Extra Day in Granada

Extra Day in Granada

The original plan was to leave for Ronda today. However, by the time I got around to booking our train tickets, the train was already full. What I had failed to realize was that today is All Saints Day, which is a public holiday for the Spaniards. Given that today is the last day of the 3-day weekend, all the Spanish tourists are headed home. We had no other choice but to stay an extra day here and head to Ronda tomorrow. The trick was to find things to do around town.

We managed to cobble together a few minor sights. We found a deal through Monumentos Andalusíes where a 5€ ticket gets you into 4 sites – Corral del Carbón, El Bañuelo, Palacio Dar al-Horra, Casa Horns de Oro.

Corral Del Carbón – a caravan inn similar to the Turkish funduq, is actually free to enter which we had stumbled upon a couple days ago.

Entryway

El Bañuelo is the traditional Arab bath, like the Turkish hammam where you go for a steam bath and a good scrubbing.

Skylights in all the steam rooms

We had trouble finding Casa Horno de Oro, so we decided to grab a late breakfast instead. After that we wandered back up to the Alhambra since we were in the area. This time we took a different route, and it was actually shorter and more scenic.

Start up Cuesta de Gómerez, then take the path on the left (Cuesta Empedrada) once past Puerta de las Granada.
The shortcut is to go through Puerta de la Justicia, where it leads you right to the plaza where the palace of Charles V and the Santa Maria Church are situated. This is the route to take if you have advanced tickets because it completely bypasses the ticket office, which is a 5-10 minute walk from the plaza.
Santa Maria church
Charles V palace
Puerta del Vino leads to the Alcazaba
A close up of a palace room with it’s beautiful jalousie (windows that allow people on the inside to look out, but protect them from prying eyes, usually to protect the female inhabitants)

There were actually a few areas in Alhambra that don’t require an entry ticket, and that we had missed yesterday like the Convent of San Francisco.

This belonged to an unknown Nasrid prince, and was later given to the Franciscans by Isabella I.
It’s living corridor has since been refurbished into a hotel

The rest of the afternoon was spent tracking down the other 2 sights left on our ticket.

Palacio Dar al-Horra was the residence of Boabdil’s (the last Sultan) mom.

Central courtyard
View from the upper floor
You can see remnants of the city wall outside the window, and a beautiful graffiti on the bottom of the wall.
We then went on the hunt for Casa Horno de Oro, which we found by going down a different route than what we had tried in the morning.

Casa Horno de Oro is a traditional Muslim house built towards the end of the 15th century.

Afterwards, there was one more museum left on our list. The Inquisition museum was conveniently located just a few steps away from our hotel.

The Spanish Inquisition lasted for almost 400 years. Muslims and Jews were ordered to convert to Christianity or be expelled from Spain (in 1483, all Jews were expelled from Andalusia). Converters suspected of being crypto Jews/Muslims were often deprived of their goods and properties, and subjected to torture to extract confessions. From 1481-1808, 34,000 were burned alive and 18,000 were burned through “staging” (accused heretics either died in captivity or escaped before they could be publicly burned alive).

Finally, we capped off our Granada trip with tapas hopping, with an absolutely entertaining food tour guide (transplant from London), and an equally engaging lady from Idaho who was part of the group.

We got to see the Pomegranate fountain (Fuente de las Granadas) during our tour. Granada = pomegranate in Spanish, so naturally, pomegranate is the symbol of the city of Granada.

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