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Seeking help with Basque and northern Spain itinerary

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I am finally planning the last month of my upcoming European trip (I leave home July 10th, am starting feel some time pressure!). I have decided to revisit the Basque country, and give Madrid, which I didn't care for too much on my first visit, a second look. Originally I was thinking of flying back to the US on Icelandair with a stop in Reykavik, but it turns out they only fly to/from Madrid in the summer. so I'll take another look at Gaudi's gorgeous architecture - see how Sagrada Familia is coming along - and fly home from Barcelona using FF miles.

I feel that I really short-changed the Basque country back in 2004, and I didn't stop in San Sebastian at all (I did stay in the parador in Hondarribia). So I'm looking for recommendations on how to spend my time, where to stay, and especially where to eat. I know there are other Basque country threads in process right now, so if you also want to link me to an existing post, that's fine.

Some background. I'm a solo, older, female traveler. I don't drive in Europe. I prefer decorative arts and crafts to fine arts, and have quit trying to appreciate art after the Surrealists, plus I have OD'ed on Madonnas and martyrs. I love Art Nouveau and gothic architecture, and will take Art Deco if no AN is available. I am not fond of baroque and rococo. I travel on a budget - I would prefer hotel rooms under 100 USD a night, and a splurge meal is 50 USD for two courses and wine.

This is the itinerary I'm working on (note that I'm trying to avoid Sunday travel):

Sat Oct 3: Fly Lyon to Pau (4 nights). I'm hoping to get to see the Pyrenees this time. Possible day trip by bus to Laruns.

Wed Oct 7: Train to Bayonne (5 nights). Day trips to Biarritz, St. Jean Pied du Port and possibly St. Jean de Luz (did that last time).

Mon Oct 12: Trains to San Sebastian (5 nights). Day trips to ?Bilbao, ?Getaria, ?others - please recommend. Day trips would be by bus or train. Given my lack of interest in modern art, I'm not sure about visiting Bilbao.

Sat Oct 17: Train (long) to Leon (3 nights). Loved Leon last time, and I hear they've been cleaning the cathedral.

Tue Oct 20: Trains to Salamanca (3 nights). I thought I might have to overnight in Burgos, but it looks like I can make the trains work if I leave Leon at 7:00. Should I overnight in Burgos anyway? I haven't been to Salamanca, but last time people kept telling me I should go there instead of Leon.

That leaves me eight nights before flying out of Barcelona Oct 31. Four each for Madrid and Barcelona? Three and five? (I want to be sure to make it to the Salvador Dali museum this time.) Day trip to Segovia or overnight? I loved Toledo last time, but I was there for the Corpus Christi festival and am not sure I want to go back. I could easily drop a night from Pau, except then I'd be traveling to S.S. on a Sunday.

Any help appreciated!

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