Granada logistics

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Nov 30th, 2016, 11:58 AM
  #1
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Granada logistics

First a bit about me and the trip. I am a 62 year old female travelling sole and have challenged knees which have yet to stop me from travelling.

Have been to Spain 3 times before, but never visited the Andalucía region. Coming from Hawaii with 3 connecting flights, one of which has a tight connection. The first part of my 6 week European adventure begins in Granada, where I have booked a hotel in the Albayzin neighborhood for 4 nights at a very reasonable rate.

I arrive in the late afternoon on April 14 which is Good Friday, also making the entire weekend and Monday a bit more of a concern.

Alhambra tickets: Would ideally like to visit Saturday, but if I miss a 45 minute connecting flight at DFW on Thursday to Madrid, I may not arrive until Saturday afternoon.

Nigh time visit to Nasrid Palace is only from Tuesday – Saturday.

So, I am thinking to book a ticker for Saturday and Easter Sunday to be sure I can see the Alhambra. If I book the ticket for a night time visit to Nasrid Palace on Saturday and unable to visit Saturday daytime, would I still be able to get a good understanding and feel?

The rest of my time in Granada will be spent wandering the neighborhoods, a break at Hammam Al Andalus, enjoying the food and wines, and if not to tired, a flamenco performance at either Peña La Platería or Casa del Arte Flamenco. All will depend on opening hours and any planned Easter celebrations which could change the direction.

Departing on Tuesday for 5 days in Sevilla: How to plan the trip by bus/train. From where do I depart?

Would appreciate if you could please share your knowledge and thoughts on this portion of my trip.
Gynna is offline  
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Nov 30th, 2016, 12:39 PM
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Interesting choosing to start your visit to Spain in Granada after a very long flight from the islands. I assume you are flying into Granada, connecting through Madrid. No matter how good the flight is, connections included, you will be exhausted by the time you arrive at your place in the Albayzin.

I would seriously consider rethinking the itinerary. Sevilla would be a much better place to start.
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Nov 30th, 2016, 12:49 PM
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Easter is a big deal in Spain, although I believe you are missing the main procession and festivities in the particular neighborhood where you are staying since you arrive Friday (I think they take place on Thursday in Albaicin). There is a major procession on Sunday, though. And there is one on Saturday from the Alhambra down into the center of the city (south of Albaicin). Here, I think this shows its route

http://www.granadatur.com/semana-san...-sabado-santo/

This is the one on SUnday from 10:30-2:45, also more in the center, it is children with lanterns that jingle
http://www.granadatur.com/semana-san...-resurreccion/

I think there are others all day, that page shows them.

I'm not clear on what your question is about the visits, if you plan to buy tickets both for Sat and Sunday and miss Saturday, you'll still see it Sunday, right? People have different tastes and feelings about things that I don't really believe anyone can tell someone else whether they will get a good "feel" for a place or not based on x number of hours, or that if you don't visit at night you won't understand it. I don't know why you wouldn't understand what it was historically, either way. I'm not a big romantic about that type of thing, though, or of spending days looking at one historic site, I don't think I've ever done that anywhere. I didn't visit at night but am sure I understood what it was as I'm a big history buff and have read a lot about Spanish history, actually, including that period.

If you want some reading material pre-trip, here is a book I enjoyed
https://www.amazon.com/Ornament-Worl...t+of+the+world

AS for traveling to Seville, you cannot go by train currently, as far as I know, there isn't a line completed. SO you either just take a bus the entire way (which is about 3:30 hrs) or take the bus to Antequera and then the train from there. That can end up taking a lot longer, depends on the transfer time. I'd just take the bus myself. The bus station where you'll have to go no matter which method is in the northern part of the city. I'd just take a taxi, it isn't that far, about 15 minutes drive. It is on Carretera de Jaen. The bus company should be Alsa.

this page gives all the info you need on that, I believe
http://www.lovegranada.com/transport...a-bus-station/

This page gives info on the buses from Albaicin, and talks about getting from the bus station
http://www.lovegranada.com/transport/alhambra-buses/

Sounds like a great trip, I'm sure you'll have a grand time. The Alhambra is open on Easter BTW
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Nov 30th, 2016, 01:47 PM
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If I book the ticket for a night time visit to Nasrid Palace on Saturday and unable to visit Saturday daytime, would I still be able to get a good understanding and feel?>>

We saw the Alhambra at night before we saw it during the day and our understanding suffered not one bit, so i shouldn't worry about this, if this is the only way you can get to do an evening visit.

if you are staying in Granada until Tuesday morning, I think that I would be inclined to spend Sunday watching the celebrations in Granada and get a ticket for the Alhambra for the Monday.
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Nov 30th, 2016, 01:51 PM
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Oh dear, what a bunch of long flights. With your knees I'd make sure to book wheelchairs the whole way. Save those knees for Spain !
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Nov 30th, 2016, 05:22 PM
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kja
 
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The night visit to the Nasrid Palace does not cover all of the Alhambra – just the Nasrid Palace. I would not consider the night visit a substitute for a day visit. I’m very glad I did both!

