The Ultimate 10 Days in Spain Itinerary (+ Travel Tips)

If you’re planning your first trip to Spain and are hoping to sample a variety of what makes this sun-drenched country special, we designed this 10 day Spain itinerary for you!

Spain has had a special place in our hearts ever since we landed in Madrid for the first time when kicking off our supposed “6-month” round-the-world trip (that was almost 7 years ago, and that trip arguably never ended).

In the years since, we have been lucky enough to visit Spain so many times that we’ve lost count, exploring countless cathedrals, castles, alcabazas, beaches, and cities along the way.

We’ve explored the country via train, car, bus, and ferry, sampling iconic attractions and little-known villages alike, traveling both alone and with various groups of family and friends.

This itinerary for Spain in 10 days has been curated for first-time travelers based on our lived experiences in Spain, and we hope that you walk away loving this beautiful country as much as we do!

Here’s how to fall in love with Spain in 10 days.

kate storm jeremy storm and ranger storm in plaza de espana seville spain
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How We Structured This 10 Day Spain Itinerary

We structured this 10 day Spain itinerary to cover many of the country’s most popular destinations in a “U” shape, beginning in Madrid and ending in Barcelona.

In addition to the ever-popular Madrid and Barcelona, this itinerary also loops through Toledo, Seville, Granada, and Cordoba in a quest to sample a variety of what makes traveling in Spain special.

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With the help of the high-speed train between Madrid and Barcelona, you can easily enjoy this trip by either flying round-trip to and from Madrid, or booking an open-jaw ticket where you fly into Madrid and leave from Barcelona.

And, while we opted to start this itinerary for Spain in the capital, you can easily reverse it and start in Barcelona instead, if the flights work out better that way!

ranger storm overlooking toledo spain on his first vacation in europe

Getting Around During Your 10 Days in Spain

Since this 10 days in Spain itinerary is focused on cities, there’s no need to rent a car or drive on this route!

The simplest (and most fun) way to travel between each destination on this itinerary is via train.

For most places, you’ll have the choice of a high-speed train (more expensive but much faster), or a slower regional train.

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We recommend comparing train schedules and prices via Omio, the service we use to book many trains around Europe.

Spain’s high-speed AVE trains, like many high-speed trains around Europe, use dynamic pricing–in other words, you should lock down your fares as soon as you can commit to dates!

Once you’re in a given destination, each city is walkable (with the help of public transportation and/or cab rides in certain places).

Shop train tickets for your trip to Spain today!

laptop open to our escape clause on renfe train in spain itinerary

The Ultimate 10 Days in Spain Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Madrid and start sightseeing.

There’s nowhere better to kick off your 10 days in Spain that in the vibrant capital city of Madrid!

Often underestimated compared to popular Barcelona, Madrid is beautiful, endlessly interesting, and pulsates with life from every corner.

It’s one of our favorite cities in Europe to fantasize about living in, and who knows–one day we might just make it happen.

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On your first day in the city, tour the (gigantic, opulent) Royal Palace, check out the cathedral, meander through Plaza Mayor, and stop by the Templo de Debod.

And, of course, your first day in Spain can’t be complete without tapas!

Head to Mercado San Miguel for endless options, or opt for this popular tapas tour to learn the ins and outs of this tradition (knowledge that will be very useful for the rest of your time in Spain).

Book your Madrid tapas tour today!

Kate Storm and Jeremy Storm in gardens of Madrid Royal Palace, an excellent stop on any 3 day Madrid itinerary

Where to Stay in Madrid

Budget

Hostal Adis — Located just off Puerta del Sol and boasting excellent reviews, you couldn’t ask for a better location in Madrid–and at a budget price, too!

Hostal Adis is an excellent property for budget travelers looking for an excellent location and plenty of privacy–rather than being a traditional hostel, Hostal Adis is more like a budget hotel.

Check rates & book your stay at Hostal Adis today!
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Mid-range

Hotel Regina — Featuring plush beds, spacious rooms, excellent customer service, and a perfect location near Puerta del Sol, mid-range travelers can’t go wrong with a stay at the popular Hotel Regina.

If you’re feeling like a bit of a splurge, upgrade to a room with a panoramic view for an experience you won’t forget anytime soon!

Check rates & book your stay at Hotel Regina today!
Metropolis Building in Madrid Spain--when trying to see Madrid in 3 days, its most popular building is a definite stop worth making.
Luxury

Catalonia Las Cortes — Simultaneously sleek and cozy, modern and traditional, Catalonia Las Cortes is housed in an 18-century building in the heart of Madrid and has blended together all the best of classic atmosphere and modern convenience.

We’ve stayed at a few Catalonia hotels over the years and have always been impressed.

An excellent location near Puerta del Sol, rave reviews and beautiful rooms make Catalonia Las Cortes the perfect luxury hotel choice for those looking for a blend of traditional and modern during their 3 days in Madrid!

Check rates & book your stay at Catalonia Las Cortes today!
Kate Storm in a gray coat walking down the street in Madrid with a red brick building to her left

Day 2: Enjoy a second day in Madrid.

The second day of this itinerary for Spain opens with one of the most memorable art museums in the country: Spain’s National Art Museum, the Prado.

Packed with masterpieces (primarily Spanish, but also from across Europe), the Prado is one of those museums that we never get tired of.

Skip-the-line tickets are a great idea here, but for the most context (and efficient sightseeing), consider taking a tour in order to make sure you see the best of Velázquez, Goya, El Greco, and beyond!

Book tickets to visit the Prado today!

Once you’re ready to move on, head to the delightful Retiro Park.

With gardens to explore, rowboats to rent, statues to admire, lawns to lounge on, and even the Palacio de Cristal to enjoy, Retiro Park is a wonderful place to relax.

kate storm, sophie nadeau, and christina juan at cristal palace in retiro park madrid in the fall

Eventually, make your way to the exit by the Puerta de Alcalá and head up Gran Vía to check out some of Madrid’s most famous architecture!

This shopping street is where you’ll find the iconic Metropolis Building (the rooftop bar and restaurant on top of the Círculo de Bellas Artes has an amazing view of it!), as well as the Cybele Palace.

Branch off to explore the Puerta del Sol and lively La Latina neighborhood in the afternoon and evening!

Don’t wrap up your last (full) day in Madrid without at least one round of churros con chocolate at Chocolatería San Ginés, either.

pile of churros con chocolate at Chocolatería San Ginés one night in madrid spain

Day 3: Take a day trip to Toledo.

Today, it’s time to leave the capital behind and take a day trip to the beautiful medieval city of Toledo.

Set about 35 minutes away from Madrid by high-speed train (or about an hour by bus or car), beautiful Toledo is easily one of the best day trips from Madrid.

