Nice or Menorca

Old Jan 23rd, 2022, 05:41 PM
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Nice or Menorca

We are spending the last week in March in Barcelona and would like to spend 2-3 days in either Nice or Menorca (Sunday-Wednesday). Menorca would likely be more relaxing while Nice area would likely have more to see/do (we would rent a car). Traveling with wife and 17-year old daughter, we typically lean more towards site seeing. Any advice would be much appreciated.
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Old Jan 24th, 2022, 01:20 AM
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Why just Menorca or Nice? There are so many places of easy reach by fast train from Barcelona which offer much more to see than those you mentioned.
Check Tarragona (Roman excavations), Valencia, Madrid, Perpignan/Salses, Carcassonne, Grotte des Demoiselles, Nimes, Arles, Avignon, Grottes de Chauvet, Orange, Aix-en-Provence.............
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Old Jan 24th, 2022, 02:47 PM
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Originally Posted by neckervd View Post
Why just Menorca or Nice? There are so many places of easy reach by fast train from Barcelona which offer much more to see than those you mentioned.
Check Tarragona (Roman excavations), Valencia, Madrid, Perpignan/Salses, Carcassonne, Grotte des Demoiselles, Nimes, Arles, Avignon, Grottes de Chauvet, Orange, Aix-en-Provence.............
Flights to Menorca and Nice were both less than an hour. I had looked into hitting some of the northern towns on the way to Montpellier or Marseille but the travel time (high-speed train 7 hours each way, 4 hours by car) cut into too much of the time in Barcelona. A car rental to the southern towns is the next option in addition to Menorca/Nice. I'll do a bit more research in that area.
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Old Jan 24th, 2022, 09:23 PM
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I haven’t been to Menorca but I love Nice. And you can easily take the train to many other towns up and down the coast.

March will be too cool for the beach though; it sure about Menorca.
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Old Jan 25th, 2022, 12:03 AM
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I'm not sure what you're hoping to do on a Mediterranean island tail end of the winter. For that matter no idea why you'd want a car in Nice. The local trains will be a lot easier to deal with. No parking for one thing.

If those are your options I think Nice wins easily.
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Old Jan 25th, 2022, 02:35 AM
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"I had looked into hitting some of the northern towns on the way to Montpellier or Marseille but the travel time (high-speed train 7 hours each way,"
Barcelona Sants dp 8.15 - Carcassonne ar 11.40: 3 hrs 25 min by train
Barcelona Sants dp 8.15 - Nimes ar 11.55: 3 hrs 40 min by train
Barcelona Sants dp 9.09 - aeroport BCN 9.26/10.50 - EASYJET - NCE 12.15/12.40 - tram 2 - Nice Ville 13.10: 4 hrs 01 min by plane
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Old Jan 25th, 2022, 04:28 AM
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Assuming that you will be flying home at the end of your stay in Nice/Menorca/whereever, where will you flying out of, jaymeyer? BCN or somewhere else?

That seems to be a pretty vital factor to take into account.
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Old Jan 25th, 2022, 05:58 AM
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Originally Posted by neckervd View Post
"I had looked into hitting some of the northern towns on the way to Montpellier or Marseille but the travel time (high-speed train 7 hours each way,"
Barcelona Sants dp 8.15 - Carcassonne ar 11.40: 3 hrs 25 min by train
Barcelona Sants dp 8.15 - Nimes ar 11.55: 3 hrs 40 min by train
Barcelona Sants dp 9.09 - aeroport BCN 9.26/10.50 - EASYJET - NCE 12.15/12.40 - tram 2 - Nice Ville 13.10: 4 hrs 01 min by plane
Flight to Nice is 1 hour, 20 minutes with a 20-minute taxi to the airport. Taking a train to one of these cities on the way to Montpellier would not be practical with luggage, so a car rental would likely be more logical. I do think Carcassonne looks pretty cool and did not come up in my original research of the area, I'll take another look.
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Old Jan 25th, 2022, 06:10 AM
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Originally Posted by annhig View Post
Assuming that you will be flying home at the end of your stay in Nice/Menorca/whereever, where will you flying out of, jaymeyer? BCN or somewhere else?

