The trouble with whirlwind tours is that some of the time, the attractions you want to see are just not open. So it was when we visited Granada for a couple of days. We could get into neither the cathedral nor the Capilla Real. Nevertheless, central Granada was charming, with some good restaurants, cafes and artisanal souvenir shops. The real attractions of this town are the Alhambra and the albaicin neighbourhood, but the central area is also charming and worth a few hours getting lost in. Oddly what sticks in my mind about Grenada was the churros and hot chocolate we had in an outdoor cafe. The hot chocolate was thicker than mud and the deep-fried churros — like long, thin sugar donuts — were disgustingly good.
We picked our hotel to be right across the street from the entrance to the Alhambra, which meant we had to take a short bus trip to reach the city centre. As ordinary buses can’t make it through the narrow streets of the hills around the city, we used the fleet of minibuses which operate every few minutes. It was only a 20-minute walk to the centre from our hotel, but the bus allowed us to avoid a steep climb on the way back up.
We also managed to catch a flamenco show in the albaicin (subject of another post). Amusingly, we were the only westerners on a small tour bus of Japanese visitors. We managed to impress a few of them with with some of our remembered (and very limited) Japanese vocabulary, causing a lot of laughter and surprise.