What is the best way to manage my time and to see all these cities! We traveling in end of March, 16 days, similar itinerary..Did you visit the San Sebastián and region, I would like to know if it a mast see as we can add days. I would really appreciate any thoughts you might have Sher. I don’t make the bookings though – If you want a completely hands off experience, I have friends who are travel agents who you can hire to create a completely custom itinerary. ;) Great choice of places and I also loved your pictures. Whatever your choice, you will enjoy your trip. Thanks in advance! Do you think it is worth going? I hope my 2 week itinerary was helpful! Hotels, restaurants, flights, sights etc – it just depends how luxury or budget you go :) You can get an idea upfront by booking your flights and hotels first. © 2020 Sher She Goes|ProPhoto 4 by NetRivet Blogs. We flew into Madrid, and spent a couple days exploring the area. This is a beautiful and helpful guide. Have a fantastic trip! The city is cosmopolitan, proudly Catalan and lively with some of the most impressive and unique sights in Spain. She found Portugal better than Spain with the exclamation most the places look the same in Spain. Thanks for reading my comment . Awaiting for your replies… I ended up extending our Granada stay for an extra half day so that I could grab the only ticket option remaining during my trip. Including staying at the same hotels. It will cover Southern Spain (Andalusia: Seville, Córdoba, Granada, Malaga) to Tangier, Morocco then to Portugal (Lisbon, Fatima, Sintra, maybe Porto) then back to California. I usually decide the order of our route based on the times tables + fares. I haven’t driven in Spain or Portugal, so unfortunately wouldn’t have any advice on that. Budget 2 full days in order to fully explore the city, with a full 1/2 day devoted to the Alhambra. Thank you. We are certified scuba divers and not sure if we can fit in a day of diving to break up the city experience. walking the camino route sounds incredible, i’ve heard great things! It felt like you wrote this for me…we also are going for exact 14 days and intend to cover Spain and Portugal, have taken a note of all your recommendations:), I have one question- do you suggest any particular operator for Baixa and Alfama walk in Lisbon? For the Alhambra you absolutely need to buy a ticket ahead of time (I have a whole post on that). I have been looking non stop and can’t seem to find anything great that is priced right. Thanks for the kind words about my itinerary :) Zara is AMAZING in Spain (at least compared to the US), plus they have Zara Home stores that I love because we don’t get them in New York! I would be travelling from Bombay and would like to ask which place should be the starting point – Portugal or Spain and am considering around May. Is this a specific palace in Sintra? Portugal’s temperate climate means that any time of year is relatively comfortable for a visit. I’m stuck with the train routes. Sher, Hi Lorna – this is just the itinerary we took, not a tour. We want to relax more rather than sightseeing from point A to B. We will be traveling to Spain for 5 days before heading to Portugal for a group trip. Don't Miss: a night hopping from bar to bar sampling tapas and pinchos. In general the high speed train runs pretty frequently, you just might not the time or seat you want if you buy the day of. I am from Singapore and am looking to holiday in Spain In June. That is incorrect. Hi ZD! That’s a generalization, of course, but that was my experience. Pena Palace is widely believed to have inspired Disney – in addition to Neuschwanstein. Faye. Do you have a better suggestion in which order should we visit the 4 cities in Andalusia? Thanks for sharing x. like a tour guide? In the larger cities hotels are more expensive so you can look into AirBnB for a more budget friendly option. Spring and fall offer the best combination of good weather, light crowds, long days, and plenty of tourist and cultural activities. Love reading your post before planning my travels. We got lucky and timed our visit for their spring festival, the Patio Festival! They’re MUCH more convenient and often cheaper. In that case because you have so much time in Barcelona, I would recommend an extra day in Seville, just to get an extra taste for south spain (which is quite different from the two big cities up north). Are you planning a trip to Spain, Portugal or both? Sorry! For tourism, peak season is typically during the summer months, particularly … Main Attractions: Cathedral, Alcázar, Barrio Santa Cruz. How long did it take you to plan this trip? I think that is the easiest way. Or you might want to visit Cordoba on a day trip when you’re in Seville. Hi Sher. check flight schedules for your dates here. Lisbon has some amazing seafood spots and charm, but also a sad air of neglect to the magnificent tiled apartment buildings. Can you share approx how much you spent for the two weeks. You could save Andalusia for a separate trip entirely as there's lots to see! Check train schedules for Spain here. I guess for anyone travelling for the first time, the usual dilemmas are always the same – Which places to consider and their relevance, though it might vary from person to person but your post gives a good comparative view of the places to visit. Any input would be grateful. The best time