Andalucia - cities and more

Old Sep 11th, 2011, 08:48 AM
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Andalucia - cities and more

My partner and I are planning a 16-night autumn trip to southern Spain, flying into and out of Malaga and hiring a car for the whole trip.

This is our first trip to the area, and we are looking for a varied experience with some time in the country and by the sea as well as the major cities.

Our proposed itinerary is:

Thurs 27th October: Fly Manchester to Malaga (arriving 11.10am), pick up car and drive to Granada, staying 4 nights. We know it's difficult to park, so would hope for a reasonably central hotel, and are prepared to pay a bit extra to park. We would see the Alhambra and other places in the city and maybe take a day trip either to the Sierra Nevada or Guadix.
Mon 31st October: Granada to Priego de Cordoba for one night.
Tue 1st November: Drive to Cordoba for three nights. Again. like in Granada, looking for a hotel with parking.
Fri 4th November: Drive Cordoba to Seville for three nights.
Mon 7th November: Drive to Vejer de la Frontera for two nights. Looking for a restful couple of days, maybe take a drive to Cape Trafalgar.
Wed 9th November (this day might be a bit ambitious). Drive Vejer to La Linea and spend about 4 hours in Gibraltar. Then in the afternoon drive to Ronda for three nights.
Saturday 12th November: Drive to Malaga airport for 12.35 departure back to Manchester.

Any thoughts? Particularly looking for recommendations for accommodation in the cities with reasonable car parking.

Thanks
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Old Sep 11th, 2011, 09:36 AM
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In Seville we'd recommend Las Casas de la Juderia
In Ronda Hotel San Gabriel
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Old Sep 11th, 2011, 09:44 AM
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It is your choice, but you are spending a lot of time is rather small places.
We stayed 3 nights in Granada and find it too long.

Sevilla is bigger than Cordoba and offers more to see.
Malaga is a very nice Andalucian town.. We stayed 3 nights and enjoyed it.
Three nights in small Ronda, seems a long time IMO.
BTW, why not stop in Ronda on the way from Granada to Cordoba
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Old Sep 11th, 2011, 10:08 AM
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I would shave a night off several of those places - Granada, Cordoba, Ronda, and add them to Seville and Malaga. Also, four hours is not enough for Gibraltar - either skip it or spend a night. The town itself is boring but going up to the top of the rock was kind of fun, but you can't get from La Linea to the top of the rock and back in four hours (well you could, but it would be very rushed). And actually I do have a good suggestion of where to stay in Gibraltar - it's a B&B that's a boat - Con Dios. The contact details are in my trip report - http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...-gibraltar.cfm


I also did a trip report to the other areas you are covering. I recommend all the hotels I stayed at and would stay at them again. http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...p-report-1.cfm
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Old Sep 11th, 2011, 10:30 AM
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IMHO Gibraltar is a complete waste of time - just not worth it to see a large rock and a pack of nasty monkeys.

I agree that I would spend more time in Seville, where there is much more to see and do. Ronda is very small - but there are things to be seen in the countryside around it. You might also consider Jerez - definiely a much better choice than Gibraltar.
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Old Sep 11th, 2011, 11:03 AM
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mdjh1957 - you must be so looking forward to your trip! Regarding your itinerary, not sure what your hopes are, but Cordoba, as beautiful as it is may not warrant 3 nights...we did it as a day trip from Sevilla, and although a few things were closed (it was a Monday) I'd agree with some other posters that a night is sufficient if you just want to "see the sights". I loved Sevilla and wished our 4 nights were a lot longer!
We stayed 5 nights in Vejer, although most days we planned day trips...we stayed in a gorgeous, large appartment from Linda Cooper at http://www.casacooper.com/
It was a great base and I would go back in a minute! Not sure if they only will rent for 2 nights, but the price was great so it may be worth a shot. There was free parking, and our place had three lovely decks for relaxing!
Good luck with your planning - please post a trip report so we can hear all about it!
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Old Sep 11th, 2011, 04:46 PM
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Thanks for the suggestions.

We don't really want to add more days to the cities, if we only wanted the cities we wouldn't have bothered hiring a car. And I've got no desire to see Malaga at all. Or Gibraltar, really, but my partner definitely wants to go and although we won't do it justice he just wants to tick it off the list of countries visited. Also it's his post-chemotherapy recovery holiday so can't say no.... Vejer sounds lovely and relaxing, and we will do trips out from there, and possibly from Cordoba, and from Ronda. We both appreciate slower travel so no desire to rush around and see everything.

I'll check out the hotels recommended already.

Thanks again.
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Old Sep 11th, 2011, 05:32 PM
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If you are not interested in suggestions about the itinerary... why ask?
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Old Sep 11th, 2011, 06:02 PM
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I'm with you mjdh.

If you give some Fodorites the slightest whiff of an opportunity to redesign your itinerary you will be flooded with "helpful" suggestions about how your plans are a mess and need to be rethought to make your experience better.

