Granada has a wonderful heritage, from Moorish architecture to Spanish splendour. The city is a must see on any trip to Spain. Here is a list of the six top places to visit in Granada.
This is the most famous site in all of Granada. It dates from the 1200s and has been both a Moorish palace and a church. A visit to the Alhambra will take one day at least, especially if you really want to enjoy it in it´s entirety. The gardens are spectacular and have a variety of fountains, flora and fauna. The Generalife palace is the Moorish summer retreat and is the most unforgettable place to visit in Granada. Book well in advance and be prepared to queue.
Another top spot to visit in Granada is the cathedral, which was actually built on top of the city´s mosque. It is one of the largest in Spain and comprises both Gothic and Renaissance styles. There are plenty of stained glass windows, typical of Spanish cathedrals to view. Paired with the myriad of sculptures and paintings, it is a marvel to see. The unique style of Spanish cathedrals is evident here and is worthy of it´s place in top monuments to visit in Granada.
Alcaiceria, Moorish bazaar
This is the site of the old Moorish bazaar, much like the ones seen in Morocco and Turkey today. Now, the streets have been converted into tourist souvenir shops but the architecture is worth seeing. From the tiny corridor that encompasses the Alcaiceria, it is the one of the many places to visit in Granada that displays the Moorish ancestry of this city. Here you can buy many souvenirs typical of the city, from ceramics to furniture.
Continuing with the Moorish theme, the old Andalucian baths are a real treat. This is one of the only remaining authentic hammams, a rarity to visit in Granada. Although they are no longer in use, you can see the wonderful scaffolding that made these baths so popular during the time of the Emir. The abandoned nature of the baths makes the atmosphere slightly creepy, but it is a real glimpse into Spain´s history.
This neighbourhood is most commonly associated with the Spanish gypsies that made Granda their home for many centuries. The neighbourhood is actually built into hillsides, and the homes are really more like caves. All of the homes are individual, relying mostly on what could be built into the hills. The neighbourhood also offers authentic performances of gypsy music and flamenco. This is one of the best places to visit in Granada to see something of the city´s Spanish cultural heritage.
This forms part of the Arab quarter, a UNESCO site that is essential to visit in Granada. The quarter is reminiscent of a Moroccan village and has plenty of small streets, sheltered from the sunlight. Many of the buildings are covered in tiles, each individually handpainted. None of the tiles look the same and they set the buildings apart from the rest of the city. There are many traditional tea houses here and the cuisine also retains some Moorish flair. Make sure that you include plenty of time to see the spectacular architecture, clearly defining the influence Islamic culture had on Spain at the time.
More to visit in Granada
Of course, the tour does not stop here. From tapas bars to lush terraces, Granada has plenty to offer a tourist. Visit in spring to avoid the hot weather and see the gardens as they begin to bloom. For more information on city breaks to Granada, please visit Iberinbound.