December in Spain--a new place

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Nov 1st, 2017, 04:40 PM
  #21
 
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We loved Córdoba,and I agree with Kja.In addition to the Mezquita and the courtyards of the Palacio de Viana, I recommend the Alcazar. We spent 2 nights in Córdoba, but could have used 3 nights to visit the synagogue, and wander more around the Juderia. The Roman Bridge is beautiful at night, and it was very lively when we were there in September with families strolling along the bridge, socializing, with their kids riding their bikes.

We had one of our best meals at Regadera, and enjoyed a meal at the Mercado just outside of the old city walls.
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 03:54 AM
  #22
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I feel like things are starting to fall into place! Thanks to all of you for helping shape the trip and flesh out the details

KarenWoo--thanks for the input and especially the restaurant recs!
Kja -I'm tempted to cut short a night in Madrid or Andalusia to spend a night in Toledo or Segovia based on your rec. I'll look into the logistics. Or, am I trying to get too much in?
ekscrunchy--love knowing that there are nice trails/hikes near Ronda will look into the town you were based in
Jamikins your photos are amazing! Certainly stoked my enthusiasm. I actually stopped looking for fear that my expectations would be too high.
Bedar, Danon, Margo OZ, Isabel, Florida1, appreciate your feedback too!

Here is what we're considering:
Day 1- Arrive from Madrid (or Toledo/Segovia)into Cordoba
Day 2- 27th: Visit some of the following Alcazar, Mezquita, Jewish quarters Palacia de Viana
Tapas Tour
Day 3: Culinary experience (cooking class or other)/ exploring what we missed
Day 4: En Route to Ronda visit winery and olive oil mill (with guide). stay in Ronda (?)
Day 5: continue to explore Ronda and environs (hoping to throw in a hike!) and drive to either Seville or Malaga (guess we would just have dinner at one of these places or a night walking tour as an "appetizer" for the two who haven't been.
Day 6: flight back to the US via Madrid

What do you think? Where around Ronda have you stayed? Or, should I skip Ronda and go for Jerez, Cadiz? I just want something that has a totally different feel and love the idea of the cave painting and the bridges. Any suggestions for Sevilla versus Malaga out? Or is there someplace else better suited for an evening that has an airport close by?

Always appreciate your help
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 04:37 AM
  #23
 
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While Cordoba was nice, Seville was amazing. I would do Seville and Cordoba rather than the white villages. If you want to keep the white villages them I would pick Seville over Cordoba.
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 05:15 AM
  #24
 
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(Playing the role of kimhe today is Elizabeth_S)

Malaga! Great restaurants, very festively decorated and at least last December we had great weather.

(Hope you're on a trip kimhe!)
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 05:57 AM
  #25
 
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Elizabeth_S: Briefly hi-jacking. Apologies to others.

We're thinking of S. Spain for late March 2018. As you know, we really enjoyed the highlights of Andalusia last year.

Thinking of venturing a bit further afield (eg Malaga, Huelva) and also spending more time in rural areas or small centres. I'd welcome your advice by PM.

Current thinking is to combine this with up to 2 weeks in Turkey - probably the last opportunity in my lifetime for a safe, pleasurable visit.
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 06:16 AM
  #26
 
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Tedgale,
I apologize for hijacking this thread, too. We recently returned from a trip to Andalusia, which included 2 nights in Malaga. We really enjoyed Malaga; I think it is an underrated city, and I highly recommend going there. The old city center has beautiful architecture, and it's clean and safe. For sightseeing, we toured the cathedral; the alcazaba and castle ruins with lush greenery and exotic flowers; and the Picasso Museum. Walked on the promenade along the port, and had drinks on the port while watching the sun set. Had lunch at the Ataranazas market. And dinner on the beach, although we were disappointed in our meal, but the ambience was great! There are more art museums if you like art, but we felt we saw enough art in Madrid. Hope this helps.
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 06:44 AM
  #27
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Hijack away! Love to learn more. Jamikins we spent time in Seville (about a decade ago) which is why we were thinking of doing something different. Elizabeth S and KarenWoo, will certainly look into Malaga. Do you suggest skipping Ronda and doing that instead? I was just really interested in the winery tour, cave painting, and the gorge hike close to the Ronda area.

Thought smaller villages would add variety. No?
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 06:50 AM
  #28
 
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Hi misha

Sorry, I missed that you have been to Seville! Your plan looks great then, it will be a nice change.