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Surrounded on 3 sides by the Tagus River, Toledo is as charming to look at as it is historically relevant.

The city once briefly served as the capital of Spain, and was even an independent kingdom at one point!

view of toledo spain from the opposite side of the tagus river

Some of the best things to do in Toledo include visiting the magnificent Toledo Cathedral, touring the Alcázar, stepping inside the Monastery of San Juan de Los Reyes, and meandering through the city’s charming streets.

Don’t miss the viewpoints of the town from across the river, either!

You can easily take the high-speed train to Toledo yourself for the day, but if you prefer the context of a tour (and/or want the easiest access to the viewpoints from across the river), this popular day trip is also an excellent option.

Book your day trip to Toledo today!

interior of toledo cathedral, an amazing addition to an itinerary for spain in 10 days

Day 4: Head south to Seville.

Sunshine, sour orange trees, flamenco, and some of the most fascinating architecture in Europe await in the next part of this Spain itinerary: welcome to Andalucia.

This is one of our favorite regions in Spain, and it always seems to keep drawing us back.

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A roughly 2.5-hour high-speed train journey will deliver you from Madrid to Seville, the capital of the Andalucia region and an excellent jumping-off point for your explorations.

We recommend taking an early train down from Madrid, dropping off your luggage at your hotel (most are happy to hold it until check-in for you), and starting your sightseeing.

Today, be sure to check out the stunning Seville Cathedral, climb to the top of the Giralda (bell tower) for beautiful views of the city, wander through the famous Plaza de Espana, and explore the delightful neighborhood of Barrio Santa Cruz.

tiled benches of plaza de espana as seen during a day in sevilla espana

The Royal Alcazar of Seville is stunning, and also one of the best attractions in town–but we’d only recommend visiting today if you’re a really big architecture fan.

As amazing as the Alcazar is (and it is, truly), it’s somewhat overshadowed by the Alhambra, which you’ll see in another couple of days when following this 10 day Spain itinerary.

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On the other hand, if you’re interested in adding a flamenco show to your Spain itinerary, Seville is the place to do it.

Andalucia is widely considered the birthplace of flamenco (though the specific origins are debated), and a flamenco show like this is a wonderful way to close out your evening.

Book your flamenco show in Seville today!

view of the torre del oro with women in flameno dresses in front, a fun place to walk during a one day seville itinerary

Where to Stay in Seville

When deciding where to stay in Seville, location is key as ideally, you’ll want to stay within walking distance of Seville’s best attractions.

We had a fantastic experience at Petit Palace Puerta de Triana on our most recent trip to Seville.

The hotel has a fantastic location (central but also quiet–a far-from-guaranteed combination in Spain), a delicious breakfast, and comfortable rooms.

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Looking for something a bit different?

The incredibly popular Hotel Rey Alfonso X is an excellent choice, and its rooftop views are sublime!

If you’d like to stick to more of a budget, Hotel America Sevilla gets wonderful reviews and doesn’t sacrifice too much in terms of location.

Meanwhile, for the height of luxury, you can’t beat the absolutely stunning Hotel Alfonso XIII!

Check rates & book your stay in Seville today!
ranger storm in the plaza de espana smiling at the camera

Day 5: Take a half-day trip to Cordoba.

Less than an hour from Seville by train or car, you’ll find the captivating Andalucian city of Cordoba–which happens to be one of our favorite places in the region!

Once the most powerful city in Islamic Spain, the Cordoba of today is small and manageable, a bite-size tourism destination that nonetheless leaves a big impact on visitors.

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Cordoba is most famous for its incredible Mosque-Cathedral–literally a former mosque with a cathedral built into its center–which is one of the most memorable buildings we’ve had a chance to visit anywhere.

The Mosque-Cathedral should absolutely be your top priority when visiting Cordoba, but beyond that, there’s still plenty to see within a short walk!

Snapping photos of the picturesque Calleja de las Flores, relaxing in the Patio de los Naranjos, wandering through the Jewish Quarter, and checking out some of the beautiful patios of Cordoba should also be on your to-do list.

kate storm in a floral dress visiting one of the patios of cordoba during a spain vacation

After seeing the best of Cordoba, you have two options for the rest of your day: first, you could enjoy another evening in Seville.

Or, if you’d rather make today particularly busy in favor of having more time for sightseeing tomorrow, you could head onto Granada.

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Granada, home to the Alhambra, is about 3 hours from Seville by train or car and is your destination for tomorrow.

You could opt to continue sleeping in Seville and take a long day trip there on day 6, or, if you’re open to packing and unpacking an extra time, you could sleep in Granada starting tonight to give yourself more time in the city.

Personally, we love Granada and would recommend spending extra time there, but both options are compatible with this Spain itinerary.

highly decorated center of mosque in cordoba spain

Where to Stay in Granada

When spending a few days in Granada, we opted to rent an apartment from Mosaiko Homes and could not have had a better experience: the owner was responsive, the apartment fantastic, and the location unbeatable!

Mosaiko Homes is located on a quiet street a short walk from many of Granada’s top sights, offering the combination of a convenient location and a lack of noise at night–two things that can be difficult to find together in Andalucia!

Another excellent option with near-perfect reviews is the incredibly unique Casa de Reyes (that decor!).

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For a bit of luxury, the popular Shine Albayzin is not only housed in a 16th-century palace, it overlooks the Alhambra.

Generally speaking, lodging in Granada is much more affordable than in, say, Barcelona or even Seville.

If you’re going to splurge on a luxury property during your 10 days in Spain, Granada is a fantastic place to do so!

Check rates & book your stay in Granada!
colorful street in albayzin granada, fun stop on a 10 day southern spain road trip itinerary

Day 6: Explore Granada and tour the Alhambra.

Whether you’re visiting on a day trip from Seville or spending the whole day in Granada (we recommend the second, but the first is doable too), there is one major item on the agenda today: the Alhambra.

This collection of centuries-old palaces (plus a fort, gardens, ruins of a medina, and more), is one of the most unique groupings of architecture in Europe, and the most-visited tourist attraction in Spain!

We wrote about visiting the Alhambra extensively here, so I’ll try to keep this (kind of) brief, but the long and the short of it is that this is a place you need to plan ahead for.

Tickets often sell out, and a tour is a great idea here if you like historical context (we enjoyed this one).

If you’re visiting from Seville, we recommend booking a day trip, because 3 hours of transit each way plus navigating to and from the complex is a headache in a short time frame (we rarely suggest taking day trips this long, but the Alhambra is worth it).

court of the lions in nasrid palaces alhambra spain

However you decide to visit, make sure that you book a ticket or tour that includes the Nasrid Palaces!

