Please sign in to post.

Spain in October itinerary, thoughts?

Greetings!

I'm taking my first trip to Spain in October with a friend. I think I have an itinerary, but I'd like some input from those who've been there. We're flying into Barcelona and departing from Madrid. I have not checked train schedules/distance yet, so is this doable? I initially wanted to visit the below, plus Toledo and Cordoba, as I know they're on they way, but that's too much! I have Rick's 2016 Spain guidebook, which I've been reading. I'm excited for Barcelona and Seville (flamenco!). I like walking, exploring, wine/food, historical sights, museums (but not ALL day), and interesting neighborhoods/shopping. Anyway, thoughts? THANKS!

Thursday - Arrive Barcelona 9 AM
Friday - Barcelona sightseeing
Saturday - Barcelona sightseeing
Sunday - Check out AM; train to Madrid; overnight Madrid
Monday - Madrid sightseeing; overnight Madrid
Tuesday - Check out AM; train to Seville; overnight Seville
Wednesday - Seville sightseeing; overnight Seville
Thursday - Check out; train to Granada; overnight Granada
Friday - Alhambra in Granada; afternoon train to Madrid
Saturday - Madrid sightseeing; overnight Madrid
Sunday - Depart early morning

Posted by
7124 posts

Look at a flight from Barcelona to Granada.

Thu - Arrive in Barcelona (3 nights)
Fri, Sat - Barcelona
Sun - Fly to Granada (2 nights)
Mon - Alhambra
Tue - Train to Sevilla (2 nights)
Wed - Sevilla
Thu - Train to Madrid (3 nights)
...with a stop in Córdoba for the Mezquita
Fri - Madrid
Sat - Day trip to Toledo
Sun - Depart from Madrid

Posted by
9 posts

Thanks, after I posted this I checked trains and flights. Cheaper to fly to Seville first; and, eliminate backtracking to Madrid, so I came up with:
Thur-Sun Barcelona, Sun. fly to Seville
Sun nignt, Mon, Tues - Seville
Then train to Granada Wed for a night/half day; then train to Madrid on Thursday afternoon, and depending, stop in Córdoba on the way...or Friday day trip. We depart 9 am Sunday.

Posted by
9 posts

Correction: I meant a stop or day trip to Toledo, not Córdoba.

Posted by
7124 posts

Note that the train to/from Granada is slow (with track work and bus replacement part of the way). A flight into Granada will eliminate one of those cumbersome journeys.
Also note, Sevilla >> Córdoba >> Madrid is an AVE high speed train corridor.

Posted by
9 posts

OK, I will check flights from Barcelona to Granada. So you're saying it would be better to only take one train ride from Granada to Sevilla, instead of Sevilla > Granada > Madrid. We are going Oct. 20 - 30.

Thanks for your help!

Posted by
14415 posts

It would probably help to have a map in front of you. It's a "straight line" from Seville to Madrid, going through Cordoba. That's the high-speed train route, and easy enough to arrive in Cordoba in the morning, leave your luggage at the bus station across the street from the train station, sightsee and then continue your journey - with separate train tickets for each leg. Granada is in another direction. It's about 2.5-3 hours by train/bus from Seville or Cordoba, 5 from Madrid. There's a high-speed train route between Madrid and Barcelona, again a "straight line" with Granada in another direction. That means you will be going "out of your way" to visit Granada. David has given you the optimal itinerary to visit all the cities you list.

My opinion FWIW - you are trying to cram in too much. Either stay 2 nights in Granada or skip it. The Alhambra is huge and will take several hours to see. It will also take time to get there from your hotel and more time to get back to your hotel, collect your luggage and get to the train station. You have a little over 1/2 day on arrival. By the time you get through the airport, into the city and drop luggage at your hotel, it'll be close to noon and you'll probably be jetlagged, sleep-deprived, and not at your best. That leaves you 9 days. If you decide to fly in or out of Seville, you will have to do some backtracking to get to both Madrid and Granada. Choose one of them. I would opt for Granada over Madrid.

Posted by
9 posts

We have to go to Madrid because we're flying home from there. I really want to visit Granada, though. I've looked at the map, but I figured it's not that far out of our way; 3-4 hrs train travel is doable. It's around the same price to fly from Barcelona to Seville/Granada ($120), so I guess Granada it is. We'll be settled after Barcelona so I'm really not concerned about jet lag. It's a quick flight from B to either. So we'd have Sunday evening there and a full day Monday to see the Alhambra, then leave in the evening to Seville, or early Tues.

Posted by
9 posts

So here's what I have; you say you'd pick Granada over Madrid? Two nights in G, 3 in S, and two in Madrid?
The last part is flexible between Granada, Seville, Madrid. I just need to know what I'm doing so I can book tickets to either G/S. We're set for our flights from the US and have booked an Airbnb for 3 nights in Barcelona. I think I'm most excited for Barcelona and Sevilla, but who knows, I'm sure it's all magnificent!

Thursday - Barcelona arrive 9 AM; sightseeing
Friday - Barcelona sightseeing
Saturday - Barcelona sightseeing
Sunday - Afternoon fly B to Granada
Monday - Granada (Alhambra)
Tuesday - afternoon train G to Sevilla
Wednesday - Sevilla
Thursday - Sevilla
Friday - Morning train to Madrid
Saturday - Madrid
Sunday - Depart 9 AM

Posted by
9 posts

Hi!

Well I messed up and didn't buy Alhambra tickets early enough and now they're sold out online! Who's been before? Is it possible to show up early and buy two tickets if there are no shows? Or, go at night? Anything? OOPS!

Posted by
19204 posts

I don't know whether any walk-up tickets are sold. Consider looking for a local tour that covers the Granada. It will cost more, but that will be better than missing out entirely.

Posted by
14415 posts

There are no "no-shows" since tickets aren't needed to enter the site and only the Nasrid Palaces have a timed entry.

Are there any Dobla de Oro tickets left? They are more expensive, but seem to allow access to all the ticketed areas.

Posted by
9 posts

Everything on the Granada website is sold out. I contacted the guide from Rick's book, but her private tour is more than we want to spend. She said we can buy the Granada card, which is $37, so that seems to be a good option, or show up at 7:30 a.m. the day of.
Rick says you can roam the free parts, but I'd love to see everything.

Posted by
19204 posts

I would definitely get the card. It would be a shame to go all the way to Granada and not see the Alhambra. I'm very glad the card is an option so you don't have to pay for a tour if you don't want to.

Posted by
2 posts

Our trip to Spain is coming up also in two short weeks! This thread has been helpful. Abey818 when are you going? We are flying into and out of Madrid, but also going to Barcelona. We want to include one more destination in the 11 days we will be there and thought about Marseilles, but it sounds like maybe we should make it Alhambra in Granada, or Seville.

We looked at the day trips that I saw on Trip Advisor and they look like a great way to get some guided tours. I don't mean to hijack your thread Abey, but would love comments. Also about flying vs trains.

Posted by
9 posts

I agree, I will definitely get the card!

Penny - I leave Wednesday, we are in Barcelona Thur-Sun., then a flight to Granada Sun. evening. Train to Seville on Tuesday, then train to Madrid on Friday morning, fly home on Sunday. We're doing all airbnb, so that's new for me as well. I'm really excited, I've wanted to visit Spain for the longest time!

Posted by
11271 posts

Penny, you should post your own thread, since your questions are different from Abey818's. But one thing is clear - if you are thinking of going to Granada, make sure you can still get Alhambra tickets before making any definite plans!