Tips for Visiting Granada with Kids

Granada with Kids

Granada is a wonderful place for a city break located in the vibrant region of Andalusia in southern Spain. The region was under Moorish rule from the 8th to 15th centuries, and Granada is known for its well-preserved examples of architecture dating back to that period – in particular its UNESCO World Heritage sites situated on two adjacent hills, the Alhambra palace complex and Generalife gardens, and Albayzin, the old Moorish quarter of city. In this post, I will share tips for planning a city break to Granada with kids (or without) with top things to do, places to eat and where to stay.

Things to Do in Granada with Kids

The warm weather and relaxed atmosphere combined with the city’s beautiful architecture and culture makes for a wonderful family city break. Traveling with our son, who was 32 months old at the time, it was fairly easy for us to walk around Albayzin and the squares near Granada Cathedral, where there is plenty to explore. Albayzin is on a steep hill where many roads are pedestrian only so a good amount of walking up- and downhill is required, something to keep in mind if you’re traveling with little ones or using a stroller.

Albacin Granada with children
Exploring the winding streets of Albayzin, UNESCO World Heritage site in Granada

Highlights of visiting Granada with kids include exploring the winding streets of the historic Albayzin neighborhood, visiting the incredible Alhambra, going on an olive oil tasting tour in the countryside and watching an outstanding flamenco performance in the Sacromonte caves. We found that five days was plenty enough to see Granada, and I would highly recommend it for a city break exploring a beautiful, historical part of Spain.

Exploring Albayzin

On the hillside opposite the Alhambra, Albayzin is a beautiful district of Granada and UNESCO world heritage site that has retained many elements of the distinctive design and architecture of its medieval Moorish past. It is a pleasure to wander around with so much to discover along a maze of narrow streets: whitewashed buildings, hidden plazas, orange trees and bright flowers, and traditional houses with secluded inner gardens known as carmens.

Albayzin Granada Spain

Throughout the neighborhood, you find amazing views of the Alhambra – and in some places, you can see as far as the Sierra Nevada mountains. The highest point of Albayzin and best viewpoint for Alhambra, especially at sunset, is the Plaza de San Nicolas. The photo below was taken from nearby Callejón de las Tomasas where we had dinner.

Alhambra view from Albayzin Granada
View of the Alhambra from Albayzin, taken from Callejón de las Tomasas

Visiting the Alhambra

One of the top things to do in Granada is to visit Alhambra, a palace complex that was built under the Nasrid Dynasty between the 13th and 14th centuries. The most popular monument in Spain and a UNESCO World Heritage site, the “red fortress” stands at the foot of the country’s highest mountain range, the Sierra Nevada, and overlooks Granada and the countryside.

Alcazaba Alhambra Granada with Kids
The Watchtower at Alcazaba, the military area of the Alhambra complex, Granada

Tip: Tickets to the Alhambra are available to purchase three months in advance – to visit the Nasrid Palaces, you select a time slot and will only be allowed to enter at that time. Demand for tickets is high, so be sure to book in advance. The official website for the Alhambra is: http://www.alhambra-patronato.es

Generalife Gardens at Alhambra

The gardens of the Palace of the Generalife, AlhambraThe places at Alhambra open for public visits are divided into four areas: Alcazaba (the military area and watchtower), Nasrid Palaces (central palace complex), Partal (includes portico of Palace and Promenade of Towers) and Generalife (palace retreat of the kings of Granada with beautiful gardens). The Nasrid Palaces is the pinnacle of the Alhambra’s design and architecture, and visits to this part of the complex are very restricted and need to booked in advance with a specific time slot. It is recommended to spend at least 3 hours touring the Alhambra.

Olive Oil Tour

An interesting excursion to go on from Granada for families is an olive oil tasting tour in the quaint village of Nigüelas, about a 30 minute drive south of the city. The tour operator, Olive Oil Tour, picked us up with other customers from a spot in Granada and provided a car seat for the drive. The tour started at an olive grove near Nigüelas, where we were shown magnificent centuries-old olive trees and the innovative irrigation system used since Roman times.

Olive grove near Nigüelas, Spain
Olive grove near Nigüelas, part of an olive oil tour excursion from Granada

During the tour, we visited an agricultural museum, the Museo Almazara de los Laerillas, that houses a well-preserved 15th century mill and is where you can learn about the traditional tools and equipment used during the process of pressing olives to extract oil.

