Please check out my photos at the bottom of this post!
Talk about a College Town | Unfortunately, I only spent 1 day in Granada. After checking into my hotel, I went for an hour walk through the modern part of the city and I got some interesting vibes. First off, Granada appears to have a younger population since the University of Granada, as well as other colleges, have a tens of thousands of students in Granada. Walking to streets you see that of younger college age students just socializing outside of University buildings. Funny store; during my walk on that first evening, I noticed this one particular street that had a lot of people wearing leg casts, arm slings, using wheelchairs, and patched up with various bandages on their bodies. My first thought was, “Damn, this is a hardcore hood!”. But it turns out that I was walking on the street where the Granada Medical College treats patients for subsidized medical rates! Lol. Never judge a city by its wounded…but as I kept walking I passed up a very large University library, dorm buildings, and more academic centers. I tend to compare Spain to Israel a lot and I apologize if this bugs you…that said the modern city of Granada sort of reminded me of different suburbs of Tel Aviv but with cooler weather. I’m sure there is a lot more to see in the city of Granada, so I’m marking this one as a “Come back for 4-5 days”. Fun fact: Did you know that the Sierra Nevada region is the USA is named after the Sierra Nevada region in which Granada is located? The looks and feels are so similar when the Spanish colonized the Western USA, they gave it the same name from back home.
The Alhambra, Jewel of Granada | The most famous landmark in Granada of course is the amazing Moorish Palace called the Alhambra. Alright…it is totally impossible for me to describe the Alhambra Palace but lets just say that once after 11 years of battle the Muslim King Boabdil surrendered the Alhambra’s keys to King Ferdinand and Queen Isabelle during the reconquest in 1492, they were so impressed with the structure and its surrounding gardens that they had to make it their own personal residence for a short while. And then after them, some dude named King Charles decided he would construct this weird Roman-ish looking Chapel literally like 40 ft away from the Alhambra’s main structure. As if that wasn’t enough he also made a 2 story Roman amphitheater just for good measure. It really strange walking out of the purely Moorish architecture and then see these 2 large Roman looking buildings just chilling on the other side of the street. Almost like walking into an epic dance battle between 2 great civilizations. I recommend walking along the Alhambra’s walks & ramparts as well as getting lost in one of the many beautiful palace gardens. The gardens by the way are, in my opinion, even better than the palace. People sign up 6 months in advance to get their wedding picture taken in the Alhambra gardens, and while I was there I saw a bride and groom to be on their photo shoot! Sightseeing in Granada seems like it took most of my time at the Alhambra and its gardens and unfortunately I didn’t have a chance to really check out the cafes and bars in the city.
Michelle Obama & Flamenco Dancing | Ok, if you are visiting Granada you MUST see some Flamenco Music & Dancing at this particular spot. For about 20 euros you can have front row seats, in middle on an Gypsies catacomb cafe, while you sip on a glass of tinto. The rhythm of Flamenco…OMG. The energy and passion of the singers, guitarists, and of course the dancers is second to none. Please go to this website: and buy your tickets. This show is so good that even Michelle Obama got tickets to see this group a couple of years ago. If you love music and dancing, this show will really open up a whole other world of rhythm and soul! There is another great spot in Seville that I would recommend but its a little more expensive. You can read about it here.
This picture was taken from the bus just driving past the Alhambra.
My and my Colombian friend waiting for the Flamenco show to start at the Cueva da la Rociío in Granada.
Not the best photo but here is my view during the Flamenco show. The band is all the way in the back.
The Cueva de la Rocío Flamenco show is located on Sacromonte Hill in Granada from there you get a great view of the Alhambra at night.
Here it is! The city of Granada.
Granada has a unique climate. Despite being in Southern Spain, it gets cool in the mornings and the city also gets more rain from the mountains.
Only about 450,000 people in Granada, so its not that big in my opinion.
Beautiful Mediterranean streets.
The landscape is a mixture of hills, rocky elevations, and lots of tree groves.
I didn’t get to see this up close but its supposed to be another great Cathedral.
Just look at this view!
Here’s the view from the Alhambra tower.
Looking down into another castle wall.
The ramparts of the Alhambra.
I took this photo from atop the Alhambra tower. Here you can see another part of the Alhambra.
What remains of a “Barrio” or neighborhood within the Alhambra walls. These are just foundations but the houses would have been 2 stories high or more.
Another cool view from the Alhambra’s ramparts.
Alhambra wall selfie.
These are the remains of an underground plumbing system for bath water.
Sorry for the poor selfie quality. The sun was hardly in the right spot.
Looking through the tower windows.
Such as cool place.
Just imagine this place 600 years ago.
I love’d this particular photo spot!
As you can probably see, the Alhambra is built on hill.
Alhambra comes from the Arabic word meaning “Red Walls” or something like that.
Fun Fact: The famous American author Washington Irving actually lived in the Alhambra for 3 months back in 1829.
it was kind of weird walking through this incredible Moorish citadel just to see this random Romansh Christian palace.
One of the many gates through the Alhambra grounds.
Look at those Romany columns.
Charles V spared no expense.
You know…just chilling the colosseum.
Upon leaving the Alhambra citadel, you see these most breath taking gardens.
Me the gardens.
Everywhere you turn there’s some cool little villa or terrace in the Alhambra gardens.
The Moors really liked using water falls and fountains in their decor.
More typical Moorish pond decorations
Kind of hard to tell from this photo, but up that hill is a small and peaceful waterfall.
Such a peaceful place. Would love to curl up with a book and some Sangria under one of the Palm Trees.
This was probably one of the coolest villas. Don’t mind the restoration going on.
Almost all the decorative roofs are carved from cedar wood.
This villa is legit!
More of the national rose gardens.
No stairs in the Alhambra main alleyways only ramps which are easier for horses.
Didn’t I mention just how peaceful the gardens are?
One of the entry gates.
The Alhambra Citadel strikingly stands out of the landscape.
Inside the walls selfie.
The holes in the wall were originally for scaffolding but now they are inadvertently used as housing for little birdies.
Atop the tower selfie.
Such a cool picture.
The main tower is so tall it makes it look like sunset at noon!
Those arches behind my big head were used my Napoleon’s artillery when he fought in Spain.
Cool pic of the main keep.
I got a little too sassy with my selfies.
Look how thick these walls are.
One of the decorative pieces that could also double as a hitching post.
Me in Charles V’s patio.
This is my adopted Italian granny for this tour! She was born in Italy but raised in Australia. Such a neat lady.
Very common to see arches like these with Islamic verses or Arabian poetry carved in the wall.
This was fo shizzle my favorite villa in the Alhambra gardens. I could live here…
More entrances made for horses.
People still use this stage for concerts and productions.
Peaceful bubbly fountains.
These gardens look a lot like the Daniel Stowe Botanicals here in Charlotte NC!