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5 nights in Granada and Malaga - what combo?

5 nights in Granada and Malaga - what combo?

Old Jul 25th, 2017, 06:28 AM
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5 nights in Granada and Malaga - what combo?

Hi there,

My friend and I (2 females) have 5 nights to spend at the end of our Spain itinerary. We will arrive in Granada by train from Seville on 16th January (assuming by lunch time) and fly out of Malaga on 21st January (midday). We are going to do a guided tour of the Alhambra to try and save time so that we can explore other parts of the city, but don't have any real plans other than that.

I've been reading lots of good stuff about Malaga lately - it's charm and it's art. It's becoming very difficult to decide which city to spend 3 nights in. We love art and architecture etc, but we also love staying out late and drinking and eating where the locals hang out. I am a musician too, so quality/authentic Flamenco shows will be a priority.

Any tips on where to spend the most time will be very much appreciated. I suppose, if necessary, we could cut a night off Seville and stay fro 3 nights instead of 4, if you think more time further south is warranted.

Thanks in advance,
Annette
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Old Jul 25th, 2017, 11:52 AM
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Don't cut time from Seville. Spend two nights in Granada and three in Malaga, given your interests. Be sure to take a jacket. It can be cold in January.
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Old Jul 25th, 2017, 02:37 PM
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Thank you Bedar, that"'s exactly what I needed to hea.
Annette
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Old Jul 25th, 2017, 05:07 PM
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I agree with Bedar's recommendation to keep your time for Sevilla.

Personally, I'd go for 3 nights in Granada and 2 in Malaga, also in light of your interests, but I can see the case either way.

I would note that a guided tour is not necessarily the way to trim your time at the Alhambra -- I often want MUCH more time at a place than a guided tour allows, and end up taking longer than I would have on my own because going back for more time in various places means that I also have to spend the time to retrace all my steps. Just something to consider....
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Old Jul 25th, 2017, 05:29 PM
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as Bedar said
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Old Jul 26th, 2017, 12:34 AM
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Thanks kja,

I see your point and have taken your advice on board. However, I've been reading a lot of reviews about how it can be a nightmare to negotiate the process of actually getting your ticket, cueing, and printing your ticket off once you get there. When I was younger this would not have worried me, but as I age, I feel less inclined to deal with all the red tape when traveling. Perhaps I've been reading too much about the Alhambra??
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Old Jul 26th, 2017, 12:39 AM
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Hi all,

I'm getting the impression from your comments that it might even be worth spending an extra night in Seville (5 instead of 4), and just 2 nights each in Granada and Malaga. I'm just mindful of the fact that the Alhambra will take a big chunk of time in Granada and that 1 half day, 1 full day, and 2 nights might not be enough there. Any thoughts on that?
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Old Jul 26th, 2017, 12:40 AM
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Maybe you've been reading the WRONG things about the Alhambra! There are LOTS of threads on this board about how to reserve and claim your ticket with near effortlessness. I don't know the details, or I would provide them, but I would encourage you to use the search box at the upper right of the screen, or even to google with the terms "fodor's alhambra tickets" to see what you find. Seriously, it doesn't have to be painful!
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Old Jul 26th, 2017, 12:57 AM
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As for your timing, I, personally, would make Malaga my lowest priority. I'm sure it's absolutely lovely, but the absolute GEMS of Andalusia are Sevilla, Cordoba, and Granada. 4 nights COULD be enough for Sevilla, depending on your interests and whether you are visiting Cordoba as a day trip from Sevilla and whether you will have jet lag when there. Cordoba CAN be seen as a day trip from Sevilla, but I thought it worth 2 full days. Granada CAN be seen with just 2 nights, but many of us think it worth 3 nights so you can see more than just the Alhambra. Your call.

Here's what I recommend: Plot your wish list on a calendar. Each time you propose to change locations, pencil in your transportation, add some time on either side (for getting to/from your lodging, checking in/out, packing/unpacking, getting lost/oriented, etc.). And as you mark your calendar, note that many things in Spain are closed on Monday, and often for all or part of Sundays too; and many things in Spain will also be closed daily for a very long mid-day break.

Hope that helps!
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Old Jul 26th, 2017, 01:40 AM
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<love staying out late and drinking and eating where the locals hang out. I am a musician too, so quality/authentic Flamenco shows will be a priority.>

Both Granada and Málaga would be perfect for all this. You should see flamenco in Granada in Casa del Arte flamenco, right at the bottom of C/ Cuesta de Gomérez leading up to the Alhambra: https://www.casadelarteflamenco.com/gb/

In Málaga, go to Tablao Los Amayas, right in the heart of the old town, and right in the middle of the area where the malagueños eat, drink and party through the night: http://www.flamencotickets.com/tabla...-amayas-malaga

And on Friday nights at 10:30 pm (Jan 19) there are performances (song and guitar) down in the basement in Peña Juan Breva, one of the finest flamenco clubs in Spain, 50 meters from the tablao mentioned above. The entrance is free, many locals and flamenco aficionados, intense atmosphere, only top of the shelf artists.