IMO, Robert2016 has given you some excellent advice.
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Nov 30th, 2016, 06:04 PM
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This is interesting to me as I will be there at almost exactly the same time.

There are some direct trains Seville - Granada and vice versa - at least I hope so. It's too early to book yet but I can see them for December and January, but not beyond.

I'm taking note of all other advice. Easter Monday is my big birthday!
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Nov 30th, 2016, 10:40 PM
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I’m very humbled to have received responses so quickly from all of you whom I respect from years of reading your posts.

Robert and kja- I agree, however, I am meeting a friend in Sevilla during my scheduled time there, so that is why I booked Honolulu to Granada, going through Madrid. Living in Hawaii is great. Travelling to Europe is expensive and very exhausting but I am willing to do what it takes.

Christina – Thank you very much for the link to the festivities which will help me to plan my time. Yes, I was planning to buy tickets for both Saturday and Sunday in case I miss my connecting flight and arrive a day later so I can be assured a visit. Appriciate your suggestion about reading material as that is on my list of research I have yet to explore.

Annhig – Your advice about booking the ticket for Monday sounds like a plan!
Bedar – Yes, I plan to avail myself of walking long distances in airports. My last few trips to Europe, especially transitioning through Heathrow, have me making arrangements with the airlines for a wheelchair.

kja – I would like to do both visits, especially after reading so many of your enthusiastic posts in this regard.

Margo – I believe that the train does not go direct at this time. Lucky you to be able to spend your “big birthday” in Spain!

New question – trying to book bus tickets but ALSA will not accept a foreign credit card. Tried 3 times and at the end, declined. Contacted my credit card company who is aware that I will be making foreign purchases and they said there was no attempt made. The ticket is only a little over 5 Euro for my desired time and if I purchase through another option, it is close to 30 Euro. Given the holidays, I would really like to book in advance. Any advice???
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Dec 1st, 2016, 09:48 AM
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I"ve had the same problem on websites in Mexico (bus company) and perhaps a bus company in Spain, also. I can buy tickets from Renfe online, though. My CC company also claimed the charge never was tried.

However, I doubt you could buy a ticket this far in advance no matter what, that's too far away. Usually you can't buy tickets online until at least 3 months in advance, in Mexico, it is even shorter.

I thought you could book that bus ticket through Renfe, actually. You can't book that ticket more than about 2 months in advance. Right now you can't book past Jan 31st on Renfe. At least that is for the route that is a bus to Antequera then train. On Renfe, you can use Paypal if your CC doesn't work.

Otherwise, use www.trainline.eu for lots of countries' train and bus systems. It does sell ALSA tickets and works with American credit cards. Is that the "other option" you say charges 30 euro? It does sometimes, but the price from Alsa ranges from 5 euro to about 30 euro, also, depending on date and time of day and type of ticket. The prices for Alsa on trainline also can be as low as 8 euro (I think they may add a couple euro fee). The buses that go to Plaza de Armas seem to always be about 20-30 euro, the 5 euro ones go to Prado station, I believe, but you can pay up to about 30 euro for them for a refundable/changeable ticket.

I just compared the same date, 1/31/17 and the exact same ALSA ticket from Granada to Seville at 10 am was 5.25 euro on Alsa and 7.85 euro on trainline, for example.

It's up to you, that is a small amt of money to me, I'd want the ticket in hand.
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Dec 1st, 2016, 07:32 PM
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Thank you again, Christina.

I have purchased through Captain Train/Trainline in past years, but did not know they sold bus tickets in Spain. It was very easy since I was already established with them and I was able to purchase my ticket on April 18 at my desired time of 10 am for a little over 6 Euro (it showed up as 7.85 during checkout process, but the final charge was less).

You are so right about wanting to have the ticket in hand and I would have paid more just to have the guarantee that I could get this date/time
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Dec 1st, 2016, 07:48 PM
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kja
 
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I'm glad my enthusiasm for seeing the Alhambra during both day and night has come through and hope you are able to do so!
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