These magnificent palaces, the final stronghold of Islamic Al-Andalus before the Reconquista was officially completed by the Catholics in 1492, are the jewel of the Alhambra and an absolute must-visit.

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Not all tours and tickets include them, though, so book yours carefully.

Once you wrap up at the Alhambra, if you’re staying in Granada, be sure to wander through the Albayzin neighborhood, admire the views of the Alhambra from a distance at the beautiful Mirador de San Nicolas, and visit the beautiful Granada Cathedral.

Granada is also a fantastic place to enjoy Spain’s tapas culture, so be sure to indulge in some snacks along with a tinto verano.

kate storm and ranger storm at the mirador san nicholas in granada spain, one of the best places to visit in andalucia

Day 7: Head north to Barcelona.

Today, say goodbye to Andalucia and head north to Barcelona!

This is the longest travel day included on this 10 days in Spain itinerary, and you can expect to spend 6+ hours on a train from Granada to Barcelona.

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We recommend booking this trip at least a few weeks in advance, as you’ll want a choice of schedules and to get the best price possible.

If you’re on a budget, you can price out flights too, but traveling by train is much more fun!

Once you arrive in Barcelona, you can check into your hotel, get unpacked, and start exploring.

Meander through the Gothic Quarter, check out the Barcelona Cathedral, sample the Santa Caterina Market, stroll down Las Ramblas, and soak up the beauty of Plaça Reial.

placa reial in barcelona spain with a fountain surrounded by palm trees

Where to Stay in Barcelona

When deciding where to stay in Barcelona, it’s important to keep in mind that this sprawling city requires some effort to move around–there’s no way to stay near all the best things to see in Barcelona, but it’s best to stay by some of them!

We checked into Citadines Ramblas Barcelona and were extremely satisfied–to the point that we may just keep going back on additional trips.

Our room was spacious, complete with a kitchenette, and extremely quiet despite the hotel being located in a prime spot right along Las Ramblas.

The view of the Barcelona Cathedral from the rooftop deck of the Colón Hotel Barcelona is pretty incredible too, though, and we have it bookmarked for a possible future trip.

If you’re traveling on a bit more of a budget, Hotel Nouvel also gets excellent reviews and is in a wonderful location.

Check rates & book your stay in Barcelona today!

kate storm walking through the columns of the balcony at the barcelona opera house

Day 8: Explore Barcelona’s unique architecture.

On your first full day in Barcelona, start with a visit to either Casa Milà or Casa Batlló, two of the most famous homes designed by Gaudi!

They’re fairly close together, but with only a couple of days left in Spain, we recommend only going inside one and seeing the other from the outside.

You’ll also want to get an early start–personally, we recommend pre-booking tickets for Casa Batlló when it opens).

From there, explore any nooks and crannies of the Gothic Quarter you didn’t get to see yesterday, including Catalunya Plaza and Mercado de la Boqueria.

fruit stand in mercado de la boqueria barcelona itinerary spain in 10 days

If you’re excited about all of Barcelona’s Catalan modernism architecture, we can also heartily recommend a visit to Palau de la Música Catalana.

Though not designed by Gaudi, it’s an amazing (and compared to much of Barcelona, uncrowded) example of the style and a memorable place to visit!

Barcelona’s Arc de Triomf is also only a 10-minute walk away.

From there, you’ll be about a 25-minute walk from Barcelona’s beaches and bustling coastline.

view of barcelona beach on a crowded day with a palm tree in the foreground

Day 9: Dive deeper into Barcelona (and possibly take a day trip).

With its long list of incredible attractions, it would be very easy to spend the penultimate day of your Spain vacation exploring the city in-depth–but another option would be to add on a trip to the monastery of Monserrat.

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This mountain retreat away from the city is known for its incredible views, and a half-day trip there is a wonderful way to get a taste of Catalonia beyond Barcelona itself.

However, staying in the city also has its charms: the views from Park Güell and/or Tibidabo, the incredible Picasso Museum (which holds over 4,000 of the artist’s works), and a visit to Camp Nou are possible additions to your list.

view of park guell in barcelona spain, a top europe bucket list travel destination

And, of course, we can’t forget the Sagrada Familia: Gaudi’s unfinished masterpiece of a cathedral is an absolute must-see when visiting Barcelona!

We visited in the early evening after hearing that the interior’s light was at its best then, and we were not disappointed–the colors were phenomenal.

If you wrap up at the Sagrada Familia before sunset and would like to enjoy the Mediterranean while in Barcelona, consider wrapping up your evening with a sunset catamaran cruise.

Book skip-the-line tickets to visit the Sagrada Familia today!

interior of the sagrada familia in barcelona spain, an amazing destination when traveling to europe for the first time

Day 10: (Maybe) head back to Madrid and say goodbye to Spain.

How the final day of this itinerary for Spain works for you depends on one factor: whether you’re flying home from Madrid or Barcelona.

If you’re taking an evening flight home from Madrid, you’ll need to take the high-speed train back to the capital (we highly recommend booking this in advance).

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If you’re leaving from Barcelona, you may have time for one more round of pan con tomate enjoyed while admiring the bustling of the city before you catch your flight!

However you close out your 10 days in Spain, we hope you say goodbye already dreaming of your trip back.

Shop train tickets from Barcelona to Madrid today!

patio in the palacio de viana, one of the best attractions cordoba spain

The Best Time of Year to Enjoy This Itinerary for Spain

Spain is the definition of a year-round destination, and that includes this Spain itinerary!

That being said, though, if you have flexible dates and are trying to pinpoint the ideal time to travel Spain, we recommend enjoying this itinerary in the spring or fall.

Summer in Spain, especially in Andalucia, can be brutally hot (we shudder to think of visiting the Alhambra at noon in July).

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Winter is perfectly doable, but the weather can be rainy and less predictable than in spring or summer.

On the plus side for winter, though, you’ll experience few crowds, low prices, and still have a decent chance at soaking up some Spanish sun, albeit with a jacket at hand.

The sweet spot for this 10 day Spain itinerary, though, which travels a decent chunk of the country and therefore needs to take multiple climates into account, is the spring and fall.

We have visited Spain in every season, and while each trip was a delight, we have a special place in our hearts for our spring and fall visits!

kate storm and ranger storm on a balcony overlooking toledo spain in winter

More Than 10 Days in Spain?

Lucky enough to have longer than 10 days in Spain? If so, congratulations!

Our first recommendation with a couple of extra days to add to your Spain itinerary is to slow down: every destination covered in this travel guide could easily use another day or two at least.

While it’s doable to travel Spain at a breakneck pace for a week and a half, the longer you’re there, the slower you’ll want to travel.

