Granada is a cosmopolitan city that has many fascinating remnants of Spain's Moorish past waiting to be discovered. This city was the centre of the Nasrid Dynasty that ruled parts of the Iberian Peninsula between the 13th and 15th centuries. 

    With its diverse community of Arabs, Berbers, Christians and Jews, Granada is teeming with unique traditions, markets, and celebrations throughout the year. Despite its hilly setting, the city is relatively easy to explore on foot, especially within the Moorish and old Jewish quarters. If you’re visiting for the first time, check out our guide on things to do in Granada in a day or two.

    What are the best things to do in Granada?


    The Alhambra

    Learn about the history of this Moorish palace with a 3-hour guided tour

    • Families
    • Couples
    • History
    • Photo

    The Alhambra is a well-preserved Moorish palace with a fascinating history dating back to the Nasrid Dynasty. Glimpses of Granada’s Moorish past can still be seen here, especially in the intricately decorated Comares Palace and Mexuar (reception hall). Nearby is the Generalife Gardens, comprising several landscapes with beautiful flowers, fountains, and pools, as well as a Water Staircase, which has water flowing through its parapets. Admission starts from €9 and guided tours are available at additional costs. 

    Location: Alhambra, Calle Real de la Alhambra, 18009 Granada, Spain

    Open: Daily from 8.30 am to 8 pm (hours vary by season)

    Phone: +34 (0)958 918 029


    Plaza Campo del Principe

    Check out colourful street art by artist El Niño at this vibrant square

    • Families
    • History
    • Photo

    Plaza del Principe is a large square within the old Jewish quarter of Granada. It’s where you can find an array of dining options in the form of tapas bars, cafes, bistros, and tablaos (flamenco bars). The streets are relatively flat, which makes it easy to explore on foot or bicycle. Some of the city’s most important landmarks include the 16th-century Casa de los Tiros fortress, Iglesia de Santo Domingo church, and Iglesia De San Cecilio church.

    Location: Campo del Príncipe, Realejo, 18009 Granada, Spain


    Rodríguez-Acosta Foundation

    Join the hour-long tour of the museum’s courtyards and underground galleries

    • History

    The Rodríguez-Acosta Foundation is a museum dedicated to 19th-century painter José María Rodríguez-Acosta. Founded in 1941, the museum occupies a large Art Deco building surrounded with beautiful gardens, courtyards, ponds, and sculptures. You can only visit Rodríguez-Acosta Foundation through a guided tour, which costs about €5. A local guide takes you through its many courtyards and terraces, 5 floors of exhibition halls, and underground galleries, one of which houses the private collection of historian Manuel Gomez-Moreno Martinez. 

    Location: Callejón Niño del Royo, 8, 18009 Granada, Spain

    Open: Daily from 10 am to 4.30 pm

    Phone: +34 958 227 497


    photo by Maria-photos (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified


    Alcaicería Market

    Buy ethnic clothing and craftworks at this historical marketplace

    • Budget
    • Shoppers
    • Photo

    The Alcaicería Market runs along the pedestrian-friendly streets starting from Plaza Bib-Rambla to the Granada Cathedral. Once a renowned silk market in Granada, this open-air marketplace is filled with colourful stalls selling mostly Arabic textiles, clothing, handicrafts, and accessories. Here, you can find a variety of ethnic clothes, textiles and leather bags. You may catch a whiff of herbal teas and Moroccan spices, especially when you’re browsing stalls near Plaza Bib-Rambla.

    Location: Alcaiceria, Calle Alcaiceria, 1, 18001 Granada, Spain

    Open: Monday – Saturday from 11 am to 8 pm (closed on Sundays)

    Phone: +34 958 229 045


    Granada Cathedral

    See Spanish Renaissance architecture at this 16th-century landmark

    • Families
    • Couples
    • History
    • Photo

    Granada Cathedral is a Spanish Renaissance church in the centre of town. Built in 1523, it’s one of the largest cathedrals in the world. One of its most picturesque features is the main altar, which has a large dome fitted with sculptures and paintings of religious figures, and towering Baroque columns painted in white and gold. The royal chapel houses the remains of Spanish royalty, including Queen Isabella I of Castile and King Ferdinand II of Aragon. The Sacristy Museum is also located in the chapel, where you can check out exhibits of Queen Isabella’s library, royal artefacts, and classical paintings.

