It’s not every day you get the opportunity to wander through an abandoned colonial hospital but in Granada many unusual things are possible. Filled with cracks and crumbling the old building felt ominous as I approached. To my surprise there was an armed, uniformed security officer standing at the door-less shadowy entrance. Thinking I’d be barred from entry I snapped a few photographs of the exterior. He watched and as I began to walk away he yelled for my attention and waved me inside with a friendly smile on his face; as if proud to have me as a guest.
As I walked inside I immediately noticed just how tattered the ruins of this hospital were. With the original long gone a makeshift wood and tin roof had been thrown up. Many of the interior walls had crumbled making it difficult to figure out where rooms began and ended. As I walked into what appeared to be a courtyard there was a horse grazing on the grass growing up through deep cracks in the floor.
A concrete staircase to the now non-existent second floor was still intact; chancing fate I carefully went up the steps to get a better view. Built in 1905 the old building is now more than 100 years old and any plans to save it appear to be failing.
Wandering through the old ruins I tried to imagine this was once a modern hospital filled with doctors and nurses. San Juan De Dios certainly holds a strange aura and along with the Granada Cemetery was one of the most fascinating things to explore in the city.