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Barcelona itinerary help trip length

Hello,
I am planning a trip in March to Barcelona with my teen and was thinking of 6 nights. Originally, I had wanted to pair it with a flight to Malaga but I think that may be too rushed. Would 5 nights be enough in Barcelona or too rushed for an overseas trip. My teen will only want to go to so many museums and has a very limited palate so I want to be sensitive to that. It is her first trip overseas. I could spend a month there and be happy.

Should we consider:
6 nights and at least one day trip that would add interest.

Should we do only 5 nights in Barcelona and call it a day

Or should we do 4 nights in Barcelona and maybe two nights somewhere a short train ride away, preferably south.

Or should I fly into Barcelona and out of Malaga and visit both cities. I am just worried about the hassel of going to the airport mid trip.

Thank you.

Posted by
1593 posts

We spent 3 nights. ( small part of a 6 week trip ). I think 6 nights is a little long, especially if not that into museums.

Is your entire trip only 6 nights?

Posted by
4860 posts

Our Spain trips have covered just the north or the south in one trip. But if you visited both Barcelona and Malaga on a single trip, you’d be at least sticking to the east, and not covering western Spain, too.

If airport hassles are to be avoided, is the time taking a train (which also involves a much easier security screening) an option? Our side trips from Barcelona were to the north (Girona, Figueres, Cadaques), but if you did 4 nights in Barcelona, what about heading to Malaga by train, with maybe a stop in Valencia, or Granada?

Posted by
2178 posts

If you can get 6 nights, I definitely wouldn't settle for just 5 ;-)

You could comfortably spend all those 6 nights in Barcelona (and barely set foot in a museum) and do 1 or even 2 day trips. However I personally like the idea of spending 4 nights in Barcelona then 2 nights somewhere else, a bit of an escapade from the big city. You could consider these pairings:

Barcelona (4 nights)
and
Girona (2 nights) - go back in time to medieval Catalonia
or
Baqueira-Beret (2 nights) - a beautiful place for skiing in the Pyrenees Mountains
or
Zaragoza (2 nights) - a taste of Moorish and Roman Spain

I also agree with you, Malaga is a bit too far for such a short trip, best stay closer to Barcelona, you'll find there's plenty to see in the region!

Posted by
200 posts

I've been to Barcelona twice, once for four nights with friends in 2017 and this past March for seven nights with family. I think the six nights with one or two day trips (Montserrat would be my suggestion, if it isn't too cold and Figueres as a second choice) would be your best choice. There is so much to see and experience in Barcelona and I would like to go back!

Posted by
18755 posts

Definitely wouldn't go all the way to Malaga on such a short trip. And Malaga is at best only the fourth most interesting city in Andalucia.

My first choice for a side-trip would be Girona, but other good ideas have been suggested. Perhaps one or two orhers will sound more interesting to you.

There are a number of very popular sights in Barcelona for which you'd want to buy tickets in advance, if they are of interest. Let us know what you want to see so we can advise.

Posted by
3 posts

Thank you all. My airport concern is just all the time involved with getting there early, travel to and from etc. The train to Granada 7 hours or that would have been great. I think for a southern, close-by train trip -Valencia would be great, it is 3.5 hours away. I will read about it. Part of me says I should still consider Malaga, as it is only 1 hour 40 minutes. I will read about Valencia and figure out total travel time of flight to Malaga versus train to Valencia travel. Thank you very much!!

Posted by
2178 posts

You appear pretty dead set on either Valencia or Malaga, two quite similar cities, I assume you know that March is far from beach weather in both places?

Posted by
3 posts

Thank you. Yes, I am aware it will not be beach weather. I am certain I would like to stay in Barcelona and if I add an additional city stay for two nights that it be south due to the weather. I think the community is right and Malaga would be too much for such a short trip. Valencia is the furthest that I would go for an overnight. I will look at a map and see what else is possible/popular. Thank you!

Posted by
4835 posts

Five nights is plenty for Barcelona. We have been there three times and love the city, except for the pickpockets.

Malaga is not so high on my list for Spain. Have you been to Seville, Madrid, Toledo, Segovia, Granada?

Posted by
18755 posts

I'd recommend checking the train schedule on Renfe.com. Valencia is more than a 3-hour train trip each way. Girona, which would be my choice if I left Barcelona, is more historic, more picturesque, and only 38 minutes away. Needless to say, the Girona ticket costs quite a bit less as well. It's a bit of a walk from the train station to the historic district but that short train ride gives you a lot of extra time to play with.

Some trains to Zaragoza take less than 90 minutes. The Zaragoza train station is also not near the main sights (the historic center and the Moorish palace), so you have to hop on a bus or into a taxi if you don't want to hoof it for quite awhile.

Girona and Zaragoza are both inland. Their nighttime temperatures in March will be a good bit lower, on average, than what you'll find in Barcelona.