Extremadura: where to base and how long

Jul 8th, 2003, 03:09 PM
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Extremadura: where to base and how long

I'm planning a trip to Extremadura and Portugal in late September. Originally thought I'd spent 3-4 nights in Cacares and do day trips to Merida and Trujillo but now I'm wondering if I should cut a night or 2 out of Cacares and spend those nights in either Merida or Trujillo.

I'm traveling by bus and train and it would make logistical sense if I did it this way to spend the evening in Merida (I think).

Any advise on 1) how long to stay in this area (I like to enjoy and not be rushed) and 2) where to base myself would be great.

Also, if anyone has information on public transportation from Badajoz to Elvas (Portugal) that would be a plus. I'll be also posting on the Portugal forum.
CathyM is offline  
Jul 11th, 2003, 02:36 PM
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topping for myself!

Also, the Parador in Cacares in booked on one of the 3 nights I had planned on visiting (the last night). However, the Trujillo parador is available all 3 nights. Would Trujillo work as a base to explore Cacares and Merida as day trips? Would there be enough to keep me occupied 3 nights in Trujillo?

It would be kind of nice to stay one place for 3 nights instead of traveling around.
CathyM is offline  
Jul 11th, 2003, 06:13 PM
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The best expert I know on Extremadura is Strest on AOL. If you can get someone to cantact him, he can help. I am interested becasue I may make the same trip about a month behind you.
lweber is offline  
Jul 12th, 2003, 05:28 AM
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I love Caceres and Trujillo, I guess there is more to do and see in Caceres but Trujillo has a lot of history too.
I would like to recommend in Trujillo de Hotel Victoria, it is a three star that could easily be a 4+ , a great buy.
I found about it because the parador was full and they refered me to the Victoria and what a find it was.
I have stayed in Merida at the Parador and liked it very much.
Merida the former Emerita Augusta y a very interesting city to visit.
One of my favorites in all Extremadura is Guadalupe, a little jewel . There we stayed at the Parador which is delightful also very nice is next to the monastery some kind of hotel managed by the priests.
But I would stay at the Parador.
I enjoyed a lot Plascencia, home of the newest Parador, this is a very interesting place to visit too.
Have to go now but if you need more information please ask me.
Graziella5b is offline  
Jul 12th, 2003, 12:19 PM
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Graziella and others,

I just topped my post regarding our November trip to Extremadura and Western Andalucia (Cadiz and Huelva) in hopes I can get more information.

Thank you in advance.

Maria is offline  
Jul 12th, 2003, 06:12 PM
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I am supplying another copy of my short report on our recent trip to Extremadura. We didn't really spend any time in Trujillo, but drove by. Guadalupe also looked like fun, but we were on route to Toledo when we passed through. We walked alot around Merida...could be a possible alternate choice for spending a couple of days. If you can possibly get a car(driving is easy in this region) do it. It will allow you to see some amazing areas not visited much by local bus routes. We LOVED Caceres!

My husband and I recently returned from a month in Spain. We were in Granada, Ronda, Sevilla, Toledo, Madrid and Extremadura. Extremadura turned out to be our absolute favorite area during our Spain travels. Caceres is relatively untouched by tourism (never found an Internet caf&eacute and we found the people exceptionally friendly. We stayed 4 nights at the Parador there and had a fabulous 5 room suite with 2 small balconies and the biggest bed I've ever slept in (8'X8'). We were absolutely the only Americans there. We didn't hear any other language except Spanish for our entire stay in Extremadura. We know little Spanish, but with our translation book, we got along just fine. The town was charming and we were lucky enough to be there during their stork nesting season. Almost every roof had several huge nests with parents attending to their chicks.

