Vacations in Granada are a unique experience. Granada is a city of contrasts, with the peaks of the Sierra Nevada just a heartbeat away and the beaches of the Costa Tropical just 70 kilometres to the east. It is one of the few cities in the world where you can ski and swim in the sea on the same day.
It is also one of the most heterogeneous, at least in terms of population, Spanish cities, with the Arab, Jewish, and Gypsy quarters (Albaicín, Realejo, and Sacromonte, respectively) bustling with life and giving the city a colourful and distinctive flavour. At the same time, the city’s nightlife is considered one of the best in the whole of Andalusia.
1. Vacations in Granada: Skiing at the Sierra Nevada
The Sierra Nevada is a mountainous massif of Spain belonging to the group of the Betic mountain ranges, specifically to the Penibetic system. It is located between the provinces of Granada and Almería. It is the highest mountain massif in Western Europe, after the Alps. The Mulhacén peak reaches its maximum altitude at 3479 m above sea level. Unesco declared it a Biosphere Reserve in 1986. In 1989, they declared a large area of this mountain massif a natural park, and in 1999, they considered a national park for its botanical, scenic, and natural values.
The Sierra Nevada ski and mountain resort
On its slopes is the Sierra Nevada ski resort, the southernmost in Europe and the highest in the Iberian Peninsula. A 35-minute drive to Granada and a 55-minute drive to Costal de Sol and the Costa Tropical make the Sierra Nevada ski resort one of the most famous and favorite destinations.
The ski resort of Sierra Nevada is a small to medium-sized resort next to a small town called Pradollano. This town is built right in the middle of the valley. But at the same time provides a breathtaking view of the plains of Granada and the mountain. Pradollano has plenty of restaurants, bars, clubs, and a busy nightlife, but also many hotels and apartments for solo travellers, families, and couples.
The ski station has been open since 1964 and, in the last years, regularly holds international competitions and events. It’s a well-equipped, friendly resort that offers something for everyone: downhill skiing and cross country, snowboarding, snow-show hiking, and sledge riding. A snow park for experienced snowboarders and freestylers and ski schools for children and kids make it a place for all tastes.
The charm of Costa Tropical’s coasts and what makes them a very special place in their landscapes full of contrasts and their historical and cultural heritage. During most of the year, you can contemplate from them the snowy peaks of Sierra Nevada. This creates a beautiful postcard and allows the travellers to enjoy the sea and the snow all in one day.
2. Vacations in Granada: Explore Costa Tropical
Costa Tropical is called the coast of Granada due to its exceptional climatic conditions. The high peaks of the Sierra Nevada protect it from the north winds. The sun shines all year round on the Costa Tropical of Granada, warming it generously in winter.
The average annual temperature is between 18ºC (in winter) and 25ºC (in summer), with minimum temperatures that do not drop below 14ºC and maximum temperatures of 33ºC (95ºF).
The Costa Tropical of Granada has an ancient history that dates back to the times of the Carthaginians. There are remains of Roman walls and aqueducts, Arab castles, and churches of the XVI century.
Seventeen municipalities share the denomination of Costa Tropical de Granada. Some are inland, in a surprising enclave between mountains and tropical valleys, such as Jete, Molvízar, or Ítrabo.
The four most important towns of the Costa Tropical of Granada are Motril, Salobreña, Almuñécar, and La Herradura.
The beaches of Costa Tropical
The charm of Costa Tropical’s coasts and what makes them a very special place in their landscapes full of contrasts and their historical and cultural heritage. During most of the year, you can contemplate from them the snowy peaks of Sierra Nevada. This creates a beautiful postcard and allows the traveller to enjoy the sea and the snow all in one day.
The Costa Tropical, located between the Costa del Sol and the Costa de Almeria, occupies a privileged strip that has the best conditions and attractions to enjoy an excellent vacation.
The coasts of Granada are not as urbanized as those of the Costa del Sol, and you can find quiet coves with crystal-clear waters.
The Costa Tropical of Granada has large tourist beaches offering all kinds of services and small quiet coves. Above all, there are beaches for all tastes and ages, especially for nudists to sandy beaches suitable for children and families, but also full of beach bars and life for younger generations.
Here is a list with the most famous beaches in Costa Tropical:
- Motril Beaches
- Granada Beach
- Beach Poniente
- Calahonda Beach
- Carchuna Beach
- Torrenueva Beach
Vacations in Granada are a unique experience. It combines snow, sea, good food and alcohol and of course a lot of fun. And all of these in one day, why not.