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1st time in Spain--One glorious week in December

1st time in Spain--One glorious week in December

Sep 10th, 2009, 01:50 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 7
1st time in Spain--One glorious week in December

Setting the scene: I'm a girl in my mid-20s who, after wracking my brain on where in Europe to go, is planning my first trip to Spain in early to mid-December. Because I don't make a lot of money I'm guessing I would probably just be able to afford to stay about a week in Spain, living from my backpack and simple accommodation. It'd probably be wise to stick to one general area because of time constraints. I was thinking either Northern Spain (Basque Country probably) or do Madrid- Andalucia.

I'll more than likely be travelling by myself, not terribly interested in clubs, just require some cafes, scenery (natural or architectural), and a few other points of interest within the city at the least.

Q: With that in mind, any advice on which cities would be the best places to go that I would be able to navigate my way around, have a good time and not break the bank? Although I'm living somewhere else now, I'm originally from the Midwestern U.S. so I'm used to snow and kind of chilly temps so that shouldn't be too much of a deterrent. Any help is appreciated
moodyblues is offline  
Sep 10th, 2009, 02:15 PM
Join Date: Aug 2009
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Hey moodyblues - if you decide on Andalusia, here is a guide of the "best" (that of course being subjective) cities in the region, written by a professional travel writer.


It covers the major ones but also some fascinating smaller cities, like Ronda. Since you're not big into clubs, etc, Andalusia is probably a great choice for you! Have a great trip and let us know what you decide on!
chitrvlr is offline  
Sep 10th, 2009, 02:45 PM
Join Date: Dec 2006
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Hi, moodyblues -

I'll second the recommendation for Andalusia. I haven't been to the Basque area yet, so can't comment on that. I love Madrid, but mostly for its museums. Andalusia - Seville, Granada, Cordoba, Ronda (et.c) - is full of "cafes, scenery (natural or architectural), and . . . other points of interest."

I wouldn't recommend trying to see both Madrid and Andalusia if you only one week.

Hope that helps!
kja is offline  
Sep 10th, 2009, 02:56 PM
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 17
ok if you are coming to Spain any time between the 4th and 8th Dec it will be high season as it is a public holiday weekend..some areas dates will change slightly.
Go North and enjoy the atmosphere which is away from main stream tourism.
http://www.maribelsguides.com/ will give you the low down on a lot of places you are thinking about.
ha20000 is offline  
Sep 10th, 2009, 02:59 PM
Join Date: Mar 2003
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December: with the weather they've had over the past several winters, I think I would set my sights further South, like the Mediterranean along the Costa Blanca or Costa Calida; or the Costa de la luz, or even further West near Huelva and Palos de la frontera (Columbus's Port of departure for his first Voyage of Discovery).

The link chitrvlr lists doesn't show el Rocio or Huelva or the Doñana wildlife refuge; but it also doesn't list Jerez de la frontera or Cadiz, el Puerto de Santa Maria, both renouned for their Bodegas (Osborne in the latter, Domecq in Jerez). Then there's Sanlucar de Barrameda, where the Manzanilla (very dry Sherry) comes from.

If you're interested in Moorish Spain, and its monuments you should probably follow the Cordoba-Granada-Sevilla link. follow that link. You might also make a base in Sevilla and daytrip to a few of the places I mention.
NEDSIRELAND is offline  
Sep 11th, 2009, 12:54 AM
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Thanks for the replies so far, I guess the National Holiday is something to think about, I could either just keep that in mind when planning or postpone the trip a little, depending on what it would affect. Andalusia does seem to have a lot of places to explore, I suppose I can just fly into that area instead of flying into Madrid and then taking a train down for time purposes. All things to keep in mind. Will keep the research going!
moodyblues is offline  
Sep 11th, 2009, 05:01 AM
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 3,567
Madridman is the absolute best online guide you find for budget travel to Spain; http://www.madridman.com/ He is very personable, and his website has tons of posts from backpackers also traveling on a budget. His website is close to 20 years old (I "discovered" him about 14 years ago!!) and the word of mouth has always been great!
Viajero2 is offline  
Sep 11th, 2009, 05:08 AM
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 3,567
moody-- My husband and I will be in Barcelona 9-12 Dec in case you want to meet for a Glass of wine, our treat! Congrats on taking on independent travel! You will be fine, Spain is an amazing destination!! Take care!!
Viajero2 is offline  
Sep 11th, 2009, 07:10 AM
Join Date: Jun 2009
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If you have one place to visit in Spain make it Seville. You can spend all of your time there and get to absorb the culture but I would go to Granada for at least 2 nights. I might also go to Malaga for a night. In December Andalucia will have the best weather although it will be very cold in Granada. San Sebastian and the Basque country is my second favorite part of Spain but I woud not go there during the cold rainy winter.
Egbert is offline  
Sep 14th, 2009, 01:31 AM
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Thanks for the Madridman Web site recommendation, Viajero2, it's been helpful in getting ideas for accomodation. Sorry I'll have to decline your offer, though! Don't think I'll be in Barcelona at all. Hope you and your husband have fun

I'm thinking I'll make Seville my base and then take a couple of day trips from there, including Cordoba before spending a couple of days in Granada.
moodyblues is offline  
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