15th century oil mill at Museo Almazara de los Laerillas, Nigüelas
15th century oil mill at Museo Almazara de los Laerillas, Nigüelas

The tour ended with an olive oil tasting session, learning about the different aromas and flavours of with extra virgin olive oils from the Andalusian region. The session included, at an additional cost, a selection of 4 Spanish wines paired with tapas of Serrano ham and fresh goat cheese.

Olive oil tasting tour outside Granada
Olive oil tasting tour in a village near Granada

Flamenco at Sacromonte Caves

The quarter of Sacromonte, which overlooks the city from the north, is home to Granada’s Roma community and is famous for its cave dwellings and flamenco performances. We booked to watch a flamenco performance at Zambra María la Canastera, which is one of the oldest flamenco cave venues in the city of Granada.

Flamenco Sacromonte Caves in Granada, Spain
Traditional copper pots decorated the ceiling of the cave of Zambra María la Canastera

It was a brilliant, energetic performance watching several flamenco dancers and listening to the music in this intimate setting where we were so close to the performers. (Children under 5 enter free but must sit on a parent’s lap.)

Flamenco Sacromonte Caves in Granada, Spain
Flamenco dancer at Zambra María la Canastera, Sacromonte Caves, Granada

Touring Granada Cathedral

Granada Cathedral was built by Queen Isabella immediately after the conquest of Granada on the site of an ancient mosque as an expression of victory of Christianity over Islam. It is a stunning building, a masterpiece of Spanish Renaissance built on Gothic foundations, and the fourth largest cathedral in the world.

Granada Cathedral Spain
Stained-glass dome of the main chapel at Granada Cathedral

The detail within the cathedral is amazing, with a grand altar and several chapels – the main chapel shown in this photo was simply breath-taking.

Browsing the Markets

Part of the fun of exploring Granada with kids was browsing its markets. There were food markets, clothes and souvenir markets and stalls along the main streets selling tea leaves, dried fruit and nuts. Our hotel was steps away from Caldereria Nueva, a street lined with shops selling souvenirs, lamps, clothes, musical instruments, babouches, home decor and more. Little T loved exploring the markets as much as I did!

Visiting Granada with children
Browsing the shops along Caldereria Nueva, Albayzin in Granada
Mercado de Artesania, Granada
Mercado de Artesania, near Granada Cathedral

Plaza Bib Rambla City Fair

At the time of our visit, a local city fair was running at Plaza Bib Rambla, a large square in the heart of commercial Granada, lined with cafés and shops. The fair was on Friday, Saturday and Sunday and it was a great place to bring kids for a break from sightseeing, enjoying the bouncy castles and covered play area – which were free to enter – and a wooden carousal (about €2).

City Fair at Plaza Bib-Ramblas, Granada
City Fair at Plaza Bib Rambla, Granada

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Where to Stay in Granada with Kids

Palacio Conde de Cabra

We booked an apartment rental for our five day stay at the Palacio Conde de Cabra, a property set in a renovated 16th century former palace in the heart of the Albayzin. It is beautifully designed and furnished in keeping with the neighbourhood’s Moorish influence, with a quaint indoor courtyard and handmade furniture and doors from Morocco. I can recommend the spacious and comfortable apartments at Palacio Conde de Cabra for a family holiday in Granada.

Palacio Conde de Cabra apartment in Granada
Living room in our 2 bedroom apartment at Palacio Conde de Cabra apartment, Granada

The apartment we stayed in consisted of 2 bedrooms with en suite bathrooms, a kitchen counter with sink, an open plan dining area and living room with beautiful high ceilings.

Check rates and book on Booking.com

Granada Spain Apartment Rental
Dining area in our apartment at the Palacio Conde de Cabra, Granada

The Palacio Conde de Cabra apartment had a city view, overlooking the steps to Plaza San Gregorio. In the distance, you can just about see Granada Cathedral peeking over the buildings. Some apartments also have a view of the Alhambra, and you can make a request for availability in advance with the owner.

City view apartment, Palacio Conde de Cabra, Granada
City view from our apartment at Palacio Conde de Cabra
Inner courtyard at Palacio Conde de Cabra, Granada
Inner courtyard at Palacio Conde de Cabra, Granada

Check rates and book on Booking.com

Located in the heart of Albayzin, Palacio Conde de Cabra made a perfect base for exploring Granada. It is only a 10 minute walk to various attractions. The hotel is a short walk from the Plaza San Gregorio, where one street brings you to the cafes and restaurants of Plaza Nueva in one direction and another through a pathway of shops towards Granada Cathedral and the commercial part of the city.

