Granada Day 2: Alhambra + Sacromonte Walking Tour
As I mentioned in my day 1 post, Monday night was unexpectedly big but I had to be up by 8am for Alhambra. I didn't hear any of my alarms so I was woken up by my friend and I had to rush to change and get ready in like 10 minutes. It took about 25 to 30 minutes to walk to the entrance. It's a bit further from the center plus the place is huge so it took awhile to walk to the right entrance.
This is the most visited place in all of Spain and you have you book tickets in advance. I booked mine about 3 weeks before coming. You can buy it through the hostel but you have to pay them a 2 euro convenience fee, which I was glad I didn't have to do. The place was huge and absolutely breathtaking! This is a must-do if you are ever in Spain. It amazes me how this was constructed back in the day. The palace especially was very intricate with a lot of small details that must have taken ages to do.
We spent over 3.5 hours there but I don't think we even saw everything. We pretty much kept a good pace going from one place to another. We didn't lag around or take our time. So definitely allocate a half day at least! We left the hostel around 8:45am and didn't get back until after 2pm. I was hung over for the first half so I had to take a coffee and food break or else there was no way I was going to make it. Having this in Granada definitely makes it a top destination in Spain! This adds on to so many other aspects of Granada that makes the city so amazing.
Sacromonte Walking Tour
I honestly did not know this was a thing in the area until I was research what to do. Sacromonte is an area just above the center of Granada where all the living caves are. They range from pretty big, fancy ones that resemble a personal home to squatting caves where gypsies or travelers can live in for basically nothing. These caves are built from the dirt and sand of the area which helps insulate the inside and keep it the same temperature year round, which means they save on AC/heaters. Many have built additional parts to the house to have plumbing and showers and such but the original intent was that it was a very cheap way to leave. You don't pay rent to anyone and you shower in common areas. Some, mostly in the squatting caves, don't have electricity, running water, or wifi. So if you don't need any of those luxuries, you can live for as long without any costs.
We got a tour of the entire area, seeing a range of different types and learning about the history of them. There are big ones that have converted into hotels/hostels for others to experience it. This is also where Flamenco was invited! So many of the caves are now restaurants and places where Flamenco shows take place. It's definitely very unique and something I have never seen before. Plus you can go up to the highest point in Granada and have an amazing view of the city. It's a great place to bring some snacks and drinks to watch the sunset and hangout.
Many of the people I met and have been hanging out with were all leaving the next day so even though it was a Tuesday, we all rallied and decided to go out. There's a big club in Granada called Mae West that's really popular on the weekdays because they don't charge a cover for either guys or girls. I wanted to save money so instead of going out for dinner. I bought 0.75 boxed wine and a tortilla (spanish omelette) that was 1.50, which usually lasts me 2 meals. For most of the night, we all hung out around the living room area talking, eating and drinking. The hostel I stayed at was a great environment to meet people and have a social setting.
I was sitting on the couch with a few other girls and none of us were wearing any make-up. We were all looking pretty grungy, which makes sense for budget traveling. Until this guy came to check in... Oh man he was beautiful. Maybe I shouldn't be writing this on a public platform but who cares, this is why it's called a diary. It was pretty funny because one girl was talking and then started to trail off and get quiet. I saw her eyes light up and then we all looked at each other because he was so handsome. And I kid you not, each of us went upstairs to freshen up, aka put on make-up and a decent outfit. It was the first time wearing a full face make-up in weeks. But unfortunately, he did not come out with us );
We had about 10 or so people in our group as we headed out. My taxi driver HATED us because (1) one girl had an open bottle of wine in the back which she kept drinking from but the guy didn't want her to, (2) one girl was getting sick so she kept asking to stop and pull over. Eventually she just got out and got a taxi back home. The driver got so annoyed of us, he just pulled over and we walked the rest of the way.
The club was pretty cool! It was a Tuesday night so not as crowded as most clubs, which in turn was a nice change. We had room to dance and move around. We got in around 1:45am and left around 3:45/4am. It was a pretty good time! It was massive though. A ton of different rooms and stages. It was not that it wasn't just all Spanish or all foreigners like many clubs I've been to.
We got home just in time to prepare ourselves for the results of the election. Well then the rest was history...