to visit Portugal is in spring (March-May), when the country is in bloom and waking after the winter. :) (P.s. Thanks for the detailed itinerary. After a major earthquake and tsunami hit Lisbon in 1755, Portuguese royalty permanently left the city in favor of this mountain retreat. Any suggestions? Royal Ramblas is a great hotel to stay in, as it's located right on the main shopping and pedestrian road, Las Ramblas. What can you suggest? We went in Spring and loved it. Thanks for this incredible detail – it’s amazing. I love all the flower shots in Cordoba, what a great time to go! Me and my friend are planning to go Portugal and spain in November. the Cathedral Mosque in Cordoba, the Alhambra Palace in Granada and the Alcazar in Seville, where scenes from Game of Thrones were filmed, Barcelona: home to Gaudi's masterpieces: the unfinished Sagrada Familia cathedral, the UNESCO World Heritage Casa Battlo site and colorful Park Guell. and you mostly have to walk around for sights and such but there’s also the trolley to take which is fun. If you do go to Lisbon, I highly recommend Sintra! Sher, your post is very helpful and sounds like a wonderful trip. I didn’t take the bus but you can check the Spain bus website if you prefer to take the bus. Visitors are drawn by the sunny and inviting southern European climate. We decided to do the first two and left Figueres for another trip simply because the train schedules weren't as convenient. Do you recommend doing the tower at the Sagrada Familia? To book tickets, use Omio. Haven’t been to all these places in Spain but definitely have to get back so I can visit more. I guess you could compare Barcelona to NYC and Madrid to Washington DC? It feels like too much. Regarding where to spend your 5 days, it depends on how you prefer to travel. If you’re booking in advance things are much much cheaper, especially flights and trains. There are local buses and taxis to get around too so no need for a car! Hi Tara – either itinerary would be amazing, it really depends on what you’re looking to do on your trip? Thank you! For me, I had limited time (2 weeks) and the main cities are easily connected via train/flights so that’s what we did. Hi! Hi Sher! May is lovely in Portugal. I might be planning a Spain trip for this summer, I’ll bookmark this and avidly follow all your recommendations haha. These times of year are fairly slow with tourists. 1. what is the easiest way to get to your airbnb from airport? Can you please share which bus company you used for the journey? Fly into Madrid, do Sevilla and Granada with day trips to Córdoba and Sevilla. Don't Miss: the Pena Palace, which is said to have inspired Walt Disney's vision of Cinderella Castle! Disclosure: This site uses affiliate links. I see what you mean. Wow I can’t wait to visit Spain someday, what a great post! We opted for 2 nights in Lisbon, with an extra day to check out the wacky, beautiful mansions at nearby Sintra! I’m not sure of the route you’re taking but flying to Portugal from Spain usually involves flights out of Barcelona, so you would go Barca > Andalusia > back to Barca just to get to Lisbon, which adds extra time. Feel free to include or exclude whatever you like :) I think if you read through all my posts on Spain, pick up the Rick Steves guidebook and read through a couple other Spain blogs, you can easily find all the answers to your questions and create your perfect Spain & Portugal vacation. I’m planning a trip for 4 adults in February. 3.How did you travel from Barcelona to Lisbon? Here are some highlights you absolutely shouldn't miss in Spain and Portugal! I got a lot of questions about how we got around. Spring can be a great time to visit, when wildflowers paint Algarve clifftops, Alentejo pastures, and northern hillsides with color. Thank you Renne! Check rates: Hotels.com, Booking.com, Expedia. Nice tips! Expect small, authentic and delicious, with a bit of flair. Pls send me a contact of a travel agent who can help me with the train and other bookings. Seller of Travel Ref. January is the coldest month of the year in the beautiful city of Lisbon, Portugal.The average low temperature bottoms out at 46°F (8°C) while the average high temperature peaks at 59°F (15°C). With shorter time the day trips from Madrid are probably easy to cut and maybe less time in Cordoba if the patio festival isnt going on, Hi Sher, Hm it sounds like you have 6 days planned for Barcelona and 1 for Seville. I was planning to make Cordoba only a day trip from Madrid (or Seville?) I haven’t been to Fatima unfortunately, so don’t have any advice. For information on positions and how to apply, please visit our travel careers website. There is a desert near Alentejo and the country lacks any large natural lakes. We are a relaxed family (2 adults, 2 teens 13-15) who like to soak it all in and enjoy nights out exploring the town etc. Not sure how much time you have but if you can fit it all in then great! Whether you get injured and need to be hospitalized, your phone gets stolen, or a flight delay leaves you with nothing but the clothes on your back, travel insurance will help when you need it most. :-). The pictures looks absolutely fantastic!!!. Train stations are usually in or near the town center so I can just hop on, get off and go sight see. Thanks so much for putting this together, very helpful! Thanks Sher, great itinerary. This