There’s an Arabic inscription that captures the essence of Granada in a few words: “There is nothing so sad as to be blind in Granada.” The perspicacity of this declaration becomes obvious as soon as you penetrate the austere walls of the Alhambra and take in the full majesty of the architecture, carvings and fountains of the Nasrid palaces. Your ticket (which should be bought well in advance following the instructions on the attraction’s website) also affords entry to the Renaissance Palace of Carlos V and to the exquisite gardens of the Generalife. If you are celebrating a special event, or are in the market for a splurge, you can stay in the lovely Parador, right on site. Make your way down into the city via the atmospheric old quarter of the Albaicin, with its tiny craft shops and restaurants, and head for the Cathedral and Royal Chapel. Also plan a visit to the crypt for the tombs of Ferdinand and Isabella, the instigators of Spain’s imperial adventures to the New World and beyond. It’s worth making the short journey out of town to visit the Monasterio Cartuja, a fabulous Carthusian monastery in the baroque style. Admirers of the poet Lorca should make the effort to visit the Casa-Museo Federico Garcia Lorca in Fuente Vaqueros, about 11 miles from the city centre.
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