Alhambra Palace Granada
Within a couple of hours drive of Malaga is the spectacular World Heritage site the Alhambra Palace and Generalife Gardens in Granada, built by the Moors in the 14th century. The palace is a very popular tourist attraction and can be very busy in the summer, and tickets from April to September regularly sell out (for daytime entry), so it is highly recommended that you reserve your tickets online as early as possible to make sure you can visit on the date you prefer.
Pre-book tickets to the Alhambra here.
Night time visits are great for the hot summer and tickets are easier to obtain usually. Allow at least 3-4 hours to for the visit.
Granada is located around 65km inland, so the temperature can be hotter than on the coast in the summer months.
There are many great places to discover in Granada city itself. For those interested in Spanish history the eye-catching Cathedral and the Royal Chapel are worth visiting.
Plaza Nueva is where many tourists end up after visiting the Alhambra Palace. The plaza is around a 15 minute walk down hill from the palace and gardens. The plaza is full of bars and restuarants , most offering al fresco dining in the warm Granada sun.
The narrow alleys of the Alcaiceria just off of Bib Rambla square are enchanting. The name derives from the Arab term "al-qaysariya", meaning a commercial area. The area was formerly a silk market, but is now lined with any number of tourist shops where you can by souvenirs depicting the Alhambra.
Bib Rambla has plenty of bars and a number of "al fresco" restaurants where you can enjoy a refreshing beer or indulge in some local tapas.
The impressive view from the Mirador de San Nicolas in the Albayzin quarter is a must see for any visitor to Granada. From here you can enjoy spectacular views over the city and across to the Alhambra Palace and Generalife gardens.
If you have more time to explore the Granada region, Granada province has more to see than Granada city and the Alhambra. During the colder months (November to April), you can enjoy Skiing at Europe's most southerly resort. The snow-capped mountains of the Sierra Nevada are at such a high altitude, that you can ski in the morning, and sunbathe on the beaches of the Costa Tropical on the same day.
Some of the best beaches on the Costa Tropical are at Almunecar and La Herradura both of which are quiet coastal resorts popular with Spanish families.
The white Alpujarra villages to the south of Granada and the natural region of Lecrin Valley are great for walking enthusiasts, birdwatching or mountain biking, also for finding the essence of Real Spain.
When to visit
The annual highlight of the Granada calendar is Easter week. The Easter processions are not as busy as in Seville, so it's easier to get a good view. The best place to see them is around the Cathedral or Gran Via.
The Crosses of May are a colourful festival celebrated during the first week in May in the streets around Granada. The best time to see them in the early afternoon and evening.
Christmas time in Granada has many Nativity scenes set up around the city by schools and different associations. There are several markets with handicrafts, and of course if if you are a skier it's the ideal time to be in town.
Food and Drink
As with any Spanish city, food and drink is varied and great quality. Dont miss the Arab style tea shops in the Lower Albayzin on Caldereria Nueva street.
In most bars in Granada you will enjoy free Tapas with your beer and wine. Find your favourite spots in the city by tasting their complimentary tapas each evening or lunchtime.
If you prefer something a little more romantic enjoy dinner below the Mirador de San Nicolas in one of the Carmen restaurants. Dine with the views over to the Alhambra.
For Ice cream lovers head to Los Italianos on Gran Via (open from Mid March to Mid October) and try their Cassata (house special) For Coffee and cake in Granada, the most typical cake from the region is Pionono named after the Pope Pius XI or Pope Nono.