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Andalucia in August: Seville-Ronda-Granada-Cordoba.

Andalucia in August: Seville-Ronda-Granada-Cordoba.

Old Jul 11th, 2013, 06:59 AM
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Andalucia in August: Seville-Ronda-Granada-Cordoba.

Hello Fodorites,

I'm trying to put together a small trip to Andalucia in early august (maybe from august 6 to 12). The main question right now is the order of my itinerary and the transportation I'll be using to go from city to city. After some research, this is what I got:

Day 1: Madrid-Seville (AVE).
Day 2: Seville.
Day 3: Seville.
Day 4: Seville-Ronda (Bus) / Ronda-Granada (Train).
Day 5: Granada.
Day 6: Granada-Cordoba (Bus).
Day 7: Cordoba.
Day 8: Cordoba-Madrid (AVE).

What i'm trying to accomplish is this:
- Time to see Seville.
- Ronda is only a daytrip between Seville and Granada. It seems that the bus is the better option for the first part and the train for the second. Is that so? Is the train much more expensive?
- In Granada I want to get the day and night tours of Alhambra.
- In Cordoba I want to see the city and to go to Medina Azahara (the archaeological site near Cordoba).
- I intend to leave Madrid early on Day 1 and to be back only at night on Day 8.

Is this itinerary adequate to these goals? Is the order of the cities right? Should I take time from one place and put in other?

Thanks!
madosborn is offline  
Old Jul 11th, 2013, 07:38 AM
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Is Sevilla your first stop after a transatlantic or long flight? If so I'd add at least a night to Sevilla to give time to overcome jetlag. Personally I'd consider 5 nights in Cordoba and visit cordoba as either a daytrip from Sevilla or en route from granada to Madrid. Cordoba is a wonderful city and you could easily spend a couple of nights but with such limited time I'd visit as a daytrip which will allow you to see the highlights.

It will be extremely hot during the time of your visit so you may not be able to do any sightseeing in the afternoon when the heat is at it's peak.
CathyM is offline  
Old Jul 11th, 2013, 07:46 AM
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Great cities but wrong time of year. Southern spain will be hellishly hot - highs of more than 100 are not rare - and there is no way I would put myself through that for anything.

I would either change the dates - to late Oct or perhaps April - or if all you have is August go to the northern Atlantic coast - where the weather is decent.
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Old Jul 11th, 2013, 08:19 AM
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I just went to these places in early June (except for Madrid). They are beautiful, beautiful places and well worth visiting.
But - just a heads up, we spent a week in Seville, and it hit 100 to 101 F for three of those days, in the second week of June. The midday heat, dry or not, will knock you out and dehydrate you, so you will need as much time as possible there, to make room for midday siestas... was also quite hot in Granada, although you're in the mountains a bit, so not as much... It was cooler - actually pleasant - in Ronda, and on the coast.

We did Cordoba as a day trip from Sevilla and had plenty of time to see the Mezquita, tour the old Jewish quarter, walk across the bridge, eat lunch, etc.

I would add an extra night to Granada, personally. See the note about heat above, . You may need more time to see things...

Seeing Ronda on the way to Granada, is spot on, imo. It's beautiful, but doable in one afternoon. We spent two nights there and it was way too much time there, I thought.

Re: Madrid - are you actually visiting Madrid, or just flying in and out of there? You may be able to fly into Seville and out of Granada for the same price, or not much more, than it would cost to take trains to and from Madrid.

As an alternate plan, maybe more ideal for summer, you could fly in and out of Malaga, on the southern coast, and spend some time on the coast, since it will be so hot.
From Malaga and the coastal resorts, you can take day tours to Granada, Ronda, and other places nearby..
It's not ideal for Granada, imo, but if all you want to see is the Alhambra, it would be ideal re: the hot weather.

We spent two nights in Nerja, on the coast, less than 1 hour drive from Malaga, and I could have stayed longer, pleasant little town, cool evenings near the water, very nice beaches.

Just remember to take it slow, drink lots and lots of water (my husband got heat exhaustion and dehydrated in June in Seville, and was nauseous and disoriented for a whole day..) and take advantage of air-conditioned inside places during midday.
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Old Jul 11th, 2013, 08:42 AM
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Bus Sevilla-Ronda is a good idea, you can easily get there by noon or so. At 17:13 you have a train for Granada, costs 19:35 (verify for your specific date at www.renfe.es)
Consider what you'll do with your bags, and where you'll spend the hottest hours of the day when things slow down because of the siesta. It's about a half-hour stroll from the station to the bridge over the gorge, then you might want to wander around the old town a bit, and back to the station eventually.
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Old Jul 11th, 2013, 04:03 PM
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Are you fully committed to seeing Andalusia in August? As others have noted, that is not an ideal time to see it unless you have a very high tolerance for heat.

Assuming you are committed to doing so and are prepared for the mid-day heat, assuming you identify a way to store your luggage while in Ronda, and assuming it really makes sense for you to fly into and out of Madrid (given that you don't plan to visit it), I think your allotment of time to places makes sense in light of your goals. You could, of course, easily spend more time in any of these places, but only if you skip some of the things you list as your priorities. Do be sure to check the hours of the places you most want to visit (some may close on Mondays or over the siesta) and plan accordingly.

Good luck!
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Old Jul 11th, 2013, 05:54 PM
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Thank you all for the great info and the warnings about the heat.

I'll be studying in Madrid for few months, but I don't think I'll have the opportunity to travel for many days in a row except for early august. A quick travel trough Andalusia seemed to be ideal in these circumstances.

About the heat, I must say that I'm a little worried right now. On the other hand, I live in Rio and we get some warmer days during the summer here.I think I have a good tolerance for heat. Does anybody knows if it usually is much more hotter in Andalusia than in Rio?

The main reason to spend more time in Cordoba (and not to see it as a daytrip) is to visit Medina Azahara, which seems to be astonishing.

Are there any grounds to choose the train over the bus to go from Ronda to Granada (like a scenic route, price etc)?
madosborn is offline  
Old Jul 11th, 2013, 06:05 PM
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I "did" Sevilla, Cordoba , Granad and Madrid in late August.
It was hot but I was young , so it was not impossible to manage....
I stayed inside for several hours during siesta
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Old Jul 11th, 2013, 07:38 PM
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Use the internet to read average and record temperatures and compare to Rio. Heat is very subjective - some people wilt when it gets to be 25, others still feel great at 30, and if you've lived in hot climates only 35 and over really get you down. The same with humidity, some love it, some don't. Know yourself and go from there.
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Old Jul 11th, 2013, 10:41 PM
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No direct bus from Ronda to Granada.

Train from Granada to Cordoba can be good as well. In Granada, the train station is closer to the city center. Check Renfe site for the timetable.
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Old Jul 12th, 2013, 10:11 AM
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In summer the temps in Andalusia are often more thn 100 degrees - and can go tup to 120. In rio in the average summer high temps are 86 - nothing like Andalusia - which may be 15 to 20 degrees (F) higher.

In terms of C, rio may be 30 in the summer and Andalusia may be 42 or 43 degrees - or even more. If you do Andalusia make sure your hotel has a good pool for the afternoons heat and that you carry water to stay well hydrated at all times.
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