I knew your request for advice was about suggestions for hotels and things to do for the trip YOU had planned but some folks are just so determined to turn it into their trip for you.

Don't get me wrong here, if you had asked "Is 3 nights too many for Cordoba?" or "Is this itinerary feasible?" then the response should be opinions on those particular questions.

As I see it you want hotel suggestions and possible a little input on the aggressiveness of your November 9th plans. I am sorry I can't help you with your trip plans - I am heading there next month and came looking for information myself.

I hope you enjoy the trip YOU planned.
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Old Sep 11th, 2011, 06:24 PM
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If one wants only hotel suggestions say so..
Why post the itinerary?
People offering input are not " aggressive".... it is THEIR time they are giving you.
Hope no one wastes their time with PP. Ever.
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Old Sep 11th, 2011, 06:25 PM
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I feel like I might be stating the obvious but I highly advise you go see Flamenco while in Seville. You won't see better unless you want to go up into the gypsy caves nearby. Seville oozes Flamenco. You can hear it everywhere you go. They board up the windows so one can't peek!
There is an hour long Rick Steve's show on Andalucia and it even includes Ronda. It runs with some frequency on PBS. It can be quite costly to park a car. Make sure you leave nothing in the car, not even in the trunk and not even during daylight. It will mostly likely be gone if you do. Enjoy!
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Old Sep 11th, 2011, 06:42 PM
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Now that's not nice, is it?
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Old Sep 11th, 2011, 11:52 PM
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Some fresh Córdoba impressions:

The "other" Córdoba around Plaza de las Tendillas, the Plaza Mayor-like Plaza de la Corredera, the Roman ruins etc can be highly recommended. All very close to the main tourist attractions but a totally different and more local atmosphere. Bustling outdoor cafés long into the night.

Several fine bodegas/tabernas in this area. Here you'll find great local places on every corner. Just had some excellent meals in a couple of them. Taberna Salinas comes recommended in the Michelin guide, and we were perfectly happy after two raciones, a bottle of wine and a couple of brandys for some 35€. http://www.tabernasalinas.com/

Bar Santos in Calle Magistral González Francés, 3 along the eastern side of the Mezquita is a laid-back and small respite in this heavily touristy area. Wonderful Jamón Ibérico.

Felt immediately at home in Plaza de las Tendillas. The thousands of people gathering here for the midnight eating of the grapes on New Years eve is traditionally directly televised on national tv. The clock on Plaza de las Tendillas has got no bells. Since 1961 the hours has been chimed in by recorded flamenco chords from the guitarist Juanito Serrano. Great atmospehere and good spirit well into the small hours, at least in the week-ends. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fexMbX4EsRE&NR=1

We lived in modern Hotel Córdoba Centro, just excellent, some 300 meters north of the Mezquita, next door to the main Tendillas Plaza. Some 60€ for a double. http://www.booking.com/hotel/es/cord...?rid=702348143

... And Málaga city is absolutely great, genuine Andalusian atmosphere, great tapas bars, restaurants, cafés, sights, shopping etc. Perhaps the most easy-going people in all of the region. To bad not spending at least one night here at the start or end of your trip.
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Old Sep 12th, 2011, 12:27 AM
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I didn't say I wasn't interested in suggestions about our itinerary. I did specifically ask about the trip from Vejer to Ronda via Gibraltar because I thought it might be a long difficult day. But the main point was to ask about hotel recommendations in the towns where it would be easier to park a car, rather than substitute places or add more on. If a town I'd chosen was an absolute dump then by all means tell me but I'm an experienced traveller and do a fair bit of research before every trip so I kind of know what I want and only need some fine-tuning rather than scrapping my plans and starting again.

Thanks again for all the suggestions. I'll be looking at the hotels suggested today.
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Old Sep 12th, 2011, 12:58 AM
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On the other hand, if people are saying I should add on MORE destinations and spend LESS time in others that must mean my original itinerary was quite relaxed which was exactly what I wanted....
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Old Sep 12th, 2011, 02:41 AM
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I find your itinerary very reasonable. I think a good idea visiting Priego, a town I love and where you'll find many unexpected things. Do not miss the adarve neighborhood and the Calle del Rio with many palaces, and Fuente del Rey. Cannot help with hotel, but there is a nice restaurant, the Balcon del Adarve; it's been some years since my last visit, and I see there are other suggestions by now.
On the drive to Cordoba, avoid the highway as it's worth a visit to Luque andd Baena.
About hotels, I'd follow Isabel's advice as she's a seasoned traveller with a keen eye for budget.
On your daytrip to Guadix, I recommend a short detour to La Calahorra, a small town with an amazing castle that has an incredible renaissance courtyard. At local hotel Hospedería del Zenete, you may ask them to phone the keeper for a visit. Maybe you are lucky and he's in a good mood (the castle is privately owned).
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