Day two of our exploration of Granada, began with a half-day walking tour after breakfast. Our experience with Michael had us setting off with high expectation for what was to be a private tour, so imagine our surprise when our guide had us waiting at the bus stop near the hotel for the small public bus. In hindsight it was good to experience the way the locals travel but it was quite hair-raising in places as the bus hurtled down steep hills, taking tight turns and winding its way through the narrowest of one-way streets – so narrow that we could have touched the walls of the houses on either side had the windows been open.
Our guide was not as good as Michael yesterday and I think we could have seen more of the high parts of the Albayzin – but we saw as much as we could, beginning with the area around the Cathedral, despite having told her that we had been there yesterday. However, we did see some other sights which were new to us including the old market which is now houses offices and also the modern market. We went to check out the Spice Market by the Cathedral but it was not on due to renovations around the church, so we ventured on to Plaza de Bib-Rambla which had wandered through yesterday ….
Next stop was the Moroccan Quarter which was colourful and interesting, however it did seem that we were visiting shops which may be in partnership with the guide. One of the Moroccan vendors had the most beautiful lights on display – rather tempting when it was obvious he shipped internationally…
A square opposite our guide’s apartment provided respite from the midday sun as we took coffee under the welcome shade of the umbrellas.
I was keen to see the next stop on our tour -the Albayzin area with the beautiful carmens, so it was back on the bus which was packed full, and quite uncomfortable in the heat of the afternoon. The bus wound its way up the hill to the Mirador San Nicolas, the famous viewpoint overlooking the Alhambra and the city, where we banged into our mate Michael again and he seemed please to see us. The Mirador provides a panoramic vista but my camera wasn’t playing the game in the bright light, so my photos are a bit disappointing. I think we were short-changed on the time we spent in the Albayzin- there are so many pretty areas would could have wandered around but that was not to be, and soon we were back in the Plaza where we had earlier taken a break for coffee.
Since there were plenty of cafes in the Plaza to take lunch, we chose one, ate our meal and headed back to the hotel by taxi to avoid the heat of the sun. Later we met on the enticing hotel terrace where Frances and I enjoyed a very pretty floral gin!
Dinner for us was in a great little place we found near the hotel – opposite the Alhambra. We were enticed by the menu which offered “the cuisine of the inhabitants of the Alhambra,” It was Middle Eastern fare and it was delicious – an appropriate way to end our stay in this lovely city with the Moorish influence.