Premium small-group tour of the Alhambra and the Generalife palace
|Languages||Spanish - English - French|
|Number of participants||Minimum 2 people - Maximum 10 people|
What the experience includes
Visiting the Alhambra is a unique and memorable experience that no visitor to Andalusia should miss. You will be able to enjoy the most delicate areas of the monumental complex: the courtyard of the Lions and the Court of the Myrtles, following in the footsteps of the sultans and kings who once inhabited them, and also the beautiful gardens of the Generalife and the Partal and marvel at their beauty.
Joining one of our small premium groups guarantees the necessary intimacy to better enjoy the history and legends that our passionate and expert guides will transmit to you; without rushing or stress. We will help you to appreciate it, understand it and feel it.
The visit is organised according to the time of access to the Nasrid Palaces, established by the Patronato de la Alhambra, manager and regulator of the accesses. Our guide will take care of all these details so that you only have to focus on enjoying the surroundings and immortalising the moment to keep unforgettable memories.
Places are very limited due to the small size of the group, we recommend that you book now, before they sell out.
Everything you need to know
- The full name, ID or passport number, age and nationality of participants, including children, is mandatory, as we have to provide a free children's ticket for children under 2 years old.
- A valid ID or passport is required for all visitors, including children. Otherwise, a parent or guardian must sign a liability waiver at the ticket office. The Patronato de la Alhambra does not accept photocopies.
- This tour is on foot. Comfortable shoes are recommended.
- We can adapt the tour for people with reduced mobility, with prior notice.
- The maximum group size is 10 people.
- The voucher is non-transferable because the tickets are personal.
- We use secure transmission, your personal information is protected.
- Immediate confirmation of booking.
- You can present your voucher on paper or electronic device.
- Please note that the guide will arrive a few minutes before the tour start time.
- Prams are not allowed inside the monument, we recommend the use of baby carriers.
- No luggage or large backpacks are allowed inside the monument.
- For those who do not wish to walk to the meeting point, we recommend using public transport, rather than a car.
- A mobile phone with a charged battery and headphones may be required.
Adults +12 years
Children from 3 to 11 years old
Infants 0-2 years
- Tickets for the Alhambra and Generalife Monumental Complex, including Nasrid Palaces.
- Live commentary in the chosen language
- Meals and drinks
Stop at: In the Alhambra: Palace of Charles V
The origin of the Palace of Charles V is due to the need for a place that would meet all the comforts of the time for the emperor and his family, as the Alcazar, which was his summer residence, did not meet their needs.
The emperor ordered the construction of the palace next to the Alhambra so that he could enjoy its wonders. The architect in charge of the work was Pedro Machuca, a Renaissance lover of proven experience. The construction of the palace began in 1527 and was fully financed in 1957. The construction went through several stages, lack of funds, uprisings that stopped the works, and so on. The roofs even collapsed due to neglect.
The palace is square, with a main façade measuring 63 metres wide by 17 metres high. The circular courtyard in the centre stands out, unique in its style and the most outstanding work of the Renaissance in Spain. Only the south and west façades are decorated in their entirety. The north and east façades are only partially decorated, due to the fact that the building is linked to the Alcazar of the Alhambra.
Stop at: Palace of the Nazaries: Palace of El Mexuar
It is difficult to know how the Mexuar was originally built, as the many restorations and reconstructions that have been carried out up to the present day prevent us from knowing what its rooms were like, those that are not in ruins. According to the quotations of the poet Ibn Zamrak, we could say that it belonged to the primitive Nasrid citadels. Both the alterations carried out after the Christian occupation and the explosion in 1590 of a powder magazine that caused great destruction have produced great modifications in the distribution and communication, so it is difficult to know how it was originally. In reality, all that remains of the group of rooms, located next to the tower of Mohammed I, is the eastern nave, which is what we now call the "Mexuar", which has not been spared from Christian reconstructions, and the gallery and Tower of Machuca, so called because it was the home of the architects Pedro and Luis Machuca during the construction of the Palace of Charles V.
Stop at: Courtyard and Golden Room
This small courtyard between the Mexuar and the Cuarto Dorado serves as a link between the two palaces. During the Christian period, it had wooden galleries to connect the upper rooms, which were preserved until the 19th century. The basin that occupies the centre of the courtyard today is an exact copy (dating from 1943) of the original fountain, which can be found in the Daraxa Gardens.