Alternatively, if you want to keep the speed going, you could add on another day trip: visit Girona from Barcelona, Segovia from Madrid, or Ronda from Seville, for example.

view of cliff of ronda spain with countryside in the background, a fun addition to a 2 weeks in spain itinerary
Ronda is absolutely worth a visit!

If you have closer to 2 weeks in Spain, consider adding Basque country to your itinerary!

San Sebastián, Bilbao, Vitoria-Gasteiz, and beyond makes for a wonderful extension to round out a couple of weeks in Spain.

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Alternatively, you could opt to extend the Andalucia portion of your trip to include a couple of days on the Costa del Sol.

With near-limitless ways to enjoy a Spain vacation, it’s safe to say that wherever you head, you’re bound to have a wonderful trip.

tossa de mar, costa brava, from above, with castle in the foreground and water in the background, one of the best beach towns in spain

What to Pack for Your Trip to Spain

Our detailed packing lists for Europe in summer, fall, and winter cover just about everything you’ll need to bring on your 10 day Spain vacation!

To get you started on your list, though, here are a few essentials to add to your packing list:

Travel Adaptors for Spain — If you’re coming from outside of mainland Europe, you’ll definitely need adaptors for your electronics. 

Camera — We completely adore our Sony a7R III, but whatever camera you’re comfortable with works–just make sure you have something with you to preserve your memories! 

jeremy storm standing in front of sagrada familia in barcelona spain travel guide

Comfortable Day Bag — We currently use Pacsafe’s sleek anti-theft backpack and love it, but if you don’t want to shell out the cash for this trip, that’s totally understandable.

Just aim for something comfortable to wear, not flashy, and medium-sized–we used a Northface Jester backpack for years and loved it as well.

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Sunglasses — They’re not kidding about the Spanish sun! I find myself reaching for sunglasses regularly even when visiting Spain in winter.

Portable USB Charger — Don’t stress about your phone dying while you’re sightseeing in Spain: bring a USB charger along for the ride.

Your 10 Day Spain Itinerary Map

Take This Map With You! Click each highlight to pull up the name of the destination. To save this map to “Your Places” on Google Maps, click the star to the right of the title. You’ll then be able to find it under the Maps tab of your Google Maps account! To open the map in a new window, click the button on the top right of the map.

4 photos of spain travel destinations, barcelona cordoba seville and granada. black and red text reads "how to spend 10 days in spain"
About Kate Storm
Image of the author, Kate Storm

In May 2016, I left my suburban life in the USA and became a full-time traveler. Since then, I have visited 50+ countries on 5 continents and lived in Portugal, developing a special love of traveling in Europe (especially Italy) along the way. Today, along with my husband Jeremy and dog Ranger, I’m working toward my eventual goal of splitting my life between Europe and the USA.

63 thoughts on “The Ultimate 10 Days in Spain Itinerary (+ Travel Tips)”

    • Thanks, Rob!

      We haven’t done a lot of dedicated wine tourism in Spain, though of course, the local wines are delicious. You’ll be near wine regions in each stop, though, so can easily opt for a half-day wine tasting outside the city somewhere.

      Alternatively, every city has more excellent wine bars and wine shops than you can count!

      Reply
      • Amazing!! Thank you so much for all of this!!

        Kate quick question if I may bother you for a bit.

        I went through everything you wrote and I calculate maybe about $5,000 would cover the hotel, train and eating expenses between cities for a family of three (My husband and I and our baby girl, toddler) This does not count the air flight ✈️ to Spain.

        We were thinking of visiting ending of May or Beginning of June.

        Does this sound about reasonable amount to take ??

        Reply
        • Of course!

          $5000 (USD, I’m assuming) is very doable, especially if you’re conscious of your budget when booking hotels! I’d recommend booking your train tickets in advance too, as those can be pricier at the last minute.

          Generally speaking, Barcelona will be the most expensive stop on this itinerary and Andalucia the most affordable.

          Reply
  1. Thank you so much for creating this! This is extremely helpful and I appreciate all your tips. I am going to Spain in the middle of Semana Santa, but flying into Barcelona and departing from Madrid. I would love to visit the cities you mentioned, but this is the current itinerary I have going. Do you think that this is doable?

    DAY 1 – ARRIVAL IN BARCELONA
    DAY 2 – BARCELONA
    DAY 3 – BARCELONA
    Easter DAY 4 – Fly to GRANADA
    DAY 5 – GRANADA (Alhambra visit)
    DAY 6 – SEVILLE
    DAY 7 – SEVILLE (day trip to Cordoba)
    DAY 8 – SEVILLE
    DAY 9 – MADRID
    DAY 10 – MADRID
    DAY 11 – Fly home

    Reply
    • Hi Chloe,

      Yes, that sounds like a very reasonable itinerary! You’ll have a great time.

      I’d definitely have some food/snacks with you as you’re traveling on Easter Sunday, as you’ll no doubt run into lots of closures.

      The week of Easter is also VERY busy in Spain (and in much of Europe), so expect higher-than-usual prices and crowds. I’d recommend booking your hotels ASAP and Alhambra visit ASAP!

      Reply
  2. Hi Kate!

    I love your site and this itinerary for Spain. We’re spending about 12 days in Spain in early April (unfortunately also over Easter, like Chloe in the message above), and using your itinerary as our template, we want to add a day or two in Gibraltar & Tangier. Have you done this? Too ambitious to add to the itinerary? It would look something like this:

    1 – Arrive in BARCELONA
    2 – BARCELONA
    3 – Fly to GRANADA
    4 – GRANADA (Alhambra visit)
    5 – GIBRALTAR
    6 – TANGIER
    7 – SEVILLE
    8 – MADRID
    9 – MADRID (Toledo)
    10 (Easter) MADRID
    11 – Back to BARCELONA
    12 – Fly home

    Reply
    • Hi Chris,

      That is a very packed schedule, but I do get the temptation of adding on a quick day in Morocco (and the UK, in a manner of speaking).

      If you want to add on Gibraltar and Tangier, I’d consider trimming a different destination to give yourselves more breathing room, as that’s a tough pace to keep up for 12 days (though doable, if you are dedicated to seeing every last place).

      Seville is a gorgeous city, but taking it off your itinerary would give you another day to work with, which you could then add to Granada or Gibraltar, since you’ll really only have an afternoon and evening there.

      If you really want to see Gibraltar, of course it’s worth seeing, but if it’s more or less just a stop on the way to Tangier, you could also look at Tarifa, a beautiful Spanish beach city (no passport control) that you can access Morocco from (I believe the ferry is slightly shorter from there, too–we’ve taken that one ourselves).

