How to Get to Nerja from Granada

If you are in the city of Granada and you are planning to visit Nerja, the first thing you should take into account are all the options available to arrive to this charming city of Malaga. Below I will tell you what they are and give you some tips for your trip.

Nicolas Reffray

Nicolas Reffray

8 min read

How to Get to Nerja from Granada

Nerja, Spain | ©Ilya Platonov

Located to the east of the Costa del Sol, Nerja is a city that conquers with its characteristic beaches of fine sand. Thanks to its privileged climate is one of the most chosen destinations by tourists, especially for those looking to relax and enjoy the countless activities that this coastal town has to offer.

From El Balcón de Europa you can enjoy some of the best landscapes of the Costa del Sol, with the cliffs and beaches of Nerja bathed by the sun. Its proximity to the city of the Alhambra, only 93 kilometers away, makes this town one of the best excursions to complete your planning of things to see and do in Granada....

1. Nerja with an organized excursion from Granada - The most interesting option

Visiting Nerja| ©Nick Kenrick
Visiting Nerja| ©Nick Kenrick

An organized excursion is always an excellent option when planning a trip to any city. There is a wide range of excursions available from Granada, as well as many ways to enjoy Nerja.

Hiring an excursion has many advantages. For example, you will not have to worry about coordinating the schedules of the different means of transport, but you can just enjoy yourself, as everything is planned and arranged in advance by the organizer.

In addition, you will always be accompanied by an expert guide who will give you all the information you need to make the most of your visit to the city and not miss anything.

The excursion to the Costa Tropical and the famous caves of Nerja from Granada for the day is a very good option if you do not have too much time in your general itinerary and want to treat yourself to Nerja, its beautiful beaches, its port and of course its picturesque caves.

Nerja is a place like few others, with its mix of history and leisure it is an excellent destination to visit with the family. In the middle of the last century, in its famous caves were discovered the first paintings made by man.

Since then, guided tours are organized to visit this important "time capsule". One can feel like breathing the same air as those first men thousands of years ago, it is a truly fascinating adventure.

  • Price: Tours departing from Granada start at 69 Euros.
  • Duration of the tour: Approximately 8 hours (full day).
  • Advantages: You will be able to get to know the area in much more detail.
  • Disadvantages: Not the cheapest option

Book your excursion to Nerja from Granada

2. How to travel from Granada to Nerja by car - The option that offers the greatest freedom

Driving a Car| ©Peter Fazekas
Driving a Car| ©Peter Fazekas

To get to Nerja by car (either your own or a rental car), you must access the GR-30 highway which is the one that surrounds the city of Granada to the west.

Then you will have to continue along the A-44 highway (the Sierra Nevada-Costa Tropical highway) and the A-7 (the Mediterranean highway), until you finally take the N-340 road to Almeria, towards the town of Nerja.

The total distance is about 93 kilometers, almost all of which are by highway, which makes the trip extremely simple, agile and safe. The total travel time is about one hour, since the roads are in very good condition and the journey can be made without any inconvenience.

Of all, this is one of the most practical and comfortable options, since, driving yourself, you can choose your own departure and arrival times, without any limitations. Besides, you can stop as many times as you want along the way to enjoy the scenery.

Remember that a large section of this route borders the amazing Sierra Nevada, so you will be surrounded by natural landscapes of great beauty. And if you want more, be sure to visit the Sierra Nevada from Granada, it is an experience you will not regret.

It is for all this that having a car during your visit is the option that gives you more freedom, you can also reach the beaches farthest from Nerja, the less central, such as La Caleta de Maro, the Alberquillas beach or the beautiful Cala del Pino, with its crystal clear waters, is ideal for diving and snorkeling.

  • Price: You can rent a car from 60 or 70 Euros per day.
  • Duration of the tour: 1 hour
  • Advantages: You can take your time and stop as many times as you want to appreciate the scenery.
  • Disadvantages: The visit is on your own, the details of Nerja you will have to look for on your own.

How to travel from Granada to Nerja by car sharing - The increasingly popular option for young people

If you want to enjoy the scenery and the comforts of traveling by car but you have a tight budget, you can choose to do this tour between Granada and Nerja sharing a car. A very good option to save a few Euros and also meet people.

Car sharing has become a very popular option, especially among young people. If you dare it can be a very good alternative to make this stretch between Granada and the city of Nerja.

  • Price: The service costs between 7 and 10 Euros.
  • Duration of the tour: 1 hour approximately
  • Advantages: You meet other people and get to your destination very quickly.
  • Disadvantages: you may be a bit wary of getting into a stranger's car.

