Secrets of the Albaicín: the Carmens of Granada
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Come with us and relax along this lovely route through some of the prettiest Carmens in the Albaicín neighbourhood in Granada. Did you know them?
Granada is known as the city of Carmens. Hailed by the Romantics as Moorish heritage, these estates distributed throughout the Albaicín neighbourhood are now part of essence of the urban landscape of the city.
The word” Carmen” is a Spanish form of the term “Karm”, which meant Vineyard and place of pleasant retreat. Surroundings like these call for no less...
In Nasrid Granada, the Karm was accompanied by two features that still accompany it today and that you will notice with each step you take through them. First, its reference to a place of pleasure, generally used as a place of temporary or seasonal retirement, and also to orchards, which today continue to shape these little paradises hidden inside the Albaicín and Realejo neighbourhood.
It seems unlikely that — after the alleys, white façades, and uphill and downhill slopes of the Albaicín neighbourhood — we should find paradises such as this one with wonderful views of the Alhambra.
Carmens such as La Casa del Chapiz, now the headquarters of the School of Arabic Studies, surprise all who visit them. Relaxation and the sole sound of the birds in its gardens is all you will hear here. And yes: right in the Albaicín in Granada.
And what about the lovely Carmen Victoria, where Alhambra and gardens seem to blend into one.
“Paradise closed to many, gardens open to a few”, wrote Soto de Rojas, and he was not wrong. Come and explore places such as the Max Moreau museum and restaurants such as the Carmen del Agua, where you can enjoy the best views of the Alhambra, the relaxation of an orchard and the scent of the best of gardens.