When it comes to weather, the late spring and early autumn are often considered the best times of year to visit Granada. Just before and after the tourism high season, these months still have predictable precipitation and moderate temperatures.
May is a month of pleasant weather, and while busy, those on holiday in May are often greeted by locals, without the overwhelming number of tourists that come throughout summer.
Much like September, the days, especially around mid-day, are warm with temperatures rising throughout the afternoon and dropping in early evening. Then evenings become cooler and mornings can be crisp. Compared to the northern part of Spain, Granada experiences some summer-like days throughout May, and daily temperatures climbing higher and higher as the month progresses.
The average temperature in May is 16°C (61°F). The average low temperature slides to a quite cool 9°C (48°F), while the average high temperature is still very enjoyable at 22°C (72°F). As there can still be relatively cold spring days throughout the month of May, those planning holidays should still pack layers and prepare for the chance of rain.
Across Europe, the month of May can still bring considerable precipitation and rainfall. While in Granada, the increased rain in April tapers off in May. There are an average of 9 rain days in May, compared to 12 rain days on average in April, and historically only 37mm of precipitation fell in May compared to an average of 52mm in April.
The days are becoming longer and there is an average of 9 hours of sunlight per day during the month of May. These comfortable, longer days are an ideal time for exploring the many neighborhoods of Granada and getting lost in the up and down streets of the Albaicín.
The cloudless, clear days of May encourage visitors to get outside in the city of Granada, however an escape from the city streets is just as ideal. The rural location of Cortijo del Marques is pristine. The impressive building was once a convent and then the manor home of the Marquis of Mondéjar, and the renovation from stately home to hotel carefully retained the feeling of comfortable luxury.
Located in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, orange trees and gorgeous greenery surround Cortijo del Marques. The hotel's setting is on a large 4,000 hectare, estate, complete with a swimming pool and sunny courtyard.
There is a unique ambiance at Carmen de la Alcubilla del Caracol, given that the hotel is restricted to adults only, and therefore attracts a certain type of clientele. The adult-only atmosphere fosters sophistication and class. However, the views from Carmen de la Alcubilla del Caracol are sure to be the highlight of a stay in this exquisite hotel. The hotel name is thoughtfully derived in part from the building's former use as a private residence.
Known as a "carmen" the traditional houses of Granada dating from the Moorish period in Granada would have both a garden and orchard on the grounds. The renovations at Carmen de la Alcubilla del Caracol retained the important tradition of incorporating these outdoor areas into the overall design and environment of the architecture and structure.
Visitors during the month of May are sure to seek a bright and light filled hotel, in order to best enjoy the spring sun and warm temperatures. Casa del Capitel Nazarí is a wonderful option. The hotel is set in a restored 15th century hotel, and the unique guest rooms are light and airy. An open patio provides a special place for guests to relax and rejuvenate after a day of sightseeing.
At Bar Los Diamantes people go for the seafood and return for the overall dining experience. The service is hasty, and visitors should expect to be a bit jostled once inside, however that is the atmosphere of a tapas bar, and the Spanish would not want it any other way. While the restaurants and its ownership group have grown in popularity, Bar Los Diamantes has tried to expand its lively atmosphere without losing its traditional vibe. As one of the few, if not the only, old-school style tapas restaurants along Calle Navas, Bar Los Diamantes is a go-to when wandering Realejo-San Matías.
Despite its North African vibe and Islamic past, Granada is surprisingly filled with good Italian restaurants. !Viva Maria! located on Calle San Jerónimo receives consistently high praise from its customers. The owner, of course named Maria, makes each dish and presents them all in the restaurant's front windows. !Viva Maria! is teensy-tiny with only ten or so chairs, but the dessert is more than worth any wait.
For a taste of traditional Andalucía in an upscale setting, visitors head to Restaurante El Claustro. The stunning courtyard is reason enough to visit this restaurant located inside the AC Palacio de Santa Paula hotel. The gorgeous setting is perfect for a romantic meal, and the service is unbeatable. When it comes to fine dining there are few places in Granada that do it better, and oh yes, there is the delicious food prepared by a chef considered to be one of the best in Spain.
Springtime is perfect for visiting a number of sites and attractions in Granada, as the warm weather encourages locals and visitors alike to be outside and active. The city really seems to come alive during the month of May. An unintentional preparation for the high tourism season over summer, and visitors should take advantage of the opportunity to visit the Generalife, near the Alhambra, while the weather is glorious but the crowds are thinner.
The origin and intention of the name for these gorgeous gardens is still debated today. Historians have interpreted Generalife to mean the Governor's Garden, the Architect's (alarife) Garden, the Vegetable Garden of the Gypsy Festivity Organiser. This discrepancy may arise in part due to the reuse and rebuilding of this area several times from the Muslim through Christian periods in Granada's history.
The buildings scattered among the many plants and water features are interesting to wander through, but the fauna and carefully constructed ponds are the highlights of a visit. Guests are encouraged to allow between one and two hours to see the Generalife, and while proximity to the Alhambra and joint ticket sales encourage doing both sites in a single day, many people choose to space out the experiences.
The Science Park in Granada is fun for the whole family, but the level of displays and exhibits tends to be appreciated more by a teenage and above population. Opened in 2004, there are permanent exhibits that range from Darwin, to butterflies and the human body. The size of the museum is quite large, and the rotating exhibits are also interesting and interactive.