Possible Spain trip - what would you do?

Jun 27th, 2013, 02:13 PM
  #21  
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We don't really eat fried food in general... I will have to look into the food...and pick places...she is a "pescatarian"... eats a lot of fish and veggies but no meat...

Sharona I have read that Costa del Sol is full of British Tourists...
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Jun 27th, 2013, 03:00 PM
  #22  
 
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We spent a month a few years back touring Andalucia and loved every bit of it. Our daughter, a college junior in Alicante at the time, joined us for long weekends. I highly recommend finding a way to Granada. We found Granada, the Alhambra, and our hotel, Carmen de la Alcubilla del Caracol, a highlight in a trip of highlights. The hotel is on a hill just below the Alhambra, making it easy to go back and forth.

We are not "big city" people either, but we all enjoyed our time in Sevilla. We took part in all the sights as well as several flamenco shows, and enjoyed walking around just as much. You can take a day trip to Cordoba, and you should. We spent 2 nights there. I remember the food we had in Cordoba as some of the best the entire trip.

My husband and I were on our own in Ronda, and were not impressed. Perhaps because it was quite cold (late October) and windy, perhaps because I had a recurrance of bronchitis which plagued me the entire trip. We found Grazelima (sp?) far more to our taste. However, it might be a bit too quiet for a 17 year old.

Enjoy your trip!
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Jun 27th, 2013, 04:43 PM
  #23  
 
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In the 13 days (as I figur e you have - you can do either Mardrid and south or Madrid and north.

You seem headed for the south - so I would instead fly into Malaga so you can start you trip in Marbella and relax at the beginning of the trip. Then see what you want in the area and head north to Madrid and fly north from there. This shouldn;t cost any more (multi-destination tickets) and will avoid the waste of an extra day from Madrid.

If you want to spend a day in Morocco I would do a quick tour - to make life simple and spend the bulk of your time in Andalusia. You don;t have much time for that and Madrid and will need to rush major sight in seville, cordoba and granada - esp if yuo want to see any of the smaller towns.

As for food, it's OK most places, good in quite a few, but you need to be selective and and be prepared for olives coming out of your ears I swear every time yuo sit down someone puts a plate of olives in front of you (I don;t care for them) even on a park bench).

And if you are tempted by a change in cuisine - consider very carefully , We tried a highly reco'd chinese restaurant - and it was definitely Spanish version of chinese - not anything like you get in NYC (at least a closer approximation in many places). And I never saw olives in chinese food before.
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Jun 27th, 2013, 05:09 PM
  #24  
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NY - ha! I hate olives but dd and dh like them

There are no direct flights from DFW to Marbella (I think there are from NYC) So we would have to change planes in Madrid - we may take the train straight to Seville from Madrid - it seems to be 2.5 hours? It might be relaxing ?

We are going to focus on the south - no Barcelona on this trip and I am not sure we will spend much time in Madrid...

DD and dh really want to see Morocco so I am seeing what that might look like... I don't read anything good about the day trip to Tangier... I grew up in San Diego and have no interest in seeing a city compared over and over to tijuana.

You are correct - we only have 13 nights - land @ 10:00 am on the 6th and fly home on the 12th.

I have a little time to work it all out... but things do book up fast...
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Jun 27th, 2013, 05:16 PM
  #25  
 
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In Seville, try the convent cookies!

http://www.tripadvisor.com/Travel-g1...ts.Dulces.html

I did this last year in a couple of central Spain towns. And plan to do it again this year in NW Spain... it makes a good office treat and story when you get back. And, I carried some around with me for snacks during the day.
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Jun 27th, 2013, 05:21 PM
  #26  
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That is cool Joan!! I will have to do it!
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Jun 27th, 2013, 07:17 PM
  #27  
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Talked to dh and booked the tickets! I am delighted & DD is now getting excited..we looked online at different images and things to do in Southern Spain

$166.00 - 150,000 miles - 3 round trip tickets non-stop DFW to Madrid! Yippeee!!!