Stop at: Abencerrajes Hall
It is located opposite the Hall of Two Sisters, and its name is due to the fact that popular tradition claims that the Abencerrajes knights were beheaded in this room, although the authors do not agree on which monarch ordered their execution. In fact, there is a rust stain covering part of the marble basin in the centre of the room, which superstition has it that it is a bloodstain of the Abencerrajes.
The entrance to the hall has two arches separated by a corridor that connects to the upper floor on the left and to the vestibule of the original entrance to the palace on the right. The central square of the hall has alcoves on either side with exquisitely decorated arches with blue capitals on the columns and painted ceilings. The walls are covered with plasterwork and have a 16th-century Renaissance-style tiled plinth. Over eight muqarnas trumpets we find a magnificent dome, also made of muqarnas. On these trumpets we can read the following inscription: 'There is no help except that which comes from God, the merciful and gracious'. The windows at the beginning of the dome let in a dim light that illuminates the muqarnas, giving it a magical appearance.
Stop at: Hall of the Two Sisters
The Hall of the Two Sisters is the second residence of the Palace of the Lions, with a structure similar to that of the Abencerrajes, i.e. it is elevated above the courtyard and is accessed through a single door, with a wooden door lock, richly decorated with geometric compositions.
After the entrance, there are corridors to the right and left that lead respectively to the rooms on the upper floor and to the toilet of the house. The name is derived from the two large marble slabs, which are centred by a small fountain that flows into the Patio de los Leones through a gutter.
The tiled plinth, one of the most original in the Alhambra in terms of its peculiarity, is a beautiful geometric composition based on the interlacing of ribbons of various colours.
The plaster decoration on the walls, divided, as is characteristic of Nasrid art, into large panels separated by epigraphic inscriptions, covers the entire wall, culminating in what is undoubtedly the masterpiece: a muqarnas dome which, starting from a central star, is developed by means of the well-known Pythagorean theorem.
Two alcoves open on either side of the square-shaped room. Each has its own characteristic space for a platform or bed, which is covered with extraordinary, beautifully decorated wooden coffered ceilings.
Stop at: Hall of Kings
Stop at: Carlos V rooms
Stop at: Lindaraja Palace
Adjacent to the Patio de la Reja, there is another courtyard with a similar structure but with a different atmosphere due to its cloistered character. The Patio de Lindaraja takes its name from the beautiful viewpoint that presides over it on its southern side, the entire exterior façade of the Palacio de los Leones which, until the 16th century, was open to the landscape.
From then on, what must have been a low, open garden was enclosed by the three bays of the Emperor's Rooms, with arcaded galleries on the ground floor for which columns from other parts of the Alhambra were used, thus creating a cloister-like sensation accentuated by the design of the garden and by the fountain in its centre.
This fountain, made of Sierra Elvira stone with a Baroque design at its base, parapet and pilaster, had, at least from 1626 until March 1995 when it was dismantled for restoration and conservation in the Museum of the Alhambra, a beautiful Nasrid marble cup with a decoration of gadroons and an epigraphic inscription, probably destined for the Palace of the Lions itself.
The courtyard and the itinerary of the palaces leave the courtyard through the only one of the three corridors that also has a gallery on the upper floor, known until recently as the "Châteaubriand Gallery", after the famous French writer and politician left his signature there. Its columns come from the demolition of the Patio de Machuca.
Stop at: Generalife Gardens and Palace
The Almunia del Generalife was an ideal estate for farming and relaxation, with a nucleus of residential buildings and a vast expanse of land for cultivation and grazing, compartmentalised into paratas or terraces by means of four large orchards, taking advantage of its orographic outlines.
These huertas are delimited by thick retaining walls, some of which can still be seen today. Their Castilian names, preserved and handed down from ancient times, are: 'Colorada', 'Grande', 'Fuente Peña' and 'Mercería', whose current boundaries must coincide approximately with those of medieval times. A meadow surrounds the estate, where horses and farm animals are bred and even served as a hunting ground for the use of the sultan.
More infoWhat to bring
- Comfortable footwear
Bookings are non-refundable. All sales are final.