Steps from Plaza San Gregorio to Palacio Conde de Cabra, Granada
Steps from Plaza San Gregorio to Palacio Conde de Cabra, Granada

Heading the other way and uphill (shown in photo above) takes you through a labyrinth of the narrow streets of Albayzin to Plaza de San Nicolas which offers amazing views of the Alhambra. I can also recommend dining at the Palacio Conde de Cabra restaurant even if you are not staying at the property. Scroll down to Granada restaurants for more on the property’s restaurant, Taberna des Beso.

Places to Eat in Granada with Kids

To be honest, with the thousands of tourists Granada sees a day – many of which come on day trips to see the Alhambra – there are quite a lot of tourist traps in the city and I’d recommend researching restaurants for the trip in advance. Based on our experience, these are several restaurants I can recommend for eating out in Granada with kids;

Carmen de Aben Humeya

Cuesta de las Tomasas, 12, 18010 Granada | +34 958 22 83 45 | Website

Carmen de Aben Humeya is a lovely hillside restaurant offering a beautiful view of the Alhambra, a great option for dinner at sunset. The food at Carmen de Aben Humeya was fantastic – especially the plate of Iberian ham with cheese and pear that we started off with, the best we had on our trip!

Iberian ham and cheese plate, Carmen Aben Humeya, Granada
Iberian ham with pear and a selection of Spanish cheese

Little T had grilled pork chops, while Mr. G and I ordered the ox entrecôte that was full of flavour and came highly recommended.

Carmen de Aben Humeya Ox Extrecotes
Ox entrecote with truffled parmentier and black trumpet mushroom sauce at Carmen de Aben Humeya, Granada

And the highlight was definitely enjoying this delicious food with an incredible view of Alhambra at sunset from Carmen de Aben Humeya’s outdoor patio.

View of the Alhambra from Carmen Aben Humeya
View of the Alhambra from Carmen de Aben Humeya

Read the latest Carmen de Aben Humeya restaurant reviews on TripAdvisor.com or book a table on TheFork.es

Restaurante Arrayanes

Cuesta de Maranas 4, 18010 Granada Spain | +34 958 22 84 01 | Website

Restaurante Arrayanes, a recipient of the 2021 TripAdvisor Traveller’s Choice Award, is one of the best restaurants in Granada for Moroccan cuisine, offering delicious food along with lovely ambience and décor. Definitely a restaurant to add to your list for a great meal in Granada!

Restaurante Arrayanes, Granada
Restaurante Arrayanes, Moroccan restaurant in Albayzin

Mr. G and I ordered lamb tajines with prunes, while Little T had a plate of chicken skewers with vegetables and loved the fresh juices. I’d definitely recommend this restaurant for great Moroccan cuisine in Granada.

Lamb and prune tagine at Restaurante Arrayanes, Granada
Lamb and prune tajine at Restaurante Arrayanes, Granada
Granada Restaurants - Restaurante Arrayanes
Chicken skewers at Restaurante Arrayanes, top Moroccan restaurant in Granada, Spain

Read the latest Restaurante Arrayanes reviews on Tripadvisor.com or view the menu and make a reservation at RestauranteArrayanesGranada.com

Taberna del Beso

San Gregorio Esquina Arremangadas, Albaicin, 18010 Granada, Spain | +34 858 99 22 47 | Website

The restaurant at Palacio Conde de Cabra, Taberna del Beso, serves Mediterranean cuisine with options for indoor or outdoor dining. I can recommend this restaurant also if you’re staying elsewhere and looking for a bar or restaurant in Granada with great food at a good value. My son had the chicken skewers, while I had the delicious chicken tajine with olives.

Taberna del Beso Granada
Chicken tajine with olives at Taberna del Besos, Albayzin

Read the latest Taberna del Beso restaurant reviews on TripAdvisor

Flights to Granada from London

I traveled solo with Little T for both journeys, and while British Airways does fly direct to Granada from London City Airport, the best ticket option in our case was to travel from London Heathrow via Madrid through BA’s airline partner, Iberia Airlines.

Andalusian countryside
Flying over the Andalusian countryside, about to land at Granada Airport

We had pleasant flights with Iberia both ways and I was very impressed with the family-friendly facilities on offer at the Madrid Airport. There was a special queue for families at security, play areas throughout the airport – near many of the departure gates and at baggage claim – and a family room complete with a small kitchen and soft play.

