Out for a walk beside the Ottawa River in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada!
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Heading to Nova Scotia around August 1st.

Tuesday, January 3, 2023

A day in Granada, Spain

The main attraction in the city of Granada is the Alhambra... an Islamic Palace built on a hill overlooking the city. The history of the Alhambra goes back to the 9th century, although most of the current structures were built between the 14th to 16th centuries.

My father had visited the Alhambra in November of 1954, and had taken two photos, both of which we were trying to match up.

We set off just after 10:00am and walked about ten minutes from the motorhome parking area to the tram stop where we bought two return tickets for €3 ($4.30 CAD, $3.15 USD) each. It was about a twenty minute ride to downtown, but we got off a bit early so we could walk.

A nice city park.

I like seeing palm trees in the city!

Not many people around yet.

But, of course it's the day after New Years Day which took place on a Sunday, so we weren't sure how much would be open or closed on the Monday. It turned out that many places did open, but not until afternoon, while some places still remained closed.

First impressions of Granada weren't great. They must have a thriving spray can industry. A ton of graffiti which totally turns me off. The only other times we have seen graffiti this bad were in Morelia, Mexico and Bogota, Colombia. 

A lot of this kind of thing.

A pretty plaza.

We continued walking up to the Alhambra. As we approached our chosen entry gate, there were a lot more people around. 

The gate of Los Granadas.
Built around 1536.

Architecture outside the gate.

The Alhambra is a huge complex. Parts of it are free, and in fact there is a lot to see just for free. You can buy an all inclusive day pass for €19 ($27 CAD, $20 USD) each, or a pass to just the Gardens, the Generalife and the Alcazaba for €10 ($14.50 CAD, $10.50 USD).

What we didn't plan on, is that it is sooo busy! The full day pass is sold out well in advance... like four or five days in advance. And when we looked at buying the partial pass for yesterday, it was sold out too. But as I said, there is a lot to see for free.

Old fountain.

You can definitely see the Islamic influence in the architecture.

Ruth and a very old wall.

This is where everybody is!

We were directed into the "free" lineup where everybody was trying to get up into the tower for a view. We almost turned around, but decided to wait it out. Things actually moved along not badly and a half an hour later we were at the top. 

Crowds waiting in line at the Alhambra, Granada, Spain.

Nice view from the tower.

Ringing the bell.

So there's this huge bell at the top of the tower, and there's a constant lineup of people wanting to ring the bell. It can be heard all over the city, and during the day it never stops! We both became annoyed by it. That alone stroked out any ambition to ever live in Granada!

Looking towards the cathedral.

Zoomed in on the cathedral.

Looking down on the lineup.

From the tower, we had a good view of the surrounding hills so that we would have an idea of where to go to try to match up one of dad's photos. 

View of the Generalife as seen from the Alhambra.

Unfortunately, we figured out later that we would not be able to access the area to get this photo without having a paid ticket!

You can clearly see the same bald hill (which now has some vegetation on it). And you can see the same white building with the tower and arches, but it's not from the same angle at all.

Oh well. And it turned out that the second photo was inaccessible as well. It wasn't a very good photo to begin with, so no need to post it here.

Entrance to Palacio de Carlos V.

Inside Palacio de Carlos V.

Ruth, in one of the gardens.


Ruth and the huge arches.

We left the Alhambra complex and walked over to the old town where there are several viewpoints looking back at the Alhambra.

Walking over to Granada old town.

We walked through an old residential area where they had torn something down and were doing some archeological digging.

The old part of Granada.

Looking back at the Alhambra.

I like this photo.

The St. Nicholas viewpoint was busy.

Lots of narrow alleyways.

Granada old town.

Then we headed over to the cathedral.

Scenery along the way.

Cathedral walls.

The main entrance to Granada cathedral.

As expected, it costs €5 to get in, and we weren't that interested. They did have a small side chapel open (which was actually quite large), and we had a peek in there...

Quite ornate.

Don't forget to look up!

And then it was back on the tram for the twenty minute ride back to Max.

Max is parked next to the red van.

As I said, the motorhome parking area is not ideal, but it suited it's purpose in that Max was safe and sound while we went off to explore the city. But we are quite happy that it was only two nights! A little too crowded for our liking.

Unfortunate that we weren't able to match up the photos, but I guess it will be a reason to return to Granada someday. Still, we had a good day seeing what we did. Headed towards Malaga today, but no idea how far we'll get.

Great deal on this Rotary Tool Accessory Kit. Don't forget to clip the extra 10% off coupon!

And in Canada...


  1. Thanks for the tour - I had heard of the Alhambra but had no idea what it was or where it was.

  2. My grandparents visited Spain and the Alhambra in the 1970s; I distinctly remember not having a clue what the Alhambra was when they told me about it. The bells all day would drive me nuts as well. And the graffiti, what a shame!

    1. Your grandparents would have seen it when there weren't quite so many visitors back then, lucky them! The Alhambra is a huge and beautiful complex. I really hope that we make it back there again one day and we will make sure to buy our tickets ahead of time.

      We found out that we picked the one day that the bell rings all day long. Apparently very January 2nd in commemoration of the date on which the Catholic Monarchs took Granada, there is a tradition where all single girls in the city who ring the bell on January 2 of each year will get married before the end of the year but these days everyone gets a chance to ring the bell and it gets rung constantly on all day!


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