Madrid-Albarracin-Barcelona

Apr 26th, 2014, 05:40 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Jul 2012
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Madrid-Albarracin-Barcelona

Hi there,

My husband and I are traveling to Spain at the end of August. We want to visit Albarracin from Madrid, so I'm thinking we will rent a car from the airport. Because our next stop is Barcelona, and the rental car cost seems to increase only marginally to drop the car off there, I'm wondering if it makes sense to just drive to Barcelona from Albarracin, instead of returning to Madrid and then flying or taking the train.

According to googlemaps, it's about 3 1/2 hours to drive from Madrid to Albarracin and then about 4 1/2 hours to Barcelona from there. Has anyone done this drive before? Thoughts/suggestions? Are the roads easy and is the scenery decent? Also looks like there are a few options for routes: which is better? along the coast or north first via Zaragoza?

Many thanks!
ATD138 is offline  
Apr 26th, 2014, 06:16 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: May 2007
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We did this route three years ago. But probably on another route than you have in mind.

First from Madrid to Cuenca is really fast and smooth on motorways only (R3 / A3 / A40).

But from Cuenca we took the (very scenic) probably shortest route across the mountain range into Aragón. It leaves Cuenca as CM-2105 but changes the numbering a few times, but is easy to find/ follow if you familiarize yourself with the map and route first. The road gets a bit narrow the further away from Cuenca you get, but is in excellent shape and has very little traffic. I think we had 10 cars in 2 hours.

From Albarracin we drove further to Teruel, but from there only on motorway (first towards the sea to Castellon and then along the sea on AP-7).

But we would NEVER have done that as a 1-day trip. In fact, we broke up the route into 3 nights (Cuenca, Teruel, and near Tortosa). 3 nights is not necessary, but if you want to have at least some time to see the sights along route (e.g. Cuenca, the Enchanted Forest near Cuenca, several miradores, the historic town of Teruel with its mudejar towers..) you cannot do that route with less than one night somewhere in the middle, IMO.

By the way, we picked up the car at a city location somewhat East of Retiro but still in 2 minutes walking distance from the Metro. And from there we were on the Eastbound R3 in no time on easy to navigate wide city streets. You may lose more time going to the airport, finding the rental car desk, maybe get shuttled to an off-AP location, etc..
Cowboy1968 is offline  
Apr 26th, 2014, 06:18 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: May 2007
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P.S. When calculating the budget, you should do your routing on viamichelin.com as you also get the motorway tolls calculated there. AP-7 along the Med and the C motorways into Barcelona proper are quite heavily tolled.
Cowboy1968 is offline  
Apr 26th, 2014, 10:10 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
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I'd come to Valencia after that Teruel/Albarracin trip ( also stop at Mora de Rubielos along the way to Valencia .. you won´t be disappointed. sweet town you may even want to sleep in if you haven´t slept in Albarracin). Then visit Valencia but leave car HERE and train to Barcelona.. UNLESS you will use the car to see Peñiscola and Tarragona on the way to Barcelona.
lincasanova is offline  
Apr 27th, 2014, 04:49 PM
  #5  
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Join Date: Jul 2012
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Thanks again to all.

It looks like doing this drive will add approximately $300 to our transportation costs, considering the cost of the rental, gas, and tolls. So now my question is: is Albarracin worth it? Our other option would be to just stay in Madrid (we've been there before, which is why we don't feel the need to actually stay there)and do a day trip to Salamanca (which we've never been to before) via train/bus (which seems easier via public transportation than Albarracin).

So...for those who have been to both Albarracin and Salamanca: is Albarracin (and the area) worth the added cost and trouble of driving? Or would Salamanca be an interesting enough day-trip from Madrid?

Thanks again!
ATD138 is offline  
Apr 28th, 2014, 05:21 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
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If you haven´t been to Segovia, Avila and Salamanca.. you have plenty to do near Madrid including beautiful Pedraza.
lincasanova is offline  
May 1st, 2014, 04:38 AM
  #7  
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Thanks for the advice! I think instead of doing the drive to Albarracin we're going to instead use public transportation to visit Segovia and Salamanca from Madrid because it seems a bit easier, closer, cheaper. My thought is to head straight to Segovia after we land in Madrid, check out Segovia for the day, and then head to Salamanca where we will spend the night (and then have the rest of the following day). Does this seem doable via public transportation? And is it sufficient time in each place (most of one day in each)? My only concern with doing this via public transport and without having a home base in Madrid is what to do with our luggage. Does anyone know of luggage storage in Segovia?

Thanks again!
ATD138 is offline  
May 1st, 2014, 04:57 AM
  #8  
 
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Are you arriving from the US? If so, I would stay in Segovia for the first night. By time you land, get your luggage, get to Segovia, etc, you may be pretty tired. Segovia has a nice central plaza and is lovely for walking.

You have been to Madrid before. Did you go to Toledo on prior trips? If not, it would be at the top of my list of places to see near Madrid.
Sassafrass is offline  
May 1st, 2014, 06:26 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
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sleep in Segovia.. I agree. Too much traveling for one day. It will be lovely at night, aqueduct and castle lit up.. and then get an early start the next day. I'd also sleep in Salamanca, perhaps making a stop in Avila if you have never been there.
lincasanova is offline  

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