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Thursday, October 31, 2013 (read 678 times)
Granada: The Sports Capital of Spainby Phoebe
Having hosted the 1982 FIFA World Cup and the 1992 Summer Olympics, as well as boasting some of sport’s best competitors, such as tennis superstar Rafael Nadal and the renowned Barcelona FC, Spain not only has a history of sport but also a passion. While each province in Spain enjoys spectating and participating in a range of sporting activity, the region which stands out in terms of enthusiasm and vigor is, undoubtedly, Granada.
When you think of what Granada has to offer in the sporting field, the list is truly endless. Granada sports range from traditional favorites such as tennis, squash, golf, skiing and swimming, to more adventurous and daring pursuits, such as airsports, watersports, horse-riding and mountain-biking. However, the most prominent sporting activities in Granada are undoubtedly the power duo: soccer (football) and basketball.
Soccer isn’t just a sport in Spain; it’s a way of life! And Granada is the epitome of this cultural trait.
Granada FC was the 3rd Andalusian soccer team to compete in La Liga and has gained a significant army of followers over the years. Bars will be packed to capacity when the local Granada FC soccer team is playing, so be prepared to form part of a buzzing crowd of enthusiastic supporters. Alternatively, if you prefer a more authentic Granada soccer experience, why not head to the Nuevo Estadio los Cármenes to watch the game live amongst 22.5 thousand other fans.
Basketball has a significant presence in the sporting scene in Spain and is beginning to rival soccer in terms of popularity, as is evidenced in the ever-increasing support for CB Granada.
The 30-year old CB Granada basketball club plays for the ACB League, which is considered to be one of the best professional leagues in the world.CB Granada is based in the Palacio Municipal de Deportes de Granada, which is the principal sporting stadium in Granada and situated adjacent to the Nuevo Estadio de los Cármenes. With a capacity of 7350 spectators, the stadium also boasts impressive facilities, including 4 changing rooms, 2 saunas and 2 gymnasiums.
It is unsurprising that Granada is a hub of sporting fans and competitors alike given the emphasis placed upon sport in the regional education system. The Sporting Activities Centre at the University of Granada offers over 400 courses for all kinds of sports and actively encourages participation in a variety of sporting activities, including athletics, swimming and mountain climbing. The University’s support in the promotion of physical activity and their emphasis on sport in the curriculum has definitely played a role in involving young people in sports from an early age.
Despite the immense popularity of both football and basketball in Granada, perhaps the most prolific and contentious sport associated with the region is bullfighting. This sport which is, of course, not for the faint-hearted, takes place in the Plaza de Toros de Granada, which sprawls over a gigantic 9000 square meters. The elegantly designed bullfighting ring can hold up to 14.5 thousand people and is situated within easy reach of all areas of Granada. This controversial sport, in which 3 alternating bullfighters (‘toreros’) each go up against 2 bulls, is a beloved part of Granada’s heritage and is a regular addition to the annual calendar of events in the region.
It seems that Granada has good reason to hold the reputation of being a sporting region in Spain due to the diversity of sports available to the public, the proliferation of devotees to their respective clubs and teams, as well as the significant number of sporting participants themselves. Granada continues to maintain its status as one of best regions in Spain to enjoy sports.
Keywords: sports in granada,football in granada,basketball in granada,soccer in granada,fc granada