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Andalucia and Madrid October 2020, new supposed itinerary

To avoid confusion, I started a new topic. The difference between this and my last post are:
I bought plane tickets to Granada, leaving from Madrid.
I subtracted 2 nights from Madrid, I added a night to Seville (4 nights in Seville instead of 3) and one night to Toledo.
I have not made any other reservations. So I could still change my mind. I used to assume big cities should deserve the most of my time.
Sunday: plane arrives in Granada 1:00 PM. If time, El Bañuelo, walk past various monuments. Sleep in Granada. 1st night

Monday: Guided or unguided walking tour; one or more of San Juan de Dios (Baroque church), Capilla Real, Catedral de Granada (renaissance church); if time, old wall, Museo cuevas del Sacromonte, La Madraza, Casa de Castril (house with small archaeological museum). Sleep in Granada 2nd night

Tuesday: Alhambra complex. Sleep in Granada 3rd night

Wednesday: Bus or train to Seville. If time, archaeological musem; walk past various monuments, Metropol Parason, Antiquarium de Sevilla (small museum of Roman remains). Sleep in Seville 4th night

Thursday: Alcázar (open 9:30-5:00pm), if time, Seville Catedral, Hospital de los Venerables, Archivo de Indias, if time other sites. Sleep in Seville 5th night

Friday: Casa de Pilatos, Palacio de la Condesa de Lebrija, if time, Palacio de las Dueñas, above museums if not seen yet. Sleep in Seville 6th night

Saturday: Above sites not seen yet, and/or Torre del Oro, possibly Plaza de Toros/ Museo Taurino (bullfighting arena and museum). Sleep in Seville 7th night

Sunday: Bus or train to Córdoba. Sinagoga (9am-3pm if open), archeological museum (also 9am-3pm), if time, Alcázar (8:30-2:30); Casa de Sefarad (10am-7pm), walk past various monuments. Sleep in Cordoba 8th night

Monday: Mezquita (10am-7pm), if time, Museo Vivo del Al-Andalus/Torre de la Calahorra (10am-6pm), walk past other monuments. Sleep in Cordoba 9th night

Tuesday: Buses or trains to Toledo. Sinagoga del Tránsito (closes 7:30pm), Sinagoga de santa María la Blanca (closes 5:45 or 6:45pm), Alcázar (contains Museo del Ejército, closes 5pm). Sleep in Toledo 10th night

Wednesday: If not seen yet, the former synagogues or Alcázar; possibly the Visigothic museum. Train to Madrid. If time, Royal palace; walk past various monuments. Sleep in Madrid 11th night

Thursday: Prado and/or Archaeological museum; possibly walk past various monuments Sleep in Madrid 12th night.

Friday: Whichever of the above museums not seen yet; if time, museum of the Americas or just more walking. Sleep in Madrid 13th night.

Saturday: flights back to Detroit

Posted by
1064 posts

Looks full but nicely paced. I like how you have left time for what you may not have had time for on a previous day.

Posted by
656 posts

Revised abbreviated supposed itinerary:

Sunday: arrive at Granada airport at 1:00pm. Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday nights (2 whole days + a few hours to half a day on the day I arrive) in Granada

Wednesday morning: Bus or train to Córdoba. Wednesday and Thursday nights (at least 1-1/2 days) in Córdoba.

Friday morning: Bus or train to Seville. Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights in Seville. Half or more of Monday in Seville. (3 night, 2 whole days + half or more of the day I arrive + half or more of the day I leave). Bus or train to Toledo.

Tuesday: sights in Toledo. Evening train or bus to Madrid.

Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday nights (4 nights, 3 whole days) in Madrid

Saturday: flights back to Detroit.

Posted by
507 posts

Go from Granada to Seville via bus. Then do Córdoba as you make your way up to Madrid. That is what we did.

Posted by
656 posts

If I make Seville my second city and Córdoba my third city, I will be in Córdoba on a Sunday and Monday. On Sundays the archaeology museum and old synagogue have abbreviated hours, both are closed on Mondays, and the Alcázar is closed on Mondays. My current thinking is, if I make Córdoba my second city, I will be there on a Wednesday and Thursday, when these sites have better hours. My plan works logistically considering that - at least based on what I saw on google maps and rome2 rio, all the trains and buses from Granada to Seville stop in Córdoba. I didn’t see any train or bus routes from Granada to Seville that go straight west staying staying south of Córdoba. Maybe google maps and rome2rio aren’t showing all the routes that will exist.

Posted by
3206 posts

Just remain flexible. If you don’t see the bullfighting museum in Sevilla, there’s a nice one in Cordoba; same for the bull ring. Remember the Giralda tower by the cathedral in Sevilla, and the Plaza de Espana. The Torre de Oro is pretty much a walk by. For me, I make a list of sights I want to see in a location, but don’t assign them a day or time (unless it’s a timed entry). That allows me to pick what I want to see and when, rather than say I need to see these sights today. Some museums have free days, so look those up before your trip, and time your visit for when you can get in for free, if possible. I enjoyed the military museum in Toledo years ago, and just happened to be there when it was a free day. It provided a good insight into what life was like there during the Spanish civil war.

Posted by
18865 posts

Don't use Google Maps or Rome2Rio to check train routings or schedules. Use If you already know you're going to take a train, go straight to the source for the most reliable information.

I agree with what you have observed: Looking at the early-March schedule (since trains for October aren't loaded yet), some of the fast train connections (AVEs and AVANTs) seem to require transfering in Cordoba; others seem to be direct, but I think they still stop in Cordoba. It's true that at least some of the slower connections (including MD, Media Distancia, trains) require a change in Antequera instead of Cordoba. That seems like less mileage, but the travel time is longer.

What looks as if it makes sense on a map--and does make sense if you're driving--doesn't necessarily align with the way trains run.

So I don't think it matters when you go to Cordoba from the perspective of travel time. Choose what works best given the schedules of the attractions you want to see.

Posted by
656 posts

Thanks for your imput.

I am thinking of skipping the Cathedral of Seville, even though I know it is the biggest church in the world, the third biggest gothic church in the world, and includes a huge wall with 45 scenes from the life of Jesus made of wood and gold... there are too many other sites in Seville. There wouldn’t be time for everything... most likely I will see at least one or more churches in Granada, at least Capilla Real/ royal chapel, and/or San Juan de Dios, possibly the Catedral - those should take away my need to spend a lot of time in any big churches in Seville versus the archaeology museum or the other sites... based on other trips, I seem to have a talent for visiting some of the less popular or uncrowded sites and museums.

Posted by
1251 posts

Good choice. I don't think it is the biggest church in the world, though it might be the biggest in Spain. It's reasonable to skip it - a lot these churches do tend to merge together after a while. I think you'll find the inside of Granada's capilla real and Cordoba's mezquitta more memorable. I think the most interesting part of Sevilla catedral is the outside anyway. Also, I wouldn't make Granada catedral a must-see if you're short of time, it's pretty bog standard - the inside of the royal chapel is much more interesting. The good bit of Sevilla catedral is going up the giralda for the view. But actually you get a better view going to the metropol parasol since from there you can actually see the giralda/cathedral. You can also get that view if you go to the rooftop bar of the hotel Inglaterra.