Last week I was in Granada and it surprised me. I was told it was beautiful, but I hadn’t expected this!! I fell in love with Granada. I think it might be one of the nicest cities I’ve been in Europe. It’s not as grand as London or Rome, but ut has a lot to do and has great atmosphere.
Granada has a large history with the Moors. You can see this in a lot of buildings in the city and the way some districts are build up with the narrow, winding streets that look a bit like a medina. There are also a lot of Arabic restaurants, although they are pretty much only for tourists. One of the great things of Granada is that you get a free tapa with every beer (or other drink) you order. My personal favourites were POË (really good tapas!) and Babel (the food is colourful and really tasty).
If you ever go to Granada you should definitely go to the Alhambra. I know it is really touristic, but it is totally worth it! Book your tickets as far in advance as possible though! I almost couldn’t go. And go early in the morning to beat the crowds. Also keep in mind that the Alhambra is not just a palace, it is more like a whole city inside a city. It includes 2 palaces, a fort and stunning gardens.
Another thing I really loved is the Albaicín district.With it’s winding streets and white houses, every corner holds a new surprise and it is a joy to get lost here. If you walk up you’ll come across some stunning views of the city. I would recommend going up to mirador san Miguel alto (a viewpoint) at sunset, or San Cristóbal if you don’t make it all the way to the top (it is quite a climb).
If you want to know some more about the history of Granada you can do some pretty good free walking tours. I did one with walk in Granada and that was really good. They make their tour personal and gibe some great tips along the way. They have 3 different walks: the first is a historic walk of the center (every day from Plaza Nueve at 11:00), the other two are walks in Albaicín and Sacromonte (you have to check their website for times and days because this varies). The tour is for free, you just tip the guide what you think it was worth at the end.
I don’t know how, but a lot of people seem to forget that Granada is really close to the Sierra Nevada (a mountain range) and you can do some great hikes here. I did a 3 hour hike from Monachil and it was beautiful. It wasn’t too difficult, most of the time you follow a smal river and you walk through a gorge.
There are some more difficult hikes as well.
Granada is a really nice city to just walk around and experience the atmosphere. There is enough to see and do, and if you’re thinking about going I would definitely recommend it! Like I said, one of my favourite cities up till now.