My husband and I are planning to travel to Spain hopefully in October but only will have 7 days. He feels we may want to spend the whole week in Barcelona and take a couple of day trips (renting a car). I am thinking fly into Barcelona and make our way back to Madrid visiting along the way. I hear staying at Paradores can be wonderful. Any suggestions would be wonderful!
Look into booking accomodation through a travel agency around Barcelona. Ask for Costa del Sol or Costa Brava. Lloret de Mar, north of Barcelona, is quite a touristy destination with great beaches and lots of hotels and pensiones. There are buses running in summer to all the major spots of interest, so a car is not necassary.
I really like Barcelona, but if I was in Spain with a rented car, I wouldn't base myself there for day trips.
BTW, since you are going in October, consider going to Andalusia, not the north.
Weather can be very iffy in Barcelona by October. Much better chance of good weather down south in Andalucia. Beautiful scenery too.
So it's a variation on the same question... a friend and I are going to be in Spain for 7 days in June, flying in and out of madrid - where to? Have very little idea of the public transport in Spain but will be coming off the back of travel round south america so just want to relax for a bit, where is a good (and accessible) place? Are we best off just staying in Madrid for the week?
... so just want to relax for a bit, where is a good (and accessible) place? Are we best off just staying in Madrid for the week?
Madrid is the perfect spot for having a lot of fun and also visit thousands of amazing points of interes. The capital of Spain, located in the heart of the peninsula and right in the center of the Castillian plain traces its origins to the times of Arab Emir Mohamed I, later becoming became the subject of a dispute between the Christians and Arabs.
If you decide to go there on vacation, don't miss the local festivals in Madrid. For example, "Carnival", a celebration with parades and costume parties culminating on Ash Wednesday with the traditional burial of the Sardine, marking the beginning of Lent. Check also http://www.nidolanguagetravel.com/destinations/madrid/ and you will complete your guide with useful things about the Spain capital!
As you will be entering and leaving the country in Madrid, I would suggest to stay at least 4 days in Madrid. Take 2 days to do some sightseeing in Madrid, but also spend 1 day in Toledo, and if you feel like it another 1 in Segovia. You could keep making daytrips for the rest of the week, but there are also some other options you might want to consider.
If you can get hold of some cheap tickets, you can fly anywhere in Spain (check Vueling Airlines, Iberia, Clickair, Spanair and AirEuropa). Barcelona would be my first choice.
If you don't feel like flying, then you might consider taking the train to Salamanca, stay there for a couple of days, and return to Madrid. Or (but it can be expensive), that the train to Sevilla. (there is a AVE (Spanish version of the TGV) connection between Madrid and Sevilla)
Trains and Busses make traveling pretty easy in Spain. check www.renfe.es for information on trains.
From Barajas Airport, you take the metro into the city. It's located under Terminal 2. I would recommend buying a 10-trip card, as it is the most economical way to use the Metro in Madrid. (if you don't lose them, as they are really small, those cards). Most people get to the Nuevos Ministerios Metro station, and continue from there.
In May there will be (finally) metro running from both T4 and T1-T2-T3 terminals at Madrid-Barajas Airport, you won't need to transfer between them, as it happens now.
Thanks guys...will take all that on board. Herr Bert's itinerary sounds good, the beach would be nice but we don't really want to fly more than necessary and we are coming from Cuba so guess we can't have it all... I'll try and do my own leg work from here but I may be back to pick your collective brains later on