2 week solo Spain trip

Old Sep 13th, 2012, 06:52 PM
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2 week solo Spain trip

I'm a 27 year old guy who is taking a 2 week solo trip to Spain from October 2 until October 16. This is a bit of an escapist journey for me - a nice little break from my professional career to focus on some fun, photography, food, and sightseeing. Here is my itinerary:

October 2: Flight from Miami to Barcelona
October 3-7: Barcelona
October 7-10: Ibiza
October 10-12: Valencia
October 12-16: Madrid

I have hotels lined up for Barcelona and Ibiza, staying on La Ramblas and Playa d'en Bossa respectively. I still need to book hotels for Valencia and Madrid.

The only concrete plan I have so far is the Circoloco closing party at DC-10 in Ibiza on October 8th.

In Barcelona, I'd like to check out some art museums, do a tour of some Gaudi architecture, check out any cool shops (think SoHo in NYC), drink, eat, etc. In my downtime on Ibiza, I'd like to rent a scooter to explore the island and maybe take a day trip to Formentera. I need to start looking into what I want to do in Valencia and Madrid.

What would everyone recommend as to areas to stay within Valencia and Madrid? I like to be right in the middle of the action, in 'hip' areas you might say, and would prefer to spend around ~$100 a night or so.

I appreciate any and all tips, pointers, tidbits of advice, and the like that anyone can offer. If anyone has a similar itinerary and wants to possibly meet up for a beer or some tapas, I'm open to it.
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Old Sep 13th, 2012, 07:16 PM
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tips for Madrid:

-remember this street: Calle Cava Baja.. you'll think you died and went to tapas bar heaven

-regardless if you have a metro pass or not there is a 1 euro surcharge to take it to Barajas airport.

-try the churros and chocolate after a festive night

-try the dried ham. the Spanish take great pride in theirs and some varieties are considered the best in the world. you'll see if offered as an appetizer at many restaurants and tapas bars

-check out the Prado after 6PM when it's free (just be prepared for a line). it closes at 8
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Old Sep 14th, 2012, 06:08 AM
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Fuensanta La Moneta was voted best female flamenco dancer by Spanish critics in 2010 and dances your nights in Barcelona at prestigious Tablao El Cordobés in Las Ramblas, 35.
La Moneta in action recently in Madrid: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FbO_lw2xWtU

More info and tickets: http://www.tablaocordobes.com/espect...eneral/en/1/73
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Old Sep 14th, 2012, 06:21 AM
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For culture and nightlife in Madrid, I recommend the vibrant Letras district around Plaza Santa Ana. Here you'll find great bars, clubs, jazz and flamenco venues long into the night. http://www.barrioletras.com/

I especially like Café Central for jazz and Casa Patas for flamenco. Only great artists at both places, changing all the time. Concerts every night at Café Central at 10pm, 15€. Stays open to 3am, 5am in the weekends. Great atmosphere. At Casa Patas, go for the midnight performance.
Café Central: http://www.cafecentralmadrid.com/
Casa Patas: http://www.casapatas.com/

Sevetral other options close by: Populart for jazz and Cardamomo, Villa Rosa and Las Carboneras for flamenco.

Several great places long into the night in Calle Echegaray, just off Plaza Santa Ana. Start off with a sherry at small La Venencia in no. 7: http://guiriguidetomadrid.com/2010/0...rry-in-madrid/
Great vibe into the night at El Burladero in no. 19. Several other places only meters away. http://www.elburladerocopas.com/index2.html

Be sure to start the next day with breakfast at a local bar/café. Usually fabulous atmosphere and ten times more interesting and more affordable than a dull hotel breakfast.

I strongly recommend The Reina Sofia contemporary art museum. The second floor with Picasso, Dalí, lots of other painitings, posters, films, photos etc., dealing with a couple of the greatest civilizational breakdowns of the 20th century, the Spanish Civil War and WWII, completely blew my mind off a couple of years ago.
(And of course Prado and the Thyssen-Bornemisza museums)

Txirimiri in Calle del Humilladero, 6 gives you an idea of why the Basque kitchen is considered among the best in the world. In the midst of one of the best tapas/restaurant districts in town, in and around Calle Cava Baja in La Latina.
http://www.tripadvisor.com/Restauran...ri-Madrid.html

I could go on and on about Madrid, a fabulous city. Last: the greatest flamenco artists perform in Madrid theaters all the time. Mostly a local and knowledgeable crowd on these events, and this could be a highlight of a stay in Madrid. Always updated program here: http://www.deflamenco.com/agenda/events.jsp?barrio=1

Lots og good value Hotels around here. Great location, close to "everything". I use to stay at either Hotel Plaza Mayor or Persal.
http://www.booking.com/hotel/es/plaza-mayor.en.html
http://www.booking.com/hotel/es/persalmadrid.en.html

Perla Asturiana close by would be even more affordable but still private bathroom etc.
http://www.booking.com/hotel/es/la-p...uriana.en.html

If you don't find vacancy at the booking.com site, contact the hotel directly. Booking.com is good for reviews, but sometimes hopeless for reservation.
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Old Sep 15th, 2012, 10:24 AM
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Great Madrid tips everyone, thank you. I'm definitely going to look into those hotels.

As a bit of an update, I have booked my hotel for Valencia. I'll be staying a few blocks away from the Colón train station. I have heard this is a nice area.
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Old Sep 15th, 2012, 11:44 AM
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You can check out the following websites for more information on your destinations:
Barcelona: http://www.barcelonaturisme.com
Ibiza: http://www.ibiza.travel
Valencia: http://www.comunitatvalenciana.com
Madrid: http://www.descubremadrid.com and http://esmadrid.com

And of course don't forget flamenco in Barcelona!
Robert2533 is offline  
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