So, the Andalusia holiday continues, these pictures are from the middle part of our holiday.
Close to where we’re staying there are caves. In this particular one, the Cave of La Pileta, they found pre-historic wall paintings from 10.000 – 5.000 BC. Pictures were only allowed at the entrance of the cave but Mr Esther snuck two in (without flash). That last one was of a calender, with those lines counting the days. The fish belly drawing we saw as well, the picture included here is from the information board outside.
What was most impressing were these huge stalagmite and stalagtite columns that had grown together and when you hit them they reverberated with sound. The guide called them the “organ”, pre-historic people would make music hitting those columns, each column had a different pitch. Totally fascinating and a pity we couldn’t film what that looked and sounded like.
We also went to Granada for a day. Nice town…
…and we made our way up to the Alhambra palace, which overlooks the city. The Alhambra, as in The Tales of the Alhambra mentioned in North & South by Fanny Thornton. The book was even for sale in the souvenir shops, but I decided against buying it because, in all honesty, I don’t think I’ll ever read it.
The palace and grounds are huge, it was a hot day, so we took many shade and drinks moments. We had booked tickets to the main palace a few weeks ago and good thing that we did as the tickets were all sold out. We got in, though, and viewed the palace with many, many other tourists. It was a bit over-run to my liking but beautiful nonetheless! The palace was built by the ruling Muslims in the 14th century near the end of their reign and all the Arab decoration is still there today. Very beautiful!
It’s a huge place with many buildings, so I can imagine that justifying any amount of tales! On our way out of the palace grounds we came across a big fountain with close to that a statue of Washington Irving, the author of The Tales of the Alhambra.
We ended the day with dinner in a village halfway between Granada and where we were staying and there, in Archidona, there was an evening festival…
What we didn’t realize before coming here is that Spanish villages here in Andalusia are full of festivities and celebrations in August, even here in ‘our’ village. We stayed for a day at the pool and that evening took a peek at the rock festival in the village square around the corner… it was Spanish rock, not the best ever, but entertaining enough.
We also spent a day in Cordoba, which, together with Sevilla, was our fave city to visit.
The 9th century (!!) Le Mezquita mosque which later also became a church was stunning. For the newest era, it also included the first painting of Mother Theresa that I have ever seen in a church.
We came across a lovely middle-eastern looking tea house in the city and went inside for a drink. I had one of the best ever chai tea lattes there.
We walked through the Jewish quarter, where we didn’t have the time (or the kids have the energy) to go to the Sephardic Jewish Museum but we did pass by the synagogue (one of the oldest in Spain). We had wanted to visit that but alas it was closed for the day by the time we got there. We did get to see the nice statue of Maimonides in the nearby square.
On our drive back we were treated to a beautiful moon rising in the sky and a stunning sunset.
The next day Mr Esther and I left the kids by the pool while we drove around the nature reserve area around here with stunning mountains, beautiful vistas, half stripped cork trees and eagles circling in the skies.
I haven’t looked at the last set of pictures yet, but there will a part three to these (we fly home again on Monday so probably after then). So many beautiful things here in Andalusia!