10 day trip to spain

Old Feb 12th, 2012, 02:25 PM
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10 day trip to spain

My friend and I are planning to go to Spain from June 3rd to June 12th, 2012. We are both in our early twenties. This has been my dream trip for years now. I am a medical student and sadly have very little time to research this. I know that we want to visit Madrid, Barcelona, Granada, Seville (maybe) and a nice beach town (maybe Malaga).

I can use a lot of help in planing this trip, so any help would be appreciated.
First, is there a good order to do this cities in to save travel time?
Second, how do we get from one place to the next between those cities?
Are there places we can take day trips to from these cities?
Should we ignore one of these cities and visit another instead?
And last (this is a big question) what are highlights of these places that we MUST see?

Thank you so much for your input in advance.
dabdel is offline  
Old Feb 12th, 2012, 02:33 PM
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dabdel - do i read this correctly?

you arrive on June 3rd and depart on june 12th? you do know that that's only 9 nights, which equals 8 days on the ground. [ignoring jetlag.] then every time you move, you lose approx 1/2 day.

add all that together, and sadly you don't have time to do everything you have planned. you could [at a pinch] do Malaga, Granada and Seville. you could do Madrid and Barcelona.

to find out the highlights [you have to decide what are your "must sees" for yourselves] get a guide book or 6 from the library - but you must have some idea of what you want to see, if this is a dream trip.

to get from one place to another, you can drive, get the train or the bus, but generally the train would probably be best.

there are of course loads of other places you could go/see but despite the fact that it's a lot smaller than the US, [where I am assuming you are from] there's a lot to see and you can't see it all in 8 days.
annhig is online now  
Old Feb 12th, 2012, 03:22 PM
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With such a very short time, highlights should be those things you are most interested in. You say this has been your dream trip for years. What exactly have you dreamed of seeing or doing in Spain: viewing great art, impressive cathedrals and architecture; walking on a beach; sitting in a cafe trying new coffee and sampling new foods? Are beaches really important to you, or Gaudi's architecture and places like the Alhambra which you can not see anyplace except Spain? You must decide for yourself what you are hoping for from this trip. Then we can tell you which will work for your trip and how to do it.

To give you some idea, plan your trip based on nights in each location and allow travel time from one place to the next.
Example: If you land in Madrid; first evening, walk around Madrid. One day in Madrid to visit Prado and perhaps palace and walk around city center. One day trip to Toldeo or Segovia. That is two full days and three nights.

Half day to get to Sevilla. Tour and walk around Sevilla that day and next. Two nights (one and a half days) in Sevilla. You could add another day and night to Sevilla and do a day trip to Cordoba.

Half day to get to Granada. Spend two nights (one and a half days).

See how quickly your time is used up. You begin to see how it will work, so you must decide what strikes your heart.
Sassafrass is online now  
Old Feb 12th, 2012, 03:27 PM
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I think you should do either Madrid and Barcelona, or Madrid and Andalucía with base in Sevilla or Málaga. All these cities are connected with the hugh speed AVE train that will take you from city center to city center in no time. Córdoba is an easy day-trip from both Sevilla and Málaga, and Granada is 1h 30 mins by bus from Málaga (some 3 hrs from Sevilla).

Madrid and Barcelona would mean the two major Spanish and VERY different cities. Both are wonderful in their own way, fabulous food, great nightlife etc. You will have plenty of beach opportunities in Barcelona.

But then again, Andalucía is something very special!

Some good sites that might help you decide:

Madrid: http://www.esmadrid.com/en/portal.do
Barcelona: http://www.timeout.com/barcelona/
Sevilla: http://www.exploreseville.com/
Málaga: http://www.andalucia.com/cities/malaga/home.htm
Córdoba: http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/313
Granada: http://www.andalucia.com/cities/gran...hamhistory.htm
kimhe is offline  
Old Feb 12th, 2012, 03:36 PM
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Thank you guys for your input. I wish I have more time to spend there but believe it or not that is my entire summer break.

I think what I would love to see more architecture and scenery than anything else. One day of relaxing at a beach would be nice but that is all I would need. Otherwise I like to on my feet looking at beautiful, awe inspiring places.

Thanks again for your help.
dabdel is offline  
Old Feb 12th, 2012, 03:51 PM
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IF those are your preferences and with limited time, I would do Barcelona and get some beach time in Sitges.

So much art and architecture to see in Barca.

Sagrada Familia, Gaudi, Picasso, oh my!
pampe is offline  
Old Feb 12th, 2012, 05:22 PM
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You are trying to cover way too much territory. If you do this you will end up with a tour of the train stations fo Spain and not much else.

In the time you have you can do a quick overview of Madrid and Barcelona.

