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Seeking ideas and your creativity .. Target: Spain; age range: teen; budget: low

Seeking ideas and your creativity .. Target: Spain; age range: teen; budget: low

Nov 15th, 2007, 05:13 AM
  #1  
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Seeking ideas and your creativity .. Target: Spain; age range: teen; budget: low

Hi,

I'm reading the travel guides and searching the 'Net, but I could really use ideas of low cost, creative activities for teens when visiting Spain.

If you've used a book that could help me with this task, I'd enjoy titles to read.

The specific area of Spain is still up for decision making. I hope that does not discourage any posters from offering ideas from opposite ends of the country. More suggestions for any particular region would be helpful in deciding the itinerary, actually.

TIA!
scotlib is offline  
Nov 15th, 2007, 05:28 AM
  #2  
 
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..given the words teen and budget, I would suggest the Lonely Planet site. Use their thorntree which is their "board".
travelbunny is offline  
Nov 15th, 2007, 05:33 AM
  #3  
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Thank you for the quick reply, travelbunny! Yes, I'll head there for sure.

Thught of one additional bit of information that could help anyone who can help me .. the time range is mid- to late-March. A special event could be happening somewhere in this time period that you know about, ex: Las Fallas Festival in Valencia. I just discovered that one last week.

Cheers!
scotlib is offline  
Nov 15th, 2007, 07:38 AM
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I'd recommend The Rough Guide to Spain. It's very helpful for low budget travelers.
Revulgo is offline  
Nov 15th, 2007, 07:50 AM
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www.hostelz.com
www.bookhostels.com

BTW, you can book tours in www.bookhostels.com

Check out this site, www.busabout.com
wally34949 is offline  
Nov 16th, 2007, 12:59 PM
  #6  
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Thank you, Revulgo and wally34949, for the additonal ideas. I've moved the Lonely Planet and Rough Guide books to the top of my reading pile, and I appreciate the additional links to add to the list I've bookmarked.

Thanks!

scotlib is offline  
Nov 16th, 2007, 09:39 PM
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Hi scotlib,

Are we talking teens visiting in Spain with their parents or traveling solo?

My family of three went to N. Spain including the Basque Region and across to Barcelona. We had a blast.

We have a teenage son who had traveled to other parts of Spain with his School the previous summer. And then we traveled together this year.

As a teenage boy i can tell you that he definitely loved the beach in San Sabastian Which is Beautiful and filled with like minded teenagers.

We rented a car and the driving was wonderful in the countryside, not so much in the cities.

Every where there was great shopping ,strolling and people watching with nice parks and plazas everywhere. You could eat relatively inexpensively or not so much. Depends on where you look and what you pick off the menu. A typical teenage palate would have no problem on the less expensive end of the scale.

If you look for festivals and street markets there are plenty of deals to be had as well as free entertainment.

I highly recommend Spain for teenagers and could maybe help you more if you give some more details.

thereyet
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Nov 17th, 2007, 03:29 AM
  #8  
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Thank you, thereyet, for the post. This would be for a school group of anywhere 15-30 teens.

We've been looking at the tours organized by a company (ex.: EF Tours, and several other companies) and also starting to look at customizing a tour.

A pre-planned tour is likely to keep one "on the run" and have almost a checklist feel, see this, check, repeat. It's not a bad thing, but I just have this feeling in me that something different would be a "good thing" (to channel Martha

It is only by having one pre-planned group tour under my belt that I know what that felt like and yearn for something .. something .. I'm just not sure what it is.

I've seen suggestions here, and rec'd it from one of the customizing companies that to keep the number travel locations once in-country to a minimum, so more things to do in one location make it more attractive.

Yet for kids who may not get back to this country for a long time, if ever, we probably should not totally restrict location.

I'd love to include ideas for activities on the trip that are not the ordinary tourist thing, especially if they're cheap!

Asking the kids would be good advice, lol, but I thought a list of potential ideas and then the question "does anything here strike your fancy" could be a better starting point.

Many thanks, again!
scotlib is offline  
Nov 17th, 2007, 06:25 AM
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Hi scotlib, My son's school group was something of a "checklist" tour but they do get to see alot. I think when you start to customize the cost will begin to go upward. My son was lucky in that the school has been doing this tour every other year for a number of years and they have a lot of experience with the companies that they work with. Aside from airfare and lodging, there are tour buses, guides, resteraunts, museums, tour of individual sites and entertainment to coordinate that I don't think you would want to try and tackle aas an individual.

They plan this trip and do fund raisers over the course of an entire year.

To keep costs down they squeeze three and four to a room. Usually not a problem for kids.

My son's trip started from Madrid, then south to Granada, Seville, Cordoba and Toledo, then back to Madrid. I think that is a pretty common tour route with lots to see and do. With a group like this you will not get the "non oturisty" feel of something you might do as a family.

This trip cost I think about $3500 per kid. It might have been a little less but that was before the $ tanked. But that is another thread.

We also sent him with about $500 spending money because kids would go nuts if they didn't get to shop.

They did a flaminco night and had considered a bull fight but opted out on that. Oh, and they did some sort of boat dinner. These are the kinds of things you can "customize" with.