The locals paseo nightly down a lovely long avenue( Avda De Espana) with a beautiful park dividing the entire length. Richard and I looked forward to our evening walk there. I enjoyed watching the children play and all the people, young and old, walking arm in arm for their nightly stroll.
We stopped by a local shop ( Gabriel Mostazo on San Anton i 6) and purchased some items for a picnic in our room one evening. After completing our purchase, the store owner generously placed a bottle of local wine in our bag. He was so sweet. We returned to his shop before our departure and purchased some of his wonderful jamon to bring back to the States. Although I was convinced we would never be allowed to bring it through customs, they didn't even blink an eye and we arrived home the proud owners of 2 pkgs of fabulous iberico jamon.
While in Extremadura, we ventured out of town for 2 memorable day trips. The first, was to Merida to visit the Roman ruins. It was very warm (in fact down right hot) that day so we wore our shorts (Big no no, I know) thinking we would check out the ruins and return to Caceres. What we didn't know, was that the ruins are spread ALL over the town of Merida. We ended up walking through the town and I could almost hear the "tsk tsk tsk" of the locals looking at the American woman who broke the Spanish fashion dress code. The ruins were amazing, especially the amphitheater and roman theater. We lunched at the Merida Parador(looked very nice) and then made the short trek back to Caceres.

The following day, we drove to the Parque Natural de Monfrague. The park is home to wild olive, cork and oak woods, stunning vistas of the Tagus and Tietar river valleys and a large proportion of Spain's protected bird species. We ate lunch at the park's only restaurant, a little hole in the wall cafe in the little troglodyte village (Bar-Restaurant Monfrague Casa Paqui). It turned out to be one the best meals we had in Spain. Richard had the ajo soup and a wonderful venison stew and I had a wild mushroom frittata and fabulous roasted chicken with garlic. After our excursion through the park, we drove towards the border of Portugal. The landscape changed dramatically and became quite tortured with amazing rock formations. Some looked like huge mushrooms and many were balanced point to point. The trees reminded us of huge lollipops and there were stone fences built every where, probably more than one would find in England or Ireland. We ended up in Alcantara, about 4 miles from the border of Portugal. There, we found an incredible bridge spanning the Tajo river. It is a Roman bridge, still in use, dating from about AD100. We were the only car around and as we drove across it, we couldn?t help wondering how many people over the ages had made the same crossing. It was now getting late so we opted not to venture any further and headed back to Caceres.
Favorite restaurants:
The Parador in Caceres for romantic evening dining outside. The Merluza and Turbo were excellent.
El Figon
Plaza de San Juan
Very fun watching the local politicians and business people dine. Fabulous menu.
Don't miss visiting the Museo Provincial in Caceres. It is quite extensive with contemporary art to regional archaeology.
Get a copy of The Guide to Weekend Excursions (in English). It is a fabulous book covering weekend touring through Extremadura and details 15 excursions. It is produced by Junta de Extremadura.
Contact: Consejeria de Obras Publicas y Tourismo
Direccion General de Turismo
C/Santa Eulalia, 30 06800 Merida
fax: 924 38 15 24
Enjoy your trip.

kpglo is offline  
Jul 17th, 2003, 05:55 PM
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Thanks for the responses. I think I've decided on 2 nights in Cacares, then 2 nights in Trujillo with a day trip to Merida. Then I'll head to Elvas (Portugal) for 2 nights.

Has anyone had any experience using public transportation to get to Elvas from Badajoz, Cacares or Trujillo?
CathyM is offline  
Jul 18th, 2003, 06:23 AM
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Hi Cathy,
Trujillo is a bit further north from Cáceres. As you are planning to go to Mérida ... have you checked the Parador at Mérida ? Staying in Trujillo after Cáceres and then going for a day to Mérida would be a bit of backtracking (mind you, I have done Trujillo, Medellin and Mérida on a day ... Medellin was really disappointing, and we stayed until late in Mérida, it was May ...).

Another place that hasn't been mentioned in this thread is Olivenza, south of Badajoz. It belonged to Portugal until the XIX century, and you can fully appreciate its influence in the streets and manueline churches ...

Rgds, Cova
cova is offline  
Mar 16th, 2015, 04:57 PM
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tedgale is offline  
Mar 16th, 2015, 08:49 PM
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Let me think about this and I'll bet back to you.
Robert2533 is offline  
Mar 17th, 2015, 03:15 AM
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Robert 2533: Note that this is an ancient thread that I bookmarked for my own use, as I'm heading to Portugal and Spain in just over 3 weeks.

Your expertise is well demonstrated but there is only 1 person on this thread who is currently looking for advice -- and it is I.

I have started a thread to gather comments and criticism of my Portugal and W. Spain itinerary. Click on my name to locate it.

I'd be most grateful to have your advice on that thread.
tedgale is offline  
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