Where to live?
Granada is, first and foremost, a university city. It has a population of 240,000 people, over 65,000 of whom are students, lecturers, researchers and administrative staff at the University of Granada. This means that a wide range of accommodation options are available to international students, researchers and teaching staff.
The Accommodation Office (Oficina de Gestión de Alojamientos) offers guidance to the university community on accommodation options in Granada, which include flats and apartments, private rooms, university residences (colegios mayores y residencias universitarias), hostels and hotels, and a specific accommodation programme with elderly people.
International Welcome Centre
If you are an international researcher or teacher intending to complete a mobility period at the UGR, the International Welcome Centre (IWC) staff will be glad to help you search for accommodation in Granada. We recommend that you contact the IWC (firstname.lastname@example.org) before coming to Granada and indicate your preferences.
Granada is one of Europe's most affordable student cities. Spanish and international students normally share accommodation — usually in flats of between 2 to 4 people — as this is the cheapest option (approximately €200-€300 per month for a room).
Doctoral students, teachers and researchers who are accompanied by their families usually choose apartments or single-family houses, the cost of which generally ranges between €500-€800 per month (depending on its location, size etc.).
Short-term stays (less than 1 month)
If you are a member or guest of the University of Granada and are planning to undertake a short-term mobility period at our institution (approx. less than 1 month) you can book accommodation at our visitors residences. The reservation must be made through a university service such as the International Welcome Centre or your host department. Our residences provide full-board accommodation and are located in historical quarters. The Corrala de Santiago Visitors Residence is located in the Realejo district, while the Carmen de la Victoria Visitors Residence is located in the Albaicín district.
Long-term stays (more than 1 month)
Renting a flat or a room
If you are planning to stay for several months or a full academic year, this is the best option. Private owners and real estate agents publish their offers on several websites and social networks. It is also common to find rental ads on the notice boards of faculties and schools.
Although rental prices are slightly more expensive in this area than in other parts of the city, it has comprehensive services and good transport connections. The faculties of Law; Translation and Interpreting; Political Science and Sociology; Social Work; Labour Relations and Human Resources; Architecture; as well as the Fuentenueva Campus, are all located in this area.
Popular among university students, the Ronda district is close to the city centre and the cost of living is slightly lower than in the historic centre or Albaicín. This area has a wide range of shopping centres, cinemas, green areas, supermarkets and gyms.
The Albaicín (or Albayzín), which is a historic district and UNESCO World Heritage Site, is one of the most charming neighbourhoods in Granada, with wonderful views of the city. As it is both a residential and tourist area, it is also one of the most expensive districts in the city. Very few bus lines connect the Albaicín to the rest of the city so residents usually move around on foot.
Beiro, Chana and Norte
These districts are the farthest from the city centre, but rental prices are among the lowest in Granada. These areas are also close to the Cartuja Campus.
Zaidín and Genil
These are the southern districts of Granada. Increasing numbers of students are searching for accommodation in the Zaidín due to the presence of the new Health Sciences Technology Park (PTS) University Campus in this district.
- Start looking at accommodation options and contact the owners/tenants before your arrival.
- Visit and view the properties in person before signing a contract or giving a deposit.
- University residences and student residences are more expensive than shared flats, but generally include other services such as room cleaning, laundry and full or half board.
- Some residences, particularly colegios mayores (private student residences), have strict cohabitation rules. Make sure you read these rules before making any decisions.
- Find out if the flat is being advertised by the owner or a real estate agent. Real estate agents will charge a fee for their service, which is usually equivalent to the cost of one month's rent.
- Request receipts for all transactions and payments, including the deposit, and store them in a safe place.
- Ask if the rent covers community fees (gastos de comunidad), which are monthly charges that all flat owners pay for the general maintenance of a building in Spain, or if you have to pay for them separately.
- Ask approximately how much you will have to pay for electricity, gas and water.
- Ask how the hot water works. If it requires butane gas, bear in mind that cylinders will have to be purchased on a regular basis from distributors. Ask the owner how to purchase a new cylinder in your neighbourhood and always try to have a spare one at home.
