The Ultimate Guide to Granada

Hee Sang Rheu is a student at the The Ohio State University, and an ISA Photo Blogger. She is currently studying abroad with ISA in Valencia, Spain.

Granada – which means “pomegranate” in Spanish – is a city that is keeping the history of the Moorish occupation of Spain, located in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains in Andalucía. And of course, it is where the Alhambra, one of the most visited place in all of Europe is.

However, Granada has a lot more places to see other than the spectacular Alhambra. Where ever you are trying to go, you’ll stumble upon one of the most dazzling streets you’ve ever seen.

La Calle de Granada 1, Granada, Spain G+ç+¦ Rheu G+ç+¦ Photo 1
La Calle de Granada.

Once you start wandering around the streets, even before you realize it, you’ll be able to find yourself at la Plaza Nueva. Granada is a fairly small city, so everything is in a close, walkable distance. La Plaza Nueva is the city’s central plaza, lined with shops, tapas bars, cafes, and restaurants.

Plaza Nueva, Granada, Spain G+ç+¦ Rheu G+ç+¦ Photo 3
Plaza Nueva.


Street performer, Granada, Spain G+ç+¦ Rheu G+ç+¦ Photo 4
When I went later in the day, I could see a street performer and a circle of people around him.

About 5 minutes away from la Plaza Nueva is the Granada Cathedral, and right next to the Cathedral is another smaller plaza with a fountain.

Plaza, Granada, Spain G+ç+¦ Rheu G+ç+¦ Photo 5
You can see the cathedral in this picture on the right-hand side.

The Granada Cathedral is a magnificent cathedral that you must visit if you are in Granada. Its white ceilings and the gold decorations will make you fall in love with this gorgeous cathedral in a second.

Granada Cathedral, Granada, Spain G+ç+¦ Rheu G+ç+¦ Photo 7
Granada Cathedral.


Of course, the Alhambra is a must see.. Most of the people – if not all of them – will be coming to Granada to see the Alhambra, the dazzling fossil of the Moorish extravaganza. Literally “the red one” in Arabic, the palace was built in the 13th century. The Alhambra  is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and it is one of the most visited monuments in the world.

Jardin de Alhambra, Granada, Spain G+ç+¦ Rheu G+ç+¦ Photo 11
The Alhambra is not only famous for its architecture, but also its gorgeous garden, too.


Alhambra, Granada, Spain G+ç+¦ Rheu G+ç+¦ Photo 13
The inscriptions on the every single wall shows the beauty of the Arabic language.

Inside the Alhambra is the Palace of Charles V, which is a Renaissance building built after the reconquest of Spain by the Christian force. What is really unique about this building is that it has a circular interior while having a square exterior. Take a look at this panoramic view:

Palace of Charles V (Interior), Granada, Spain G+ç+¦ Rheu G+ç+¦ Photo 15
The circular patio on the inside.


At night, you should explore the Albaicín – neighborhood of the gypsies, and enjoy the flamenco show.

Flamenco show, Granada, Spain G+ç+¦ Rheu G+ç+¦ Photo 16
Flamenco show.

This is completely optional, but I recommend you to get up extra early in the morning to hike up the Albaicín neighborhood and to go to San Cristobal Hill, because the sunrise there is amazing. The sunrise, with the Sierra Nevada Mountains and the Alhambra in the foreground, is something extraordinary and it’s well worth getting up extra early.

Sunrise from Albaici-ª++n, Granada, Spain G+ç+¦ Rheu G+ç+¦ Photo 17
Sunrise from Albaicín.


Quick side note :

If you go to the Albaicín area later in the day, you can go to one of the gypsy stores like this one and take a look at their cute souvenirs, like I did!

Tienda de Albaici-ª++n, Granada, Spain G+ç+¦ Rheu G+ç+¦ Photo 19
Tienda de Albaicín.

The world awaits…discover it.

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