Barcelona +??

Old Jun 1st, 2021, 11:13 PM
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Barcelona +??

Hi, I am planning a 10 - 12 day ish trip ( me, my wife and 8 yrs old son) to Europe in July from San Francisco. I am considering flying into Barcelona, spend about 3 days there , take a train to Madrid and spend about three nights and then flying to another destination spend another 3 days and fly out. The goal of the trip is mostly to relax, enjoy beaches, food, some site seeing, some art and architecture . I am deciding between Nice and Lisbon as the third destination. The itinerary including Lisbon comes out to be about $1500 cheaper for the three of us for Air ticket , but probably Nice will be Nicer ( is it ?? more expensive for sure) Any suggestions ?

Also, the other consideration for the trip is Split and Prague . That is a bit more ( about 3K more than the Barcelona - Madrid - Lisbon ) expensive from airticket standpoint.

We are really open to the destination. Not planning anything hectic and packed itinerary . We have been to Switzerland, Paris, Italy before .

Any suggestions will be very welcome .

Last edited by swagato; Jun 1st, 2021 at 11:43 PM.
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Old Jun 2nd, 2021, 01:30 AM
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You say that you're not planning a packed and hectic trip, but you describe 3 stops, including travel in 10 days. Madrid is a long way from a beach and IMO Nice doesn't do it for me.

I think that I'd stay with one destination, probably Barcelona as it has far more to offer in terms of architecture than any of the others. The food scene is excellent and you'd have the chance to do day trips to lots of places:

Montserrat (monastery)
San Sadurni d'Anoia (Cava)
Figueres (Dali Museum)
Tossa del Mar (lovely old town and seafood)

to name but a few. You can chill on the beach in Barcelona and Tossa and although you don't technically need a car, it's certainly more convenient when out of the city.
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Old Jun 2nd, 2021, 02:58 AM
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I agree that I would not add a third destination, and especially one which involves an additional flight. If you would like to add a third destination, I strongly suggest one where you can easily jump on a train or bus to get there. But Barcelona and Madrid easily have more than enough to keep you busy for your available time. You waste time just moving from one place to another. Use your time wisely, save some money and have a much better holiday.
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Old Jun 2nd, 2021, 03:26 AM
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I agree with the other posters. With only 10 days, I would not leave Spain and would focus on Bacelona and Madrid. Add a day trip to experience something else. There will be so much to do, see and eat. I always like to remember that 3 nights is only two full days.

I had to recently make a similar decision for my upcoming trip to Croatia. I really wanted to do three days in Bosnia and Herzegovina but I only have 11 days to play with including 2 travel days. So instead I’m doing four nights, three days in Dubrovnik, four nights, three days in Hvar and three nights, two days in Split. I added a day trip to Mostar, B&H and Montenegro. So I get to move slower in each stop but will still get a taste of other places.

I think if you truly slow it down and take out the additional plane trip you will have a more fulfilling time.

Happy planning!

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Old Jun 2nd, 2021, 06:49 AM
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Incredible that you feel the need to go to more than one destination on such a short holiday. Can I suggest

Barcelona, Girona, Figueres, Perpignon and Narbonne would fill the lot and if really bored drop in Carcassone, Beziers and Montpellier or Taragonna in the other direction and the winery of Torres and perhaps a trip into the hills of Andorra. So much to see in this area.
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Old Jun 2nd, 2021, 07:59 PM
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Your trip sounds amazing! Barcelona is awesome--bike tours, beaches, walking tours tapas bars, pubs, Sagrada Família, the Picasso museum, picnic at Park Guell! Three full days might do it, four would be better. I wish I had added on Girona and Montserrat.

I haven't been to Madrid yet but am planning a trip there in 2022. From Madrid, we are going to take a train to Seville for a few days -- it sounds like that is an entirely different experience from Barcelona and Madrid. San Sebastian is another town, a coastal town, that people love in Spain! From Seville, we will fly to Lisbon on RyanAir or TAP. (Madrid-Seville-Lisbon in 10 days with our adult kids, then husband and I will go to Porto for two weeks.)

I really like Nice! It has beaches but they are a bit rocky as you probably know. Charming old town. The train makes it easy to run up and down the coast.
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Old Jun 3rd, 2021, 12:01 AM
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Thanks everyone. We were thinking of dropping Madrid and Nice and do 5 nights in Barcelona and 4 nights in Lisbon. But sounds like we can just stay in Barcelona for the whole time. Is anyone familiar with the local CoVID situation in Barcelona area ? Both myself and wife are vaccinated but our 8 year old son isn't .
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Old Jun 3rd, 2021, 12:03 AM
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Do I need to rent a car or we can take train for the day trips ?
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Old Jun 3rd, 2021, 01:01 AM
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car or train, it depends on the trip. The train is pretty good in the cities mentioned above. There are four easy ways to get an idea

read seat61.com which explains how each system works (and they do vary by country)
load the trip into Google and see what comes up (includes buses)
check bahn.de ( really the German train website but they kindly include most of western Europe)
search out train maps
https://www.rome2rio.com/ (data gets better every year) (includes buses)

I travel to Europe two or three times a year and very seldom do I feel the need to hire a car, park a car, fuel a car, worry about a car etc


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Old Jun 3rd, 2021, 01:56 AM
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The train is very convenient anywhere to the north and south of Barcelona. From Sants station you can go in either direction or catch the trains up to Montserrat which allows for all four of my above suggestions. If you want to explore the countryside, then a car is much more flexible and allows for the spur of the moment stop at a country bar or restaurant.

COVID information is listed here:

https://www.barcelona-tourist-guide....barcelona.html

but parts may be out of date. Check your country's travel advice.
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Old Jun 3rd, 2021, 02:06 AM
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I need to put in my vote for Valencia. Love the city, the parks, the energy. You've got the beach, the old town and you can cheaply rent a bike to ride through the park and outlying areas.

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Old Jul 11th, 2021, 11:43 PM
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we loved our 5 nights in Barcelona in 2017. may i suggest the hop on off bus as it gives you lay out of city and its fun.
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