My best friend lives in Valencia, Spain and had her ‘Spanish wedding’ in July of 2012. We wanted to be there to celebrate, but also took the opportunity to drive down from Madrid and up the Mediterrean coast. Our absolute favorite stop was Granada. Its a bohemian mix of Middle Eastern and European, the last hold out of the Moorish empire in Spain. Our small inn was at the top of a hill; winding roads were quite the challenge for our unaccustomed-to-driving-manual skills. The roads are paved in round rocks that make you aware of every step. The bustling main square marked by the Plaza Isabel La Catolica which will lead in one direction towards La Catedral and more modern side of the city, or in the other direction towards Albayzín, the ancient Muslim neighborhood bustling with tapas bars.
Our first evening, we meandered up to the Mirador de San Nicolas, named for the proximate church, but famous for its view of Alhambra. We enjoyed the street performers, who brought along a sleepy puppy and clapped alongside the other locals and tourists as a bride and groom danced for their formal pictures while the sun set. We wandered back into the modern areas and finished off our evening with hot chocolate, churros, and a cerveza (beer) from the local Alhambra brewery. Churros may not be a customary evening snack, as I got a few funny looks ordering it close to midnight, but I knew I wanted to try some of Granada’s famous treats. The next day was spent wandering through La Cathedral, which had been flush with people from a choir show and exploring the enchanting Alhambra. The endless courtyards, bathhouses, and gardens were unbelievable. Sadly, we moved on from Granada after only one evening, but it remains to be my favorite and most memorable destination.