Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page >

Madrid, Seville, Cordoba and Granada in 11 days. What are good countryside day trips in any of these areas?

Madrid, Seville, Cordoba and Granada in 11 days. What are good countryside day trips in any of these areas?

Old Jan 30th, 2006, 03:02 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 85
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Madrid, Seville, Cordoba and Granada in 11 days. What are good countryside day trips in any of these areas?

Hello Everyone,
I have just begun to plan a trip to Spain for early to mid-May. We have purchased our tickets: We are including a stop in NY for 4 days, and then JFK to London (only business class seats I could get with AA miles); returning from Granada to Tampa. I've been searching this board and gleaned some good info so far.

Our itinerary so far is:
Madrid 4 days (3 full days)
Seville 4 days
Granada 3 days

This will be my husband's first trip to Europe (my 5th including a visit to Madrid and Toledo)and he would like to see some countryside. What do you suggest? I was thinking of doing a day trip to Cordoba and possibly one to Puerto de Santa Maria.

I would welcome some input including number of days in each city. I really wanted to see Barcelona and would drop one or two cities if that would be a good tradeoff for the day trips. We do want to see Seville and Granada. Thank you very much for any help you can give me. Gladys
gladfon is offline  
Old Jan 30th, 2006, 03:26 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 6,260
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Ask yourself: what, besides the Alhambra are you planning to do in Granada?

I'm not saying there isn't more to do but IMO it wouldn't take three full days and also IMO, the Alhambra is THE major site in that city.

Cordoba you could do on the way from Madrid to Seville.

BTW, there are relativelt cheap flights Granada-Barcelona and even cheaper flights Barcelona-Madrid.
Intrepid1 is offline  
Old Jan 30th, 2006, 03:34 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,495
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
This is just me, and I'm sure many people on this board will say its too much of a rush, but thats just their opinion!
Spend 2 days in Madrid and spend the 3rd day in El Escorial or Toledo. Spend 1 or 2 days in Granada and go to some of the white villages on the way to Seville. And I would definitely spend half a day in Cordoba.
zwho is offline  
Old Jan 30th, 2006, 03:37 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 12,492
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
there is so much to see around madrid that i would take a day from granada and add it to madrid, allowing yourself to visit toledo one day, and if you feel you have seen enough of madrid, also segovia.

you will get a good feel for the central plains, and lovely mountains in the distance, have th eopportunity to see some of the most impressive cathedrals(toledo) and castles (segovia).

nice souvenirs always in toledo.

stop off in cordoba as suggested on way to sevilla on the AVE.

after sevilla, take a jaunt down to jerez to see the spanish riding school, and tour one of the sherry wine cellars (bodegas).

the off to granada. Carmona outside sevilla is also nice. has a parador up on top of the town.

enjoy granada , the alhambra,and if you still have energy, go down to the beach town of nerja before you venture back to tampa.

i would leave barcelona and southtern france for another trip.

lincasanova is offline  
Old Jan 30th, 2006, 07:55 PM
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 85
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thank you intrepid1, zwho, lincasanova for your responses. I forgot to mention that we will be using buses/trains to get around, so that limits us a bit. I know that we can get a bus from Seville to Jerez; how about Carmona? I have been to Madrid and Toledo, so I think it would be nice to see Segovia. I'm thinking of taking a day from Granada and adding it to Seville so that we can do a daytrip to Cordoba from there. Can we visit Arcos de la Frontera by public transportation? We probably don't have time to visit more than one white village without a car. Thanks again. Please keep the ideas coming.
gladfon is offline  
Old Jan 30th, 2006, 08:35 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,262
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Personally, I also think Granada can be done in a day. We actually made a very long day of it and did both the day and night tour of the Alhambra (I wouldn't waste my time on the night if I were to do it over again). We drove from Granada to Toledo and the drive wasn't particularly interesting, so I'm not recommending it as seeing the countryside.

We enjoyed Cadiz a lot, and so perhaps you might want to go there from Seville. We had a rental car so it is hard for me to imagine where you might want to go on the bus because I am not familiar with those routes. Another 2 towns we liked were Grazalema in the mountains where we spent a day hiking and Ronda which I was wondering about but thought was really spectacular.