I will start a new thread for the planning
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Jun 27th, 2013, 07:53 PM
  #28  
 
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Why a new thread? There is already so much info on this thread for you and others
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Jun 27th, 2013, 08:05 PM
  #29  
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This will work I just was not sure the title was right for the details of the trip
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Jun 28th, 2013, 02:44 AM
  #30  
 
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I suggest Gibraltar is a waste of time unless you guys have never been to the UK and want a taster. If you go to Morocco (and I would) then fly to Marrakesh (do not catch ferry to Casablanca or Tangier, the movies either were not shot there or they have gone a long way down hill since)

Marrakesh is sort of Arabia light, so while you do have to haggle there is very little pressure to buy or give alms. Hop over to the Africa forum to get some ideas.

Despite the haggling it is very easy to catch the bus from outside the airport to the centre of town and walk around from there. If you need to stay a night, either book into an international hotel or a Kasbar hotel either zone is walkable from the centre.
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Jun 28th, 2013, 03:21 AM
  #31  
 
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We also did a day trip to Granada to tour the Alhambra. It was a long day but doable, especially since you have such nice accommodations awaiting you back in Marbella. >>

if the budget stretches, I'd suggest an over night in Granada, possibly going there straight from Madrid so as to be able to do the night-time tour of the Nasrid palaces, as well as a day-time visit to the Alhambra and Generelife.

I would suggest this:

May 6 - Arrive Madrid - get train to Granada, stay night. Do night-time tour and then tour the next day. Drive to Cordoba, stay Cordoba.

May 7 - explore Cordoba. pm drive to Seville. Stay Seville.

May 8 - stay Seville

May 9 - drive to Marbella via Ronda.

May 10-17 - Marbella

May 18 - train to Madrid. explore Madrid

May 19 - go home.

That puts you in Madrid at the end of your trip for going home.
annhig is offline  
Jun 28th, 2013, 05:57 AM
  #32  
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Thanks Ann & Bill.

One thing I wanted to mention is that when I booked our FF miles tickets - I put in 3 travelers at first and it did not show availability for non-stop from DFW. I put in 2 people - and there was availability - put those on hold - went back in and searched for one ticket and there was availability.... so the seats were there - it just did not want to release three to one reservation...which I thought was odd..so we have two record locators- I will call and have them linked but just a heads up...occasionally you have to work the system

I will have to check the train schedule for Madrid to Granada.

I am open to spending the night & yes, have the budget to do so - the FF tickets and the week timeshare help with that. We will stay on points in Madrid most likely at a Marriott property...

I need to explore Morrocco as it seems to be high on both DD and Dh list... As the resident travel planner sometimes I have to bring bad news that things just won't work into a plan.. but we shall see!
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Jun 28th, 2013, 06:59 AM
  #33  
 
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Hi, we are planning a trip around the same time so I have been reading your posts with great interest! How lucky to have 2 weeks! We have 10 days & there is so much to see!! I will also be booking FF flyer tickets though not non-stop from Boston unfortunately - thought I will try your trick & see if I get better results. Thanks for sharing!
excited_confused is offline  
Jun 28th, 2013, 07:14 AM
  #34  
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Excited_Confused - that is great!
Do you have any idea where in Spain you are considering?
How many seats are you trying to get? They are released for the beginning of May so start hunting
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Jun 28th, 2013, 09:08 AM
  #35  
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I checked & I can use our points at the Marbella Marriott as well .. Affording more flexibility & the possibility of less than a week study at that resort.. Open to suggestions with this in mind...still want to stay in southern region...

Want to hike, horseback ride(if possible)
Love the smaller villages...
I know it is about 10 months away.. But excited!
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Jun 28th, 2013, 09:20 AM
  #36  
 
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mom,

I have good friend who stayed at the Marriott timeshare, they said iit was excellent.

What airline did you book? Premium economy varies greatly. I see you got a great deal so any extra comfort is a bonus.

