Madrid & Seville Question? (please)

Old Jul 22nd, 2009, 10:50 AM
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Madrid & Seville Question? (please)

Please help with Spain trip for wife's birthday.
Financially and time wise; Madrid & Seville seems to work for us. I do like to split trips between 2 locations when possible. I get to see more and stops me from getting bored.
I was thinking of 3 nights in each location..My question would be: If this was your choice would you add or reduce a night in either city? Would you scrap the whole itinerary and just go to Barcelona?
I hear mixed about Madrid so wondering if 4 nights in Seville would be a better choice? Blah blah, ramble ramble, having a hard time making a decision..your input would be greatly appreciated!
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Old Jul 22nd, 2009, 11:17 AM
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Have not yet been to Barcelona, but we enjoyed Madrid and Seville very much. Your split of time in each seems about right, as there is quite a bit to do in and around each. I'd devote one of the days in Madrid to a day trip to Toledo. If I had a couple more days, I'd see more of Andalucia--Cordoba and Granada.
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Old Jul 22nd, 2009, 11:28 AM
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I haven't been to Barcelona, either, but loved both Seville and Madrid so would not change anything from 3 nights in each. Why would you scrap the whole thing and just go to Barcelona? I hear a lot of mixed reviews about it, and it's not the same as rest of Spain.
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Old Jul 22nd, 2009, 11:34 AM
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They are 3 very different cities, so it really depends on your wife's interests, if this is a birthday present for her. Also, what time of year are you going? That makes a difference too.

Madrid is best for people who enjoy museums featuring great paintings, people who enjoy glamorous late night dining and cafe/bar lounging, shopping, and have yearned to see Toledo or Segovia (easy day trips from Madrid).

Sevilla is very Southern, very Catholic spanish city, with lots of tiles, flamenco, a very atmospheric romantic old quarter, and astonishing cathedral. It's an easy day trip to Cordoba, with its fantastic, unique antique mosque, one of the great monuments of Europe.

Barcelona is Gaudi, gaudy, trendy and has a lot of interesting modernismo and modern art (Picasso museum, Miro, Barcelona chairs...) and is a shopper's and foodie destination (although I think the food is better in Madrid). It's Catalonian and defiantly not-Spanish, and it's got a lot of British holidaymakers in its most-touristed spots.

Sevilla and Madrid are VERY hot in hot months. Barcelona has more charm I think when you can eat outdoors and enjoy the maritime setting.
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Old Jul 22nd, 2009, 11:37 AM
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I should add that Barcelona has an extensive "gothic" quarter, really an old medieval town plan in one part of it, well preserved, but something of a jumble of too many tourists and too many pickpockets and a good number of historic buildings and funky stores and destination restaurants.
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Old Jul 22nd, 2009, 12:40 PM
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What is your wife interested in? If everyone's Madrid descriptions don't float your boat, then skip it. That's what I decided to do for my upcoming trip, despite the fact that we're flying into it. Madrid will wait till next time, there's too much else that I'd rather see in other parts of Andalucia this time.

Depending on what you're interested in, of course, you could fly into Madrid and take a train immediately to Seville.
Stay there 3 days, with a daytrip to Cordoba. Go to Granada for 2 days (many folks will tell you not to miss the Alhambra, but, again, it depends on your interests), then back to Madrid. Spend part of a day there and fly home the next day.

Or, spend the entire time in Barcelona.

Or, spend the entire time in Madrid, with daytrips elsewhere.

If you're coming from NJ, remember that your first day may be quite hazy because of jetlag, so that will leave you with only 5 "real" full days.
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Old Jul 22nd, 2009, 02:47 PM
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>

You can get from Madrid to Sevilla (AVE) in 2.5 hours. But IMHO, you really need 4-days in Madrid, assuming that you're going to daytrip to Toledo or Segovia one of those days.

Sevilla can be Hot as the hinges of hell: Our last trip there, we went out and did some early AM Touring; dined and went back to the Hotel where we could 'hang out' at the pool and nap in our air conditioned room until about 7PM. Then we went out again to enjoy some early nightlife.

Barcelona is nice! It doesn't get as hot as Sevilla or Madrid and it can be a lively stop. What turns me off are the gypsies
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Old Jul 22nd, 2009, 02:58 PM
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Madrid is a big busy city. Barcelona is much the same imho. Sevilla however, 'feels' much smaller because you will probably spend all of your time in the old quarter.

Your 3/3 split should be fine.

Ian
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Old Jul 22nd, 2009, 03:15 PM
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Have not been to Barcelona, but loved Madrid and Seville (and Granada). Whether or not you choose to spend time in Madrid you really must look into spending some time in Segovia, an easy day trip from Madrid, but you really (IMHO) want to devote a couple of days and nights to it. It is lovely and welcoming and very pedestrian friendly.
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Old Jul 23rd, 2009, 04:01 AM
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Every last one of ou have made me feel better..I love the answer that says; yes, no and whatever..jaja lol

For now Seville is a keeper..I might go somehwere for a night and then onto to Madrid before going home...So?????

1. 1 night...no car near Seville or Madrid..pick a town
can I get to Granada or Segovia from my 2 cities?


Hay, I love you guys!!
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Old Jul 23rd, 2009, 04:07 AM
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We recently spent a week in Madrid, with two day trips to Segovia and Toledo. Originally we thought of going to Andalucia (Seville, Granada, Cordoba) as well, but our planned 2 week trip turned into a one week trip only and I did not want to shortchange myself.

