Escalera del Agua
Historic Site and Notable Building in
The Escalera del Agua or Water Ladder is a feature in the Generalife in the Alhambra Complex, in Granada, Spain. To access the highest area of the Generalife you need to ascend the Escalera del Agua.
It is a fourteenth century outdoor staircase protected by a laurel canopy, it is famous for the channels of water that run down its banisters. The large staircase has three landings each one a circular patio with a small pool and fountain. There is also a central channel of water that runs in to the pools on the landings.
Its Spanish name was documented in 1572 when they were repaired: “las fuentes que dizen la escalera del agua.”
Escalera del Agua in 1536
In 1526 Andrea Navagero, the Venetian ambassador describes the water stairs of the fourteenth century Generalife:
“At the highest part of the site in a garden there is a lovely wide staircase… The Stair is made of masonry and every few steps has a landing with a hollow to hold water. The parapets on each of the stair have hollowed out stones on the top, like channels. The valves at the top of the stairs are arranged so that water can run either in the channels of in the landing hollows or both. The volume can be increased so that the water overflows and inundates the steps and drenches anyone there”.
Visiting Escalera del Agua
For opening times of the Escalera del Agua in the Generalife see Alhambra Opening Times.
The Escalera del Agua is part of the Generalife of the Alhambra Complex and access it you need to purchase Alhambra Tickets or a Alhambra Guided Tour.