This old quarter on one of Granada’s two main hills stands apart from the city of 19th-century buildings and wide boulevards. A holdover from the Nasrid empire, it even predates the Renaissance city that sprung up around the cathedral. The Albaicín and Gypsy caves of Sacromonte farther up the hill were the homes of marginalized Muslims and Gypsies declared beyond the pale by the Christian conquerors. The narrow labyrinth of crooked streets in the Albaicín was too hilly to tear down in the name of progress; ironically, it is now some of the most desirable real estate in Granada. Its alleyways, cisterns, fountains, plazas, whitewashed houses, villas, and the decaying remnants of the old city gate have all been preserved. Here and there you can catch a glimpse of a private patio filled with fountains and plants, a traditional, elegant way of life that continues. The plaza known as Mirador San Nicolás is a delightful spot to enjoy a drink at a cafe. It becomes especially romantic at sunset, when the reflected color makes the Alhambra seem to glow on the opposite hill. During the winter and spring, you may even see snow on the peaks of the Sierra Nevada mountains.