Along the route through Nasrid Granada, following the route of the Dobla de Oro, which holds so many treasures along the way, we find in the Carrera del Darro one of the most significant points when it comes to understanding life in the Arab period in Granada: El Bañuelo.
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El Bañuelo, the Arab baths
Also called “hammān al-Ŷawza”, the Bath of the Walnut Tree, also known as the “Bath of Palacios” or the “Bath of the Gate of Guadix”, its current name is due to the fact that it was smaller than the baths in the Alhambra.
El Bañuelo is the site of exquisite baths from the Zirid period for public use built around the 11th and 12th centuries, making it one of the oldest monuments of the Hispano-Muslim period.
Unlike other structures, El Bañuelo was not demolished after the capture of Granada, although a dwelling was built on top of it almost immediately, which today is the entrance to the monument. Due to the very good reputation that the Arab public baths had among the Christians, the building has survived in perfect condition over time.
Located on the Carrera del Darro, it has a rectangular floor plan and concrete walls throughout its entire length, vaulted in solid brick. The composition of the walls: mortar, sand and stone, has the triple function of favouring the escape of vapours, lightening the weight of the roof and allowing light to enter from the outside.
Precisely for this purpose, El Bañuelo is equipped with skylights in the shape of eight-pointed stars through which the sky can be glimpsed and the natural light necessary for good illumination is obtained.
Its structure rests on typically Moorish arches, and the whole has an appearance reminiscent of traditional Roman baths. All of this from the Nasrid perspective, which was an exceptionally good culture in the art of imitating and adapting the advances of other cultures to their own.
Location and how to get there
El Bañuelo is located at Calle Carrera del Darro, number 31. You can get there on foot from the centre of the capital. Or you can also use public transport: The city bus lines C1 (Albaicín – Centro) and C2 (Sacromonte – Centro), both circular, leave you very close to the entrance to the building.
From 15 September to 30 April open every day of the week from 10:00 to 17:00. From 1 May to 14 September every day of the week from 9:00 am to 2:30 pm and from 5:00 pm to 8:30 pm. The opening hours may be modified on national and local public holidays and Cultural Heritage days.
The ticket price is 5€ per person and will also give you access to the rest of the Andalusian monuments in Granada city. On Sundays, you can access the site for free, always until full capacity is reached.
You can buy your tickets for Andalusia Monuments through the official website of the Alhambra following this link.
Rather than simply paying a visit to this splendid El Banuelo, immerse yourself in the wealth of Granada’s monuments and uncover additional historical structures throughout the city.