If you’re going to Spain on your holiday, you’re in for a treat, and not just in terms of the tapas. Sultry, sophisticated and decorated with wonderful art and architecture, Spain is a country packed full of amazing places.
European countries are well-known as the seat of marvelous landscapes and landmarks, putting them on almost everyone’s top lists of tourist destination. Among those is the country of Spain, which has the largest number of World Heritage Cities and the second largest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, following Italy.
Spain is seen as an exotic country because of its friendly people, warm weather, laid-back lifestyle, cuisine, exciting night-life, and its world famous festivities and folk-lore. In a country that is so geographically and culturally diverse, there is no telling what possibilities lay in store for your vacation. Whether you are tanning at the beaches, running with bulls, or exploring old historical sites, you are sure to find something interesting to do in this diverse country.
Displaying here are some splendid shots of Spain’s Remarkable Landmarks with brief descriptions for your next travel destination, served as a treat for your eyes.
Part palace and part fortress, the Alhambra is the pinnacle of Moorish art and one of the best architectural sights in the whole of Europe. Overlooking the pretty hillside city of Granada, it’s easy to spend a day exploring this remarkable monument to Spain’s Muslim past. Its sheer beauty is simply astounding and it’s no wonder it ranks as one of the most incredible visitor attractions in Spain. The Alhambra was originally established in 1238 by the founder of the Nasrid Dynasty, Muhammad Ibn al Ahmar. He wanted to create a new Muslim capital in Granada upon being driven to Spain’s south by Christian forces. To this end, the Alhambra presents a hard and domineering face as it marks the bitter rivalry between Spain’s Christian and Muslim forces. But there’s beauty in its hostility, and its ornate gardens and pools of running water add a softer touch too.
Merida Roman Theatre
The stunning Merida Roman Theatre is fit for an emperor, or at least it was back-in-the-day. As a former colony of the Roman Empire, Spain contains plenty of amazing sights for fans of ancient history and the Merida theatre goes down as a firm favourite. It was constructed in approximately 15-16 BC and would have accommodated as many as 6,000 people at the time. Now this extremely well-preserved Roman theatre displays its original semi-circular walls, part of the stage and double-tiered columns. And if seeing the Merida theatre piques your curiosity about Roman Spain, be sure to check out some of the other ancient-era tourist attractions in Spain particularly the Lugo Roman walls and the Segovia Aqueduct.
The Spanish Civil War was one of the most turbulent and tragic periods in Spain’s recent history. This makes the ruins of Belchite, a town destroyed during the conflict, all the more somber. As vividly represented by Picasso in his masterpiece Guernica, the Spanish Civil War witnessed the first deliberate mass aerial bombings of civilian towns and cities and Belchite is a memorial to this destruction. Located next to a modern town of the same name, the ghost town contains a series of eerie structures, including several churches and a convent – all that is left of this utter destruction. Not one of the most glamorous tourist attractions of Spain, it is nevertheless one of the most poignant, important and though-provoking.
Located on a wild dune beach and in front of a strip of clear, azure sea, the ruins of the Roman city Baelo Claudia will stir the imagination. Stretching back to the second century BC, Baelo Claudia was wealthy and successful enough to be granted municipal status by the Emperor Claudius. It went into disrepair later, as a result of various earthquakes and raids, leading to its eventual abandonment in the sixth century AD. Its former glory has never been restored, but that shouldn’t distract from what is ultimately one of the most underrated tourist attractions of Spain. Many parts of the city can still be made out, such as the forum, temples, aqueducts and cisterns and the sheer picturesque nature of the ancient ruins and the beautiful blue sea make this firmly one for the Iberian bucket list.
La Sagrada Família
Barcelona, Spain’s second largest city, has a large concentration of distinct Gothic architecture. According to Frommer’s Travel Guide, the most famous building in this city is Antoni Gaudí’s masterpiece, La Sagrada Familia. This Art Nouveau structure is a defining landmark for Barcelona, begun in 1882 and finished in 1926. The church features surreal symbolism and bizarre designs that capture the imaginations of all who enter.
El Escorial is the ultimate symbol of Spain’s former royal glory. Lying 50 kilometres outside Madrid, this UNESCO-listed sixteenth century royal complex was built under the orders of King Philip II of Spain between 1563 and 1567. Its style, now known as Herrerian, was considered innovative at the time and it’s worth making the day trip from Madrid for this alone. Then there’s the fact that many of Spain’s monarchs have been buried within its imposing grand granite walls. Add to the mix around 1,600 paintings on display and El Escorial really is a royal residence to remember.
Dedicated to the composer Juan Crisostomo de Arriaga , who has been called ” Spanish Mozart’, the theater has been one of the remarkable buildings in Bilbao.