      Alternatively, the high-speed trains do run on Easter, so if that day is more or less just a holding day on your calendar (since the Madrid sites will be closed), you could travel back to Barcelona then, which would give you day 11 back to see a bit more of that city.

      Any high-speed trains you do opt for, though, I’d book ASAP. It’s often a mad rush for trains over Easter with people traveling for the holiday.

      Reply
      • Thanks Kate. After doing some more reading and research, we’re going to bypass Tangier. Instead, we’ll use that time to explore the towns between Granada and Seville (Thinking Nerja and Ronda) by car. Have you rented a car and driven in southern Spain? Any issues we should know about or is it a pretty standard car rental experience?

        Gracias!
        Chris

        Reply
        • We’ve driven in southern Spain many times(including Granada, Seville, Ronda), but generally by renting cars in Portugal and then driving them over.

          It’s a pretty standard European driving experience, though–parking outside of historic centers and walking in, etc. If you’re a confident driver I wouldn’t be worried. The driving is also stunning–plenty of chances to enjoy gorgeous views along the way!

          Reply
    • Here you go, Sarah. 🙂

      Day 1: Arrive Madrid
      Day 2: Madrid
      Day 3: Day Trip to Toledo From Madrid
      Day 4: Travel to Seville
      Day 5: Half- Day in Cordoba
      Day 6: Granada and the Alhambra
      Day 7: Travel to Barcelona
      Day 8: Barcelona
      Day 9: More Barcelona or Day Trip
      Day 10: Travel Home

      Reply
      • Hi Kate,

        This is a GREAT article. I’m going to follow your itinerary. I’d also like to visit San Sebastián and Cadiz. Could you recommend a way to incorporate these into your itinerary? Thank you!

        Susie

        Reply
        • Hi Susie,

          So glad you found our post helpful!

          There’s not an incredibly efficient way to add San Sebastian to this itinerary, as it’s several hours out of the way regardless of where you add it on. It is a gorgeous city, though!

          Your best bets would probably be either visiting after Madrid and then flying to Andalucia from San Sebastian, or visiting after Barcelona (especially if you’re flying out of Madrid) and then taking the train back to Madrid to head home.

          Of course if you find a good flight to or from San Sebastian you could use it as a starting or ending point, but Madrid and Barcelona tend to have the best deals for transcontinental flights (assuming you’re not coming to/from Europe).

          Cadiz is much easier to add on–it’s just an hour or so south of Seville by car, so you can easily add it to your Andalucia leg. Some people even visit it as a day trip from Seville.

          Reply
  3. Hi! Your trips look amazing! Wondering if you could offer advice. I have 10 days to plan. In my head I will be able to see Madrid, Barcelona, Seville, a beach town, Lisbon or some location in Portugal, and Morocco.
    As I’m researching, this looks like it might be impossible. Knowing my family would like to hit all 3 countries, what would you offer as a reasonable way to spend these days without feeling crazy and traveling constantly. It is myself, my husband, and kids age 13 & 17 who travel very well.
    Thanks for any help!

    Reply
    • Hi Jen,

      You know, I actually have it on my list of future blog posts to write some sample itineraries combining Spain and Portugal. Thanks for the reminder!

      If you want to see all 3 countries in 10 days, the most realistic way is to do it via a sampler platter style, meaning 1-2 base destinations in each of Spain and Portugal, depending on whether you want to take a day trip to Tangier or you plan to spend a few days in Morocco.

      One option could be 3 days in Lisbon (with a possible day trip), 3 days in Seville (with day trips further afield–possibly Granda/the Alhambra and Cordoba), 2 days in Tarfia (pretty Spanish beach town with ferries to Tangier), and then a couple days in Tangier. But that’s already pushing it as far as what you can fit in!

      Keep in mind that unfortunately, Spain and Portugal are not very well-connected to each other by rail. When you’re short on time, your best options will be renting a car and driving across the border (in the south/if you want to go to the Algarve) or flying (between major cities).

      Reply
  4. Hi,
    Thank you for this great itinerary! My husband and I are planning a trip on similar lines this year and I had a few questions I was wondering you could advice us on:
    1. Is early September a good time to visit? Would August be too hot?!
    2. Is one day in Granada enough? I have heard that Alhambra itself can take quite a while and hence was wondering if one day would be too tight a squeeze
    3. Between Barcelona and Madrid, if you had to suggest one for first time travellers, which would you recommend?!

    Thank you so much!

    Reply
    • Hi Rushali,

      Of course, happy to help!

      Early September is definitely preferable to August. It’ll still be warm, especially in Andalucia, but it’ll be much less crowded. It often feels like all of Europe heads to the beaches or mountains in August and then promptly goes home by September 1–so September will be much more pleasant from that angle.

      One day being enough in Granada is all dependent on how much else you want to do! In a perfect world, I’d love to rent an apartment in Granada for a few months and take advantage of all the food and nearby hiking. 🙂

      But for the purposes of a short trip, one day is enough to see the Alhambra (it will take up the bulk of your day) and then do a quick pass through the rest of town, hopefully prioritizing the Albayzin neighborhood, the Mirador de San Nicholas, and tapas.

      If you’re able to add on a second day (or even half day, like I laid out as an option above), you won’t be sorry, though.

      Barcelona vs Madrid… that’s an intense debate! Personally, we prefer Madrid, but we’re in the minority. Barcelona is wildly popular (deservedly so!) and has the beach, more outlandish architecture, and a more fast-paced vibe.

      Madrid is arguably more elegant, with world-class museums, and is a bit cheaper.

      Both are incredible–if you are struggling to decide, I’d make a list of the top 3-4 things you want to see in each city and see which ones pull to you more.

      Hope you guys have a wonderful time!

      Reply
  5. Hi Kate,
    Would you recommend activities like River Rafting, Hot Springs, Walk in the wild while in Spain? We are planning a trip during early May

    Reply
    • Hi Rajesh,

      If they’re priorities for you and you have time, absolutely! Andalucia in particular has great options for all of those. You might want to look into extending your time in Granada if you want to get outdoors during your trip.

      Reply
  6. Hi!
    My husband and I are going on a 10 day trip starting in Barcelona. We go to Mallorca then Seville. Were having a hard time deciding if we want to end in Madrid or Lisbon, any recommendation?

    Thanks 🙂

    Reply
    • Hi Samantha,

      That’s a hard call, as they’re both wonderful but very different!

      Very generally speaking, I’d say that Madrid is best if you’re looking for museums, the royal palace, and a chance to travel overland from Seville (it’s an easy train ride).

