The cave-studded neighbourhood of Sacromonte (“The Sacred Mount”) is spread out over the dusty, cacti-studded countryside high above Granada. This other-worldly barrio is home to many of Granada’s Gypsies, as well as artists, intellectuals and misfits from all over the world. Discover the story of this unique area.
The official history of Sacromonte is murky and there are different accounts of when exactly the first caves were carved into the hillside. According to some, it was only when the Gypsies – or gitanos – settled in Granada after the expulsion of the Moors by Ferdinand and Isabella in 1492; yet other versions hold that Granada’s Arabic inhabitants had discovered long before then that the soft earth of the Valparaíso valley was ideal for carving out dwellings. Either way, by the beginning of the 16th century, there was a sizeable Gypsy population living on the hillside opposite the Alhambra. Large families occupied the caves, alongside the livestock on which they often depended to make a living; there was a main room for eating and cooking, a larder, often only one bedroom and a room for the animals.
Zambra and Flamenco
Venta el Gallo, 5 Camino del Sacromonte, Sacromonte, Granada +34 958 22 84 76
Usually, such gitano parties are difficult for the outsider to access, but during Sacromonte’s Easter celebrations they break out on the streets too. The procession of the Gypsy Christ is usually held midway through Granada’s week-long Semana Santa (“Holy Week”) celebrations and is one of the barrio’s most important social occasions. Sacromonte’s most famous daughter, the flamenco singer Estrella Morente – daughter of the legendary Enrique Morente – often attends and sings emotionally charged saetas (tributes to the Virgin Mary) from a balcony as the Gypsy Christ is carried along a route lined with bonfires.
Museo Cuevas del Sacromonte
Though many of Sacromonte’s dappled white cave-dwellings are now available to rent, either as permanent residences or holiday homes, and and are kitted out with wifi, TV and fully functioning kitchens and bathrooms, you can see them as they would have been originally in the Museo Cuevas del Sacromonte. This superb museum is situated at the top of the hill and offers visitors the chance to look around ten caves that have been rendered as they would have been when the Gypsies first settled in Sacromonte. As you’ll see when wandering around this incomparable neighbourhood, though, life here hasn’t changed much since then – and Sacromonte is all the more charming and beautiful because of it.
KEEN TO EXPLORE THE WORLD?
Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.