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Madrid, Barcelona Airport Question and Trip Planning

Madrid, Barcelona Airport Question and Trip Planning

Old Mar 9th, 2009, 03:28 PM
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Madrid, Barcelona Airport Question and Trip Planning

Hi everyone,

My husband and I are in the initial phases of planning our first to Spain for 10 days in mid-late May. We are in our early 30's, love art, architecture and food. I have been scouring the boards and searching and am a bit overwhelmed by all of the information.

Is it better to fly into Madrid or Barcelona? Are there advantages to either airport? We plan on visiting both cities and the price is the same, but unfortunately the deal doesn't allow for flying in one city and out the other. I need to book the ticket by tomorrow, so any advice would be appreciated.

We would like to see Madrid, Barcelona, and maybe some side trips which I haven't really looked into yet (Seville or Granada or Rhonda? Costa del sol). We don't want it to be a hectic trip, but we want to explore and take in the cities. I will probably be posting more questions as I research more.

Many thanks,
~apple
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Old Mar 9th, 2009, 03:56 PM
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Where are you flying from? If the UK then there are tons of options for flying into Madrid and out of Barcelona. If you are flying from the states into Madrid check into an open jaw ticket - prices should be similar.

My flight is into Madrid and out of Malaga - no Barcelona this time. I have more time so my itinerary is based in Madrid, side trips to Toledo and Segovia then to Seville, hire a car and drive the coast to Malaga. I wanted to visit Granada and the Alhambra hence the decision to fly out of Malaga back to London for a few days before heading home.

There is an excellent trip report by indiancouple tagged spain, who really detailed their trip. I suggest that you search it - it has great info and helped me in planning my trip.
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Old Mar 9th, 2009, 05:11 PM
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Oh wow, open jaw! Thanks for the suggestion. So I guess now we can fly into Barcelona and out of Madrid or vice versa. That makes it a lot easier then . . . Will look into that trip report. Thanks, denise.
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Old Mar 9th, 2009, 06:42 PM
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This link will take you to first page of all Spain's trip reports. You can click on the Next link for more...
http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...tripreport.cfm
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Old Mar 10th, 2009, 08:35 AM
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We will have 10 full days in spain. Starting to look at sample itineraries: If we want to see madrid, granada and barcelona, would it be better to do the reverse order of this?
Day 1 - 4 Madrid
Day 4-6 Granada
Day 6-10 Barcelona
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Old Mar 12th, 2009, 01:55 PM
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We've booked our tix! We're flying into Madrid and out of Barcelona with 10 full days.

Question regarding staying in Barcelona - would you recommend the Eixample area near the University of Barcelona or the Born area? Which one is safer?

1) The Arc de Triomf apartments are located in Calle Ausias Marc with Calle Napols, next to Passeig Sant Joan, just 15 minutes on foot from Plaza Catalunya and just 2 blocks from the nearest metro/train station.

2) The Eixample Apartments are located in Consell de Cent St with Enric Granados Street, in the heart of the Eixample Area. The apartment is three blocks away from Passeig de Gracia.

3) The Born one is by Comerc and C. de Mar, 50 meters away from the Picasso Museum. Someone mentioned to me Born is not as safe at night since its in las ramblas? Any other opinions?

Thanks!
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Old Mar 12th, 2009, 02:17 PM
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Born area is great especially if you are in your 30's. We stayed last year in a Habitat Apartment and we are in our 50's. Great restaurants, stores and a younger hipper flavor than the rest of the city. Kind of like Soho compared to upper east side. We are going back to same apartment this May. I would not stay in any other area.
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Old Mar 12th, 2009, 04:53 PM
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Hi Macdogmom, thanks for the reply. I'm looking at the Habitat Apartments as well. They look really Which one are you staying in? So you think it's a safe area?
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Old Mar 12th, 2009, 05:19 PM
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also, macdogmom, did they charge you a cleaning fee? thanks!
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Old Mar 14th, 2009, 07:26 AM
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We prefer the Eixample area when staying in Barcelona. Of the three areas you mention, the Eixample one is probably safest at night, and closest to great restaurants and shopping, but quieter. It's also in the heart of the "Gaixample" if that has any bearing in your decision.