Or, you can do a very quick overview of the big 3 of Andalusia - Seville, Cordoba and Granada. (We have done 2 road tips of Andalsia, one 10 nights and one 12 - and still have a lot to see there.)
nytraveler is offline  
Old Feb 12th, 2012, 05:33 PM
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For art and architecture I do:

Madrid 3 nights, Sevilla 3 nights and Granada-2 nights.

You can take day trips from Madrid and Sevilla and I think Granada deserves 2 days-one for the Alhambra and one for the other attractions in the city.

I'd save Barcelona for another time-there's far to much to see and do there for the time remaining.

I'd take the fast train from Madrid to Seville and the train from Seville to Granada. You may want to see everything but the train rides will take half a day plus finding your hotels. Take some time out to relax and enjoy Spain.
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Old Feb 13th, 2012, 02:14 PM
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I agree with nytraveler - with only 8 nights I'd visit either Madrid & Barcelona OR Andalucia.

If you choose Madrid & Barcelona fly open jaw so you don't have to backtrack.

If you choose Andalcia I'd stay in Sevilla for 4 nights w/a daytrip to Cordoba, Granada for 2 nights and then with the other 2 nights you have several options (rent car for 2 days exploring the white villages, Malaga, additional day in Sevilla and daytrips, etc...). I'd also try to fly open jaw (perhaps into Sevilla and returning from Malaga).
CathyM is offline  
Old Feb 13th, 2012, 08:08 PM
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Does anyone know of a relatively fast way to get from Barcelona to Malaga (apart from RyanAir)? Is there a coastal train?
margiedochas is offline  
Old Feb 13th, 2012, 09:27 PM
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AVE takes about 5 and half. Hours , but it is more
exp than flying. Vueling has several flights a day.
danon is online now  
Old Feb 13th, 2012, 09:30 PM
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I have talked to several medical students, and they seem just fine doing itinerary even more aggressive than what is mentioned here. I think for someone who can handle an internship, this kind trip would be a piece of cake even if does not seem that way for others.

To rationalize the trip, don't back track. This is especially the case for Barcelona and Granada. Granada and Barcelona are both time consuming to connect to other cities by ground, so do them by air as much as practical.

To make the trip linear, you can do multi-city trip into Barcelona and out of Madrid or vice versa. Then you can connect cities like this to minimize connection time:

Fly into Barcelona.
Fly to Granada, www.vueling.com, for example.
train/bus to Seville
High speed train to Madrid.
Fly home from Madrid.


Barcelona: Gaudi architecture-Park Guell, Sagrada Familia, Casa Mila; tapas, etc
Granada: Alhambra - Narid Palace (need reservation) + Generalife gardens, Royal Chapel, Albayzin viewpoint
Sevilla: Cathedral, Alcazar, Flamenco, day trip to Cordoba/Mezquita
Madrid: Palacio Real, Plaza Mayor, Prado/Reina Sofia museum, day trip to Toledo

I would not recommend this much to ordinary travelers.

Ricksteves Spain guide book has a page for each of these cities, Barcelona at a Glance, etc., mentioning what HE thinks are the highlights. Many don't agree, but it is a starting point to quickly grasp what you find at each destination.
greg is offline  
Old Feb 14th, 2012, 05:28 AM
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I would not recommend this much to ordinary travelers.>>

i wouldn't recommend it to anyone.
annhig is online now  
Old Feb 14th, 2012, 05:37 AM
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It certainly sounds like a relaxing respite from the taxing schedule of a medical student.

Since you are in your 20's and all things being equal, you will earn a decent salary sometime in the future, you will have the opportunity to return to Europe on many ocasions. There is no need to try and see it all on the first visit.
Aduchamp1 is offline  
Old Feb 14th, 2012, 10:09 AM
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Madrid 3 nights, Seville 3 nights, Granada 2 nights. Save Barcelona for another trip.
Egbert is offline  
Old Feb 14th, 2012, 11:00 AM
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I wouldn't post recommendations on an itinerary based on a group of medical students who have probably never visited Spain, or even Europe. I'd assume someone who has a hectic and stressful work schedule would want to have a relaxing and enjoy their vacation. Trying to visit Madrid, Barcelona, Granada and Sevilla in 8 nights, an average of 2 days each, would mean approx 2 days of traveling time (transport, to/from hotels, check in) - or 25% of the vacation. Not to mention a rush once you arrive in each city to try to even see some of the highlights.
CathyM is offline  
Old Feb 14th, 2012, 11:04 AM
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I'll third the suggestion:

Madrid 3 nights, Seville 3 nights, Granada 2 nights.

That's a bare bones minimum, of course. Fly into Madrid and home from Granada. Take a train between the three cities. No time for any day trips.

"MUSTS" are totally subjective. You need to decide for yourself. For me, wandering through the different neighborhoods is MY must - yours will be your own.

Here's a small sampling of attractions:



bardo1 is offline  
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