Our flight arrived in Madrid in the morning and we took the train to Cordoba (glad we went there) and spent the night. The next day we took the train to Seville. After our stay in Seville we picked up a rental car and were happy with the flexibility it gave us. My suggestion is to consider a car for at least part of your trip.
julies is offline  
Old Jan 31st, 2006, 07:08 PM
  #7  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 85
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Hi Julies,
Thank you for your suggestions. I'm thinking of doing a day trip from Seville to Cordoba (by AVE), bus to Jerez (1.30 hrs.)and Cadiz. We'll see how it goes once we are there. From Madrid possibly a tour to Segovia. I want two nights in Granada because we are returning from there and want time to relax. This will be my husband's first trip abroad and I want him to be relaxed and not have to deal with driving and parking. The idea is to get him hooked on travel so he'll want to travel with me. Until now I've traveled with my sister. You'll see me back on this board asking for hotel and restaurant suggestions. Thanks again. Gladys
gladfon is offline  
Old Jan 31st, 2006, 07:24 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 40
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
We've been to Spain eight or nine times; here are some of our thoughts. Like others have said, the sites in Cordoba can be done easily in one-half day. Similarly, the only site to see in Granada is the Alhambra Palace which takes one day. However, some of our favorites include: Alcala de Henares, Cuenca, Segovia, Salamanca, Almagro, Avila, Burgos, and Seville. In our opinion, the Costa del Sol has been totally spoiled by high-rise condominium complexes, reminding one of eastern coast of Florida; there are lots of billboards in the English language, and the area generally caters to the British tourist industry. Please, consider staying in a couple of the government-run hotels (paradores); they are absolutely fabulous and offer a non-commercial, regional experience in every situation; if you choose to stay in a parador, we guarantee it will be one of your most enduring memories of your trip to Spain. And, if you rent a car, driving in the Spanish countryside and on the toll roads is a breeze; driving in the cities, like any large metropolis in the U.S., offers more challenges--stay alert, watch the signs and avoid communte hours. On an early trip to Spain, some 20+ years ago, it was difficult adjusting to the (late) meal hours, but we learned that one can always get a sandwich or snack (tapas) at a bar, or better yet an ice cream cone (helados) from a street vendor. The term "bar" in Spain is quite different from the typical American "cocktail lounge," so don't be reluctant to venture into a bar there--familes with children are often present. Spain is a wonderful travel experience; English is spoken widely; and, Americans are most welcome.
NorCal is offline  
Old Feb 1st, 2006, 07:23 PM
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 85
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
NorCal:
Thank you for reminding me about the Paradores. Julies and others say they enjoyed Cadiz, so I'm considering the Parador there, or else the one at Arcos de la Frontera.
gladfon is offline  
Old Feb 1st, 2006, 11:05 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 12,492
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
even if you don't stay at them, the paradors are the most welcomed rest stop in spain.
we also stop for coffee and to use the facilities.

they are usually in a unique setting or historical building, so you can't go wrong.

a jaunt up the hill in malaga for the view and terrace at the malaga parador is well worth it.

also, the tomb of queen isabella nd ferdinand and their children in granada cathedral is a moving experience, also to be added to the alhambra "must sees".
lincasanova is offline  
Old Feb 2nd, 2006, 12:50 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 6,260
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Topping this..the parador at the Alhambra is just that: right in the middle of it! A great place to stop off even for a short break, especially if you can have a meal on the terrace overlooking the Generalife.
Intrepid1 is offline  
Old Feb 2nd, 2006, 06:42 PM
  #12  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 85
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thank you Lincasanova and Intrepid1 for your suggestions. I didn't realize that you could just stop by a parador. I particularly would like to stop at the Parador in Granada. Some time ago I had planned a trip to Spain which didn't materialize and was able to reserve a room there. This time I have begun to plan too late to be able to get in there; but I will be able to see it.
gladfon is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
embrad
Europe
9
Mar 3rd, 2014 07:48 AM
travelinB
Europe
17
Apr 29th, 2013 01:51 PM
firsttimetospain
Europe
8
Oct 2nd, 2004 07:41 PM
Steerpike
Europe
10
Sep 29th, 2003 07:05 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Manage Preferences - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information -