My History of Art class was by far one of my favorite classes I have ever taken! Our professor was constantly making sure we were comfortable with the material and always including us in the lessons, instead of just lecturing! It was also great because I could apply the classroom lessons to the real art I would see as I traveled around Spain.
Population: approximately 240,000
The city of Granada is situated at the foot of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, at the confluence of three rivers, Beiro, Darro and Genil.
Granada was first settled by native tribes in the prehistoric period, and was known as Ilbyr. When the Romans colonized southern Spain, they built their own city here and called it Illibris. The Arabs, invading the peninsula in the 8th century, gave it its current name of Granada. It 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.
One of the most brilliant jewels of universal architecture is the Alhambra, a series of palaces and gardens built under the Nazari Dynasty in the 14th century. This mighty compound of buildings — including the summer palace called Generalife, with its fountains and gardens — stands at the foot of Spain's highest mountain range, the Sierra Nevada, and overlooks the city below and the fertile plain of Granada.
The Sacromonte hill, which overlooks the city from the north, is famous for its cave dwellings, once the home of Granada's large gypsy community.