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The Train In Spain And Maybe Take A Plane?

The Train In Spain And Maybe Take A Plane?

Old Mar 1st, 2015, 12:41 PM
  #161  
 
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progol - most or less right I think!

as best as I can work out, you have to enter everything within the complex within the session that you have paid for, including the Generalife, but you don't have to have exited it. so as well as entering the Nasrid palaces within the 30 minute time slot [again, you are not required to exit them as well within this period, just to enter] you have to enter the other areas which are marked on the ticket like the castle area.

friends of ours had a morning session ticket but didn't manage to get to the Generalife before 2pm so they were denied entry; if they'd got there at 1.55 pm they could have spent all afternoon there,

we had a 10.30 am slot, so we got to the entrance at about 8.30 am, walked down to the main site [which takes 15-30 mins depending how fast you walk and how much time you spend looking at the various things en route] then saw some of the other sites before our 10.30 slot. We spent at least an hour in the Nasrid palaces, had some lunch, finished seeing anything that was left, and got into the Generalife by about 1.30pm, spending at least 2 hours there.

we had booked our day time tickets in advance on line but not the evening ones, which was an impulse when we were there. We ended up going the night before we had our day time visit and I didn't feel that it detracted from the experience at all.

Elizabeth - what a shame! Hope you are better soon.
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Old Mar 4th, 2015, 08:30 PM
  #162  
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I've been told that the tickets for the Alhambra are available 90 days prior to visit. Unless I am incorrect, they still are not showing for May. Am I nuts? Let me rephrase that. Am I incorrect? Thanks.

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Old Mar 5th, 2015, 02:34 AM
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Dare I answer this question?! You are (ahem) correct. The site is unpredictable -- the only answer is to check regularly to watch when the tickets are finally released.

Just because we're told that we can buy tickets 90 days in advance, this does not mean that they are actually available to do so!
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Old Mar 13th, 2015, 03:45 PM
  #164  
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I have a few more Barcelona questions...

Casa Batlló and Casa Milà…should we do both, or is one enough? Different enough to try both? They're only a few minutes apart so time doesn't seem to factor into the equation.

Looks like Parc Guell is now a reservation must? Si?

And Montserrat…funicular or cable car…that is the question?

A friend recommended Restaurant En Ville?

Thanks.

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Old Mar 14th, 2015, 12:10 AM
  #165  
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And if I can tag along with maitaitom... Is the evening "Secret Pedrera" worth considering?
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Old Mar 14th, 2015, 02:14 AM
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mataitom -- Both Casa Batlo & Casa Mila are well worth going to. They are very different -- Batlo was built as a single family structure, and the entire building (interior and exterior) is fantastic. We absolutely loved this place. Mila is a multi-family building, the interior of the apartment that we saw was a much subtler "Gaudi" treatment, though the rooftop of the building is as amazing as it gets. We fell in love with Casa Batlo -- you could really sense the intimacy of the place, since it was built for a single family.

We went in 2006, and I wasn't aware of the Secret Pedrera visit, so I don't have any info whether it's worth it or not (but sure, why not, it sounds like fun!).
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Old Mar 14th, 2015, 06:07 AM
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Casa Batlo and Casa Mila (La Pedrera/The quarry) are very different. Saw both again a week ago, and La Pedrera looks almost alive and like it's going to start walking any minute...
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Old Mar 14th, 2015, 09:12 AM
  #168  
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If we go to Casa Mila (Pedrera) at 9,would 11:30 reservations at Casa Batlló be an adequate amount of time to see Mila. How much time would you allot for both? Thanks.

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Old Mar 14th, 2015, 10:52 AM
  #169  
 
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Hi Maitaitom, just caught up with your planning for Spain, a country which we loved. Reading up-thread, it seems like you received enough ideas to enlighten as well as confuse. And as your Dad wisely said, "There's. . .Tom's way."

In relation to the question direcly above, we agree with Progol's description of Casa Battlo'(especially liked) and Casa Pedrera. The timing seems a little close for us, as we'd want to have lunch for energy to enjoy Casa Battlo'. Just a thought.

Re: Montserrat: FWIW If you plan to enjoy the boys' choir, make sure to get in the church very early. In our TR we detailed our experience of the crowds.

Your planning is getting us excited about returning to Spain!
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Old Mar 14th, 2015, 11:00 AM
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Montserrat - funicular is fine, and avoids the queues for the cable car in both directions.
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Old Mar 24th, 2015, 10:41 AM
  #171  
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Looks like Casa Batlló Fast Pass tickets are good for anytime you show up, so that's good.

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Old Mar 24th, 2015, 11:02 AM
  #172  
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So after all I've looked at it, when purchasing the tickets this is the first time I realized it is actually spelled Batlló.

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Old Mar 26th, 2015, 10:53 PM
  #173  
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"Looks like Parc Guell is now a reservation must?"

Good question! It looks to me like one CAN reserve in advance, but I'm not seeing anything that suggests that advance reservations are required (except perhaps for large groups). What made up think they are required, maitai? And what say the experts?
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Old Mar 27th, 2015, 12:45 PM
  #174  
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"What made up think they are required, maitai?"

I thought I read it was a good idea in one of the many Spain trip reports I've read (not necessarily required), but I've been known to drink wine while reading them, so hope someone comes up with a definitive answer.

