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Please help with Itinerary Draft for Madrid, Andalucia

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Hello fellow travelers,

We are in the beginning stages of planning a trip to Spain for this summer (realizing we're a bit late, but still optimistic!) We visited Barcelona last summer and loved it, so this year we’d like to explore more of the country.

I’ve done some research online and in books, and I’m hoping for help from the experts here on Fodors to help me develop my itinerary.

My husband and I will be traveling from with our two teenage sons (19 and 17). We have visited Italy, France and Switzerland and have rented cars in Provence and Tuscany, so we’re comfortable driving, but DH wouldn’t mind public transportation to break things up a bit!

We have enough miles for at least one and possibly two free tickets on Delta, depending on the exact dates of travel. We’d like to minimize back-tracking, so I thought we could fly into Madrid from JFK and back home from Malaga. We love a variety of experiences when we travel: art museums and strolling in cities like Paris and Rome, driving through scenic countryside, immersing ourselves in the medieval history of Siena…all of it!

Here’s the rough draft of our itinerary so far:

Madrid: 4 nights

Toledo: either as a side trip or spend a night or two—looking for recommendations here

Train to Seville: spend about 5 nights, renting a car to do day trips to the Hill Towns

Drive (or train) to Granada, stopping to visit Cordoba on the way (or should we spend a night in Cordoba?)

Granada: 4 nights, with side trips to Costa del Sol

Morocco: not too sure we want to go here; I’ve read mixed reviews. Your thoughts?

Malaga: one night before we catch our flight home

While we know it will likely be very hot in the summer, that’s the only time we can travel due to school schedules. If anyone can recommend a nice spot by the sea to stay for a couple of nights before returning home, we’d certainly like that.

We’d be grateful for any suggestions or advice on hotels and transportation between these cities, or other places we should visit. Thanks in advance!

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