At the foot of the magnificent Sierra Nevada Mountains lies the hip and youthful student city of Granada. While the most visited tourist attraction in Spain, Alhambra Palace, makes this Andalucian city a worthy stop, it’s the bustling atmosphere, free-tapas culture and mysterious, old-world charm that make a Granada visit extraordinary.
Things to do in Granada, Spain
As is the case with most historical European cities, the best way to appreciate Granada is by wandering the narrow, winding streets by foot. And there’s no better place to start than Spain’s most visited monument, Alhambra Palace.
Subject to countless Romantic tales and myths, the UNESCO World Heritage listed Alhambra Palace is a breathtaking and unforgettable specimen of Moorish Spain. Let your imagination run wild among the reddish walls, gardens and terraces of the stunning Palazio Nazaríes and the Alcazaba. Completed in the 14th Century, it served as a refuge for Muslim intellectuals, artists and poets as Christians conquered Al-Andalus.
After the fall of Moorish Spain, the red fortress was converted into a church and much of it was destroyed. It suffered much neglect and decay until the Romantic writers of the Napoleonic era resurrected old dreams of adventure and intrigue. Today, the palace is an eclectic hodgepodge of styles merging Christian and Islamic influences. It remains beautiful and a prime place for exploration and adventure, enthralling thousands of visitors per day.
Only a short walk from the magnificent Alhambra palace in Granada, it is said that the beautiful Generalife water gardens aim to recreate paradise on earth. As you stroll through the shaded terraces, glimmering fountains and ponds streaked with goldfish, it is difficult not to agree.
The gardens were built in the 14th Century under the reign of Muhammad III: the Patio de la Acequia, which translates as ‘Water garden courtyard’, consists of a long, pool bordered by abundant flowerbeds and sheltering hedges. Sultans used to repose here to escape the arid heat of the palace and it is one of the finest examples of Moorish gardens in Spain. These gardens are such an opulent and entrancing place to relax that you will never want to leave!