Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Albaicin Apartment - Granada

I took the bus from Cordoba to Granada yesterday and passed through miles and miles of olive groves and olive oil manufacturing facilities (even an organic one!). There were more and more hills, and we stopped in several small communities which were perched on top of a mountain with an old Arab fortress at the top of the hill and layer upon layer of white stucco houses clinging to the slopes. As we approached Granada, we could see the snow-covered peaks of the Sierra Nevada in the distance.

The modern part of Granada is spread out on the plain, but I am staying in a small apartment in the Albaicin, which is perched on the hillside. Albaicin overlooks both the modern city of Granada and the Alhambra, which is on another hilltop across a green, treed river valley.

Albaicin is an old Arab quarter so the streets are narrow and winding, further complicated by frequent flights of broad, low stairs. I am about five flights of stairs below the Mirador San Nicolas, from which you have wonderful views of the Alhambra. It's a busy tourist site in the daytime but was deserted when I walked up there early this morning.

The photos show my apartment, which are the windows in the very bottom level of the house to the left (almost hidden by the cement enclosure). The photo of the Alhambra is shot over the rooftop of the property owner's rooftop patio. The modern-day mosaic is an example of the way many of the sidewalks and stairways in southern Spain are made with pebbles arranged in a pattern in concrete. They use various colours of pebbles so it's very attractive. There's also some photos of the stairs to give you an idea of why my legs were aching very badly by the end of the day yesterday!

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