granada information

River Darro

Page updated 12th February 2024

Río DarroRío Darro


Alhambra Tours


river darro granada





The river was originally named after the Roman word for gold (aurus) due to the fact that people used to pan for gold on its banks. This name was then changed by the Arabs to Hadarro and after being renamed Dauro by the Christians, it finally became known as Darro.

river darro granada

Four bridges cross the River Darro: Puente de Espinosa (16th century), Puente de Cabrera (16th century), Puente de las Chirimias (Bridge of the Pipers) and Puente del Aljibillo (Bridge of the Cistern). The photo on the right shows the Puente del Aljibillo which is at the far end of Paseo de Tristes and refers to the aljibe or water cistern that used to exist on the promenade on the other side of the river.

paseo de los tristes granada

The other bridge in Paseo de los Tristes is called "Puente de las Chirimias" or the "Pipers' Bridge" and although there may have originally been an Arab bridge in this same spot, the bridge you can see today was rebuilt in 1882.

river darro granada

You can also see the remains of the Puente del Cadí (built in the 11th century) - an old Arab bridge which was knocked down in the middle of the 17th century, and now only its base and the part of its horseshoe arch still exist.

This used to connect the Albaicín with the Alhambra and a horeseman could ride over the bridge and along the top of the old wall in order to reach the Puerta de las Armas in the Alhambra. The score marks which can be seen on the inside of the bridge used to hold an iron grille to prevent the enemy from reaching the city from along the river banks.

At one time the river used to flow through the centre of Granada but in the 19th century it was covered over in Plaza Nueva due to flooding and in order to create more space.