Andalucia has it all—glorious coastline, soaring mountains, cosmopolitan cities, white-washed villages, marvelous Moorish heritage—and Granada makes an ideal base from which to day-trip your way around the region, on either private or group tours. Here are some top trips from Granada.
Sierra Nevadas — 19 miles (30 kilometers) from Granada
Escape the city with a day tour to the Sierra Nevada mountains in a vehicle made for the rugged roads. This extensive mountain range has some of Spain's tallest peaks, including the 11,424-foot (3,482-meter) Mulhacén and 11,129-foot (3,392-meter) Veleta. Hikers and climbers find plenty of trails within Sierra Nevada National Park, while nature enthusiasts can keep busy spotting park’s 20-plus species.
Tropical Coast — 40 miles (65 kilometers) from Granada
The Tropical Coast pairs a fascinating history with stunning scenery, and you’ll see more on a guided tour. The hub of activity here is Nerja, home to miles of dreamy beaches and the spectacular Caves of Nerja, where you’ll find 20,000-year-old archaeological treasures. Scuba diving fans should head to Motril. Another favorite is the white-washed, hilltop village of Salobreña.
Las Alpujarras — 44 miles (70 kilometers) from Granada
An area of stunning natural beauty dominated by the dramatic rugged peaks of the Sierra Nevada, Las Alpujarras attracts day trippers with its tree-clad slopes and impossibly photogenic villages. Don’t miss the famous medicinal spa town Lanjarón or Trevélez, Spain’s highest village. A guided day trip from Granada offers a convenient way to see the sights without worrying about transportation.
Cordoba — 102 miles (165 kilometers) from Granada
Wander Cordoba’s flower-filled alleys to see sizeable squares, whitewashed courtyards, and the lavish La Mezquita mosque and the cathedral built after the Christians conquered the city in the 13th century. Then lose yourself in the evocative and ancient Jewish quarter, home to one of Spain's few remaining—and oldest—synagogues. A guided tour keeps you on schedule and adds context to this historic city.
Seville — 159 miles (256 kilometers) from Granada
For many travelers, Seville (Sevilla) is a highlight of an Andalucia (Andalusia) visit. This historical city is steeped in centuries-old buildings, including the Seville Cathedral (the largest Gothic cathedral in the world and a UNESCO World Heritage Site) and the Real Alcázar. These and the labyrinthine medieval Jewish quarter are highlights of private and small-group day trips.