GRANADA PRE-CONFERENCE TOUR
Thursday 7th to Monday 11th July 2005
• MORNING ALHAMBRA TOUR - Friday 8th July
The Alhambra is one of the most visited monuments in the world. Its construction was begun by the founder of the Nasrid Dynasty: Mohammed Ibn Alhamar, in the XI century, at the red hill known as ASSABIC, which overlooks Granada. First the Fortress or Alcazaba was built and afterwards the Royal Palace and the highest part of the Alhambra which became the court member residence. Later on Charles V commissioned a palace and the highest part of the Alhambra which became the court member residence. Later on Charles V commissioned a palace to be built at the same site. We shall visit the most important hall and courtyards of the Alhambra including the PATIO DE LOS ARRAYANES (Myrtle courtyard), the PATIO DE LOS LEONES (Lion Courtyard), the SALON OF THE EMBAJADORES (Ambassador’s Hall), and the SALA DE LOS ABENCERRAJES, which was the scene of a tragic legend. In addition we shall also visit the Alcazaba or Fortress, the Royal Baths, the Partial Gardens and the Palace of Charles Fifth.
The visit will then continue to the Generalife situated next to the Alahmbra and which was a place of leisure and recreation for the Moorish Kings of Granada. The Generalife contains magnificent gardens with many varied sort of flowers and fountains described in the poem,"THE HIDDEN WATER WEEPS". The visit includes two further courtyards, the PATIO DE LA ACEQUIA and the PATIO DE LA SULTANA.
• EVENING FLAMENCO SHOW - Friday 8th July
Flamenco is a genuine Spanish art. This evening is a unique opportunity to watch a genuine Flamenco Show at its best. Any visit to Granada would not be complete without visiting the Alhambra and seeing live authentic gypsy dancing. They gypsy flamenco evening accurately encapsulates the essence and colourful ambience of the Sacromonte. We provide a typical Andalusian dinner to consume during the performance. The Cave ‘La Canastera’ specialises in Zambra that is normally performed by a gypsy family. The performance represents the rich tradition of gypsy folklore. The Zambra is generally happy, enchanting and full of the abundant grace exuded by the gypsies.
• FULL DAY EXCURSION TO THE ALPUJARRAS - Saturday 9th July
This excursion no only includes interesting cultural elements but is also recommended for those interested nature and landscape since it is placed at the area of Sierra Nevada Mountain on the Mediterranean. The climate variety here has made the Alpujarras one of the most important areas in Europe for Botanists because of the variety of species to be found. We must also take into account the important Moorish cultural heritage, the characteristic landscape made up of small white houses and their small terraces cut into the Mountainside for farming, some of which are over 2,000 metres above sea level. All of these aspects combine to make a visit to this unique area a must. We will visit Lanjaron, a famous spa town with its medical waters and Orgiva, the central town of this mountainous region. In addition to a series of picturesque villages such as Carataunas, Pampaneira, Pitres, Portugos with its Fuente Agria or bitter spring water and Trevelez, the highest village in Spain. We shall then continue through Bubion to Capileira where a typical lunch will be served.
• FULL DAY EXCURSION TO THE COSTA TROPICAL AND NERJA - Sunday 10th July
Enjoy a guided visit to Nerja and Almuñecar. Located in the historic region of La Axarquía, Nerja is bright town on the Málaga coast, which has a beautiful sea front, formed by beaches, coves and cliffs. Visit Nerja Cave The cave is 4,283m long, but only a third of it - specifically, the area called the Low Galleries - can be visited. The importance of this cave rests on the fact that his has almost all known types of natural formations. In addition, it is easy for visitors to get in because of the width and great height of its chambers. Outstanding among all the chambers is that of then Cataclysm, where you can see the mark of a seismic movement that took place about 800 thousand years ago. You can also contemplate cave paintings of animals in the Torca Chamber and symbolic and animal representations in the Chamber of Ghosts. In the first chamber, the Lobby, the visitor can see a display cabinet with human remains, ceramics and tools. In the Bethlehem Chamber is a burial from 6,300 BC. To see some fabulous views of stalactites and stalagmites in this cave, the best thing is to visit the viewpoint in the Chamber of the Elephant's Tusk. Visit Almuñecar. The old town centre of Almuñécar is a historical, sightseeing and cultural treasure-trove, and enjoyed by all. The genuine heart of Almuñécar is located around the Castle of San Miguel, which inspired the name of this old quarter, "Castillo" or "San Miguel". The streets are paved with traditional Almuñécar cobblestones, and there are innumerable little squares, patios and corners where neighbours pause to chat. It is easy to get lost here, but there is no need to worry, as it is a delightful pleasure just to wander around the back streets of this quarter and perhaps discover an unexpected beauty spot Enjoy a tapas lunch.
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