I hope you have found this post helpful in discovering what Granada has to offer for a city break with kids! Read on for more inspiration for travel with kids and city breaks;

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Tips for Visiting Prague with Kids

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Pin for Later – Tips for Visiting Granada with Kids

Granada with Kids

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27 Comments

  1. Wonderful! We visited the Alhambra and loved it, but regretted that we didn’t have more time to explore Granada. Your photos are making me want to get back there! #farawayfiles

  2. so beautiful! I’d love to visit it#farawayfiles

  3. I am desperate to go to Granada to see the Alhambra and now so much more thanks to you! What a fantastic experience – especially the flamenco and all that delicious food. Thanks for sharing on #farawayfiles

  4. Beautiful!! I really want to go to Granada so this got me itching for this trip again. Great post! Thanks for sharing. #Farawayfiles

  5. Granada is high on my Spanish bucket list – even more so now #mondayescapes

  6. That’s a bummer about the stomach bug. It’s never fun to be sick while traveling. I love the cathedral. The details are stunning. And your accommodations seem cozy with a nice view. #mondayescapes

  7. OK we definitely to need to book the Alhambra, we went pre children but we should see it again and we only live an hours drive away so have no excuse…just too busy seeing the rest of Andalucia! Thanks for the ideas and inspiration #farawayflies

  8. Oh it looks so pretty here, I’d love to see more of Spain! #MondayEscapes

  9. When I was in Argentina and Brazil we saw a performance of the Tango and the Samba! I need to remember that the next time I’m in Spain to book a performance to see the Flamenco! #MondayEscapes

  10. I would love to explore Granada like you! Seems like a lot of people stop only to visit the Alhambra but I know the city deserves a proper visit. Love all the tips on food. Didn’t know the tajines were so popular there. #MondayEscapes

  11. I can almost feel the Spanish sun on my skin reading your post! We visited the Alhambra several years ago while on a week-long stay in Andalucia, and I really, really enjoyed it. What a breathtaking place! I love the look of the apartment you rented, so Spanish. We have to go back!
    #FarawayFiles

  12. Granada looks beautiful, I would love to visit one day #citytripping

  13. The food just looks amazing, love that antipasto plate.

  14. This is one of the best guides to Granada I’ve read, Cindy – your photos are fabulous and you’ve gone into lots more interesting detail of all the things to see and do. That ham, cheese and pear has me salivating but I’d love to explore the various neighbourhoods and seeing a flamenco show here looks even more impressive than the one I saw in Seville. Wonderful post for #Farawayfiles

  15. I LOVE Spanish cities! We visited the Alhambra a few years ago but sadly didn’t have time to see Granada too – your photo’s are making me sad we didn’t. And, the food is enough to make a trip for! mmmm. #citytripping

  16. Such a brilliant post. Having lived in Bavaria for so long, we kind of neglected Spain, but went to Oviedo recently, and now I am addicted again! 🙂 #mondayescapes

  17. I have wanted to visit since reading the Return, it looks such a wonderful place steeped in incredible history I so want to visit, it is just beautiful. Thanks os much for linking up #MondayEscapes xx

  18. Not just snapshots – a wonderful guide to the city! I would really love to see this part of Spain! Thank you kindly for sharing with #FarawayFiles, Erin

  19. So much you have covered here – fantastic! To chose two favourites I would like to see, from your post, would have to be the ‘red fortress’ and the Granada chapel. Both look amazing #FarawayFiles Annette

  20. The Alhambra is one of my favorite places in the world – it blew me away – so I was excited to see you wrote a post about Granada. I wish I had explored Granada more when I was there many moons ago. The Olive oil tour sounds amazing! #citytripping

  21. Some stunning photos of one of my favourite places. I loved my long weekend in Granada some time ago and would love to return. Some great tips here! Thanks so much for linking up #MondayEscapes

  22. Everything about this post is exquisite! It looks as though you had a marvellous stay, even down to the characterful apartment. I really want to try that ox entrecote – it sounds amazing.

  23. This sounds a really awesome trip. Granada is somewhere I’ve wanted to go for a while so need to make it a priority! Would enjoy exploring its history. The olive oil and wine tour sounds right up my street too. Thanks for linking #citytripping

  24. What a wonderful round up of your trip. I knew Alhambra was popular and the place to see in the region but I had no idea you had to book so far ahead. Great tip! #MondayEscapes

  25. […] Snapshots of Granada – Piccolo Explorer  […]

  26. Food, flamenco, views and architecture – what a varied and fantastic trip! Enjoyed reading about this via BritMums Spain travel round up. I haven’t been to Granada it looks a really excellent place for a family holiday.

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