It was our first extended school trip, which proved to be really interesting and enlightening.
After a 6+ hour bus ride and 1 pit stop, we finally made it to southern Spain, specifically Granada.
Granada was the last Muslim city to fall to the Christians in 1492, at the hands of Queen Isabel of Castile and her husband Ferdinand of Aragon.
The region surrounding Granada has been populated since at least 5500 B.C. and experienced Roman and Visigothic influences. Elibyrge was used as the name for what is now Granada by the 7th century B.C. and, by the 1st century A.D., it had become a Roman municipality known as lliberri.
The fall of Granada has a significant place among the important events that mark the latter half of the Spanish 15th century. It completed the so-called Reconquista (or Christian reconquest) of the eight-hundred-year-long Islamic rule in the Iberian Peninsula.
We quickly disembarked from the bus and discarded of our things in our rooms because we had a tour planned for Real Capilla de Granada, a Catholic mausoleum that houses the remains of the Catholic Monarchs (Queen Isabella I and King Ferdinand II) as well as their daughter (Quenn Juana or Juana la Loca), her husband (Felipe I or Phillip the Handsome) and their eldest son, Miguel da Paz, Prince of Asturias, Portugal and Girona. The church also holds priceless relics, portraits, tapestries, and much more dating from the 15th century.
Unfortunately we weren’t allowed to take pictures, which they enforced. *sigh*
Our next stop was Catedral de Granada, whose foundation was laid by the architect Egas starting from 1518 to 1523 atop the site of the city’s main mosque. The dome of the main chapel is decorated with beautiful stained glass, sculptures and paintings by Alonso Cano. The Inmaculada by Alonso Cano is especially noteworthy.
After our tour we were allotted free time to wander around Granada, with the warning to look out for pick-pocketers. It was short lived, with a quick dinner because Amipa chose that time with Manerva to be picky about food, because we then had a night tour of Albaicin, a district in Granada that had retained most of its Medivial Moorish past AND was declared a world heritage site in 1984. Our tour then led us to Tableo Flamenco, where we got our first dose of authentic flamenco, especially with their dancers!!
It was closing in on midnight when we finally got back to the hotel, and you’ll never guess what time we have to be up for!!