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Overview

Many Spanish icons originated in the sultry south: flamenco, tapas, sherry, and the bullfight. Islam's 700 years bequeathed the beautiful architectural legacy of Granada's Alhambra, Córdoba's Mezquita and the white villages. Earlier Phoenician and Roman remains are plentiful. Granada's gorgeous Capilla Real is a post-Reconquest highlight: here the great monarchs, Fernando and Isabel, lie in their crypts. Andalusia has gorgeous, white sandy beaches on its breezy Costa de la Luz, rocky cliffs at Cabo de Gata and miles of azure Mediterranean in between. It has the Sierra Nevada's ski slopes and the Alpujarras's magical valleys. ...

Many Spanish icons originated in the sultry south: flamenco, tapas, sherry, and the bullfight. Islam's 700 years bequeathed the beautiful architectural legacy of Granada's Alhambra, Córdoba's Mezquita and the white villages. Earlier Phoenician and Roman remains are plentiful. Granada's gorgeous Capilla Real is a post-Reconquest highlight: here the great monarchs, Fernando and Isabel, lie in their crypts. Andalusia has gorgeous, white sandy beaches on its breezy Costa de la Luz, rocky cliffs at Cabo de Gata and miles of azure Mediterranean in between. It has the Sierra Nevada's ski slopes and the Alpujarras's magical valleys. Tertiary-age fir forests cover some of its mountains and there are Paleolithic cave paintings. Sevilla, Málaga and Granada are increasingly cosmopolitan places with hip bars, clubs and restaurants, and vibrant cultural scenes. Málaga has the chic Picasso Museum. Fiestas best demonstrate the Andalusian spirit. Try the Jerez Horse Fair, Sevilla April Fair or Cádiz Carnival. Andalusia is an outdoors haven: you can wind- and kite-surf, cave, abseil, rock climb, spot dolphins and whales, bird watch, sail, horseback ride and hike.

John Noble
About the Expert

John Noble is a coauthor of Lonely Planet's Spain, Andalucia, and Mexico as well as many other LP titles from Indonesia to Belize to Brazil.

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John Noble for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Andalusia is in the south of Spain, east of Portugal and the Atlantic Ocean; and north of the Mediterranean Sea and the Strait of Gibraltar.
  • Language: Spanish
  • Currency: Euro
  • Research: Wikipedia | Wikitravel
  • Weather: Rainfall | Daylight

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Year-round. July and August are most exciting. May, June and September for perfect weather.