Ronda is on our list, our neighbors loved it.

Hope you have a wonderful and incident-free trip!
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Jun 28th, 2013, 09:34 AM
  #37  
 
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Mom- after a lot of effort I discovered that Ryanair fly to Marrakesh from both Madrid and Sevilla.

http://www.ryanair.com/en/cheap-flight-destinations

so you could fly straight from Madrid to Marrakesh, and from Marrakesh to Sevilla. and if you don't want/need to spend an entire week in Marbella, that gives you far more flexibility for the rest of your trip, thus:


May 6 - Arrive Madrid - fly to Marrakesh

May 7 - Marrakesh.

May 8 - fly to Seville.

May 9 - Seville

May 10 - Drive to Marbella via Ronda

May 11 - Marbella

May 12 - Marbella

May 13 - Marbella

May 14 - Drive to Granada via Malaga

May 15 - Granada

May 16 - Drive to Cordoba, stay Cordoba

May 18 - train to Madrid. explore Madrid

May 19 - go home.

if you could find a place to use your points in Malaga rather than Marbella, that would be even better!
annhig is offline  
Jun 28th, 2013, 10:38 AM
  #38  
 
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Hi Momddtravel2, this is our first trip to Spain so I think just Barcelona & Madrid. DD (23) only has a week off between finishing the semester & starting clinicals so it will be Sat to Sat, May 10-17th for her. Working on my DS (26) to join us. DH & I can stay on until Tuesday, I am still trying to figure out where we want to spend those extra 3 days. Our mileage is with United, 60,000 per ticket, so you are getting a good deal! Flights are not non-stop but connections aren't bad & still plenty of open partner flights so far.
We may go to Seville for those 3 days. Have heard that Ronda & Cordoba are worth a visit, not enough time for us but you can probably plan on visiting. Morocco sounds really interesting, I was SOOO keen on taking a stopover in Istanbul on the way back from Spain (even though I know it is nowhere on the way) but since those flights are not non-stop either, it doesn't make sense given the time we have. It's just killing me not to take advantage of the stopover we can get in a different city in Europe!
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Jun 28th, 2013, 11:41 AM
  #39  
 
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e-c - can I suggest that you start your own thread. as you are throwing Barcelona into the mix and have a shorter trip, there are probably things which apply to your trip and not to this one and vv.

in brief, however, if you only have a week I would strongly advise if you can flying open-jaw [into one place, out of another] which cuts down on the backtracking. you said that you only have time for 2 places - quite right. please resist the temptation to try to cram andalucia into your part of the trip once DD has gone home.

assuming you can get the flights, I would fly into Barcelona, spend 5 nights there [you won't run out of things to do!] then get the train to Madrid, and stay there til DD goes home. once she's gone, continue exploring Madrid with daytrips in the area - Toledo & Segovia are obvious choices.
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Jun 28th, 2013, 01:37 PM
  #40  
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I got a few guide books today and am digging in!

Ann I appreciate the input and advice! I am sure I will have many more questions as I continue to plan. Unfortunately the marriott property in Malga is not very nice and won't work. I will continue to look for a timeshare swap and see about other places to use our points to balance out the budget.

EC - I agree with Ann - I know it is tempting to get a lot in but I can only speak from experience - we have only been to Europe twice - once we were in Paris 2 nights (was supposed to be 3 but got messed up with flight delays), Montreux 2 or 3 (cannot remember), Florence 4 and Rome 5...and we were whopped by Rome (I often wonder if that is why I did not fall is love with Rome...that I was just "done") the next trip we spent 10 nights in an apartment in Paris... it was just a lovelier way to travel... the moving does get tiring and wearing...and at the time I was not working so did not need to come home and get right back to work... I would follow Ann's advice and go to Barcelona and Madrid.

The southern region of Spain is more appealing to us for a variety of reasons and I explained to both dh and dd that if they want to go to Barcelona in the 13 days it really complicates things.
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