In the previous article we mentioned the Palace within the Castle walls. Well within the Palace is an example of the remains of a tiny Islamic courtyard garden.

 

It must be at least 800 years old and we think it is absolutely charming.

 

The central basin would have held a fountain, and there are no less than five stone runnels into which the water would overflow.

Two of them ran under the floor of the adjacent Palace to cool the rooms in the hot summer. Three sides of the courtyard are deep iwans which are huge stone niches with arched roofs.

You can see the remains of one with grass growing on what would have been the seating area. The iwans would have been spread with carpets and cushions so the court could lounge in comfort cooled by the water in the fountain and its runnels. Magic.

This is the man who manages the Castle. He was actually born in the Castle, as his father was then the caretaker.

You can still the see the ruin of what was once their house.

Now he lives in the nearest village, but has worked at the Castle for 37 years and is a great host, speaking good English.

 

travels_saladin_4 main and travels_saladin_3 inside

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