The Carthusian Monastery of Granada or Monasterio de la Cartuja is one of the finest examples of Baroque in Spain. This monastery was inhabited by Carthusian monks. This religious order was found in France by St Bruno in 1804 in Chartreuse. The Carthusian monks are very austere. The monks live their lives in rigorous fast and silence and they dedicate their time to prayer, study and manual work.
The Carthusian Monastery of Granada, started to be built in 1516 by the mandate of Gonzalo Fernández de Córdoba (el Gran Capitán) and finished halfway through the XVIII century. The monks lived in this monastery until 1835. Some parts of the monastery have been lost, like the great cloister. Other parts are in excellent status of conservation.
Carthusians had up to 24 monasteries in Spain. Nowadays there are 4 monasteries inhabited by the monks, in Burgos, Valencia, Barcelona and Zaragoza.
The façade, cloisters and refectory
At the entrance, there is a black and white cobbled path that leads to a fantastic staircase made by Cristóbal de Vílchez. On top of the façade there is a shield of Spain and an image of St. Bruno in white marble.
The cloister is the centre of the monastery and from there a great amount of doors communicate the entire monastery. From some of the angles you can view the church tower.
From the refectory you can access a small room usually with a fountain, where the monks cleaned their hands before eating. The room of this monastery – nowadays without fountain is decorated with an altarpiece by Sánchez Cotán representing the apostles St. Pedro and St. Pablo. Other paintings also by Sánchez Cotán represent the construction of the first Carthusian monastery, two Carthusian bishops and the virgin with the child.
The temple is of a one nave style, divided in three parts. The first for the town people, the second for the non-professional and the third for the monks. The room is decorated with paintings from Sanchez de Cotán. The doors are decorated with shells, ivory, silver and ebony by José Manuel Vázquez. The walls are lavishly decorated and include statues that surround six paintings that describe the life of the Virgin. The main altar is decorated with wood and mirrors.
Behind the main altar and separated from the church by a door from Venetian crystals, you can find the sacristy. In the sacristy the architecture, painting and sculpture fuse together creating one of the most beautiful and impressive creations of the Spanish Baroque. It was built by Francisco Hurtado Izquierdo between 1704 and 1720.
A small square floor supports a whirlwind of energy, soaring upwards with the intention of exalting the tabernacle, in which lies the body of Christ. The central baldachin and the pairs of columns at the corners advance and project outwards to the centre of the room. Two figures painted on top of each of the door jambs show the path to follow.
The sculpted figure of Faith crowns the whole ensemble and seems to connect it to the cupola. The cupola represents heaven and contains a series of images designed to exalt the Eucharist.
Opening times Carthusian Monastery
Summer Schedule (March to August): Monday to Sunday from 10:00 to 13:00 and 15:00 to 18:00.
Winter Schedule (September to February): Monday to Sunday from 10:00 to 13:00 and 16:00 to 20:00.
Contact Phone: +34 958 161 932
Address: Paseo de Cartuja, s/n, 18009 Granada, Spain
Tickets Carthusian Monastery
Entrance tickets for the Carthusian Monastery can be bought directly at the ticket office of the monument.
|Children (under 12)||Free|
Accessibility Carthusian Monastery
Unfortunately the Carthusian Monastery is not prepared for wheelchair visitors as there are a lot of steps on its entrance and no lift or ramp available. For visitors with limited mobility, you have to consider going up these steps. Afterwards the rest of the monument is easily accessible.