Friday, 16 November 2012

Granada

Words cannot describe how pleased I am that I decided to go to Granada this weekend. Great city, great company and great memories.

We stayed at the Oasis Hostel, just five minutes away from Plaza Nueva and amidst a cluster of Moroccan trinket shops and teterías. Pretty much the perfect location for seeing the city and a really international hostel, full of backpackers. The first night we had a wander around before stopping for some Chinese tapas and returning to the hostel for paella. The first "wow I love this city!"'s could already be heard.

The next morning was an early start to trek up to the heights of the Albaicín, where we had a stunning view of the Alhambra and the rest of the city. Getting lost in this rustic barrio was both unavoidable and desirable as you constantly come across hidden Moorish monuments and winding side streets. Later in the afternoon we visited the 600 year old cathedral and sampled a few exotic teas in a tetería near our hostel. And had a cheeky cachimba.

That night, after a quick stop at the chupitería- a bar which specialises in shots, and they have hundreds of them, all for one euro- we went back to the Albaicín for slightly less cultural reasons. We went to a discoteca in a cave. Yes, that's right, a cave! Camborio  caters for erasmus students but it was packed with locals too who had braved the steep climb. It overlooks the Alhambra and had the rain not been torrential that night, it also has an outdoor patio area which gives you a view of the whole city.

A walk home in the rain assured the hangovers weren't too bad the next day and we set off for some shopping before heading to the Alhambra. It's probably the only thing in Spain where you HAVE to be at the right place at exactly the right time or they won't let you in. Not entirely sure how the locals cope. It's basically a huge palace made by Islamic leaders of the city which has had many additions as new hands and religions conquered Granada. Well worth a visit even if standing outside for 4 hours in Granada winter weather was a bit of a temperature shock for those who have been sheltered in Almería for the last two months!

I decided to stay another night after the others had already left for home as I couldn't bear the idea of leaving when I could so easily spend some more time exploring. My Monday was utterly perfect, as I wandered around parks and riversides with the book I'd bought at the 'feria' the night before and even made a return to Cafe Football, the student favourite which has enough sweet treats to give you diabetes just by stepping through the door.





Living only two hours away it's going to be a struggle to stop myself just hopping on the bus every few weeks. It's official, they told me it would happen, but I didn't believe them. I'm in love with Granada.






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