Anyway, if you have more Qs please ask.

thereyet
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Nov 17th, 2007, 08:03 AM
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scotlib, I'd repost this with a new title, something like "Spain: Arranging School Tour Group". If I remember correctly there are a few regular posters who have done this. When reading your title, I thought you were either a teen or helping one teen, which is quite different.
BowenLinda is offline  
Nov 17th, 2007, 03:01 PM
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Hi thereyet, it is great to read about other tour trips for students. Not being able to do lots of them myself (just one at a time, every other year is what my school does; this year was my first time to go) I appreciate reading other versions. It is all going in to the sponge, to come out someday in a reasonable idea of what will happen with our trip.

Thanks BowenLinda for your suggestion. I will continue searching the forum and reading my guide books, and when I have a bit more of an idea of locations use your idea for a thread title.

Thanks!
scotlib is offline  
Nov 18th, 2007, 06:40 AM
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Hey scotlib,

How old are the teens that will be travelling?

I did school trips to Spain once a year when I was 16-18, so the stuff we did may or may not be a good idea for younger teens.

Our teachers usually had a "half-day" agenda, meaning that we would visit the Palacio Real in Madrid in the morning hours, then have lunch, then have free time, until we would meet again at the hostal to go to dinner together.

Often our teachers (we always had two teachers joining the trip) split up the group of 20 students for alternative visits. In Madrid, for example, we visited the Palacio Real together, next day one group went to the Prado, the other to the Estadio Bernabeu. Not exactly "off the beaten track" sights, but with group discounts calculated in your budget, most of these places are not really expensive.

Giving us at least half a day for our own expeditions through the cities, also helped us to understand the importance of learning foreign languages ;-)
Cowboy1968 is offline  
Nov 19th, 2007, 04:59 AM
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Hi Cowboy1968,

Our teens are the same age range, 16-18.

When doing the free time, how did your teachers know approximately where you were? We always told students to stick with a buddy on this last trip, and the importance of that came true when one student was lost, or at least location unknown, for a while, when separated (everyone thinking she was with another group).

Thanks!
scotlib is offline  
Nov 19th, 2007, 05:41 AM
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I would suggest you use a better company than EF as they are the very low-end student company (along with Explorica). Most student tour companies will customize, if you have a big enough group. Of course, the price goes up if you don't have enough to fill a bus (40-50).

If you want a better quality student tour company try:
mid-range
www.cha-tours.com
www.passports.com

higher-end
www.netc.com
www.acis.com

Another company to consider is Contiki. They are known as a party tour for teenagers and college kids, but will also do custom private tours. They know all the fun, trendy places those age groups enjoy. www.contiki.com

Why Spain? If it's because they are Spanish students, then you might consider using Enforex language school. The students will live in apartments and they schedule excursions along with language lessons. My daughter's teacher always used them and they stayed in Salamanca which is a great college town and not very far from Madrid.
www.enforex.es
kybourbon is online now  
Nov 19th, 2007, 05:47 AM
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I would avoid Contiki with 16-18 year old kids. That crowd is for the party kids in their 20's and early 30's who just wanna get laid.
wally34949 is offline  
Nov 19th, 2007, 08:27 AM
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How to choose one area of Spain?
IMO the key towns of Spain are:
* Madrid, the capital of Spain.
* Barcelona, Catalonian culture.
* Sevilla, Andalusian culture.
* San Sebastian & Bilbao, Basque culture.
* Santiago de Compostela, Galician culture.
* Salamanca & Toledo, Castilian culture.
To get full info on all Spain, check out:
http://www.spain.info/TourSpain?Language=en
Revulgo is offline  
Nov 19th, 2007, 01:42 PM
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wally - The OP was talking about a private tour so even is she used Contiki, it would only be her group and no one else. I assume the OP is too old to be allowed on a non-private Contiki tour. Contiki regular tours are only for ages 18-35, but private are for whatever age you want.
kybourbon is online now  
Nov 19th, 2007, 01:49 PM
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Sorry for the delay in answering your question, scotlib.

Well, our teachers obviuosly did not have much of a clue where we went during our "free" half days.
We all had the business card of the hostal we were staying at, a map, and a pass for public transportation.

I cannot really remember anyone getting lost, though. We usually roamed around in groups of 2-6 buddies.

Today it is even easier to stay in touch since every kid has at least one mobile phone.
Cowboy1968 is offline  
Nov 19th, 2007, 03:54 PM
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Thanks for the reply, Cowboy1968. It is always good to read another perspective of student trips, and from the student side is very helpful.

Yes, kybourbon, EF is low-end, but having an okay trip with them is making looking at other prices hard to take. Time to get real and admit spending some more will be returned in having a fuller experience. Many thanks for the links.

Thank you for the list and link, Revulgo!

wally34949, thanks for the caution, though if it is a private tour, it would be at least interesting to get a itinerary proposal and price. As kybourbon guessed, I would not be on a Contiki tour otherwise. Personally I would not have done it 20 years ago either, but then I was always the wallflower who thought the people who drink until they threw up were nuts, which was probably the same they thought about me
scotlib is offline  
Nov 19th, 2007, 06:40 PM
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I just remembered that when my daughter was living in Madrid in 2006, many of the kids used Funiversal for tours to Portugal and Italy. You could get group airfare from one of the airlines if you have 10 or more travelers. You might could book some side trips with Funiversal. I think they are based in Madrid and their tours are aimed at mostly college kids. They have a group link on their website.
http://www.funiversal.com/cgi-bin/index.pl?o=0
kybourbon is online now  

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