      Lisbon is best for views, being near the coast (you can easily take a day trip to Sintra, Cascais, or both), and the chance to sample another country during your trip. There’s no train service from Seville, you’ll need to fly, drive, or take a bus.

      Both offer popular food options, but Lisbon has a bit more of a seafood focus while Madrid tends toward pork.

      This is all very general, but I hope it helps a bit!

      If you haven’t seen them, our guides to spending a few days in each city will give you a feel for them:

      Madrid: https://www.ourescapeclause.com/3-days-in-madrid-itinerary/
      Lisbon: https://www.ourescapeclause.com/3-days-in-lisbon-itinerary/

      Good luck deciding! 🙂

      Reply
  7. Hi Kate!
    Would recommend Lisbon or Madrid if we can only go to one on our trip? Were going to Barcelona, Mallorca and Seville before.

    Reply
  8. Hi Kate! Thank you for this great itinerary. My husband and I are planning to visit Spain this September (finally will be going on our honeymoon!). We are thinking of being out there for about 10-12 days. I have two questions that I would love your insight on. First, considering we may have extra days, any suggestions on which cities we should extend our stay at? We love wine, great food, and the outdoors. Second, what, if any, restrictions are still in place due to COVID that we should keep in mind? Thank you in advance for your help!

    Reply
    • Hi Sandra,

      Congratulations on your marriage!

      Honestly, any of these cities are worthy of spending more time in, but if I absolutely had to pick, I’d recommend Granada (because your time there is really compressed in the original 10-day itinerary and there’s lots of great hiking just outside of town) or Barcelona (the most popular day trips include the Penedes Wine Region and the beautiful small towns along the Costa Brava–a different kind of nature to appreciate).

      I could make a case for any of them, though!

      As far as COVID, there aren’t any current restrictions that are likely to impact your trip. I believe masks are still required in pharmacies and hospitals, but that’s about it.

      Hope you guys have a fantastic honeymoon!

      Reply
  9. Hi! Thanks so much for this super helpful blog.. I have a question about transportation. We are a group of 3 ladies arrving from US to Madrid in the afternoon and would like to start our trip in Barcelona and end in Madrid for return flight. I think we will travel via train same day to Barcelona but my concern is luggage. Do you know if trains allow for larger suitcases or will we be met with bag costs?

    Thanks so much for any advice!

    Reply
  10. Hi Kate! I am planning a two-week trip to Spain for my husband and me for next spring. (Your 10-day Spain itinerary has been super helpful!) So far, I am generally following that itinerary with a few extra nights in some places (we have 3 nights in Madrid with a day trip to Toledo, 3 nights in Seville with a day trip to Cordoba, 2 nights in Granada, and 4 nights in Barcelona with a day trip to Girona). My question is, if we still have 2 more nights we can add on somewhere, would you recommend renting a car and seeing some of the White Hill Towns of Spain (with 2 nights in Ronda), or using the Lisbon stopover program and spending those 2 nights in Lisbon (with a day trip to Sintra)? I can’t decide between the two! Any thoughts or suggestions you have would be great! Thanks!!

    Reply
    • Hi Cate,

      Definitely a very hard decision! And unfortunately, there’s no right answer.

      I’d opt for the hill towns if you’re looking for more peace and quiet with a side of nature, and Lisbon if you’re looking for a city break and palaces (in Sintra). The hill towns are gorgeous but aren’t as heavy on sightseeing as a capital city is.

      Lisbon definitely adds more variety to your trip, so I’m inclined to lean that way (the stopover program is very convenient, we used it ourselves several years back), but if hill towns definitely make for a more relaxing trip since you’ll be spending a full week in Andalucia that way.

      Hope that helps a bit, but I’m afraid there’s no clear winner or loser here!

      Reply
    • Hi Rebecca,

      Assuming you’re trying to fit everything within 14 days, the only realistic way to do so would be to trim another destination or two. Personally, I’d recommend visiting either Madrid or Barcelona (whichever appeals to you more/has better flight options for you), then Ibiza by plane, then fly to Andalucia from there.

      You can take the ferry to Ibiza as well, but I’d recommend looking into an overnight route so you don’t lose one of your days to traveling there.

      If you have longer than 14 days and want to add Ibiza as an addition, I’d probably leave from Barcelona and then fly to Andalucia afterward.

      Reply
  11. Hi Kate, we will be visiting friends who live in Madrid in later March-early April of 2023 (exact dates still TBD). We’re spending a week 3/23-3/31 with them at a rental house in Benimeli, but will likely travel around on our own for another week or two on our own. Your itinerary sounds lovely. Can I ask why you don’t include Valencia? My sister studied there in college and loved it.

    Reply
    • Hi Sarah,

      For the same reason we didn’t include Basque Country, Mallorca, Galicia, and many more… simply time! Can’t see it all in 10 days, as lovely as that would be, so we focused on the destinations that tend to be a priority for first-time visitors.

      Valencia is a beautiful city, though, and would definitely allow you to trim the budget a bit if you swapped it for Barcelona. 🙂

      Reply
  12. Hi Kate! This is SO helpful!

    I’m planning a trip for December, which will be winter and on Christmas Eve/Day. Do you have advice or tips for travelling, where to go, what to do/not do or anything that would be useful for being in Spain at this time?

    Thank you!!

    Reply
    • Hi Angela,

      In general, expect for things to be closed and everything to be VERY quiet on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day! Some places will be open the morning of the 24th and then close around midday.

      I’d recommend stocking up on groceries and planning to spend a relaxed day exploring places that can’t “close”–parks, plazas, etc.

      If you’re there before Christmas, check out any Christmas markets that are around! They don’t have quite the same atmosphere as the ones in Central Europe, but they can still be lots of fun.

      Reply
  13. We’ve already been to Seville (loved it of course), any thoughts on swapping it with Valencia? Curiously nobody in the comments has mentioned it, and you don’t either…we travel in January and seems like a really nice place to visit that time of year. Looks beautiful. 10ish days split between Madrid/Valencia/Barcelona seems easy travel wise too.

    Reply
    • Hi Mick,

      Valencia is a beautiful city, and very popular with expats! It doesn’t tend to call as many tourists as Seville, probably due to both location and fame. I don’t know anyone who has visited who didn’t love it, but as most people are working with very limited time, the most iconic cities tend to pull visitors.

      I’d have a hard time suggesting someone skip Andalucia entirely if it’s their first trip to Spain (it’s one of our favorite regions, and we’re far from alone in that), but you’re obviously in a different position!

      Reply
  14. Hi Kate!

    We are planning this trip from Jan 1-11th. Thank you so much for sharing your trip. The only place we are skipping is Granada. Should we try to accommodate a stop there, or leave it for another trip.

