonderful Castle of Gibralfaro (14th century), joined to Citadel by a stretch of wall that gives superb views of Málaga and its port.
At foot of Gibralfaro can be found Roman Theater, La Malagueta, and old quarter of city.
In center of historic district stands Cathedral of Málaga (16th-18th centuries), also known as La Manquita because of its unfinished tower.