Sierra Nevada is a paradise in winter for skiers and the rest of the year for mountain and hiking lovers. These qualities make it one of the most recommended excursions from the city and definitely one of the essential plans.
A great advantage is that the village of Sierra Nevada is only 40 kilometers from the city. It is a short distance, but, as it goes deep into the mountains, it is not entirely accessible by some means of transport.
Choose the best option, an organized excursion
To this type of places there are always organized trips that make it much easier to arrive and visit our destination, so booking an excursion to Sierra Nevada from Granada is very easy.
During the ski season these excursions are more frequent and include the transfer to the slopes of Sierra Nevada, transportation in a 4x4 vehicle and the accompaniment of a local driver-guide, plus a complimentary drink in the panoramic restaurant. The trip usually takes less than an hour and depending on the type of excursion we hire, we will have more or less time in Sierra Nevada until the return, which, of course, is also included.
The prices depend a lot on the activities included in the excursion, but the most basic packages are usually priced from about 80 euros. If for example we visit Granada in 4 days, it is always a highly recommended option to complete our trip. Note that you can also book a snowshoeing tour in Sierra Nevada.
- Price: From 80 euros.
- Duration: 6 hours.
- Advantages: Transfer and excursion of approximately six hours, transportation in a 4x4 vehicle and the accompaniment of a local driver-guide.
- Disadvantages: Time is limited and we have to stick to the itinerary of the excursion.
Consider the most flexible option, the car
If you have a car or you want to rent one, you should know that this means of transport is the most comfortable and fastest way to go to Sierra Nevada from Granada. It is about 40 kilometers from the city center to the village of Sierra Nevada and it takes about 40 minutes. The route is mostly by national road and most of it is a very twisty stretch with many curves as it runs in the middle of the mountain. If you like driving you will enjoy it.
Certainly this is the fastest route, although there are several alternatives that run through the national park and, if you are not in a hurry, are highly recommended to enjoy the scenery.
Due to the characteristics of the road, the car is the best and fastest way to get there. The price depends on factors such as the type of vehicle, consumption or if you have your own car or a rental car. You should also take into account the parking on your arrival, since Sierra Nevada is quite touristic, especially during the ski season, and in this case you will probably have to park in paid parking lots.
- Price: Depends on several factors such as consumption, parking, car rental...
- Duration: 40 kilometers and 40 minutes approximately.
- Advantages: It is the fastest and most comfortable transportation to get there.
- Disadvantages: The road is very twisty and in high season you have to leave the car in a paid parking.
If you are looking for the cheapest option, opt for the bus
Although the car is faster and more comfortable, the bus is the best option in terms of prices to go from Granada to Sierra Nevada. The advantage is that we save the price of fuel and parking in addition to the fact that the tickets are very economical. In the case of choosing the bus as transportation , we must take into account the winter and summer schedules, as there are significant differences.
- In winter, being ski season, departures are daily from Monday to Friday at 8, 10 and 17 hours and on holidays, Saturdays and Sundays at 8, 10, 15 and 17 hours. The return schedules to Granada are from Monday to Friday at 9 am, 4 pm and 6:30 pm and on holidays, Saturdays and Sundays the same schedules with an extra trip at 1 pm. Of course these buses are equipped to carry ski equipment.
- In summer and outside the high season, trips are greatly reduced. In fact, there is only one outbound bus at 9 am and one return bus at 5 pm. In both cases, the buses leave from the Granada bus station in the north of the city, about 3 kilometers from the city center. The main company offering these trips is Tocina, which specializes in this route.
The prices of the tickets are very cheap and start from about 5 euros. The disadvantage of the buses is that we are subject to the schedules and that the journey is somewhat longer, almost an hour, and less pleasant if you are prone to dizziness.
- Price: From 5 euros.
- Duration: Between 50 minutes and 1 hour.
- Advantages: It is the cheapest means of transportation.
- Disadvantages: We are subject to the schedules established for the round trip.
If you want another alternative, a cab is an option.
It is always advisable to have alternatives in mind in case other transportation options fail. In this case, the most feasible alternative, but not cheap, is the cab. It is just as effective and comfortable as the car, but much more expensive.
The 40 kilometers that separate Granada from Sierra Nevada can cost more than 40 euros depending on traffic. Keep in mind that when you leave the city limits, the rates rise considerably. And if you travel in winter and the conditions force you to put chains, you will always be charged a plus that can bring the price dangerously close to 100 euros.
Therefore, cabs are only recommended in very specific cases, when other plans fail, and always better if you share and reduce costs. In this link you have all the information about cabs in Granada.
Information of interest
- Price: From 40 euros.
- Duration: 40-50 minutes.
- Advantages: It's insurance in case all else fails.
- Disadvantages: Very high price compared to other alternatives.
Please note that there are other methods of transportation
Definitely, going to Sierra Nevada is one of the must-do's when planning what to see and do in Granada. And another alternative to get there is car sharing through apps like Blablacar. I do not put it as the best alternative, since there is not always availability to cover this route, but it can always be an option if you look ahead of time.
This alternative is always more advisable in winter, since it is ski season and the trips are more frequent. The rest of the year the offer is very low and there is no guarantee of finding a trip.
The great advantage is that if you find a trip, they are usually quite cheap because of the shared expenses. Normally, they are around 5 euros, similar to the price of the bus ticket, with the advantage of having the comfort of traveling by car.
- Price: From 5 euros approximately.
- Duration: 40-50 minutes.
- Advantages: If you find a ride and don't mind carpooling it is very cheap.
- Disadvantages: Availability is limited and you are not always guaranteed to find a ride.
Tips for getting from Granada to Sierra Nevada
- If you make the trip by car between Granada and Sierra Nevada in winter, be sure to bring chains as the risk of snow is quite high.
- In the case of traveling by bus, it is always advisable to get the tickets online and the return ticket at the same time to save some money. They can also be purchased at the resort itself.
- The ski season in Sierra Nevada is usually from late November to April. Keep this in mind as there is always more traffic and demand at this time and the availability of transportation may be affected.
We compare the different options
- Organized excursion
- Price: From 80 euros
- Duration: 6 hours
- Advantages: Comfort and organization
- Disadvantages: Subject to itineraries
- Price: Depends on several factors
- Duration: 40 minutes approx.
- Advantages: Speed and comfort
- Disadvantages: Expenses of consumptions, parking...
- Price: From 5 euros
- Duration: 50 minutes - 1 hour
- Advantages: The most economical transportation
- Disadvantages: Subject to round trip schedules.
- Price: From 40 euros approx.
- Duration: 40 minutes approx.
- Advantages: Safe alternative
- Disadvantages: Price much higher than other transports