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1. Posted by ellentravels (Budding Member, 5 posts) 27 Dec '12 05:49

ellentravels has indicated that this thread is about Spain

I'm planning a one week trip to Spain in January with my 19 and 17 year old daughters and do not intend to relax on this trip. I would like to visit: madrid, Toledo (day trip), Gibraltar and Barcelona. This was my basic itinerary: Monday/Tuesday: Madrid. Wednesday: Toledo and travel to Gibraltar via train. Thursday: Gibraltar. Friday: travel to Barcelona. Saturday/Sunday/Monday: Barcelona. I would like to travel from Toledo to Gibraltar on Wednesday, but I don't see a train connection. Alternatively, I can travel from Madrid to Algeciras on the 3 PM train, which arrives at 8 PM. Does anyone know the cost of a taxi form Algeciras to Gibraltar? Does the long commute to Gibraltar make sense? I will probably never have the opportunity to visit this area again.

2. Posted by casaianda (Budding Member, 45 posts) 27 Dec '12 06:06

Hello from spain.

Your itinerary is far, far too ambitious!

Forget Gibraltar - its a run down, dirty bit of Rock that can be seen within a couple of hours so definitely not worth the detour.

Madrid requires at least 3 full days and Toledo, although ´do-able´ as a day trip from Madrid, really warrants at least 2 days.

There are no trains - or buses for that matter - from Gibraltar across into Spain.

Save Gibraltar - if you really want to see it - for a future trip to wonderful Andalucia. This time just concentrate on Madrid and Barcelona with your side trip to Toledo.

[ Edit: Edited on 27-Dec-2012, at 06:08 by casaianda ]

3. Posted by LittleHote (Inactive, 78 posts) 27 Dec '12 10:03

I agree with casaianda, that schedule involves far too much travelling and too little holiday. Apart from that I disagree: Gibraltar is a fascinating place that can do justice to a week on it's own. Madrid and Barcelona are just cities, albeit cities with some interesting things to see.

You could do Madrid and Barcelona sensibly in a week.

As already said, there is no public transport crossing from Spain into Gibraltar. If you get the train to Algeciras you will then need a bus or taxi to La Línea. From memory it is about 30 or 40 minutes on the bus, so you can guess at the cost of a taxi from that. Once you are dropped off near the border, you just walk across into Gibraltar. This will probably be the only time in your life that you will walk across an operational airport runway, so stop halfway to take in the experience! Once you are in Gibraltar it is small enough to walk everywhere, though you may want to take the cable car to the top of the rock.

4. Posted by Andyf (Respected Member, 291 posts) 27 Dec '12 10:16

I was in Gibraltar three days ago and I thought it was a brilliant place to visit - it had the outpost feel of Hong Kong and the town had that British-but-not vibe like St Helier or Douglas.

If you're there for just one day you could join a taxi minibus tour taking about 3 hours to see all the sights, cost £22, which would leave you some time to explore the town and soak up the feel - bags of historic sights.

Alternatively there's the cable car up the Rock, but that leaves you with a lot of walking between areas up top. Cost £8 one way, £9.75 return, gives you free access around the nature reserve at the top of the rock but an admission ticket for the attractions (siege tunnels, moorish castle, st micheal's cave,...) is an additional £10.

There's a lot of politics from the Spanish, eg yesterday at Malaga airport I saw a postcard showing the Rock and captioned simply Andalucia, and they enforce a dangerous flightpath for approaching aircraft to avoid spanish airspace. They don't allow public transport across but then it's a two minute walk to the border from the bus station in the Spanish town La Linea de la conception. Walk across the border, and you're at the bus stop for Gib buses into town - or enjoy the ten minute walk into town, which crosses the airport runway!

5. Posted by manisavane (Budding Member, 7 posts) 27 Dec '12 11:38

Hello,

I have only to add to the Gibraltar question arising above! Where I live only an hour from for ten years. Gib is okay for a quick visit only, the shops are shut all afternoon, the shops are basically selling booze, perfume, jewellery, and the odd trinket! There is a spending limit to take back into Spain, well under £200, a limit of one carton of cigarettes and one bottle of alcohol, although I am sure that's not really a concern.

Take pounds with you, because the charge for using Euros is extortionate in most places!

The Rock does have a great tunnel system inside, more miles in the rock, than on it, and an amazing cave/auditorium is in there also, then there are the monkey's, I personally don't like them, but if you don't mind them, and hold onto your bags/purses etc, good luck!

I think really you either love it, or hate it, and, until you go, you will never know!

6. Posted by ellentravels (Budding Member, 5 posts) 27 Dec '12 17:19

Thank you everyone for your wonderful advice. While the consensus appears to be the travel time may not be worth it for a relatively short stay in Gibraltar, I found a flight for 16 USD on RYANAIR from Malaga to Barcelona. The flight is 1 hr and 45 minutes. I confirmed that the flight is legitimate.

7. Posted by LittleHote (Inactive, 78 posts) 28 Dec '12 02:53

But you will still need to get from Gibraltar to Málaga.

I think it's a real shame that we are discouraging you from visiting Gibraltar. I would far rather spend a week in Gibraltar than in Madrid and Barcelona. How about skipping at least one of those and giving yourself a real opportunity to see Gibraltar?

8. Posted by ellentravels (Budding Member, 5 posts) 6 Jan '13 09:40

Thank you all for your assistance. I'm not a sophisticated traveler and trip planning is a bit new to me. :)I have booked the inexpensive flight on RYANAIR from Malaga to Barcelona. What is the best option for traveling to Malaga from Gibraltar? Does anyone know how much a taxi will cost? I'm traveling with 2 other adults. The bus appears to take between 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Can you recommend any other options (shared mini-vans)?

9. Posted by LittleHote (Inactive, 78 posts) 7 Jan '13 02:38

A taxi over that distance would be by individual negotiation with the taxi driver or company. Just because of the distance and time involved, it won't be cheap, although you will be spreading the cost over three people. Remember the taxi is unlikely to get a return fare, so you will be paying for the taxi to go both ways.

Spanish long-distance buses are very efficient and very cheap. When I did Almeríá to Gibraltar there was no stop in La Línea so I had to go to Algeciras and then take a local bus back to La Línea.

I just had a quick look on www.alsa.es and there doesn't seem to be either La Línea - Málaga or Algeciras - Málaga, which I find odd. Try www.renfe.es. It probably depends on dates, but I found a train Algeciras - Bobadilla - Málaga with one change en-route.

10. Posted by Herr Bert (Moderator, 1370 posts) 7 Jan '13 11:52

If you are with three adults, then I would suggest to hire a car for a day. Providing at least one of you has a drivers license. If you have some time, you can make the detour on the way back to Malaga to Ronda.

[ Edit: Edited on 07-Jan-2013, at 11:52 by Herr Bert ]