Monachil and Granada

Monachil

The picturesque village of Monachil is set in a valley in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada, 8 km from Granada, and is a perfect base for exploring both the mountains and the city. Within the municipal boundaries of Monachil are peaks of over 3000 metres, and the highest ski station in Europe, with 70 km of pistes open from December till April. A short walk from the village is the beautiful Cahorros gorge, well known to rock climbers all over the world. Besides rambling and climbing, outdoor activities on offer include mountain biking, paragliding and horse riding. The present village of Monachil dates back to Moorish times, but a ten minutes walk from Cueva de la Luz takes you to the remains of a fortified Bronze Age village built almost four thousand years ago. The villagers, the local fiestas, and the new residents combine together to make for a unique experience in this corner between Granada and the Sierra.

Granada

With the snow capped Sierra Nevada as a backdrop, the city of Granada has one of the most beautiful and spectacular settings in Europe, worthy of its most famous monument, the Moorish palace of the Alhambra. Surely as near to perfection as possible in this world, the Alhambra is one of the wonders of the world. As the Alhambra is the most visited monument in Spain, to ensure getting a ticket best book in advanceonline at: www.alhambratickets.com.  Besides visiting the Alhambra and other monuments of the city, probably the best way to spend a day in Granada is simply to wander at random around the old quarter, climbing the maze of narrow cobbled streets that form the hilltop barrio of the Albaizin, with its breathtaking views of the Alhambra and the snow mountains behind, and on to the gypsy quarter of Sacromonte. For flamenco lovers a stroll around the cave dwellings of Sacromonte is a must. If you like you can take in a flamenco show in one of the zambras – lively singing and dancing but, it must be admitted, very much for tourists.

Lorca and de Falla

Granada was the home of Andalusia’s greatest poet and playwright, Federico Garcia Lorca, who did much to bring about a revival of flamenco and whose poems form the lyrics of innumerable flamenco songs. Together with the Granadino compositor Manuel de Falla, Lorca organised the first competition of Cante Jondo in 1922 in Granada, bringing together for the first time all the most important flamenco singers and giving the flamenco scene in Granada and flamenco in general a great boost.. You can visit Lorca’s and Manuel de Falla’s houses in Granada: La Huerta de San Vicente, now in a park in the centre of Granada that bears the poet’s name, and the Casa-Museo de Falla.

www.huertadesanvicente.com
www.museogarcialorca.org
www.manueldefalla.org

 

Arriving by Air

To Granada: Vueling and Ryanair fly directly to Granada. From Granada airport (www.aena.es) there is a bus to Granada centre. Get off at the stop Acera del Dauro and then walk two minutes to Paseo del Salon, from where you can catch a bus to Monachil Pueblo. 

To Malaga: There are many budget flights to Malaga from all over Europe. Once you have arrived at the airport you will need to take a local train, bus or taxi to Malaga bus station, from where there are buses to Granada almost every hour between 07.00 to 21.00. The journey takes just under two hours and costs about 10 euros. From Granada bus station take the number 3 bus to the city centre and get off near the Paseo del Salon. 

To Madrid: In summer, flights tend to be a lot cheaper to Madrid than to Malaga. From Madrid airport take the metro to Mendez Alvaro, the nearest stop to the bus station Estacion del Sur. From here there are buses several times a day to Granada. The journey takes five hours and costs 15 euros. 

 

Arriving by Bus and Train

There are regular buses and trains to Granada from all over Spain and Europe. See www.granadainfo.com/granadatravel.htm 

 

Getting from Granada to Monachil 

From the Paseo del Salon (by the river Genil) there are regular buses to Monachil. These buses are with the company Linan at ten minutes past the hour, every hour from 8.10 until 22.10. (Be careful it says Monachil Pueblo and not Monachil Barrio, otherwise you will have a mile walk at the other end.)
Taxis from the airport to Monachil Pueblo cost about 30 euros; from the bus or train station about 20 euros, and from the paseo del Salon about 15 euros. 
 

