Visiting the Palace of Carlos V in Granada is one of the essential activities for anyone who comes to the city.
Located in the heart of the Alhambra complex and a beautiful and contrasting Renaissance construction, this monument is one of the most popular and important places in Granada.
Do you want to know the basic information to visit it? We’ll tell you then.
How to visit the Palace of Carlos V in Granada?
It is one of the most interesting monuments in Granada, due to its location, artistic style and the number of visits it receives.
Surely you are wondering why an emblematic building is located within the Nasrid enclosure of the Alhambra, and it can be said that the decision to place it here symbolized the triumph of Christianity over Islam.
Today, it is an obligatory visit historical place and it is also currently the headquarters of the Granada Museum of Fine Arts (since 1958) and also the headquarters of the Alhambra Museum (since 1994).
But, what else are you interested in knowing before visiting the Palace of Carlos V in Granada?
Its name is due to the fact that it was Carlos V himself, grandson of the Catholic Monarchs, who, as a result of his wedding with Isabel of Portugal in Seville and subsequent honeymoon in the Alhambra, was impressed by the beauty of the Nasrid Palaces. In this way, he commissioned the construction of a new palace for his residence.
The works began in 1533 and suffered many delays until they were finally concluded in 1637, without ending the construction, since Felipe II (Carlos V’s son), focused on the construction of the Escorial.
The project was attributed to the great painter and architect Pedro Machuca, creating a stylistically Mannerist palace. A style that was taking its first steps in Italy and that used proportion, symmetry and the use of architectural orders.
Therefore, this “Roman” style palace definitely changed the image of the Alhambra complex, both inside and in connection with the city (it modified accesses).
Palace of Carlos V visit
From the Alhambra complex itself you can see the imposing Renaissance building with a square floor plan and an original facade of cushioned ashlars.
But even more surprising is its interior, with a large circular patio lined with no more and no less than 32 Doric columns and a covered gallery.
Don’t forget to bring your camera with you!
And how to get to the Palace of Carlos V in Granada?
Well, you have different options:
- On foot: from the central area of Granada, through Plaza Nueva, Cuesta de Gomérez, Puerta de las Granadas, “Cuesta Empedrada” of the Alhambra Gardens and Puerta de la Justicia. Or if you come with a guided tour, you will start the visit from the main entrance of the Alhambra complex (where the ticket offices are).
- By public transport: through line C3.
- By private vehicle: through the A-395 road, exit 5-A towards “Alhambra” and park in one of the visitor car parks.
- In taxi.
The entrance to the Palace of Carlos V is free, as is the entrance to the two museums that it houses inside, the Alhambra Museum and the Museum of Fine Arts (for EU members).
However, once you get here, the ideal option would be to visit the entire architectural complex, so we recommend you book a complete guided tour of the Alhambra and the Generalife, so that you can understand as much as possible the history and essence of this architectural jewel declared a World Heritage Site.
The Palace of Carlos V can be visited during the same opening hours as the Alhambra, that is:
- Winter hours: from October 15 to March 31, from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
- Summer hours: from April 1 to October 14, from 8:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Whenever we visit some historical place, we like to know curious things that happened here in the past.
In this way, as if it were not enough that the Palace of Carlos V of Granada is of Renaissance style being located in the heart of a Muslim monument and that its construction also never finished, we have other curiosities to tell you about this emblematic building:
- It was called the “New Palace” to differentiate it from the existing Nasrid palaces, which were renamed “Old Palaces”.
- It was devised as a symbol of universal peace. It was conceived as a new Ara Pacis (Altar of Peace) and this is shown by the carved reliefs on its main portal, where the battle of Mühlberg is represented. Here, angels of peace with torches in their hands proceed to burn war utensils and the figure of Carlos V on horseback, underlines the final victory with his presence.
- Carlos V built this palace for his residence but never lived in it. So much so that the entire building was not actually completed until 400 years after his death. That is to say, the emperor ordered to build it in 1527, but he died in 1556 and it was not until 1637 when his son Felipe II finished the works without having finished them. Later, in 1923 the palace was recovered after a long period of abandonment and finished in 1958 so that we can now visit it for tourists.
Do you already have all the information about visiting the Palace of Carlos V in Granada?