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My first trip to Spain

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My husband and I are taking our first trip to Spain in January. We fly into Bilbao on the 2nd and on to Sevilla on the 4th and finally home from Sevilla on the 11th. I have decided since our time in the north is short to skip San Sebastián and spend the short time in Bilbao.
We are cattle ranchers in the US and live in a very rural area, so want to get out of the city while we are in southern Spain, and see the countryside. To accomplish this we plan to rent a car for the week, and drive to Granada for a night or two. My questions to you are this:
What other towns do you recommend, and should we stay or do a day trip? Our interests are history and really experiencing the country and the food.
We will be there for Epiphany, should we stay in Sevilla or is there a better town/village to spend this holiday?
And finally,how likely are we to run it to English speakers outside of the cities? I speak some Spanish but do not consider myself fluent.
Thank you!

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