This ancient Moorish stronghold is today one of Andalucia’s most scenic cities, with a dramatic setting in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada, crowned by the graceful Alhambra Palace.

It is easy to understand why this 13th-century Arabic stronghold attracts tourists by the tens of thousands. An exquisite ensemble of Islamic architecture and art, celebrated for centuries in poetry and song, popularized by Washington Irving’s ”Tales of the Alhambra,” its image endlessly replicated on postcards, the Alhambra represents the essence of Andalusia, a historic landmark encrusted with romantic associations.

Step backwards in time as you wind through the ascending cobblestone streets of Albayzin. You’ll be rewarded with beautiful views from the Mirador San Nicolas. Granada’s nightlife is vibrant and varied, thanks in part to its student population. Hit the bars of Calle Elvira or, for a quieter outing, the traditional tea rooms of La Calle de Las Teterias.

View Gallery