I spent a couple of days in Granada during a four-day road trip around Andalucia. Granada is a major city with about 300,000 residents and its main tourist attractions are the Alhambra, Albaicin and the Cathedral. Granada has millions of visitors each year, especially during the summer months, so if you want a slightly more relaxing walk around Granada then plan your visit in the shoulder periods. There are plenty of things to do in Granada and a weekend trip may not be enough so you might need to prioritise. If you follow my guide you will have a good chance to see most things in Granada as I spent only two days here covering the below items.
Here is a quick list of things to do in Granada when you visit:
- Fly direct to Granada with one of the many operators
- Take a cab or bus into town and stay at one of the central locations
- Have dinner at Venta el Gallo, a Flamenco restaurant
- Walk around Albaicin, Sacromonte and historic downtown Granada
- Visit the Alhambra and Generalife
- Have lunch at a traditional local restaurant near the Bullring
Dinner Recommendation for Granada
For my first night I went to a flamenco restaurant called Venta el Gallo. Here you can have dinner and then enjoy a flamenco show afterwards. I had fried haddock with a slice of baked potato for the main course and a local cake for desert. They also have a selection of tasty house wines.
Self-Guided Walk Tour in Granada
The next morning I walked around the city center, starting at Avenida de la Constitucion. My first stop was Jardines del Triunfo, a garden at the bottom of the road which used to function as a muslim cemetery. From here I walked towards the Puerta de Elvira, the entrance to Albaicin.
Walking Around Albaicin
Albaicin is an ancient district of Granada, formally known as the muslim quarter. Here you will find various reminders of Granada’s muslim past, such as the gates and walls you can see in my video about Granada. Granada will be on your right walking up towards the top of the hill from the main gate. If you are lucky, you will be walking around Albaicin almost alone as most tourists take the sightseeing bus here.
Related: This article is part of a series. Read the full itinerary about my road trip around Andalucia here.
There are plenty of viewpoints in Albaicin, providing for some stunning vistas over Granada. What I would recommend is walking along the narrow streets where car traffic is sparse so you can enjoy listening to the birds chirping.
Most of the buildings are white in Albaicin with one or two floors and a high wall, typical in many Arabic countries. At the square called Cuesta de Chapiz you should turn right and continue walking towards the river and the Alhambra.
Palacio de los Cordova
At the bottom of that street you will find the Palacio de los Cordova, a reconstructed medieval palace. This palace was initially demolished to make way for some other structures, but in the 1960s a local millionaire decided to rebuild the palace using drawings and paintings from centuries ago.
I really enjoyed walking around the garden and the views from here are very good, so make sure you stop off here on your way walking around Granada.
The Paseo de los Tristes
As you exit Palacio de los Cordova, turn left and walk to the river where you will see a cute little bridge. This area is Paseo de los Tristes, leading towards Plaza de Santa Ana. There are many cafes and restaurants here so if you need a break I would recommend stopping here to eat or drink something. As you sit out on the square sipping a drink, you will be able to enjoy the stunning vistas over the Alhambra.
The Cathedral of Granada
Walk down Paseo de los Tristes towards Plaza de Santa Ana to reach Granada’s downtown area. The Cathedral is about five minutes walk from Plaza de Santa Ana, costing five euros to enter. It is a major structure, taking up a huge area, yet it is only half its original size as parts of it were demolished to allow for the construction of apartment blocks.
As you come out of the Cathedral, turn right and carry on walking towards Plaza Romanilla in the direction of the train station to reach Avenida de la Constitucion again. Along this path you will find many small cafes and restaurants, all serving tapas and a drink, so this is also a great spot to take a break.
Past Avenida de la Constitucion is the Bullring or the Plaza de los Toros. This is another great structure in Granada, preserved in its original form and still hosting sporting events to this day. I had lunch at the Las Vegas Restaurant, opposite from the Bullring for €8.80. The daily menu includes a starter, main course, desert, a drink and the bread, so it is an amazing deal if you are looking for something low cost.
The Alhambra and Generalife
I have written a separate article about the Alhambra and Generalife, so please read that post for more details.