    1st DAY- MADRID (1)(Hotel Regina, RIU, or any other)
    2nd Day- TOLEDO (2) (35 mins highspeed train)
    3rd Day- MADRID TO SEVILLA (3) (2.5 hrs highspeed train)
    4th Day- Still in Sevilla (Day trip to Cordoba (4))
    5th Day- Sevilla to Cadiz (5) 1hr 24 mins
    6th Day- Cadiz to Malaga (6) 3hrs 48 mins (day trip to Marbella(6))
    7th Day- Malaga to Barcelona (7) 6hrs 17 mins
    8th Day- Barcelona
    9th Day- Barcelona
    10th Day- Madrid

    Reply
    • Hi Xavier,

      Your itinerary is already very full, so if Granada isn’t at the top of your priority list, I think it makes sense to leave it off for this trip!

      I’m not sure if you’re planning to sleep in Toledo on day two or take a day trip, but personally, I’d recommend opting for a day trip to keep the transition simpler.

      The other day that sticks out is day 6. It doesn’t seem like you have enough time to explore both Malaga and Marbella, so I’d recommend choosing one of them and staying there. If you’re mostly hoping to appreciate Marbella, in other words, I’d just head right there and spend the night instead of taking a half-day trip after spending several hours getting there from Cadiz.

      Hope that helps and that you have an incredible time in Spain!

      Reply
  15. Kate and Jeremy,

    Thank you so much for taking the time and effort to educate those of us who will be traveling to Spain for the first time. My wife and I, who are around 70, are planning a 10 – day trip to Spain in September. Your 10-day intinerary sounds fantastic. While we are both in good health, my wife does have a knee that can act up. Based on your experience, is this itinerary a reasonable one for people our age?

    The other question I have is whether there is a travel agent you would recommend to help us coordinate everything? We are spoiled as we just returned from a trip to Argentina and worked with an amazing person — both professionally and personally. Plans came together perfectly. Does anyone come to mind?

    Thank you, again, for your thoughtful recommendations. It is incredibly helpful and reduces the anxiety of being completely overwhelmed by all the touring options. Happy holidays.

    Gayle and Alan

    Reply
    • Hi guys,

      So happy you’ve found our site helpful!

      Everyone is different at any age, of course, but I’d say you’d have better luck with this Spain itinerary than, say, a similar one in Italy–fewer hills. You’ll definitely want to take advantage of tours to smaller towns (with possibly some hop on/hop off bus tours), including Toledo, to limit walking in hilly places. For the Alhambra, definitely take transportation up to the palace–it’s a long, steep walk from town.

      But Madrid, Barcelona, and Seville all offer lots of flatter walking areas.

      Anecdotally, we visited Seville and Cordoba last year with my grandparents in their late 70s, and they found it very doable.

      As far as travel agents, no advice to offer there, I’m afraid–we’ve never worked with one ourselves.

      Hope you guys have an incredible trip!

      Reply
  16. I have been practicing Spanish for the goal of traveling to Spain in 2024 or 25 with my family. I wanted to do 10 days and capture all the popular and non-popular but recommended spots. I think this is perfect – going to save it!

    Reply
    • That’s great to hear, thanks Anita! Good luck with your Spanish studies–it definitely does a lot to enhance a trip. 🙂

      Reply
  17. HI KATE
    HOPE YOU DOING GOOD .
    UR DETAILED ITENIARY ABOUT SPAIN IS AMAZING .
    WE ARE PLANNING A TRIP IN START OS MAY . THOUGH WE ARE CONFUSED WHETHER WE SHOULD DO SPAIN OR ITALY . WE HAVE 10 TO 12 DAYS IN HAND , COULD YOU PLEASE SHARE SOME OF YOUR VIEWS TO IT .
    THANK YOU
    MARISHA

    Reply
    • So happy you found our posts helpful, Marisha!

      Choosing between Spain and Italy definitely isn’t easy! Personally, we have a slight preference for Italy, but both countries count among our favorite places to travel. You truly can’t go wrong, so I’d decide which is home to your absolute top 1-2 destinations, whether that’s Madrid, Cinque Terre, etc, etc, and then go with whichever country that is.

      Alternatively, you could of course enjoy one city in each country with a flight betweeen!

      Here’s our recommended 2 week Italy itinerary if you want to compare: https://www.ourescapeclause.com/2-weeks-in-italy-itinerary/

      Reply
  18. Hi Kate,

    Thank you for all your wonderful tips! My husband and I are planning a 10-12 day trip to Spain this year and wanted to ask for some advice on cities to see. We love architecture, churches, markets, and music and enjoy walking and exploring new sites.We were thinking of doing the following cities: Madrid (fly in/out of), Toledo, Seville, Cordoba, Granada but wanted to know what other day/overnight trips you would recommend to places such as Ronda, Nerja, Malaga, Andalusia or Estepona. As much as we would love to visit Barcelona we would rather do that on another trip.

    Reply
    • Hi Melinda,

      There are definitely more than enough day trip options (or overnights) to keep you busy with that timeline! Truly you don’t necessarily need to add any others–slowing down a bit in the places you mentioned will still leave plenty of stones unturned–but if you would like, the white villages (including Ronda, Setenil de las Bodegsas is also very memorable, among others) are a great option.

      The Costa del Sol is a bit further, but if you want to spend some time on the beach, Estepona, Malaga, Cadiz, Tarifa, etc, are all wonderful bases as well.

      Our Seville day trips guide might give you some ideas, it covers the general area pretty well: https://www.ourescapeclause.com/day-trips-from-seville/

      Reply
  19. Thank you Kate for the info! Do you mind giving recommendations on day trips vs. overnight stays? I don’t want to feel rushed when visiting a city but don’t mind spending a night or two in places where there’s plenty to see and do.

    Reply
    • Hi Melinda,

      In your case, if you’re hoping to spend time on the Costa del Sol, I’d pick one base to spend a night or two in down there and potentially visit another spot from that base. Personally, we love Tarifa, while Malaga is very convenient for hopping from village to village. The smaller beach towns are lovely, but I’d opt for one of those if you’re hoping to stay in one place for a bit, as opposed to using it as a place to take day trips from.

      The small white villages, like Setenil de las Bodegas, can easily be done as a day trip. We spent a few days in Ronda and loved the slower pace, but you can easily cover over half its main attractions on a day trip as well–just depends on your priorities!

