Discovering the Alhambra with children is a fantastic idea, but like all family activities, it requires a bit of organization so that everything goes perfectly. Even more so when it is an extensive visit of several hours as is the Nasrid palace city. I tell you everything you need to know!
1. Get your tickets online and in advance to avoid the queues
The dream of many travelers is to go to Granada to discover its mythical Alhambra, one of the most beautiful monuments in Spain and a cultural reference of Hispano-Muslim art in the West.
It is, therefore, a very popular monument where the capacity is limited due to security and conservation reasons. So to ensure access to the Nasrid fortress on the date and time you want, I recommend that you book your tickets to the Alhambra as far in advance as possible, as soon as you book your flight or your hotel.
This is the first piece of advice I would give you when it comes to getting to know it, especially if you are traveling with your family to the city. If you buy your tickets to the Alhambra online and in advance, in addition to being able to compare types of tickets and rates, you will avoid long lines with children at the ticket office to get them. Something essential so that they do not get tired before even starting the visit.
2. How are the children's tickets to the Alhambra?
The visit to the Alhambra in Granada is paid and to access it is necessary to purchase a ticket. However, children can get them at a lower price than adults, something that allows families to save a little on vacation that never hurts.
How to buy tickets at the ticket office
Sometimes parents prefer to do the cultural visits at their own pace because they feel that they will be more comfortable if at some point there is an emergency to go to the bathroom or if there is a need to take a break to eat or play, especially when the children are still young.
If this is your case, you can try to get general admission tickets without a guided tour at the ticket office for the same day of the visit and benefit from a discount or free tickets for children depending on their age.
Each day the capacity is limited and there are long lines at the ticket office to try to get tickets. If you don't mind the risk of queuing up and not getting tickets for the same day, I recommend that you take a look at the conditions to try your luck and take advantage of the reduced price on children's tickets at the box office.
Of course, you will have to bring an identity document where you can verify the age of the children at the entrance to the Alhambra.
How to buy tickets online
However, if the children are older and you think they can have fun doing a guided tour of the Alhambra, I recommend this option without a doubt. Not only will they enjoy the beautiful views of the Andalusian palace city, its gardens and fountains, but they will also hear some very curious legends and learn very interesting things in a fun way.
This kind of tours are adapted to families and the guides are very friendly with the kids so a guided tour of the Alhambra is a fantastic idea if you want to make a different plan with your family and at the same time know in detail this monument.
If you want to book your places in one of these tours that go around the Nasrid fortress, in Hellotickets you can find tickets or guided tours to the Alhambra where the price of the children's ticket is also somewhat lower than that of adults, so you can save money without having to get tickets at the last minute once you are in Granada!
3. Immerse them in the history of the monument
When visiting the Alhambra with children, it is advisable to prepare the visit with them beforehand so that they know something about what they are going to see and can let their imagination run wild once they are inside.
For example, you can introduce them to its history by telling them when it was built, who lived in this place, what life was like here, etc.
In fact, there are books about the Alhambra and its legends dedicated to children that can help you in this task, such as "La Alhambra contada a los niños" by Ricardo Villa Real Molina or "Cuentos de la Alhambra para niños" by Washington Irving, an adaptation for children of the original work of the American writer.
Older kids will probably know it from their history classes at school or from having seen it in TV series such as "Isabel" where the reconquest of the kingdom of Granada is recounted.
4. Bring some snacks and drinks
The visit to the Alhambra is long (about 3 hours) so it is likely that at some point in the tour the children will get hungry and thirsty. It is important that you do not get caught unawares and carry in your backpack or bag plenty of water and a snack to snack, because inside there is no place to take something to drink.
5. Better to go see it in the morning
Granada is hot, especially in summer, so if you are going to visit the Alhambra with children I recommend you to do it early in the morning when it is still cool. The kids wake up full of energy and can make the most of the route through the monument.
In addition, early in the day there are usually not so many tourists or large groups so you will find it more pleasant to walk around without crowds, take pictures, enjoy the details and even take a break to regain strength during the visit.
6. Prepare your clothes for the visit
As in any excursion with children, when planning it, some details must be taken into account, such as the weather and the children's clothing.
Many families take advantage of the summer vacations to visit the Alhambra and at this time of the year it is usually very hot in Granada. Remember to protect children from the sun by wearing a hat and sunglasses, as well as sunscreen on their skin because they will be exposed to outdoor spaces such as the Generalife and its gardens or the Partal.
Do not forget to dress them with comfortable shoes because the visit to the Nasrid fortress is long and they will walk a lot from one place to another. In addition, they will probably take advantage of the outdoor trails to play and run, so for that day it is better to put them some shoes that they already have tamed so they can enjoy themselves to the fullest.
7. Make a stop at the toilets before starting the tour
Before starting the visit to the Alhambra with children, it is essential to take them to the toilets, since there are hardly any bathrooms inside the monumental complex and we know that kids can have an emergency at any time.
At the entrances to the palatine city and in the vicinity of the Palace of Charles V you will find a toilet area. Keep this in mind when planning your visit!
8. Leave the baby stroller in the locker to see the Alhambra
Those of you with babies or children who do not walk much should know that access to the Alhambra with baby carriages is not permitted for reasons of conservation of the monument.
However, don't worry because there is a free baby carrier service (up to a maximum of 12 kg) for visitors who need it and want to leave the strollers in the cloakroom. You will find it at the Wine Gate and you can use it on presentation of your ticket.
It is a good option to move more freely and to make a visit to the Alhambra with children more comfortable.
9. Plan your meals
When traveling with children, another important point to prepare in advance is where to eat after the visit.
It is not something that should be left to chance, because by the time you finish your children may be very hungry and if you do not know Granada it is not advisable to make them wander around looking for a free table in such a touristy city, they could get tired and have a tantrum!
So before you go into the first restaurant you come across, I recommend you check out my article with Where to eat near the Alhambra, you'll hit the nail on the head for sure!
10. Take the tourist train to the Alhambra
To make your visit to the Alhambra more exciting and fun, the day of the activity I recommend you to arrive on board the Granada City Tour tourist train (also known as the Alhambra Train), whose green line has a stop at the monument.
This way, the kids won't get tired walking up the hill that leads to the top of Sabika Hill, the place where the Andalusian palace city is located. It is important that they reserve their energy for the visit afterwards.
It is a means of transport that makes a tour of the main tourist attractions of Granada and has an audio guide service and two special information channels for children that will explain in an entertaining way what you are seeing, so both adults and children will enjoy the experience.
In addition, thanks to the Hop-on Hop-off system, if you buy your ticket for the Granada tourist train you can use the vehicle as public transport to move between different parts of the city, as you can get on and off at any stop along the route.
It is a very useful option if you want to save time on travel or give your legs a rest after so much walking, especially if you are traveling with children. However, if you want to know other ways to get to the monument I recommend you to read my article How to get to the Alhambra.