Getting to Monachil by car 

Whichever direction you are coming from, when you are approaching Granada on the motorway you need to follow the signs to Sierra Nevada. Once you are on this stretch of the motorway ring road (Ronda Sur), take the second exit off, signposted La Zubia, Monachil, Vergeles. Follow the signs to Monachil. After the traffic lights you begin climbing the hill through Barrio Monachil, the new village. Follow the road round two sharp bends until you reach another set of traffic lights, where you go straight on and follow the road down into Monachil Pueblo, the old village. Cross the first bridge and park in the square – do not try to reach Cueva de la Luz by car!  

The only place you are likely to go wrong is just before the first sharp bend in Barrio Monachil, where a side road on the right looks very like the continuation of the main road you are supposed to be following. If you reach a roundabout before the second set of traffic lights, you went wrong, but don’t worry. Just take the third turning off the roundabout, up the hill to the traffic lights, turn right, and you are back on the road down into Monachil Pueblo.


Walking to Carmen's Studio in Monachil

Having parked your car in the square or got off the bus, look for a narrow street between Supermercado Rosario and Montana Activa bike shop (English spoken if you get lost). Follow this street for about 150m, where the street widens a bit to allow a couple of cars to park and you will find a path going steeply up on the right. Follow this right to the end, past a cave with a colourful door and up the stone steps to La Cueva de La Luz. If you get lost ask for Carmen or ring my mobile 652 508 730.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Where to stay in Monachil

There are several attractive hotels and “casas rurales” to rent where you can stay alone or as a group. I can recommend the following:

Hotel Rural El Rio. 60 euros for a double room, with the possibility of putting up to four beds in the room. Breakfast included. The hotel restaurant offers a set lunch which is not included in the room price and has to be reserved each morning. The hotel is just ten minutes walk from La Cueva de la Luz, along the river and through typical village streets.
www.hotelruralelrio.com     0034 958 304 023

Hotel Alicia Carolina.
Double room 60 euros; single room 39 euros; family room 80 euros. Breakfast included. It does not have a restaurant but the hotel is situated in the new part of Monachil which has more shops and restaurants and more frequent buses to Granada. It is an attractive half hour walk to Cueva de la Luz, but there is a regular minibus service if you don’t have the time.
www.monachil.es   0034 958 500 393

Casa de Csilla and Shaun.
A very comfortable house in the centre of the old village, attractively restored in typical Andalusian style, with several bedrooms and bathrooms, a spacious kitchen and a roof terrace with views. The price varies depending on numbers and length of stay, but there is room for at least 8 people. It is five minutes walk from Cueva de la Luz and even closer to the supermarket and bus stop to Granada.
www.ridesierranevada.com  y  www.ownersdirect.com    0034 660884073

Casa de Katy.
A typical village house, small but ideal for a couple with children because of its enclosed patio with views of the village and mountains. It is 7 minutes walk to La Cueva and the price is about 60 euros per day. Ring Katy on 0034 661 562 292 (English spoken).

Cueva la Chumbera.
A typical cave house just below Cueva de la Luz. It has two bedrooms, a sitting room with kitchen and an outside bathroom. It is in a very quiet area and accommodates two to four people at a very reasonable price. Ring Ana on 0034 958 302 477 (English spoken). 

For more accommodation options visit: www.monachil.es.

 

Tourist Guides to Granada

Good websites to visit include:

www.andalucia.org

www.granadainfo.com

www.pocketguia.es

www.turgranada.com

www.turismogranada.org

www.where2.es

 

Hotels in Granada

AC Hotel, Granada

Hotel Nazaries

Ladron de Agua, Granada

Palacio de los Patos, Granada

Parador, Granada

  

Contact information

Email: carmen976@hotmail.com  

Mobile: +34 652 508730        

Postal: Carmen Alvarez Jurado, Lista de Correos de Monachil, 18193, Monachil, Granada, Spain