The Andalusian Experience: Malaga and Grenada


Last week I undertook an enchanting voyage to the Andalusian cities of Malaga and Grenada (in the South of Spain). It’s one thing to be told that the area used to be ruled by the Moors, and quite another to actually see the Moorish sites and realize how similar they are in style to the ones you find in Morocco with fountains, courtyards, arches, ornate woodwork, calligraphy, geometric patterns, and tile mosaics in green, black, yellow, and blue – all the trappings of Islamic art and architecture.  The highlight was of course the Alhambra in Grenada, which I heard is now the most visited tourist attraction in Spain. In Malaga, I also visited its magnificent Cathedral. Apparently, the site where it was built was first a Basillica and then a Mosque, before being converted into a Cathedral (over centuries of construction and never finished). Other highlights I saw in Malaga included the the Alcazaba, a Moorish fortress built over Roman ruins, and the Picasso Museum. Interestingly, though Picasso was born in Malaga and the museum boasts an impressive collection, the artist never actually returned to the city after he left at 19 years old.

Inside the Nasarid Palace of the Alhambra. Looks like Marrakesh!

In the Alcazaba, Malaga

Malaga by night, as seen from the marina. Cathedral and Alcazaba in background.

A while ago I wrote in a post about the Morocco travel adds I spotted in all the Paris metro stations. Now, I found the same add in Malaga in Spanish! It says "Morocco: The Country that Travels with You."

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