This time I was planning to visit this splendid nation for the second time. On this land of spectacular natural, historical, and cultural attractions, any tourist would really like to come again and again. I say this because of my previous experience. The attractions in Spain are really diverse where you can find any type of attraction as per your mood and budget. As the major landscapes here are deciduous and coniferous forests, dry plains, salt marshes, rugged coves, and river valleys; the most ideal way to feel the vibes of the country is via hiking, jeep excursions, and national parks.
Speaking about the historical attractions in Spain, there are cave paintings, Roman temples, Romanesque churches, Moorish baths, and Renaissance and Baroque palaces. Further, clubs, restaurants, beaches, resorts all assure a memorable night fun with good food and games. Let me now tell you about those attractions in Spain that I visited this time.
I first headed to the mountainous region of SEVILLE whose capital, one of the largest Spanish cities, proudly holds the heritage of 500 years of Moorish occupation. One of the top attractions in Spain is here as the Seville Cathedral that is the largest Gothic building on the planet. Home of the burial of Christopher Columbus, the cathedral offers a fine collection of art and stonework. The cathedral bell tower, called the Giralda offers rewarding climb; which was formerly a minaret and observatory. The Alcázar is another attraction, which is the palace-fortress of the Arab kings exhibiting the top Mudéjar (Moorish) architecture. Other attractions are the Alcázar gardens, the neighborhood of Santa Cruz with its white houses, and the Torre de Oro (Arab fortifications).
The Holy Week in Seville is worth exploring, which comes after the famous April Fair. Here, the couples parade the fairground decorated with colored lanterns and casetas on Andalucian horses and are in the traditional flamenco costume. Drinking, eating, singing, and dancing are all a part of the celebration. But, early booking for accommodation at festival is required.
Come to CÓRDOBA, the city discovered by the Romans and now the most reputed city in Europe. Here, the attractions are the Great Mosque built between 785 and 1002, the Great Hall featuring carved horseshoe arches of alternate white stone and red brick, the Patio de Los Naranjas, the Ablutions Courtyard packed with orange trees and fountains, and the Mihrab (prayer niche), the old Jewish Quarter with a 14th century mosque (one of the three in the country), the Archaeological Museum boasting the Roman and Moorish finds, and the ruined palace of Medina Azaha that is still being excavated.
Do not miss GRANADA that was last city to be conquered by the Christians. One of the best tourist attractions in Spain is in this historic city. This is the spectacular monument of the Alhambra that was the palace-fortress of the Nasrid kingdom in the 13th and 14th centuries.
To discover this, book the tickets a day before, I mean before 24 hours. Here, the major attractions are the Palacios Nazariés with its halls, courtyards, and loggias inlaid with painted enamel tiles, fretted arches, stalactite vaulting, marble sculptures, and stucco ornament; the Alcazába that is an 11th century hilltop fortress; and the Generalife that are the gardens of the summer palace. Across the river is the Arab quarter of the Albaicín where the Arab baths, the Renaissance Casa de Castril, and the Church of San Nicolás offering the commanding views of the Alhambra and the surrounding countryside are worth visiting. While you are in the town, do explore the Gothic Capilla Real (Royal Chapel) made as a mausoleum and a mark against the Moors by Ferdinand and Isabella and the adjoining cathedral.
Just 25 miles south of Granada is the one more famous destination Sierra Nevada, a mountain range offering the highest peak, the Pico de Veleta at 11,155 feet. Herein, you can opt for hiking or for winter sports amidst the coastal sunshine. The mountain resorts here are Capileira, Borreguiles, and Pradollano. If you wish, take up a coach excursion to the scenic remote settlements of the Alpujarra on the southern edges. You will be surely rewarded with the vivid views of the valleys and ravines as you hike or drive on the twisting roads.
Do visit the town of Jaén that is an ancient one full of historic buildings and art gems namely, the Provincial Museum, the Cathedral, the Castle of Santa Catalina, and the 11th century Moorish baths. Head to Baeza that is known for its remarkable refined houses maximum of which belong to the Renaissance period. Look for the most astonishing Palacio de Jabalquinto where the Mudejar influence is very well evident from the decorations.