2. Experience Spain's Rich Heritage at Granada
Granada is one of Spain's most visited cities, attracting not just thousands of tourists but also multitudes of students, who flock to this stunning settlement in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountain range to study, party and enjoy life to the full. Serving as the provincial capital of the Granada Province, the city is rich in Moorish architecture, most famously the enormous Alhambra palace complex. The reign of the Muslim rulers ended when the Catholic King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain entered the city through the gate of Puerta de Elvira in 1492 and declared the Moors defeated after years of bloodshed. Built in the 13th century, the Alhambra is one of the most beautiful buildings in the world, brimming over with delicately carved stonework, enchanting fountains and verdant gardens. At sundown crowds gather at the Mirador de San Nicolás, a paved lookout where the Alhambra's ancient stonewalls glow red in the setting sun. For a taste of what it must have been like to live in such a city in medieval times, head to the ancient Muslim quarter, where once Moorish administrators and rich merchants had their white-washed mansions and splendid gardens.