|Gorgeous facade in Granada's Sacromonte district.|
|The less scenic path, called Cuesta de los Chinos, or|
Pebble Slope, because of its paving.
No worries though. Carrera del Darro is a scenic old street with interesting buildings and ancient Arab remains. And, if we hadn't landed here, we might have missed the opportunity, after rehydrating, to visit the nearby gypsy caves of Sacromonte on the outskirts of town.
The Sacromonte quarter really has only one main street, and it's easy to know when you've found it because its entrance is marked by a statue of "Churrohumo," a popular gypsy from Granada in the 1950s. (Not sure why the patina around his crotch is buffed clean . . . )
|Churrohumo awaits you on Camino del Sacromonte.|
The walk up the street, Camino del Sacromonte, is fascinating, as it is lined with cave dwellings excavated from the soft white limestone rock. These still-inhabited homes go back deep into the hills - the fronts are only facades.
The gypsies were not the first people to live in Granada's caves. Since the 15th century, Arabs, Jews, and Oriental nomads have inhabited these underground accommodations; the gypsies simply moved into them after the Moors were expelled during Christian conquest of Spain.
Many of the structures are now flamenco clubs, in this region called zambras. Zambra is a traditional, flamboyant gypsy flamenco dance which evolved from Moorish belly dancing. We did not attend a show, which I understand vary significantly in quality, nor were we in the Sacromonte district at night, which has been said to not always be safe.
|Zambra clubs in the Sacromonte district.|
I would have loved to explore the intriguing side lanes and unusual landscape of the gypsy district even more (although preferably in cooler weather, as there is a lot of concrete in whitewashed Sacromonte), but my kids were not keen on scouting any further. I can't say this area is especially captivating for children, I suppose. There are outstanding views of the Alhambra complex from Sacromonte.
|Terrific views of the Alhambra from the Sacromonte district in Granada.|
You can stay overnight in Granada's gypsy caves if you're so inclined. Here is a pretty looking rental offered by Veo Apartments: Granada Apartment Sacromonte Cueva 2. Looks like fun to me!
This is my weekly link-up post for Photo Friday at DeliciousBaby.com.