We stayed 5 mins drive outside of Ronda here and really enjoyed it:

http://www.la-perlablanca.com/

Enjoy!
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 07:19 AM
  #29
 
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If you decide to go to Segovia, you should make it a point to visit Palacio Real de La Granja de San Ildefonso - it's only a short ride in a taxi or on the bus from Segovia, and very well worth it.

It was the summer/fall palace for the Spanish Royals, modeled on France’s Palace of Versailles, and the gorgeous collection of Flemish tapestries on display is reason enough to visit. Both times I have visited this palace - as English speakers, our party of two has had a wonderful private tour, included with the entry fee.

In the small village of Ildefonso, there are many restaurants serving "judiones" - a very delicious local bean soup that I haven't found anywhere else.

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attracti...stile_and.html
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 07:52 AM
  #30
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scdreamer, that sounds amazing! Wow!

Jamikins, PerlaBlanca seems great!

I'm now thinking about ending the trip in Malaga (read about their Christmas lights and stopping at the Caminito Del Rey en route) It will cut short some of our time in Ronda but seems fabulous. Anyone here done it?
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 11:30 AM
  #31
 
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Thanks KarenWoo
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 01:26 PM
  #32
 
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You'll have enough time in Ronda. I don't know about the Camino del Rey. It's supposed to be quite dangerous. Many deaths have occurred there. Certainly not for me. I'm a chicken. Better the lights and delights of Malaga.
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 03:05 PM
  #33
kja
 
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Whether you have time for all the things you are proposing isn’t clear to me – I must admit that I don’t understand your itinerary. For example, you say that you are considering cutting a night from Madrid, but I don’t see what you have any time there! Noting that ONLY you can decide whether you have enough time in any location, and really, you can only do that by plotting things out on a calendar, I don’t know how we can offer advice without knowing what your plans are. Sorry!

@ tedgale: I’m sure you realize that 2 weeks is very little for Turkey. You can click on my screename to find my trip report on 3.5 weeks in western Turkey.
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 03:28 PM
  #34
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@ tedgale: I just realized that you already visited Turkey. I even followed your recommendation for a restaurant! Sorry....
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 05:00 PM
  #35
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Sorry-- I mentioned in passing in my first post, but should have clarified that we will be spending the first four nights of our trip just outside of Madrid. My son has spent the semester there and will be planning those days.

So, as it stands, we will have four nights in Madrid (unless we decide on a night in Toledo or Segovia) and then go to Cordoba for three nights, Ronda for one night, and Malaga for our last night before flying back home to the US.

We will be stopping at a winery and olive oil mill en route to Ronda, spend the evening there and had thought of spending a couple of hours in the morning there before going to Malaga. Now, I think the Caminito Del Rey might be a good detour for the nature/adventure lovers in the family, but it will take away from our time in Ronda and/or Malaga. So perhaps, they just hike the gorge in (or see cave paintings etc) in Ronda in the morning before heading to Malaga.

Bedar, I thought that the new path for the Camino was supposed to be safe. Am I wrong?

So grateful for the input.
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 05:06 PM
  #36
kja
 
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Thanks for clarifying.

FWIW, I think Toledo is extraordinary, but Segovia is very special and is better suited, IMO, to a day trip or one night stay.
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 05:32 PM
  #37
 
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I suppose it might be safer BUT give me Malaga any day !
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 06:41 PM
  #38
 
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Toledo is more interesting than Segovia IMO.
There is no reason why you shouldn't make a day trip to Toledo.
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Nov 2nd, 2017, 08:45 PM
  #39
kja
 
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Like danon, I agree that a day trip to Toledo could make sense if that’s what suits you best. But I can envision a reason that some people might have for NOT doing so, based on my approach to travel: I am reasonably certain that I won’t have the time to revisit any place I go (with the exception of major international air hubs), so I try to match the time I have to spend in places to the time I want to have in them. So, for me, having insufficient time for my interests would, in fact, be a reason against taking a day trip to Toledo -- but that’s just my preference, and I don’t make assumptions about whether other’s share that perspective or not. I simply try to provide my impressions of the amount of time one might want to spend in various places with the understanding that YMMV.

I’m sure you’ll make a decision that offers you and your family some wonderful moments!
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Nov 3rd, 2017, 12:30 AM
  #40
 
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I'd wait to see Toledo when you can stay overnight. There's magic at night that the massive influx of tour groups obscure during the day.
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