A Spanish treasure in the Andalucian region, Granada has a long and interesting history, a wealth of architectural splendours, year-round active adventures in the great outdoors, and a vibrant youthful nightlife.
There’s no lack of things to do in Granada – which is almost the problem! How do you split your limited time in this city? Which tours offer the best value for money? Which ones include the most of what you want to experience?
Don’t worry. We are here to help. We’ve done the legwork – this is our insider guide to the best things to do in Granada!
Written by our travel writing experts, this guide is designed to show you the best sights and sounds Granada has to offer – no matter your budget!
These are the best things to do in Granada… some of them are some seriously hidden gems…
We’d have to say you were telling fibs if you said you weren’t looking for some fun on vacation. Nobody goes on holiday to feel miserable! Here are some fun experiences in Granada to appeal to different interests.
Walking around Granada and soaking up the sights is fun, but powering about by Segway is even better! You’ll have time to practice your technique before taking to the streets and helmets are provided. Plus, a guide will accompany you on your adventures.
Visit some of Granada’s most attractive neighbourhoods and see a variety of historic and cultural sites. In the UNESCO-listed Albaicin, pause to admire Dar al-Horra Palace, Paseo de los Tristes, and Cuesta del Chapiz and to enjoy the vistas from San Nicholas Viewpoint. Then, discover Sacromonte with its vibrant area of Veredo de Enmedio and caves that are still home to gipsies.
One of Andalucia’s most famous and striking attractions, the historic Alhambra is an expansive fortified complex with several palaces, gardens, courtyards, halls, towers, and other buildings. Interesting statues, fountains, carvings, and other decorative details can be found throughout the grounds and you will spot both Spanish and Moorish designs along with rich Islamic touches.
Be inspired by the stunning art and architecture of the lavish Nasrid Palaces. Be wowed by the strength of the mighty Alcazaba Fortress. Enjoy the beauty of the Generalife Gardens, some of the oldest Moorish gardens still in existence today. The Alhambra truly is a marvel to see and a site not to be missed!
Have a thrill at the scenic and dramatic Lentegi Canyon as you rappel down a 27-metre-tall waterfall, abseil over sheer rock faces, slide down smooth rocks, scramble over rough terrain, and take a refreshing dip in the cool gushing waters.
You’ll have an experienced instructor with you at all times and all safety gear is provided. You’ll certainly get the adrenaline pumping with this awesome activity!
Don’t look down! Daredevils and thrill-seekers can have an exhilarating time at the spectacular Caminito Del Rey, one of Andalucia’s most stunning destinations.
The exciting pathway hangs some 110 metres in the sky, passing between mountains and offering breath-taking views of the scenic Chorru Reservoirs. With nature all around you, it’s easy to feel like you’re floating as you cross high bridges and walkways, and you’ll get many great snaps for your Instagram feed. #YOLO!
Take on Granada’s three biggest hills on a mountain bike adventure that’s filled with nature and culture. Feast your eyes on splendid views as you peddle to La Silla del Moro, Sacromonte with its caves and abbey, and historic Albaycin with its labyrinth-like streets.
Your ride will take you through lush forests and pretty olive groves—be sure to charge your GoPro batteries! Top tip: wear comfortable shoes and clothes that aren’t likely to chafe.
It’s time for a legal (and literal) high! Another fantastic activity for thrill-seekers, tackle the exciting via ferrata at Moclin. Your heart will certainly be beating quickly as you complete the course, complete with steps, bridges, a zip line, and other obstacles.
Climb, walk, jump, and rappel to test your mettle in scenic surroundings. All safety equipment is provided and a professional guide will accompany guests. You’ll definitely bag some bragging rights after completing the course—high five!
After all the above cool activities and adventures, you’re likely to be in need of some serious TLC. Soothe your mind, body, and spirit in a traditional Arabian steam bath, known as a hammam.
The gorgeous interiors showcase splendid Andalusian tile work, and it’s easy to feel as though you’ve been transported back to the times when Arabs controlled the lands. Bathe in hot and cold water, feel the steam working its magic, and relax with a glass of mint tea. You can also arrange a massage if you want to really spoil yourself and bliss out.
The rich history and splendid sights in Granada make it a fantastic destination for lovebirds. You could stick with the tried-and-tested formula of dinner by candlelight and cocktails at sunset (which, to be fair, are always nice), but … it’s time to be a bit more original!
Get your passions firing even more with these recommendations.
The desert-like landscapes of the Sierra Nevada can only be described as spectacular. Bump across the terrain in a four-wheel-drive vehicle and visit charming mountain villages, forests, and splendid viewpoints that see relatively few visitors. Admire the snow-capped peaks and arid environment and spot old ruins that date back to the Spanish Civil War.
