I’ve recently posted some photos from our trip to this beautiful place of Granada, Spain. Because of it’s Moorish historical background, a particular area in Granada is called Alhambra which in Arabic means reddish walls («qa’lat al-Hamra’» Red Castle). My daughter got a book – “Tales of the Alhambra” as her souvenir that I’ve used for research and information…
Because of it’s Moorish historical background, a particular area in Granada is called Alhambra which in Arabic means reddish walls («qa’lat al-Hamra’» Red Castle)
Alhambra is strategically located with a view of the whole city. The first historical document dates back as early as 9th century. The castle of Alhambra was built around year 889, and this castle became a military fortress because of its location. It was until the arrival of the first king of the Nasrid dynasty, Mohammed ben Al-Hamar (Mohammed I, 1238-1273), in the 13th century, that the royal residence was established in Alhambra. This event marked the beginning of Alhambra’s most glorious period. This sprawling hilltop fortress complex encompasses royal palaces, serene patios, and reflecting pools from the Nasrid dynasty, as well as the fountains and orchards of the Generalife gardens. (Sorry, no pictures from inside the castle 😦 we weren’t able to get our tickets)
It was until the arrival of the first king of the Nasrid dynasty, Mohammed ben Al-Hamar (Mohammed I, 1238-1273), in the 13th century, that the royal residence was established in Alhambra. This event marked the beginning of Alhambra’s most glorious period.
Then the Catholic monarchs came and parts of the castle were destroyed to give way for a new palace and the onset of Catholicism.
Below are the pictures taken from our trip, with the above intro and its spectacular sights, this is by far one of my favorite cities in Europe 🙂
On our fifth visit to Lourdes France, we were able to participate in the nightly rosary vigil. It starts at 9 pm and lasts for about an hour. Same feeling of peace and hope enveloped me as we sang to the hymns and recitation of the rosary. Chanted with various languages I may not know but still familiar and heartfelt. The procession is more than a ceremony that for devotees like us – is a time of prayer and peace.
I’d like to share the hymn – “Ave Maria de Lourdes” in French. As seen on a short clip I recorded below.
Ave, Ave, Ave Maria! Ave, Ave, Ave Maria!
O Vierge Marie, le peuple Chrétien, à Lourdes vous prie, chez vous il renvient.
Le fond de la roche s’éclaire à l’instant: la dame s’approche, fait signe à l’enfant.
“Venez, je vous prie, ici, quinze fois, avec vos amies entendre ma voix.”
Avec insistance la dame, trois fois, a dit: “pénitence” Chrétien, c’est pour toi!
“A cette fontaine venez et buvez; dans l’eau pure et sainte allez vous laver.”
“Je veux qu’ici même, au pied de ces monts, le peuple que j’aime vienne en procession.”
Alsace is a historical region in northeastern France, bordering Germany and Switzerland. It’s filled with beautiful small villages like one particular place called Riquewihr.
This old town is the perfect backdrop setting for fairytales i.e. Beauty & the Beast. Humming Belle’s song as we walked through this picturesque village. Charming and colorful houses, each has a unique theme of it’s own. And I even found the lovely fountain in this scene of Belle where she sat to read her book. The old town from the 16th century still feels the same until today and for me is the most beautiful village I’ve ever seen. I didn’t like to leave.
“Riquewihr – les plus beaux village de France”
Photos will be uploaded when I get back home, I promise 🙂
We stayed in Colmer, another quaint town in Alsace. Its cobblestone streets lined with half-timbered medieval and early renaissance buildings. The gothic 13th century St. Martin cathedral took 600 years to built and stands tall in the central Place de la Cathédrale. The area along the canals is known as the La Petite Venise (Little Venice). You can take a boat ride to explore the old fishermen’s district.
Strasbourg. The capital city of Alsace. Being in the border of France and Germany, it was enriched with a unique combination of German and French influences. Its enthralling past gives this city a distinctive and endearing history.
We took a boat tour after visiting the gothic Cathédrale Notre-dame that houses the astronomical clock.