I'd also suggest looking into BCN hotels, as many are now priced very attractively, often less than apartments.
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Old Mar 16th, 2009, 01:14 PM
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Hi all,

With 10 full days in Spain, would you please help me decide how many days in each city? This is our first visit to Spain and I'm not sure how much time to allot for each city. We are flying into Madrid and out of Barcelona. We want to visit Granada.
4 nights Madrid
2 nights Granada
4 nights Barcelona?

or 3, 3, 3 or please help!
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Old Mar 17th, 2009, 11:44 AM
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so i was leaning torwards
3 nights madrid
3 nights granada
4 nights barcelona

however, a friend suggested:
3 nights madrid
2 nights seville
2 nights granada
3 nights barcelona

it got me thinking, but is this too much moving around? please help!!

also for hotels:
granada - deciding between alhambra palace (standard room inc breakfast about 155 Eur) and carmen special double room (120 Eur). which would you recommend?

barcelona - deciding between hotel murmuri (147EUR inc breakfast) and villa emilia (123 EUR). i think villa emilia might be a bit farther?

any opinions or suggestions are really appreciated. thanks!
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Old Mar 17th, 2009, 03:16 PM
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For Barcelona, I checked a few mid-range hotels for 3 nights (May 25-28) just for sample rates:

Hotel Pulitzer €109 (not incl. IVA, no breakfast)
Hotel Inglaterra €138.58 (incl. IVA, breakfast)
Hotel Jazz €134.82 (incl. IVA, no breakfast)
Granados 83 €130 (not incl IVA, no breakfast)

Of these I'd recommend the Pulitzer for its great location and chic interiors. The rate is also very good for this 4-star property.
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Old Mar 17th, 2009, 04:02 PM
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I am your age and didn't love staying in the Exaimple area. It is really quiet at night. It was very cool to be surrounded by the great Gaudi architecture but I felt we missed out a bit on the real vibe of the city. And I wasn't interested in super luxury designer shopping in that area either. We had 2 weeks and did 5 days in Madrid, 3 in Seville and 5 in Barcelona (with a day trip to Sitges). I was surprised to love Madrid and also loved Seville which I thought I would. I liked Barcelona but not as much as the other two. I really like big cities though. I would definitely not stay in 4 places in 10 nights - too much moving. Also, we went in May and it was HOT everywhere so be prepared to take a siesta.
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Old Mar 17th, 2009, 07:05 PM
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Sorry, I didn't get back to you sooner. In the born area we are staying here--http://www.habitatapartments.com/princesa3.htm
Never for a moment felt unsafe. Probably a lot less crime than most american cities and towns. We didn't have to pay a cleaning fee--just paid when we met them at the hotel. They took credit cards, but couldn't pay beforehand.
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Old Mar 17th, 2009, 07:08 PM
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Also we were in Barcelona last mid-May and did not have real hot weather. Probably in the 70's during the day.
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Old Mar 17th, 2009, 07:16 PM
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appletea, I did exactly what your friend suggested - it definitely was a lot of moving around but it was the trip I wanted to do and I enjoyed it.....it's really up to you how much moving around you feel up to. But personally I would not stay in Granada three nights as per your original idea - I'd rather stay the extra night in Madrid. But I had rain in Granada - not when I was at the Alhambra though - so maybe that influenced me....I really liked Sevilla and would have liked more time there....
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Old Mar 20th, 2009, 08:18 AM
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hi mara,
did you train from madrid to seville and then train again from seville to granada? i think i want to visit seville, but i also don't really want to move around too much. very difficult to decide. it's our first trip to spain.

any other opinions from anyone? thanks.
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Old Mar 20th, 2009, 09:58 AM
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HiAppletea,

It's a balance between seeing more places, and relaxing in fewer places, isn't it? I have the same problem. I think on a "survey" trip like this, I personally would lean towards including Seville, using exactly the itinerary your friend suggested. But that's just me.

Would you fly from Granada to Barcelona? There are good cheap flights on Vueling, and your transportation would then be pretty efficient between all of your cities. The AVE train from Madrid to Seville is less than 3 hours, and I think Seville to Granada is about the same although many people here seem to recommend the bus as a good option too. So for instance, you could leave Madrid in the morning of your 4th day and be in Seville by noon, giving you all the rest of that day as well as the next. And leave Granada on an afternoon flight so that you have the morning to continue exploring Granada.

Others will think it's too rushed though.
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Old Mar 20th, 2009, 10:27 AM
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appletea, Yes I took the train from Madrid to Seville. From Seville I took a train to Cordoba and stayed there a couple of hours, then I took the bus to Granada......most of this thanks to info from yk's trip report.....which I think is linked in a post above...
I flew from Granada to Barcelona on Spanair...
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