7 Reasons I Love My City (and 3 Why It Sucks): Granada

Granada, Molly's City

Granada, Molly's City

Pros and Cons, every place, even a place as beautiful as Granada, has them. Our guest writer Molly Sears-Piccavey gives the scoop on living in her adopted city.

By Molly Sears-Piccavey

After living in Barcelona for over 8 years, I moved south to the city of the magnificent Alhambra palace. Initially I was concerned about leaving the big city, where I´d adjusted easily to the cosmopolitan life. Moving down to traditional Andalusia was going to shake things up and challenge me. I have been in Granada for over 6 years now. I have adjusted well to the new setting and I actually love the city of Granada as much those who were born here. I certainly haven´t regretted the move from Barcelona to Granada.

The Upside:

1.FOOD – Eating out can be amazingly cheap with free tapas offered in many places. Breakfast out costs just less than 2 euros at the moment. For that you great a frothy café con leche and a piece of toasted baguette with butter and jam, or like the locals with tomato and drizzled olive oil.

2.WALK – I love that I can walk everywhere.

3.TIME – Distances between things are small. In Barcelona or Madrid as it takes at least 45 minutes to get anywhere. The day just flies by. Here in just 10 minutes you can get practically anywhere in the city. This way you can fit a lot of different activities into one day. It seems that time stretches further here.

3. WEATHER -The climate is great. In winter it is really cold. That crisp, fresh Alpine style cold. In summer it’s baking hot but not at all sticky or humid. If you keep in the shade, it is bearable. We have a proper summer and a proper winter. Spring and autumn seem to fly by without us hardly noticing.

5.MONEY – The cost of rent and house prices here are good value when comparing with other towns and cities in Spain. For example 170,000 euros could buy you a new basic 3 bedroom home with shared community swimming pool and individual garage at the moment. Rent here is around 600 euros for 3 bedroom apartment in the city centre.

6.WEEKENDS, WEEKDAYS -To me here every day feels like the weekend. People are out at night in the week, not just at weekends. I find it really easy to mix with the locals and get on here. People are generally friendly and welcoming.

7. SWIM AND SKI -A well-known fact is that you can actually ski and sunbathe on the beach on the same day. The ski resort is about a 40-minute drive from the city and the beach is a similar distance away at Motril or Salobreña. Of course I would only recommend doing this at the end of April or in May.

Molly Sears-Piccavey

Molly Sears-Piccavey

The downside:

1. AIRPORT- Limited amount of flight destinations. The local airport hardly has any international flights. National flights to Barcelona or Madrid are available, although both have few flight times to choose from. Most people travel 90 minutes by car or bus to nearby Málaga to catch a flight.

2. JOBS- Career opportunities: If you are running you own business, freelance or online-based, then you’ll do OK. Work is pretty limited. If you want to find work here a good level of business Spanish is obligatory. Currently around 1 in 4 people are unemployed in Granada province.

3.FAMILY-TIES -A problem here is enchufismo. This is where families stick together and give jobs to other family members, (cousins, brother-in-law, uncle, etc) and don’t let anyone else in. This mindset can be a particular challenge when doing business, (not only for foreigners, Spaniards from other areas can experience this, too).

Molly was born in Nottingham, UK but has lived in Spain since 1998, initially in Barcelona but now in Granada, Andalusia. Molly works in Communication, PR and Institutional Relations and in her spare time reads, tweets, listens to podcasts and blogs. There´s not enough time in the day! Molly speaks fluent Spanish and English along with some French and Catalan.http://piccavey.com/

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5 Comments

  1. Posted August 19, 2012 at 4:54 am | Permalink

    I was horrified at first to see that my favourite city in the world had as many as three downsides, but relieved to see that they don’t actually relate to the city itself. A wonderful, wonderful place.

  2. admin
    Posted August 20, 2012 at 11:06 am | Permalink

    haha…very few! I’d love to get back to Granada soon.

  3. Posted October 22, 2012 at 10:28 am | Permalink

    Hi Molly!

    I am absolutely agree with you in each of your points, but I would include traffic as another point of the “downside”. In the “upside” a huge number of things (the soul, the natural and fresh air from Sierra Nevada, the history, etc).

  4. Posted February 28, 2013 at 11:18 am | Permalink

    Having studied in Granada for a semester and applied for teaching in Spain for next year,
    I was curious when I saw the title to out the 3 downsides to my beloved Granada. Seeing as though there is nothing about the city itself I’m not offended. Right after I left Granada I heard that RyanAir pulled out. I remember taking a direct flight with them from Granada to London, which was great. I loved the fact though that I could walk everywhere!! I loathe my car to this day. I’ve tried biking, which I do like but I still much prefer walking, mostly due to my time in Granada.

  5. admin
    Posted March 3, 2013 at 2:49 am | Permalink

    RyanAir is not a huge loss. The company is pretty hit or miss. We also love Granada.

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