see + do
El Bañuelo, Granada
Tel: 34 958 027 800
Concierge.com's insider take:
Formerly part of the Mezquita del Nogal (Mosque of the Walnut Tree), these beautifully restored baths date from the 11th century and are among the oldest and most complete in Spain. It's easy to miss the entrance, just off the Carrera del Darro, and first impressions are not overwhelming, with an unremarkable small courtyard centered around a fishpond. But inside you'll find a series of perfectly preserved brick-vaulted chambers complete with typical horseshoe-shaped arches. These were used as cool, warm, and hot rooms; the pretty star-shaped skylights were to let light in and steam out. The columns, which look incongruously Western, were pilfered from Roman and Visigothic ruins. Baths in Moorish Granada were important meeting places for both sexes (on separate days), as well as having religious significance. Today these rooms are used as a venue for cultural events such as concerts and poetry readings; if you want to actually take a dip, visit the Baños Arabes across the river.
Open Tuesdays through Saturdays 10 am to 2 pm.
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