The Top 10 Monuments in Spain

A visit to Spain is not just about the sun and sea, as it is also a country steeped in history with an extraordinary and interesting past. It has been ruled by Iberians, Romans, Muslims and eventually by the Catholics. All of these rulers leaving the most amazing monuments just waiting for you to discover!

The Alhambra

This a beautiful combination of buildings and gardens. The Palace comprises of rectangular courtyards and various fountains. There is the remarkable Nasrid building that was the living quarters for various monarchs. The oldest building is the Alcazaba citadel and the finest structure is the La Vela tower, which offers panoramic views - not to be missed!

Basilica of la Sagrada Familia

This was built in 1883 and work still continues on it today. The first architect to undertake this project wanted to design a neo-Gothic building. However after his death, Gaudí took over and stamped his own personal distinctive style on the building. He finished the chapel of San José, the crypt and the door of El Nacimiento.

Great Mosque of Cordoba

The Great Mosque stands in the historic centre; it is one of the most lavish examples of Muslim art in Spain. It was built in 785 by Emir Abdurrahman. It has undergone various extensions over the centuries. The last renovation in 987 resulted in the interior boasting beautiful columns with double arcades and horseshoe type arches.

Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela

Construction began in 1075 and the work took place under the direction of Master Esteban on the remains of old churches built in devotion to the saint. It features 200 figures referring to the Apocalypse.

Burgos Cathedral

This cathedral has received the UNESCO World Heritage designation and is one of the most impressive examples of Spanish Gothic art. It was built over a long period of time which lasted from 1221 to 1795. Its boasts a gallery of statues displaying all of the monarchs.

Alcázar Fortress in Segovia

This outstanding fortress dates back to the Christian era in the 12th century. It was built on top of a rock and used as a residence by Alfonso VIII. It also contains a number of secret passageways that lead to the river and also to many of the city's palaces.

Majorca Cathedral

The cathedral is built over the walls of Palma de Mallorca's old town and comprises of three naves. The main nave is home to the Trinidad chapel, where the remains of kings Jaime II and Jaime III are buried. The stunning highlight is the main door and the south door or Mirador, known for its ornate decoration which features sculptures by Guillermo Sagrera.

Nuestra Señora del Pilar Basilica

This was built between the 17th and 18th centuries. Inside is the high altarpiece made out of alabaster, and the Renaissance choir-stall. The basilica was declared a National Monument and is said to be one of the most important spiritual destinations in Spain.

Roman Theatre in Mérida

The theatre seats up to 3,000 people and stands on the hill of San Albín, where the slope is said to improve the building’s acoustics. It was built by General Agrippa in probably 16 or 15 B.C. The theatre has been the site of the Festival of Classical Theatre since 1933 and is said to be the most visited monument in the city.

La Giralda Tower

The Giralda tower is one of the highlights of Seville and definitely something not to be missed! A series of ramps will take you up to the bell tower which has the most amazing views over the city. To one side is the Orange Tree Courtyard which includes a visigoth pool. The areas decorated with bricks are the work of the famous architect Alí de Gómara.

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