The Andalucia route: Malaga - Granada
The Andalucia region of Spain is home to a culmination of cultures, cuisines, and history waiting to be discovered. One of the old fashion ways to discover Spain's southern region is hitting the road. In your car, you'll start from the gateway of the south, Málaga, to the foothills of Granada, you’ll witness a wide-ranging terrain, but the one constant factor that will welcome you is the sun. We’ll guide you along the way from Málaga to Granada for the most scenic route, passing coastal Andalucian villages and climbing up the great Sierra Nevada mountain pass.
- Route name: Scenic Route of Andalucia
- Total length 167 KM
- Duration: 4 hours 8 minutes
- Season: The best time to visit Andalucia is during Spring and Fall when the temperature isn’t so high.
- Highlights: Coastline drive, Sierra Nevada mountain roads and the ancient city of Granada.
- Best by car
Starting your trip from the capital of Costa Del Sol will give you a glimpse into the ever changing Andalucian lifestyle. Málaga is blessed with a rich historical legacy, dating back to nearly 2,800 years, making it one of the oldest cities in the world. With influences from Phoenician, Roman, Moorish and Christian dynasties, the modern day Málaga has welcomed new developments, forging a vibrant artistic scene, sprouting exquisite culinary cuisines, and becoming a touristic hub of the south of Spain. To start your coastal route of Andalusia, take the N-340 road all the way to Nerja.
Spend some time walking the historic pedestrian walk in this peaceful resort town of Nerja. Once a fishing village, it has become climbed the ranks to become a top vacation spot and has many attractions to offer. Climb the Balcon de Europe, the seafront balcony established by 1885 when King Alfonso XII, and walk along the Playa el Salon. If you’ve got some time on your hands, be sure to visit Nerja Caves for a series of spectacular caves carved out by mother nature, home to the largest stalagmite in the world. Just outside of Nerja, you can visit the Maro Cliffs, a national park where you can lounge on some of the sandy beaches, climb the 16th-century watchtower, and if you’re lucky, you can spot the continent of Africa on a clear day.
After exploring the beaches and the Maro Cliffs, it’s time to drive up the Sierra Nevada scenic route, taking the A-4050. The mountain pass is known as the Gate of the Moor’s Sigh (El Puerto del Suspiro del Moro), the name was attributed to the Moorish king of Al-Andalu, who stopped to mourn his loss of Granada. Driving through the long, winding road will reward you with a view of the Sierra Nevada, leaving behind the fleeting ocean view in the background.
You’ve arrived at the pearl of the Andalusia route, Granada, the last stronghold of the Moors and a multicultural city filled with rich history and stunning architecture. Home to the world famous citadel Alhambra, where the grounds of the estate can take an entire day to discover. Within the Alhambra, you’ll find the picturesque Palacio de Generalife, where the gardens will transport you back into history. On the opposite side of Alhambra, you’ll find the Arab quarters, Albayzin, one of the world heritage UNESCO sites. Be warned that parking in the city center might cause difficulties during the high season.