      Reply
  20. Hi Kate, thank you for creating this itinerary! We used your Portugal itinerary last year and loved it! Planning a 12-day family trip to Spain in July with 3 kids ages 14-17. Currently considering the following:
    Fly into Malaga (2-3d)
    Granada (1d)
    Seville (1d)
    Cordoba (1d)
    Madrid (1-2d) /Toledo day trip (opt)
    Barcelona- remaining time/fly out of
    Main question- is Malaga worth visiting? Or we can do start/ end in Barcelona.
    Is it too much?
    Remove/add something?
    We don’t plan to rent a car, but may consider if it makes sense for a portion of the trip.
    Thank you in advance!

    Reply
    • Hi Elena,

      That’s amazing you hear you enjoyed our Portugal suggestions, thank you for sharing!

      First, Malaga–if you’re wanting to spend a couple days relaxing on beaches, I’d consider going a bit further afield, perhaps to Nerja, Estepona, etc. If you’re just wanting some general sightseeing, a full day in Malaga is probably enough, and I’d consider trimming a day or two there and giving it instead to Seville, Granada, or Madrid.

      Malaga has some cool places, and it’s definitely worth seeing the Alcazaba, Picasso Museum, Cathedral, etc. if you fly into there, but I would say that personally, we find it the least compelling city on your list (which is admittedly a list with very stiff competition).

      You may already be planning on this, but I’d definitely take a day trip to Cordoba from Seville rather than spending the night there to avoid the hassle of changing hotels again–it’s a very easy day trip.

      If you trim a bit from Malaga, I think you’ll be moving at a very doable pace, and agree there’s no need for a car on this route.

      Enjoy some tapas for us!

      Reply
  21. Hi Kate, thank you so much for your reply and additional tips!
    I was thinking the same regarding Malaga, given the competition :).
    So reworked the itinerary as follows:
    D1 Fly into Madrid (seems to be doable with current flight options)
    D2 Madrid /Toledo day trip
    D3 Seville
    D4 Seville/Cordoba day trip
    D5 Granada
    D6 Granada
    D7-D12 Barcelona- /fly out of

    A couple of questions:
    1. Would you recommend adding a day or two D1-D6, and if so, where?
    2. In addition to sightseeing in Barcelona, we hope for some beach time. Would you recommend staying in Barcelona for the beaches? Or is there one that is a reasonable day trip and is worth it.
    2a. I looked into Cala sa Boadella, do you have any thoughts on that or any other one?
    Thank you so much!

    Reply
    • Hi Elena,

      Anytime!

      Personally I’d suggest adding one day to Madrid to give you time to see a bit of the city in addition to visiting Toledo. Gives you a little more time after the flight to get settled, and Madrid is also a very cool city (we love it there).

      Barcelona’s beaches are expansive, sandy, and good for relaxing on, but they’re generally not considered the best beaches in the region. If you’re looking to get out of the city for a little beach time, Sitges is a very easy and popular day trip, and Tossa de Mar offers a combination of beach + castle. There are lots of beach towns nearby, though! A Barcelona expat we know wrote up several day trip options from Barcelona for us and she included quite a few beach destinations: https://www.ourescapeclause.com/day-trips-from-barcelona/

      Reply
      • Hi Kate!
        I am so sorry, somehow I missed your reply, just saw it. Thank you so much, I greatly appreciate it! Love Barcelona day trips, we will plan to do at least one.
        Thank you again!

        Reply
  22. Hi Katie
    I just read through your entire itinerary and it sounds great. My husband and I and our two adult children are flying into madrid, arriving on 4/15 and out of Barcelona on 4/24. We want to visit Sevilla during the Feria de Abril. I was thinking 4/15 and 16 in Madrid. Should we take train to Sevilla on the 17th or plan to leave Madrid on the evening of the16th? Want to do a day trip to Cordoba and see Granada before heading to Barcelona, Could you give me your thoughts how we should alot time in each city

    Reply
    • Hi Suzanne,

      If you are open to a more fast-paced itinerary, I’d definitely consider an evening train to Seville on the 16th, since it sounds like you’re hoping to fit in quite a bit down there.

      From there, I’d recommend spending the 17th-19th in Seville (with one day allotted for Cordoba), then head to Granada on the 20th, see the Alhambra on the 21st, and head to Barcleona the 22nd.

      That leaves you with only enough time for a very whirlwind tour of Barcelona, but since you’re hoping to enjoy the Feria de Abril, you won’t want to cut Seville short!

      Reply
  23. Kate
    This might be a duplicate comment. Going to Spain arriving in Madrid 9am on 4/15/24 and leaving from Barcelona on 4/24/24. We want to see El Palacio Real and Prado museum for sure. We are thinking of just staying one night in Madrid and then heading to Sevilla. We would like to go to Toledo. Should we go from Madrid or Sevilla? We are not interested in other museums in Madrid but have considered 2 nights in Madrid. We also want to go to Granada before Barcelona. Not sure how to split up our days. Any suggestions? We are traveling as a family with my husband, 31 yr old daughter and 28 yr old son. Also what are would you suggest if we would rather get an apartment than hotel in Madrid

    Reply
    • Hi Suzanne,

      Just saw you left two comments! I also have a message for you under your other one. 🙂

      For Toledo, I’d recommend taking a day trip from Madrid and not changing hotels. You will have to double-back slightly that way, but overall it should be more efficient than changing hotels again, as the city is really very close to Madrid.

      As far as using a hotel vs apartment in Madrid, there are pros and cons to both (and we use both depending on the trip). For such a short trip, though, we’d personally probably opt for a hotel unless you’re planning on eating most of your meals in an apartment versus going to markets/restaurants. If you do opt for an apartment, I’d carefully peruse the reviews for noise, as it can be an issue in Madrid depending on the street and neighborhood!

      Reply
  24. Not sure about the festival but we will be there during that time. How much time should we consider spending in Sevilla? If we want more time in Barcelona would you give up Cordoba or Granada?

    Reply
    • Hi Suzanne,

      I’d recommend making your you have one full day in Seville itself, excluding days you arrive, depart, or take a day trip to Cordoba. Here’s what we’d recommend doing with one day in the city: https://www.ourescapeclause.com/one-day-in-seville-itinerary/

      As far as Granada versus Cordoba, they’re both wonderful.

      Based purely on sightseeing, I’d recommend Granada, as it’s a distinct city that has a very different feel than Seville, and it also has the Alhambra, which is easily one of the best historic sites to visit in Spain.

      However, Granada can’t easily be done as a day trip from Seville (you really need an organized tour for it, and even then, it’s a very long day), so I’d make the decision based on whether you want to keep your pace of travel slower (in which case I’d visit Cordoba), or if you want to prioritize seeing as much variety as possible in limited time, in which case I’d visit Granada but make sure to spend at least one night there.

      That being said, we love Cordoba too! The Mosque-Cathedral is an unforgettable building, and either city will be a great addition to your trip.

      Reply

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