The Alcazar of Segovia
Alcazar of Segovia is a dramatic tourist attraction and regarded as a popular historical site throughout Spain. It is one of three major sites for touring within the city of Segovia.
The striking building is situated on the top of an isolated rocky elevation. Its unique shape has been compared to the bow of a ship and sits above the spot where the two rivers in the town meet, offering the visitor an idyllic vision.
This castle has been the chief inspiration for the design of the castle in Walt Disney’s Cinderella.
Castle and Fortress
Historical documentation reveals the first known structure was simply a wooden fence and then a fort, circa 1120, and by the reign of King Alfonso VIII (1155-1214), a residential addition was added to serve as the primary residence for the royal couple. Subsequent improvements were made to make it a stronger fortress serving equally as a royal residence and a military fortress to defend the land.
The majestic exterior has many spires reaching skyward near the front and rear of the commanding building. Its strong military focus is reflected in the presence of a fortress with numerous look-out towers, in and otherwise enchanting romantic edifice. This breathtaking vision is well-matched in the interior by the ornate traceries and pendant sculptures, adorning the numerous residential apartments.
Alcazar of Segovia served as the most popular residence for the monarchs of the Kingdom of Castille throughout the Middle Ages. The structure was expanded upon in 1258 under the leadership of King Alfonso the X of Castille, following a collapse of numerous structures in the building.
Improvements and renovations continued under future monarchies, until the royal court moved to Madrid, and the Alcazar then served as a prison for two centuries prior to the establishment of The Royal Artillery School in 1762.
Ninety years later, in 1862, there was a damaging fire that left the building unused to complete the repairs which was completed 20 years later. King Alfonso XIII was in power at this time and turned the building over to the Ministry of War to use as a military college.
Much of the decor of the interior was performed by Arab craftsman, depicting all of the kings of Castille, as well as verses from the Qu’ran. The most visited and appealing areas to be seen on tour are the Throne room adorned by oriental carpet and numerous drapes, and the dramatic royal shield above the thrones, The Belt Room adorned lavishly with gilded trim and mosaic tile, as well as the Armory Room, which as the name suggests, brings to mind the romantic ‘Knight in shining armor’, so dramatically depicted in literature and in history.
For amazing photo views please also visit http://www.alcazardesegovia.com/. The text is written in Spanish and may not be translated, but the photography is still worth the visit.