The Alhambra in Granada: where water defies gravity

The Alhambra had one of the most complex hydraulic networks in the world, capable of lifting water from the river for almost a kilometer.

Photo credit, Getty Images

image caption

The Alhambra had one of the most complex hydraulic networks in the world, capable of lifting water from the river for almost a kilometer.

Water is ubiquitous in the magnificent Alhambra of Granada, a 13th-century palace complex that is one of the most iconic examples of Moorish architecture.

Water flows in the canals that cool the buildings, flows from fountains in large halls and charming courtyards and is designed so that at certain angles it perfectly frames the majestic arched doorways.

The same complex system adds color to the famous Generalife Gardens, a neighboring former summer palace.

At that time, it was one of the most complex hydraulic networks in the world, able to withstand gravity and deliver water from the river to a depth of almost a kilometer.