The first tip I’m going to offer you about visiting the Alhambra is not to do it on a severe hangover 😂! The second is, take lots of water and brace yourself for lots of walking; but also for some breathtaking views and some beautifully intricate details!
This is my final Spanish Travel Diary – is it weird I’m a bit sad they’re over? I hope you’ve enjoyed reading them as much as I’ve loved writing them and taking pictures for them. Let’s get down to it…
The Alhambra is a palace fortress complex located in Granada. You can see it as you drive up, but it’s deceptive – it looks smaller than it is. You need to book your tickets pretty far in advance (it’s unlikely you’ll be able to get them on the day if you just turn up!) and be prepared to tussle with their website as it is not user friendly.
We drove as there is ample parking but you can get busses etc which will take you there for the day too!
The Alhambra itself has a long and rich history which I would never be able to do justice here – for history buffs (I know Abbey Louisa Rose will want to know more! 🙂 this site is great for giving you all the details!)
Overall, the ticketing system works pretty well as it means you’re not overwhelmed by other people whilst you wander round the spectacular palace (though you do have to queue outside, so definitely take water / a hat / suncream if you get sun stroke, as the queue can take around 45 mins).
There’s so much detail in every corner you look, whether that’s the beautiful Arabic script across the tiles, or the stunning geometry you’ll find carved into the ceilings.
As you wander round, you’ll find the gardens which are full of blooming roses, and through each winding path you’ll find yourself at either an impressive vista or some awe-inspiring architecture.
I personally loved this beautiful area – it used to be the hareems quarters! I could just imagine the ladies luxuriating in the beautiful setting!
We also had a little explore into the fort – we didn’t make it quite to the top as we were majorly flagging at this point (even those who weren’t hungover were struggling after 4 hours walking in 40 degree heat!), but it did afford some amazing views of Grenada!
At the end of your two-hour stay, you can get a shuttle down into the town just underneath, or alternatively you can walk your way down the hill. It’s very scenic but you will no doubt be exhausted from all the walking.. !
We decided to venture up a side street, and found a very odd little restaurant tucked away. It had beautiful paintings on the walls, shelves packed with random things, whilst TVs soundlessly played Japanese cartoons. Told you, VidaXtra restaurant is certifiably weird – but don’t write it off just for it’s slightly quirky setting!
The barman served drinks, and as we ordered food, threw on his chef whites.
Freshly squeezed orange juice was made by hand in front of us, meanwhile we all opted to totally fuel up on carbs – we definitely deserved it after the day we’d had! I opted for the most beautiful beef carpaccio, accompanied by an amazing mushroom gnocchi! Other orders included divine Bruschetta (why does this never, ever taste as good when you make it at home?!) and spicy spaghetti, as well as a chilli Penne dish. It was another hidden-gem-find!
They did run a little short staffed, and they don’t take card, so you’ll need to go prepared with cash, but they did bring a round of complementary shots the barmaid had whipped up as an apology for being a little slow, and for not taking card!
I cannot recommend both the trip to the Alhambra and VidaXtra enough!
I’m so excited that my next set of travel diaries will come from Singapore, Indonesia and Melbourne. I’m feeling super nervous but super excited too – if you’ve got any tips for me then let me know!
Omg this place looks amazing! Absolutely stunning and all the views we live for! This sounds like a place for us to visit next! Your upcoming travels sounds amazing, so jealous and we can’t wait to hear all about it!
Jessica & James | http://www.foodandbaker.co.uk / http://www.foodandbakertravels.co.uk
You should def add it – you guys would love it and the food is right up you guys’ street!
I’ve LOVED your travel diaries!
Your photos are absolutely stunning as always, the detail in the architecture is beautiful, I’ve actually just looked the Alhambra up as I want to know more about it now!
Finding cute, quirky restaurants is the BEST on holidays! Plus, it sounds like the carbs were definitely needed after the amount of walking you were doing (and to help the hangover of course!)
I’m now really hungry…
I can’t wait to see photos and hear all about your next travels, I’m so jealous!
Aww thank you Hels! You would love the Alhambra! I know – it’s made me be way more adventurous with my food looking up places to go and eat etc, I love finding such unusual and lesser-known places, and of course sharing them all with you!
Although, all this talk of food has made me hungry now, too!
Wow this looks stunning! Your pictures are absolutely amazing! You are so talented!!
Awww thank you so much Kris Marie, that’s so sweet of you to say!
WOW your photos in this post are breathtaking! Really really beautiful! This fortress looks so beautiful, and the detail is so intricate!
Thank you so much Hayley, I was so taken with all the pretty architecture, it was hard not to keep snapping away!
So picturesque. I’m not too much of an architecture buff but this place is exquisite.
I can’t wait for your next lot of travel diaries!
The views were absolutely stunning. I can’t wait to share the next series of travel diaries with you as well!
The architecture looks completely amazing, as does the food!
It was so dreamy, I could have wandered around the palace all day!
Oh wow, such stunning buildings – the details are crazy! I love the photos in this post. And that food… it’s made me so hungry!
Haha I know, I’ve totally made myself hungry coming back to this post to get up to date with comment replies! The details are so intricate, it’s amazing!
So sad that the Spanish travel series is over, good job you’re off on your travels again as I type, no doubt experiencing some more amazing things, ready to share with us upon your return! Your photos (as always) are incredible and really give a feel for the place’s history, culture, and atmosphere! The harem quarters are really gorgeous, I wonder if that made having to share the same man worth it hahah! I’m intrigued about why your restaurant was showing Japanese cartoons with the sound off, perhaps a favourite of the owner haha? The food looks incredible though, especially all that pasta! Gnocchi is one of my all time favourite foods and it’s so simply to cook at home too, although I agree that it never tastes quite as good in your own kitchen! Thoroughly enjoyed this post!
Abbey 💓 http://www.abbeylouisarose.co.uk
Awww Abbey, your comment made my day! Thank you so, so much! I’m glad you got a feel for the history, culture and atmosphere of the place through the photos, that makes me super happy!
And yes, I wondered that, too! It was like a very luxurious spa although with one rather unpleasant responsibility, ha!
Mmm Gnocci is so lovely isn’t it? I might have to forego the diet when I’m back and make a massive batch of it!
I thoroughly enjoyed reading about your day in Granada! I have yet to go to Spain, but it is on my travel to-do list. I am excited to read about your other travels, especially Singapore!
Ooh Natalie def add Spain to your travel list, there’s so much to see (and eat! ha).
Incredible beautiful – I love your photos here and I think I have now added yet another place for me to visit in (the hopefully near) future.
Maira / http://www.lovefrommaira.co.uk
I’ve really enjoyed reading your travel diary posts, they’ve been fab! I love your photos in this post! These seems like a place I would definitely like to visit, I love the mixture between the architecture and history and nature. I haven’t tried any of that food before but it does look incredible. Looking forward to reading your next post!