Located in northwest Granada, La Chana is one of the city’s most popular districts and is defined by the lively atmosphere created by its 27,000 residents, called ‘chaneros’ in Spanish. It may not boast the great historic and cultural monuments that can be found in the city centre, but tapas lovers should be sure to include this stop. This multicultural, working-class neighbourhood features low buildings and one of the highest number of tapas bars per square metre in the city. At these bars, diners can choose half-portion tapas with every drink to the delight of people who love simple, traditional and delicious food. If the idea of eating a full meal with two or three beers sounds appealing, then make your way to La Chana.
Made up of the Angustias-Chana-Encinas, Bobadilla, Cerrillo de Maracena and the new Barrio de los Periodistas neighbourhoods, La Chana is a popular district where locals coexist alongside immigrants and students from the nearby Faculty of Fine Arts and the Faculty of Engineering. In recent years, La Chana has taken a qualitative leap by improving the urban planning, social services, and leisure and cultural alternatives, in part thanks to the demands of chaneros, who have always fought to make their neighbourhood better. The La Chana Civic Centre fosters culture and organises workshops and activities throughout the year.
The district originated in the Las Angustias neighbourhood, where the Archbishop’s Board backed the construction of social housing between 1953 and 1960. However, Cerrillo de Maracena had already existed for many years as a village in the Maracena municipality, but it did not form part of the neighbourhood (and thereby Granada) until the 20th century, when the town grew thanks to the beet sugar industry and it was ultimately absorbed by the city.
Bobadilla, on the other hand, which has around 400 residents, is Granada’s smallest neighbourhood and one of the three districts (along with El Fargue and Lancha del Genil) to be located beyond the city limits. Its history illustrates the rise and subsequent fall of the beet sugar industry in Granada’s countryside: it emerged around Azucarera San Isidro, one of the largest in Granada, whose gorgeous 20th century building was abandoned in 1983 and stands today in Bobadilla like a ghost from the past.