Lots of back and forth on here with advice when planning this trip....turned out great but what we like may not be for everyone.
2 adults mid 50s so we do get tired after a long day of walking...also we only bring carry-on (first time for my wife) and it worked out fine (the carry on's had to be checked on Vueling cause the rules are different)
Bottom line: 1 night in Barcelona at the start, fly to Seville, 2 nights in Seville, pick up a car, drive to Carmona for a few hours then to Cordoba for 1 night, drive to Ronda for few hours then to Granada for 2 nights, fly back to Barcelona, stay another night, fly home to the US. So it was 7 nights, 5 hotels, 3 days of intense but fun driving and using google maps on my iphone to get around but we had a blast....like I said this may not be for everyone but we don't like to be bored and like adventure and this was awesome....I can't stand a 3rd night in a hotel and risk being bored..too much to see in Europe. We only stayed 7 nights cause this was free airfare and its tough to get 10 or 11 day intervals for flights when booking your Avios.
Flew into Barcelona from the US for 1 night (we have been in B before), had a great time revisiting the Sagrada Familia, and the Palace de Musica, plus used their great metro system. We stayed (for the second time) at the hotel torre de catalunya which is conveniently close to the Sants train station and the metro. Next day we took a cab back to the airport to fly via Vueling to Seville.
Vueling planes can be tight but its only a 90 minute flight so not that big a deal. In Seville we stayed at the AT apartamentos & VTV Conde de Torrejón 10, found on this site and on trip advisor, great service, big rooms, full kitchen and washer dryer.....we only stayed 2 nights but were able to wash our clothes. The managers are exceptionally nice here..small negative is too long of a walk to the historic area (Cathedral and Alcazar) so its a 6 euro cab ride if you don't like walking constantly.
Day 2 (Thu) Barcelona, Seville
Arrived in Seville - our apt was near the Square of Hercules.you need to remember that after your GPS can't find your apt.
That afternoon we walked around and got tickets to the hop on/ hop off bus….went thru the entire loop and got off at a shopping bazaar 1 stop past our apt.
That night we took a cab to the historic area and ate at La Bulla – very good tapas place near the river and saw the flamenco show at El Arenal….read that its a bit touristy but we found it high energy and totally enjoyable.
Day 3 (Fri) Seville
Work up around 7:30 and hustled to get ready because we had a walking tour of the historical area of Seville at 10:00am. Grabbed a quick coffee and sweet roll and took a taxi down to the torre de oro (tower of gold). We were early so we walked by the river and then went up to the meeting place between the Alcazar and the National Cathedral.
Tour was just ok..the guide was a bit difficult to understand and not very informative also stopped for 10 minutes for his own coffee break. (I think you do just as well with a rick steves book self guided tour)
Afterwards we walked around a bit, got lost then had lunch near the Alcazar...then went into the Alcazar, huge complex of palaces and gardens – still used today by the royal family when they visit Seville.
Had an audio guide that you had to hold to your head like a phone….lame compared to headphones. Otherwise the Alcazar was awesome, huge levels of garden after garden and elaborately designed room after room. High 80s that day so very warm.
For dinner we decided to stay in the apt area near the square of Hercules. Went to have tapas at Eslava – highly rated, great place very crowded so we ate at the bar.....total including a couple beers around 25 euros (southern Spain is so inexpensive)
Walked around a bit before getting desert and then back to the apt