3. How to travel by cab from Granada to Nerja - The most comfortable option

Granada Taxi| ©JJ Merelo
Granada Taxi| ©JJ Merelo

Traveling from Granada to Nerja by cab is an excellent way to make the whole trip in just 1 hour, enjoy the trip, and go comfortably and safely. In addition you can decide and manage as you please the departure and return times, without having to accommodate the times of other people.

Although a trip like this can be obtained from 110 Euros (one way) if it is done directly, the good thing about traveling by cab is that you can choose the way yourself and deviate as many times as you prefer, to visit the intermediate locations.

To return to Granada you will have to hire another cab, so the total would be 220 Euros. Which is not so expensive if you think that up to 4 people can travel in an average size cab.

It is a very good option, full of possibilities, to organize a tailor-made trip. If you are just passing through Granada, you can directly book your cab ride from Granada airport to Nerja, so you won't waste a single second.

  • Price: The service costs about 220 Euros round trip.
  • Duration of the trip: Approximately 1 hour
  • Advantages: You arrive quickly at your destination and you don't have to deal with other passengers.
  • Disadvantages: It is not a very economical option.

How to travel from Granada to Nerja by bus - The cheapest option

Granada Bus| ©Kristain Baty
Granada Bus| ©Kristain Baty

If you are looking for a practical and economical option to get to Nerja from Granada, this is undoubtedly the bus. The price of the tickets ranges between 10 and 15 Euros (one way). Much less than a cab and a rental car.

Per day there are a total of seven bus departures from Granada to Nerja, the first one being at 7 am and the last one at 7 pm. Depending on the route taken by the bus and the number of stops it makes, the trip can take between two and three hours.

Although it takes much longer than going by car, this option gives you the peace of mind of not being the one driving and you can simply enjoy the ride, read a book or do whatever you please.

Buses have Wifi service and air conditioning on board, so you can enjoy greater comfort during the trip.

Always remember to check bus schedules and routes from Granada to Nerja, to avoid any confusion, or to find out about any last minute changes to the itinerary (which are not common, but can happen).

As you can see, bus travel is definitely the cheapest alternative to visit Nerja from the city of Granada, and therefore one of the most chosen, so if you decide to take the bus, make your reservation early.

Just keep in mind that it takes between 2 and 3 hours one way and the same on the way back, so you would be missing a good 4 to 6 hours to enjoy Nerja.

  • Price: The service costs between 20 and 30 Euros (round trip).
  • Duration of the tour: Between 2 and 3 hours
  • Advantages: You can relax and enjoy the ride.
  • Disadvantages: It takes much longer than the cab or rental car.

Book your excursion to Nerja from Granada

If you are still wondering which is the best option, don't worry, here I compare all of them so you can choose the one that best suits you

  • Excursion with specialized guide
  • Cost: From about 69 €.
  • Duration: More than 8 hours
  • Advantages: Allows to know a little more about the region and not to worry about everything.
  • By own or rented car
  • Cost: Car rental (about 50 € per day) + gasoline
  • Duration: 1 hour
  • Advantages: Allows you to manage your time and enjoy the road.
  • By shared car
  • Cost: Between 7 and 10 € each way approximately.
  • Duration: 1 hour
  • Advantages: Allows you to manage your time and meet people
  • By bus
  • Cost: Between 20 and 30 € round trip
  • Duration: Approximately 2 to 3 hours
  • Advantages: Allows you to relax and enjoy the scenery
  • By cab
  • Cost: More than 100 € per way
  • Duration: Approximately 1 hour
  • Advantages: Allows you to relax and enjoy the scenery

Tips for the journey between Granada and Nerja

Streets of Nerja| ©Nicolas Vigier
Streets of Nerja| ©Nicolas Vigier

Here are some tips to keep in mind for this trip.

  • Do some research about the different attractions that Nerja has, the essential details, its best beaches, its history. There is nothing worse than leaving a place without getting to know it, or missing out on treasures because you haven't done your research beforehand.
  • If you are not in a hurry to return in the day, I recommend you to find out what are the best options to stay in Nerja. Spending the night in this picturesque town can be a great plan.
  • While it is a short drive, don't forget to bring some snacks and drinks for the road.
  • Travel in comfortable clothes: Whether you opt for the car, bus or cab, always choose comfortable clothes and according to the outside temperature.
  • Use sunscreen. Keep in mind that a trip of one or several hours under the sun can cause annoying sunburns that will not allow you to enjoy the ride in Nerja.
  • Once you have arrived, I recommend that you reserve a table at La Fuente da Paolo, one of the best restaurants in Nerja.