I did not think that one week only was enough time to really see all that we wanted in Andalucia.

Therefore, personally I would skip Madrid altogether and spent the 6-7 days in Andalucia itself. There is more than enough to see there in many weeks so I am sure you will find what to do. Madrid was not my favorite place at all. It is a big city but very clean and people were friendly and helpful. I just personally prefer the smaller quainter places.

Barcelona is also nice, but again a bit city. I have also been there on a different trip. I was happy to have seen both these cities but they are not high up there on my list and surely not a place where I would prefer to visit on a return trip.

As others have also said before, it also depends on your personal preferences and your wife's as this is a gift for her.

Good luck and have good and safe travels wherever you decide!!
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Old Jul 23rd, 2009, 04:32 AM
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So what do you think about 3 night Seville, 2 nights Granada or Cordoba and 1 night in Madrid? Can this be all done by train?
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Old Jul 23rd, 2009, 05:06 AM
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Not easily. Were it me, I would do Cordoba as a day trip from Sevilla, rent a car, do two night in Granada (stay at the parador if you can, and even if staying elsewhere, see the Alhambra at night as well as during the day), fly to Madrid.

It's still going to be a jam-packed rush, and really not much more time in Madrid than perhaps the Prado if your wife likes paintings (or the palace if she still wants more tiles) and a great, great dinner in Madrid. I would focus on the seeing one sight in each place comprehensively, and then otherwise relaxing and enjoying the food and each other's company. Packing in a lot of sightseeing might crush the glamorous fun of skipping across Spain's highlights for a week.
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Old Jul 23rd, 2009, 01:42 PM
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How does this sound, its weak on what to see in Sevilla though so you'll have to add your own ideas or recommendations of others.

Takes in:
Madrid, Cordoba, Granada and Sevilla in 7 / 8 days


Arrive US early am Day 1
Hotel in Madrid city center. Check in, go and have tapas for lunch in Plaza Mayor.
Take a siesta until 1800-1900
Do the bus tour thing between 1900 and 2200
2200 Have an evening in Plaza santa ana
0100 Bed

Day 2
All day Excursion to.... Segovia and / or Valle de los Caidos (its on the route)

Day 3
Madrid to Cordoba mid morning train or bus Useful directions: www.madrid-guide-spain.com/madrid-cordoba.html
Lunch: Salmorejo in the old quater
Afternoon and on to the evening: Mezquita and Dinner in the Jewish quater

Day 4
Morning Royal stables
Midday train to Granada
Evening visit: Ahlambra, Moorish tapas zone

Day 5
Morning: leisurely breakfast and explore Granada until train at Midday to Sevilla
Afternoon: Sevilla

Day 6:
Sevilla
Evening train to Madrid

Day 7
Daytime explore Madrid: Royal palace, Art museums, Football stadium & museum and the Plaza de Toros.
Evening: Posh dinner to round off the holiday

Day 8: am flight departs
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Old Jul 23rd, 2009, 02:32 PM
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anguspm-
Way too much moving around in such a short time. 1 night in Cordoba, Sevilla, Granada each and all back to back. You won't see a thing except train stations, highways and just run through the sights.

johnb-
If you're thinking of Madrid and Sevilla with one night elsewhere that's easy via public transportation Cordoba is easier than Granada since it's on the Ave line between Sevilla and Madrid. I can't seem to find exactly how much time you have but it appears to be a week. If so, I'd limit myself to 2 home bases and do daytrips from there. This gives you the most flexibility and less rushing around and unpacking/repacking.
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Old Jul 23rd, 2009, 02:43 PM
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Madrid has world class museums and is an excellent hub to visit the many worthwhile towns that surround it. Sevilla is beautiful and comes closer to the stereotype that is southern Spain. Barcelona has a joi de vivre that is its own with a sense of style and design that is unqiue.

It all depends what you are seeking.

I must say that anguspm itinerary sounds more what they call in football training a "two a day" with its activity and movement being its reward especially day seven.
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Old Jul 23rd, 2009, 03:25 PM
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There are recommendations to do Cordoba as a day trip from Seville -- is it also possible to visit as a "half" day on the way from Madrid to Seville (i.e. not staying a night in Cordoba)? Taking a morning train from Madrid to Cordoba, visit the Mezquita, then take a later train that day to Seville? Or is there way more to see/do in Cordoba?

Or for johnb, he'll probably start in Madrid, then AVE to Cordoba and AVE to Seville? It seems to do Cordoba as a day trip from Seville is backtracking... ?
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Old Jul 23rd, 2009, 03:48 PM
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did i say i love you guys?
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Old Jul 23rd, 2009, 03:52 PM
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You could take us instead of your wife.
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Old Jul 23rd, 2009, 03:52 PM
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Since you arrive & depart Madrid, I would structure it this way:

Day 1 arr Madrid – train or fly to Sevilla – plan nothing but relaxing & light wandering
Day 2 Sevilla
Day 3 Cordoba daytrip (or better yet, stay in Sevilla & relax a bit)
Day 4 Drive/bus/train to Granada – afternoon Alhambra visit
Day 5 Drive/bus/fly/train to Madrid
Day 6 Madrid

Still a very busy itinerary.

Ian
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