You and your partner can feel extra-special and fancy as you explore the lovely landscapes of Alpujarra in a sleek and stylish luxury vehicle. Pop the top down to feel the sun against your skin and the breeze through your hair. Stop when and where you like to admire lush vineyards and olive groves and to discover pretty towns and scenes of picturesque valleys that could have come straight from a postcard or glossy travel magazine. PS—lunch is also included! Savour delicious local cuisine in a traditional roadside restaurant to add to the romance. Do note that the driver needs to be over the age of 25.
Keeping the whole family happy needn’t be a chore; Granada has plenty to appeal to people of all ages.
Trying to explore any city, no matter how fascinating, with children can be a pain. Their little legs don’t want to carry them far, they can easily get tired, and they need plenty of variety and stimulation to stop them from getting bored. Bored kids often equal whiney kids!
Give kids a little thrill and take the load off your own feet and discover the city’s highlights aboard the sightseeing train. You can get on and off at a number of designated stops to explore more, stop for lunch, grab a drink, or, as is often the case when travelling with children, hunt for a bathroom!
There are two routes to choose between and you don’t have to wait long between trains at each stop. Engaging child-friendly recordings are available in English and Spanish, leaving you free to listen to the informative adult-focused commentaries (available in 12 languages).
A terrific attraction for old and young alike, Parque de las Ciencas is an interactive museum that offers fun and educational experiences. The whole family can learn more about various branches of science, the environment, the human body, the solar system, and more. There are plenty of open spaces where little ones can run and play and your kids are sure to be enchanted by the butterfly house. Enter the maze too and see who can find their way out the quickest!
Famous as Granada’s Gypsy neighbourhood, the folk atmosphere of charming Sacromonte is strong. The area is also well-known for its cave dwellings, some of which are still used as homes and businesses today. Visit the Sacromonte Cave House Museum for a peek into homes of the past, complete with period furnishings and craft equipment. They’re sure to capture your imagination!
Aquaola is a large water park on the outskirts of Granada. Especially enticing on a hot summer’s day, cool down in the pools and enjoy a variety of water features and rides. There are attractions that are suitable for children of different ages, including slides, water jets, and a wave pool. You can chill in the shade or the sun, have a picnic, and relax in the bar.
Taking a trip can hit your bank account hard if you’re not careful. Be savvy and include some of these awesome free things in your plans.
Located within the Alhambra, there is no admission fee to admire the collections of the Museo de Bellas Artes. It is home to mainly religious artwork, including paintings and sculptures, and reminds visitors of the Christian conquest of the previously Moorish city.
It’s worth noting that, although you need to pay to enjoy major sections of the Alhambra, there are other parts that you can explore for free.
Take a walk through two of Granada’s most beautiful and historic areas: Albaicin and Sacromonte. You can also feast your eyes on the handsome and imposing Alhambra in the distance.
See Moorish legacies in Albaicin, one of the city’s oldest areas, and learn about the various groups that have called the area home over the years. Sacromonte is known as the Gypsy part of the city and you’ll discover quaint cave homes hewn into the mountainsides.
Granada’s night scene is lively, youthful, and diverse. There are many excellent bars and clubs where you can party the night away, not to mention the abundance of inviting restaurants. Your nights don’t have to be solely about eating, drinking, and dancing though …
Visit charming Albaicin in the evening and watch a captivating and sensuous flamenco show in a traditional tablao. The costumes are beautiful, the singing is soulful, the guitar playing is vibrant, and the dancing is incredible. The show includes different styles of flamenco for an authentic Spanish evening you won’t forget.
You might already have explored the spectacular Alhambra complex by day, but the buildings take on a whole new atmosphere when bathed in the soft glow of the moon. A nighttime tour of the Nasrid Palaces will make you appreciate the Moorish beauty even more, and with small group sizes, you can be sure of an intimate experience. Hear secrets about the Royal Family and let your imagination run wild.
Uncover some of Granada’s secrets and visit places that are away from the typical tourist trail for an evening of suspense, surprise, and intrigue. Buildings are made even more atmospheric in the dim light and stories seem even more mysterious. Some tales are sordid, dark, scandalous, and bizarre, and you’ll hear about famous people from the city. With accounts of a mad queen, tales from the Spanish Inquisition, information about the Jewish expulsion from Granada, and more, you’ll definitely see the city in a different light.
Granada has so much to offer and a trip here will be far from boring!
Learn more about the city’s history, admire nearby nature, try a range of thrilling activities, savour tasty cuisine, uncover secrets from times gone by, and get plenty of cultural insights when you enjoy the best things to do in Granada.
What are your thoughts? Have we missed any of the best or coolest things to do in Granada, Spain? Give us your knowledge below in the comments!