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Old Mar 27th, 2015, 04:52 PM
  #175  
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Thanks, maitaitom. And I trust you knew that I meant to say "what made YOU think...." -- I didn't mean to suggest that you had made it up! I just searched the board and see some threads that make the recommendation -- thanks for pointing me in the right direction!
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Old Mar 27th, 2015, 09:13 PM
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Hi MaiTaiTom - this is long overdue but wanted to say thanks for all your very entertaining Trip Reports - just finished the Paris one!

In case you are still working on your Barcelona itinerary, here are a few suggestions - I was there for 10 days last July and fell in love with the city -
great bohemian vibe - and lovely people, food, wine!

1. You will need a timed ticket for Parc Guell to see the Monuments section where the mosaics are located. Park access is limited to a certain number of people every half hour so without a timed ticket you risk a long wait in line.
The park grants a 30 minute grace period for your timed entry so you're allowed to enter up to 30 minutes late. Since it gets very crowded, recommend getting there when the park first opens in the morning or in the late evening before closing - we did an 8:00 pm timed entry to see the sunset. By 8:30 pm the crowds were thinning out. I think we left around 9:00 pm.

2. You asked about visiting Casa Mila and Casa Batllo back to back and tomarkot suggested a lunch break in between which is a good idea. We visited Casa Mila on a timed ticket @ 9 am and stayed about 1.5-2 hours (loved the roof.) Then, we took metro to Parc Ciutadella and meandered through the Parc past the beautiful fountain on our way to
Barceloneta - stopping for a leisurely 2+ hour lunch with a pitcher or two of sangria at a beachside restaurant called Ona. Another metro to Casa Batllo for a Fast Pass entry (not a timed ticket) @ 4:00 pm (toured for about 1 hour.) That schedule worked well for us. In the evening we also did a Food & Wine Tour until 1:00 am (supposed to end at 11 pm but having too much fun.)

3. The next day we toured La Sagrada Familia (not easy after getting in the night before at 2 am!) on a timed 9:00 am entry with a 9:15 am timed entry for the Passion Tower - we chose that tower because of elevator access - I recall the other tower requires exiting via a long stairwell but suggest you verify. To be honest, I was not that impressed with the Passion Tower - the viewing windows are very narrow - perhaps the other tower has a more open view? We stayed about 2 hours in the church which is amazing and spent just a few minutes in the tower.

Afterwards, we had a leisurely lunch - are you noticing a pattern here - at a restaurant near the Picasso Museum. We had a timed ticket for the museum at 2:30 pm which is necessary, otherwise a very long line. Really enjoyed the museum - get the audio guide.

4. I can also highly recommend Hospital Sant Pau which is about a 10-15 minute walk from La Sagrada Familia. Beautiful site with a poignant history. Designed by Lluis Domenech Montaner, a contemporary of Gaudi. Recall they offered 4 tours in English each day - tours last about 1 hour. You do not need to reserve ahead - just pay at the door. Perfect low key site to tour on your arrival day when you're jet lagged since it's done in small groups, primarily outdoors, and the place is gorgeous, awe-inspiring. It was my favorite site in Barcelona.

5. Montaner also designed the Palau de la Musica - another highly recommended site. Guided tours offered on a timed ticket every 30 minutes. Your other option is to book tickets to attend a live event.

6. Not sure if you're interested in booking a small group tour for a day trip? I did 2 day trips with a company called Spanish Trails and was very pleased with the tours and tour guides - Montserrat/Penedes Wine Region and Costa Brava/Girona. I also did 2 food and wine tours with them and a walking tour of the city - enjoyed them all. They limit their group size to 8 people.

Assuming you've already booked your lodging but if you are looking for a recommendation we stayed at BarcelonaBB - a bed and breakfast in the Eixample neighborhood - one of the best rental experiences we have ever had.

Any questions, let me know. Wishing you a wonderful trip to Spain filled with adventure and maybe a leisurely lunch or 2!
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Old Mar 28th, 2015, 06:46 AM
  #177  
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NomadLass…thank you so very much. Great suggestions. I'm stocking up on acid reflux medicine for those late dinners and Sangria lunches.

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Old Mar 28th, 2015, 07:10 AM
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Back from yet another great trip to Barcelona, and one of several great finds this time was brilliant tapas bar Tapeo close to the Picasso museum. The Coca sardina tapa was one of the highlights of a week-end with much food from top of the shelf. Reservation recommended.
http://www.tapeoborn.cat/tapas-menu/...ardina-en.html
http://www.tapeoborn.cat/home-page.html
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Old Apr 15th, 2015, 11:06 AM
  #179  
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Thanks kimhe…

Well, we have everything booked from trains, planes and automobiles to hotels to attractions…except for one.

In Madrid, it looks like the Prado only has a ticket that is not timed. Does that let ou skip the line?

And one Barcelona question…

Montserrat…What is the best advice for a day trip out there? We are armed with info from the internet and guide books, but like to hear first hand accounts. Is there a train we should be sure to catch to get back to Barcelona in early to mid afternoon?

Thanks.

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Old Apr 16th, 2015, 12:54 AM
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And the #1 food highlight of the Barcelona week-end was a late night meal at Xemei. The Bigoli en salsa Veneciana was beyond anything I've ever tasted (1.35 in this video): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Lvcjtoh0tU
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