spain - driving barcelona south

We are planning to drive from near Barcelona to Granada and beyond and are willing to take 2 nights along the way to get to Granada where we will stay 2 nights. My questions are: Best location for starting that trip, that is renting the car to avoid driving in the central part of Barcelona. I am guessing airport pick up for the car may be needed for one way rental. Sights to see along the way - cultural, natural, whatever Economical but nice places to stay along the way that will give us about 3 hours or so of driving each day. I was thinking somewhere outside Valencia for first night and in vicinity of Cartegena for second night. Any other recommendations or thoughts about this plan. Beyond Granada, we are thinking Ronda, Tarifa, day trip to Morrocco, Seville, Cordoba, Toledo, Madrid and will have 14 days to cover this. We are not sure if she should drop the car in Seville or keep it until later in the trip. Advice? thanks!

Posted by Kathy
Seattle
33 posts

Are you driving between Barcelona and Granada because you want to experience that? My husband and I took the high speed rail from Barcelona to Sevilla, picking up a rental car at the train station. We then went to Ronda, then Granada, and back, returning the car in Sevilla before spending 3 days there.

Posted by Ed
Pensacola
7958 posts

The drive from Barcelona is the most boring, grubby, unscenic drive in the country. And it ain't like I've just done it once. If you're determined to do it, stack bricks on the accelerator and hook bungee cords to the steering wheel and take a nap. Valencia is okay, but not worth making the drive. Cartagena is not as bad as it was years ago, but barely worth a slow-down. You could make much better use of your time. Sights to see along the way: Cultural: none Natural: none
Whatever: whatever The rest is pretty standard, but you probably have time to slip in Segovia and Avila if you keep the car until Madrid. The day trip to Tangier may not be worth the trouble. A separate trip across the whole Northern Tier is a pretty neat experience.

Posted by H J
LaGrange, Ga, USA
914 posts

Change your trip!!! Have not made the route you seek, but from comments of friends who have traveled even more than me, I think you will be disappointed. Take the train system from city to city, and get an automobile for excursions out of them if you wish. Omit Morocco unless you just must say you have been there and in Africa. I have not been, but friends went from Malaga this summer to Morocco and said it was not time well spent. Never, never, never consider driving within the city of Madrid unless you have a blindfold and s big dose of valium. The traffic is horrendous and parking expensive if you can find it. I have been there many times in the past five or so years and would never want to attempt to drive there. Sevilla, Cordoba, are both reachable from Madrid on an AVE train...2 hours to Cordoba and 1/2 hour more to Sevilla. Toledo is 1/2 hour from Madrid, different direction than Sevilla. Just my thoughts, but do not let me scare you away from Spain. It is a wonderful place to visit and the people are even more so!!!