    Location: Catedral de Granada, Calle Gran Vía de Colón, 5, 18001 Granada, Spain

    Open: Monday – Saturday from 10 am to 6.30 pm, Sunday from 3 pm to 6 pm

    Phone: +34 958 222 959


    Huerta de San Vicente

    Visit the summer home of Federico García Lorca

    • Couples
    • History
    • Photo

    Huerta de San Vicente, located 1.5 km southwest of Plaza del Principe, was the summer residence of renowned poet Federico García Lorca. Today, it’s a museum displaying many of his personal belongings, photographs, drawings, manuscripts, and a few paintings by Salvador Dali. You should save some time to stroll through the gardens surrounding the museum. The winding walkways and beautiful flowers are a great place to relax. Admission costs about €3, which includes a 45-minute tour of Huerta de San Vicente.

    Location: Casa-Museo Federico García Lorca, Virgen Blanca, 18004 Granada, Spain

    Open: 1st June - 15th September: Daily from 9 am to 2 pm, 16th September - 31st May: Daily from 9.30 am to 5 pm

    Phone: +34 958 258 466


    photo by Spencer Means (CC BY-SA 2.0) modified


    Turkish bathhouses

    Enjoy a steam bath at Hammam Al Andalus

    • Couples
    • Luxury

    Hammams are traditional spas where you can relax with a steam bath and massage after a day of sightseeing in Granada. Also known as Turkish bathhouses, treatments typically involve bathing in pools of varying temperatures, followed with a full- body massage using aromatherapy oils. One of the best hammams in the city is Hammam Al Andalus, which is a 10-minute walk from The Alhambra. It’s set within a 13th-century Moroccan bathhouse and has 7 bathing pools decked out in Arabic mosaics, arched doorway, and motifs. Book ahead if you’re planning a visit on weekends. 

    Location: Calle Santa Ana, 16, 18009 Granada, Spain

    Open: Daily from 9.30 am to midnight

    Phone: +34 958 229 978


    Flamenco shows

    Check out flamenco bars along Camino de Sacromonte

    • Families
    • Couples
    • Nightlife

    Granada, with its thriving gypsy community, is one of the best cities in Spain to watch traditional flamenco dances. Many bars and restaurants in Granada’s touristy spots host flamenco shows, but for an authentic experience, many locals recommend visiting the cave tablaos (flamenco bars) within the Sacromonte district. A 2-hour-long show typically costs €25, but expect to pay more for meals and drinks. The neighbourhood also offers plenty of sightseeing spots, thanks to its many cave homes and hillside walkways overlooking The Alhambra, River Darro, and Valparaiso Valley.

    Location: Camino del Sacromonte, 18010 Granada, Spain

    Open: Daily from 8 pm to midnight (hours may vary)

    photo by Yair Haklai (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified


    Plato alpujarreño

    Enjoy this traditional dish at a restaurant in the Moorish quarter

    • Food

    Plato alpujarreño originates from the mountain villages of Las Alpujarras. Similar to a British fry-up, this traditional meal consists of fried potatoes, onions, eggs, ham, sweet green peppers, chorizo, and morcilla (blood sausage). There are plenty of restaurants and bars serving this hearty dish in Granada’s Albaicín district. Choose a restaurant that has terrace views of The Alhambra for an iconic Andalusian meal.

    Location: Albaicín, Granada, Spain

    photo by Boca Dorada (CC BY-SA 2.0) modified


    Jamón de trevélez

    Enjoy this Spanish ham and various tapas at Jardines de Zoraya

    • Food

    Jamón de trevélez is one of the many cured meats you can find at most tapas bars and marketplaces in Granada. This regional dish originates from the mountain village of Trevélez, located 90 km south of Granada City. The process of making Jamón de trevélez involves salting and air-drying an entire pork leg for a period that lasts between 14 and 20 months. It’s typically eaten with fried broad beans, so look out for Habas Fritas con Jamon on the menu when ordering at a restaurant. A good spot for a variety of Spanish wines, cured meats and cheese is Jardines de Zoraya, which is located in the Albaicin district of Granada. 

    Location: Jardines de Zoraya, Calle Panaderos, 32, 18010 Granada, Spain

    Open: Monday – Friday from 11 am to 11 pm, Saturday – Sunday from 11 am to midnight

    Phone: +34 958 206 266

    Penny Wong | Compulsive Traveller

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    Attractions and experiences recommended in our guides may be affected. Please check local guidance before you travel.

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