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Itinerary Feedback on Madrid & Andalucia (9 nights End of October)

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Itinerary Feedback on Madrid & Andalucia (9 nights End of October)

Old Oct 10th, 2011, 01:12 PM
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Itinerary Feedback on Madrid & Andalucia (9 nights End of October)

Hello,

We would like to go to Spain (in 10 days) for 9 nights. Because of our work, we’re unfortunately not flexible on days.

We usually like to take our time but understand it won't be the case here. We’ve never been to Spain so this would be sort of an introductory tour.

Can anyone please comment in this itinerary? Is it feasible?

Day 2 : Land in Madrid (4 nights) in the a.m. Tour Madrid
Day 3 : Madrid – Prado?
Day 4 : Day-Trip to Toledo
Day 5 : Madrid – El Escorial or Attractions Madrid?
Day 6 : Trsf to Grenada (2 nights)
Day 7 : Grenada
Day 8 : Trsf to Seville (by Bus ?) (3 nights)
Day 9 : Side Trip to Cordoba
Day 10 : Seville
Day 11 : Fly from Seville

Should I cut Madrid 1 night and add it in Andalucia?

Can we manage without a car? I guess we would take the train from Madrid to Grenada. I wanted to take the AVE to Seville but don’t think it works with our itinerary.

Should we take the side-trips to Toledo & Cordoba on our own (by train) or take a tour?

Thanks a lot in advance
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Old Oct 10th, 2011, 02:13 PM
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That's a lot to fit in, in a very short time period, but we're doing a similar trip. We have 10 nights, though our arrival day is very short. Here's what we're doing:

Fly into Madrid, pick up rental car, drive to Toledo where we spend the night.

Then drive to Granada, 2 nights.

Drive to Cordoba, drop the rental car on arrival, spend 2 nights.

Train to Sevilla, 2 nights.

Train to Madrid, 3 nights.

I really wanted to spent two nights in Cordoba, because I'm very interested in the history of the Moorish period in Spain; I don't know if most people would make that choice.

We don't usually do such rushed trips, but my other two travel companions really wanted to visit all of those places.

We rented a car for the first portion of the trip because to take the train to Toledo, we'd have to get into downtown Madrid from the airport. And there's no high-speed train to Granada, so we weren't saving any time by taking the train. And I don't mind driving (and DH doesn't mind navigeting). It will also be easier to get to Cordoba from Granada by car. In retrospect, I think we should have gone to Sevilla, then Cordoba, but I didn't realize until I booked train tickets (from Sevilla to Madrid) that the train route from Sevilla to Madrid goes through Cordoba.

Plenty of people do this entire trip by train, and that's the advice that I was given for our trip. But for us, and our time constraints, a car for a portion worked better for us.

As we haven't been to any of these places yet, I can't tell you about cutting time from Madrid, and we definitely aren't taking any side trips from Madrid. But we did decide to spend only 3 nights in Madrid (2 1/2 days), so we could spend more time in Andalusia. We're going to Madrid primarily for the museums; that's our preference.
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Old Oct 10th, 2011, 03:05 PM
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I think your itinerary looks quite nice for 9 nights. You've well planned open jaw flights so you don't have to back track. I would plan a daytrip to Segovia from Madrid versus El Escorial, but you may only have time for one daytrip from Madrid and I'd definately make this Toledo.

Personally I'd take a day from Madrid and add to Sevilla. But this is just my personal choice as I prefer Sevilla over Madrid.

I would definately not rent a car. You can take a train OR bus from Madrid to Granada and then Granada to Sevilla. In the cities a car will be more of a burden than a blessing. The benefit of having a car is to explore along the way but you really don't have enough time for exploring anyways with 9 days. You can get a taste of the train system on your daytrip from Sevilla to Cordoba.

I'd also not do a tour for Toledo or Cordoba. They are both easy to do on your own. But it's another personal choice. I am not a tour person.
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Old Oct 10th, 2011, 03:17 PM
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I'd also take a day from Madrid and add it to Sevilla. But definitely go to the Prado while in Madrid. It's my favorite art museum.

I did a similar trip and got around very well without a car. I got around fine in Cordoba without a tour. I had planned on visiting Toledo on my own, and it looked easy, but unfortunately didn't make it there.
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Old Oct 10th, 2011, 07:35 PM
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You can do the Prado and the Reina Sofia on the same day, they're not far from each other - just opposite directions out of the same Metro station. Reina Sofia has a plethora of Dali paintings, Picasso's Guernica, and a lot of modern art (if you're into that).

I'd take trains as much as possible. Bloody Spaniards drive like Europeans and driving in Spanish cities is a skill best learned when not on the go.

Have you checked Vueling.com or another discount airline for flights from Madrid to Granada and Granada to Seville?
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Old Oct 11th, 2011, 12:50 AM
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Sounds like a really good plan, if you know a bit about what you are up for this is an easy walk with no stress. Both Granada, Sevilla, Córdoba and Madrid would give you lots of possibilities to dig into loads of history and especially the Moorish past. And all cities are fabulous sights, restaurants, cafés, tapas bars, shopping and nightlife. Very diverse.

Madrid, Córdoba and Sevilla are on the high speed AVE/AVANT train network. Half the time of driving. From city center to city center in no time and affordable tickets on renfe.com. If bought on the train stations, the price is more than the double. Living hell to drive in Sevilla, Córdoba and Granada.
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Old Oct 16th, 2011, 02:17 PM
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Thanks a lot for your feedback!

We added one night to Sevilla and took it from Madrid.

Would you take the bus or train from Sevilla to Grenada and Grenada to Sevilla? Seems a close call.

Would it possible to do a day-trip from Sevilla or Grenada to Ronda or the white villages or is it a bad idea?
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Old Oct 16th, 2011, 10:58 PM
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Bus or train betweeen Sevilla and Granada would be very much the same.

Bus from Sevilla to Ronda in some 2 hours, 11€. Departs every day at 10, 15.30 and 18h.
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Old Oct 16th, 2011, 11:28 PM
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It would be easier (more frequent connections and less travel time) to day trip to Arcos vs Ronda. However with one day already set aside for a day trip to Cordoba you may not end up wanting to do 2 day trips.

The previous poster is correct - the bus and train from Granada to Sevilla take approx 3 hours so it doesn't really matter which one you decide to take.
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