In the district of Albaicín, in the centre of today’s Granada, there remain many vestiges of the fortified wall that used to surround the city. The large walls are reinforced with brick and stone. Some parts of the wall date back to the Zirid period (9th century), while others to the end of the Nasrid period (14th century) . Among these ruins are the towers and gateways to the city, including the Puerta de Monaita, the Puerta de las Pesas, the Puerta de Elvira and the Postigo de San Lorenzo.
In the second half of the 14th century the wall was built to defend the districts located on the Cerro de San Cristóbal hill and in the Albaicín and Albayda districts. The wall ran from the Puerta de Guadix, passed through San Miguel, and continued to the Puerta de Fajalauza and the Postigo de San Lorenzo, ending at the Puerta de Elvira.
The Alcazaba Qadima of Granada is located on the highest point in the Albaicín district, where the Roman city Eliberri was built. Here the Muslims built strong walls on top of the former Roman ones. The first buildings date back to the Caliphate period, but the most impressive constructions are from the Zirid period (11th century), when the Kingdom of Granada had already been established. They had strong walls with impressive towers made of solid stone and with gates that were as grand as the Puerta de Elvira.
The extensive part of the wall that ran between the Puerta de Monaita and the Puerta de las Pesas is one of the few surviving sections. It is located at the foot of the Alcazaba Qadima Albayzín and you can get the best view of it from the Mirador de San Cristóbal. This section is over 350 metres long and is attached to the Alcazaba Qadima.
As the Albaicín district grew larger in the Nasrid period, the citadel was strengthened with a new defensive fortification. This section of the Nasrid wall (called Muralla Alberzana, meaning ‘orange grove’) starts from the Cuesta de San Antonio and reaches Fajaluza, running parallel to the Carretera de Murcia.