That seems to be a pretty vital factor to take into account.
Our flight is a round trip to BCN is from Sunday morning (landing) to Sunday morning (departure). Originally, I was thinking about jumping on a flight to Nice after landing in BCN, but I've read that restaurants in the Nice area are mostly closed Sundays/Mondays. So the better plan would be to fly to Nice mid-week and back to BCN Saturday night, then stay by the airport to make it easier for a 6 am flight the following Sunday morning.

Based on the further research and feedback on here, I think I'm going to take Menorca off the table and either fly to Nice for a few days or rent a car and spend the additional time near the coast north/south of Barcelona.
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Old Jan 25th, 2022, 08:05 AM
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Ok, with flights into and out of BCN your original instinct was probably the best one - standard advice here is always to put your time in your departure city at the end of the trip. That said with flights being cancelled all over the place and the time it takes out of the day to get to the airport, go through the extra security, get to your new accommodation, etc etc. given the length of your trip IMHO hiring a car and exploring that area of Spain is a much better idea than flying anywhere in such a short trip.

I think if you do some research you'll find some very interesting places to explore quite close to BCM - Girona would make a good base for trips into the Pyrenees for example.
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Old Jan 25th, 2022, 08:24 PM
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There are a number of restaurants closed on Sunday and/or Monday in Nice, but not most, even in the off-season. Some well known tasty ones are, however. If you go this route, a car isn't necessary but there will be fewer traffic concerns.

Carcassonne is nice, but is very limited. If you do go that way, I recommend Narbonne as a stop. But you could simply stay in Catalonia as mentioned.
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Old Jan 25th, 2022, 10:48 PM
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Originally Posted by jaymeyer20 View Post
Based on the further research and feedback on here, I think I'm going to take Menorca off the table and either fly to Nice for a few days or rent a car and spend the additional time near the coast north/south of Barcelona.
Great idea! Depending on the time you are in Spain, you may see some fantastic celebrations. Spain does love their religious holidays. Personally, I'm a HUGE fan of Valencia. If the weather is warm enough, rent bikes for two days and check out the place! The park and the science center are worth seeing alone but Valencia has a lovely old town and a very nice beach area...all connected with good bike paths.
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Old Jan 26th, 2022, 04:19 AM
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North of Barcelona is lovely. We visit Dali's home and enjoyed it. Are you visiting the Alhambra? We flew to Granada and it was an easy flight.
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Old Jan 26th, 2022, 04:56 AM
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If you end up in Nice, no car is needed. There is excellent bus and train service up and down the coast.
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Old Jan 26th, 2022, 06:51 AM
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Both places have plenty to do in such short a stay. I would choose Menorca, because Nice falls in a path that I am more likely to follow again. But if you are a frequent traveler to Spain, maybe you will have lots of opportunity to see Menorca another time?
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Old Jan 26th, 2022, 07:17 AM
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"Flight to Nice is 1 hour, 20 minutes with a 20-minute taxi to the airport. Taking a train to one of these cities on the way to Montpellier would not be practical with luggage,"
If you travel with more than hand luggage, you will have to arrive at BCN AT LEAST 1 hr ahead. That means: train or taxi to the airport 20 min, Check in etc. 1 hr, flight 1 hr 25 min, luggage retrieval etc. 30 min, tram/taxi to Nice 30 min: total at least 3 hrs 45 min.
I cannot imagine you to take a lot of luggage to Nimes or so as you would backtrack to Barcelona 1 or 2 days after. You would certainly deposit all the luggage you wouldn't need at Nimes at your Barcelona hotel reception or in a Sants railway station luggage locker.
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Old Feb 1st, 2022, 11:34 AM
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Thank you for everyone's input! We decided to spend 3 days in the area around Nice since we've never been to that area.
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