Book Online: Day Trip to Alhambra from Malaga (With Local Tips)

Are you staying in Malaga and would love to explore the stunning ancient palaces of Alhambra in Granada? In this article, I will tell you everything you need to know about booking a day trip to Alhambra from Granada!

If you prefer to skip the details and book right away, there is a link included below.

BOOK ONLINE: Alhambra guided tour with pick up from Malaga

Your Options for Day Trip to Alhambra from Malaga

There are three different ways you can see Alhambra on a day trip from Malaga:

  1. Booking a day trip with a tour operator – highly recommended as it saves you a lot of hassle and time, and you will also get a dedicated tour guide to make the most out of your trip. It’s one of the most efficient ways to see Alhambra without the added stress of commuting and trying to secure tickets on your own. The tickets to the monument and a guide in English are included in the price.
  2. Plan a day trip on your own with a rental car & prebooked tickets – you can also organize your own day trip by renting a car in Malaga, and then driving to Granada on your own. You will still have to get tickets to the Alhambra monument, find a place for parking and pay for the rental and petrol, on top of navigating big city traffic in a car. It might end up costing you a lot more than option one, and the added stress of driving.
  3. Plan a day trip on your own using public transport – this is another option if you don’t like driving and would like to use public transport. There are direct buses and train services from Malaga Maria Zambrano and Malaga main bus station, however, you will have to take into account the timing of the arrivals, and your transport from the station to the monument, as the tickets to Alhambra have a dedicated time slot, so you can’t be late. While it might be a slightly cheaper option, you will waste a lot of extra time commuting.
Palace of Charles V in Alhambra, Granada
Palace of Charles V in Alhambra, Granada
Palace of Charles V in Alhambra, Granada
Outside walls of the Palace of Charles V in Alhambra

Where to Book Day Trip to Alhambra from Malaga

To ensure you don’t have to worry about transport, guide or tickets to Alhambra, I recommend booking your trip online to save a lot of time and hassle.

BOOK ONLINE: Alhambra guided tour with pick up from Malaga

PLEASE NOTE: in the summer months even day trips like these sell out really fast, and they only run twice a week, so secure your spot as soon as you know your trip details for Malaga.

Online booking for a day trip like this has a lot of advantages, for example:

  • Late cancellation policy – you can cancel up to 24 hours before the trip, and get a 60% refund
  • Guide in English included
  • Pick up and drop off in a central location in Malaga, so you don’t have to commute anywhere to reach the pick up point
  • Skip the line tickets to the monument included, so no need to worry about securing your own tickets
  • Honest traveller reviews included on the booking page
  • Activity duration of 10 hours, which is perfect for a day trip like this
  • Option to explore the city of Granada on your own after visiting the palaces

What’s Included in this Online Booking

  • tickets to the Alhambra Palace – full complex access included (palaces, Alcazaba, Charles V palace and Generalife gardens)
  • guide in English and Spanish
  • transport to and from Granada to the pick up location in Malaga
  • headphones to listen to your guide (not audio guide)
Generalife Gardens, Granada Spain
Generalife gardens of Alhambra in late spring
Generalife Gardens, Granada Spain
Palace inside the Generalife gardens

Itinerary For Your Day Trip to Alhambra from Malaga

  • pick up in Malaga, at San Jacinto Street, 1, door of the NH Malaga Hotel at 9am (you can check the availability calendar here to see the starting time for each trip)
  • drive to Granada via the highway in a comfortable bus, the journey should take about an hour
  • once you arrive in Granada, you will head straight to the Alhambra with priority skip-the-line tickets included in your day trip voucher
  • the day trip also includes a guide in Spanish and English, which will take you through the Alhambra palace and Generalife Gardens
  • after the visit, there is free time to explore the city of Granada, before returning back to Malaga

What You Need to Know: Day Trip to Alhambra from Malaga

I have been visiting the palaces of Alhambra three times now, each time in a different season and in a different way. Tickets to the monument are notoriously difficult to get on short notice, and if you’re staying in Malaga you would also have to face the transport options to Granada and then to the monument, for those reasons I recommended booking this day trip online as an organised tour.

BOOK ONLINE: Alhambra guided tour with pick up from Malaga

Here are some of my tips for making the most out of your trip:

  • If you’re planning your stay in Malaga, look at the day trip options to Granada at the same time, as tickets to Alhambra often sell out weeks in advance, which means your day trip options will be also pretty limited
  • The day trip option I linked above runs twice a week, so check your dates early enough to ensure you can get a spot as tickets sell out pretty fast, especially in the summer months
  • For the booking, you will need to provide details for the travellers including their date of birth and passport number – the tickets are issued as personal ones and checked against the ID at the entrance, don’t forget to bring your ID with you for this trip
  • Wear comfortable shoes for exploring Alhambra and the gardens, the complex is pretty big
  • Take water with you to keep hydrated, especially in the summer months. There are some vending machines between the Nasrid palace entrance and the Alcazaba courtyard, that’s where the toilets also are
  • No food is allowed inside the complex, you can have a snack in the courtyard between the Charles V palace and Alcazaba, there is also a small kiosk to buy coffee, drinks and snacks
  • No backpacks are allowed inside the Alhambra complex (bigger than 40×40 cm), there are lockers near the vending machines but the number of available ones is pretty limited – please keep this in mind!
  • Baby prams are also not allowed inside the complex, you will have to leave them in the luggage storage room
Alhambra in Granada, Spain
Alhambra in Granada, Spain

Frequent Questions About Day Trip To Alhambra from Granada

Is this trip suitable for kids?

I would say you can easily take kids with you if they will be comfortable (or you) with the 1 hour journey to Granada and then back to Malaga. If you have a small baby that requires a pram, keep in mind that these are not permitted in Alhambra, so taking a baby carrier is a good idea. The premises of the palace get crowded easily, especially in the summer, so make sure you keep an eye on your kids while inside.

What should I do in my free time in Granada?

There is some free time in Granada included in this day trip, I think with the limited time you have, the best use of it is to take a stroll through the streets of Albaicin and take in the views of Alhambra from one of the higher points.

You can also sit down for a drink and enjoy the old custom of free tapas with every drink served, pretty much anywhere in the city. If you’re looking for some restaurant recommendations, my favourite ones are in this article.

Is there barrier-free access in Alhambra?

As far as I remember there isn’t and this day trip is not recommended for wheelchair users or people with reduced mobility.

Can you do this trip in bad weather or on a rainy day?

You can easily see Alhambra even if the weather is not great, as most of the exploring is indoors. The only issue is seeing the Generalife gardens and the Alcazaba fortress.

I hope this article provided a good overview of what you can expect on this recommended online booking for a day trip to Granada! I hope you will enjoy this trip and will be keen to hear your feedback in the comments section.

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