Also a cool bar/restaurant on the ground floor (very flamenco atmosphere), and a fine flamenco museum in the floors above. https://www.lonelyplanet.com/spain/m...1479616/360734
http://www.malagaturismo.com/en/tour...breva-group/79

In Málaga, I also very much recommend the Soho art district down by the sea, plenty of local atmosphere cafés, tapas bars and restaurants around here: http://www.andalucia.com/cities/mala...t-district.htm

And in the Soho district, I also recommend cutting edge and affordable dining in Óleo at the Contemporary Arts Center by the Guadalmedina river.

Excellent terrace and atmosphere and the most friendly, knowledgeable and accommodating waiters. Mediterranean/Asian fusion, creative starters (the jurel ceviche on lime was to die for), fabulous steaks (Rubia Gallega meat) etc. etc. Best food experience in more than a year last fall, and that included several days in food mecca San Sebastián. Reservations is a must. And you can have lunch out on the terrace in January, Málaga is usually much milder than Granada in winter: http://www.oleorestaurante.es/
http://azahar-spain.com/azahartapas/oleo/

And I must also mention emblematic Bodega El Pimpi in the heart of town, less than hundred meters from the flamenco venues mentioned above. Fabulous atmosphere long into the night, especially in the weekends. And you never know what happens in the large top floor room late at night. Live music, and up here we've experienced some never to forget flamenco impros from the guests.

You get an idea one minute into this fine video intro to El Pimpi, just across the street from the Moorish Alcazaba palace: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FQ60p6dyFEs

Have fun!
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Old Jul 26th, 2017, 02:43 AM
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Perhaps also a consideration that Málaga would most likely be much milder than Granada in January, especially at night. Average day highs in Málaga in last half of January is very pleasant 63F, and in Granada it's 57F, but at night you could expect around freezing point in Granada whereas average night temperatures in Málaga are around 46-50F.
http://www.wetteronline.de/klima-temperatur/malaga http://www.wetteronline.de/klima-temperatur/granada

3000 year old Málaga (Malaka) - the oldest city in Europe together with Cádiz (Gadir) a little west along the coast - is also Andalucías "city of culture with its so-called 'mile of art' being compared to Madrid, and its dynamism and fine dining to Barcelona."
https://www.lonelyplanet.com/spain/andalucia/malaga

And even though nothing beats Alhambra in Granada, the Moorish Alcazaba palace fortress in the heart of Málaga is a few hundred years older there it lies on the hill above the 1st century AD Roman theater: http://www.malagaturismo.com/en/tour...tro-romano/413
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Old Jul 26th, 2017, 07:12 AM
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We liked Malaga very much. - an Andalusian city right on the sea;
3 night was not too long, while we found 3 nights in Granada a bit much.

As you can see , everyone has their favourites and different priorities .
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Old Jul 26th, 2017, 08:00 AM
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... and one more thing. You'll probably be in Málaga on Saturday Jan. 20th. Then I recommend very, very much to have lunch inside the Atarazanas food market, right in the heart of town.

Saturday lunch here is a highlight of the week for many malagueños. Here you can have the local pride conchas finas, oysters, razor clams, prawn skewers etc. etc, much fish and seafood, but also great vegetable and grilled meat tapas. Full of groups of friends and families, loud, crowded, but still very laid-back, and the people running the bars are in full control. Can be a very special experience, the best atmosphere and many GTs around...
http://eastofmalaga.net/2014/07/25/w...ry-perception/
Cafe Bar Atarazanas: http://azahar-spain.com/azahartapas/...do-atarazanas/
El Yerno: http://azahar-spain.com/azahartapas/el-yerno/

Spain is known for fantastic food markets (Boquería in Barcelona, La Bretxa in San Sebastián and a long etcetera, not to mention all the new gourmet markets). I love them all, but Atarazanas in Málaga is a clear favourite. Top quality, rich history, relatively small and mostly frequented by locals.

And next door to the Atarazanas market you have emblematic Casa Aranda, my favourite café in all of Spain: https://www.lonelyplanet.com/spain/m...1268164/360734
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Old Jul 26th, 2017, 11:33 AM
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4 nights in Seville is adequate even if you make a day trip to Cordoba. Then 2 nights in Granada and 3 in Malaga.
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