- Ask how much the deposit is (normally a month's rent). If everything is in order at the end of the rental period, the landlord must return the deposit to you. Make sure you request a receipt for the deposit.
- In Granada, summers are very hot and winters quite cold. Keep this in mind and try to find out if the flat is well insulated and has central heating or air conditioning, etc.
- Read the rental contract very carefully and make sure you understand all of the terms and conditions.
- Most apartments and houses do not have fire alarms or smoke detectors, so be careful when using cookers, stoves, radiators and any other heating devices. Never leave your house or go to bed without turning them off. For additional safety, you could also buy and install a smoke detector.
Living in Granada
What is it like to live in Granada? In what follows, we give you an overview of some of the characteristics that make Granada a special place to live.
A university city
Granada has a population of 240,000 people, over 65,000 of whom are students, lecturers, researchers and administrative staff at the University of Granada. As a result, a lively student atmosphere has flourished here, giving rise to the development of a modern, multicultural and vibrant study destination that welcomes people from all backgrounds.
Five of the UGR’s campuses are spread out across the city, giving it an unmistakable university feel. The remaining two campuses are found in the North African cities of Ceuta and Melilla, making our institution a truly intercontinental university.
As the University is at the heart of the city, Granada provides incoming students and researchers with excellent services and facilities, along with a wide range of cultural activities. It is also one of the least expensive cities in Spain, while commonly regarded as offering one of the highest levels of quality of life.
A cultural hub
Thanks to its rich historical and cultural heritage, and to the presence of a proactive university community, Granada has firmly established itself as a vibrant cultural hub. Along with its charm, its many recreational activities make it a great city to explore and a magnificent destination for students from around the world.
It currently boasts a wide variety of festivals which take place throughout the year, including:
International Hocus Pocus Magic Festival of Granada
International Jazz Festival of Granada
International Music and Dance Festival of Granada
International Poetry Festival of Granada (FIP)
International Tango Festival of Granada
International Young Filmmakers Festival of Granada (FIJR)
BAG International Arts Festival
FACBA Contemporary Art Festival
Retroback International Classic Film Festival
White Night Festival in Granada
"Cines del Sur" Film Festival of Granada
"Cinemística" Film Festival
International University Theatre Meeting in Granada (EITUG)
An array of flamenco and dance festivals
The UGR also regularly holds concerts, film screenings, plays, exhibitions, and workshops.
An unbeatable location
Granada, a safe modern city, also has an outstanding geographical location just 40 minutes from the Mediterranean Coast with its tropical climate, and 30 minutes from the Sierra Nevada ski resort. This means you can enjoy mountain sports like skiing and snowboarding and bathe in the Mediterranean Sea all in the same day. The towns and villages dotting the coast, such as Motril, Salobreña and Almuñecar, offer scenic beaches and exceptional weather throughout the year.
The surrounding towns and villages, such as those found in the mountainous Alpujarra region to the south, offer cultural diversity and stunning scenery.
Granada and these surrounding towns offer a wide range of sporting and leisure activities, including as mountaineering, hiking, rock climbing, kayaking, waterskiing and windsurfing. The UGR Sports Centre (CAD) offers courses in all of these areas.
Rich historical and architectural heritage
Granada is an enchanting city, full of monuments, history and, of course, the University. The world-renowned Alhambra and Generalife palaces, which form the backdrop of Granada’s cityscape, are widely regarded as among the most outstanding examples of Arabic architecture in the world. In 1984 these palaces, along with the labyrinth-like historical quarter known as the Albaicín, became UNESCO world heritage sites, further adding to Granada’s reputation as one of the most beautiful cities in the world.
As well as working constantly to enrich the city culturally, the UGR is fully committed to its policy of recovering, restoring and conserving buildings of historical worth in the city. “La Madraza” Palace (1349), Hospital Real (the seat of the Rectorate) and the Faculties of Law, Medicine, Translation and Interpreting, and Communication and Documentation, among others, are all buildings of considerable historical worth.