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First pass itinerary for Spain in October?

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Given the current state of the Euro my wife and I are considering a 3-week trip to Spain in October, the soonest we can or want to go. This is partially depending on if I can get flights with my FF miles, I wanted to brush this rough itinerary idea by Fodorite experts.

We definitely want to see Toledo, the Alhambra, and to spend some time in the area around the town of Cazorla because my ancestors lived there hundred of years ago. Beyond that we are interested in picturesque smaller towns, castles, walking. Less interested in big cities for this trip.

My thoughts are for the itinerary are:

* Fly to Madrid, spend a couple of days since we are there
* Train to Toledo, spend 2-3 days
* Rent a car and gradually (over about a week or so) make our way to Cazorla, spending time where something strikes our fancy
* Spend a few days around Cazorla
* Drive to Granada, return the car, spend a couple of days.
* Train to Malaga, fly home.

Again total time ~3 weeks. Thoughts on the above appreciated. Any glaring errors or omissions.

Two specific questions:
1) Is there a best place to look for car rentals? A quick search turned up europcar.com. Anything better?

2) In October would we need to pre-book hotels, or could we wing it as we go?

Thanks!

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