is a unique experience of crossing the border without queuing or passport controls. Im also planning a same trip for July. its so easy to understand and the photos are all amazing. There's so much to see in Barcelona (and the city makes a great base for nearby day trips in Catalonia) so budget at least 3 full days! Food in Spain is average priced (compared to New York). We settled in for a couple days of sightseeing, healthy doses of tapas, rioja wine and laid back nights that ended with churros con chocolate. I didn’t rent a car so to get from city to city I took the train or flew. Get a quote for your trip here. Also within an easy day trip from the city are Girona, a walkable old city famous for its historic Jewish quarter of narrow cobblestone streets, and Figueres, where Salvador Dali built his museum and personal shrine. The Patio Festival is an opportunity for proud locals to exhibit their version of ‘Best Lawn' and visitors can see traditional Moorish style patios decorated with a profusion of beautiful pink, red and green blooms. Since Portugal and Spain share the same peninsula, their landscapes and climate are similar. Hi Sher, I am so pleased to have found your blog! Keep reading below for a day by day city itinerary of must-see sights, things to eat and where to stay! Fly into Barcelona, explore Barcelona, and do monterassat, and then take a flight to Lisbon and explore Porto and sintra, 2. Hm.. Barcelona has great food, lots of nightlife, impressive architecture, shopping, a cosmopolitan feel. Can you suggest links For Madrid and Barcelona very similar to your Andalusia posts? Sounds like an amazing European tour! Your photos are so nicely taken as well! We are planning a 2 weeks trip to Spain and Portugal in early July 2020. Average temperatures range from 77°F (25°C) in summer to about 58°F (14°C) in winter. Hi Regina – thanks for the kind words! Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window), Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window), Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window). We decided to fly after hearing unimpressed reviews of the overnight train service. Hi Anna – If there are trains available, I prefer trains. You could also go in fall (between September and October) when the sun is still shining, the weather is warm, and many of the crowds have dispersed. A couple friends recommended Sintra as a must do while in Lisbon. You can live a fairytale in Sintra. Thank you. Main Attractions: Royal Palace, Museo del Prado, Retiro Park. The north of the country is mountainous and wet while the south is drier and has rolling plains with many beaches near the Algarve. I know what you mean, it takes a loooong time to plan because I like to customize my itinerary to things I like to do, plan the transportation myself and also keep things within budget! You can check out the whole photo series by exploring the hashtag #shershegoes_spain, Or save this article to read later by pinning it ⇟. For example, the Madrid day trip to Toledo is strangely very popular! Thank you for sharing your wonderful itinerary. We are flying in and out of Madrid so i cant decide what would make more sense. Large numbers of Portuguese head to the beach during this period, when the water temperatures are warmer than usual. Madrid is more historic and I really loved South Spain. Glad you like it :) I took about 2 weeks so it sounds like you have plenty of time. Wow, what an incredible trip and your pictures are absolutely stunning! By plane, I guess? Just wondering if you could please clarify how many days you spent in Barcelona and Madrid with day trips. Hi! Beautiful photos, thanks for the insight into such spectacular places! Main Attractions: National Palace, Quinta da Regaleira, Palace of Queluz, Arab Walls. Since it’s not a packaged tour, the trip cost will depend on what you want to do! I recently posted about it with tons of photos, have a look! She even advised me considering either of Barcelona or Madrid as they both are very similar. We decided to do a Spain getaway at the last minute and then added on Portugal at even later minute and found it helpful to read Rick Steves, Lonely Planet, forums and blogs to ultimately decide which cities to linger in and which to skip altogether. That’s how I plan my trips! Some people feel Cordoba is small and that the highlights can be seen in a day trip. my kind of welcome drink: grapefruit palomas! Check out this 7 day Southern Spain travel guide, How We Spent 3 Incredible Days in Granada, Insider Tips for Visiting the Alhambra Palace. 5 – We will then travel to Vigo [train or fly?] […] Our Itinerary: Exploring Spain & Portugal in 2 Weeks […], […] The Best Spain and Portugal Itinerary to Take Now!January 2, 2018 – 12:15 am […]. If only haha. 2.How about BUS from Cordoba to Seville? So glad you like it :) What a great birthday trip!! I think it depends on where you want to go and how much time you have! All these places are amazing,I definitely have to visit them someday! And what amazing photos. They charge a nominal booking fee for the process, I believe around 1-3 euro per transaction, so try to organize your route first then buy all the tickets in one go. The city deserves 1 full day – unless you're in town for the Cordoba Patio Festival when you won't be able to get enough with even two or three days! And if there are cheaper hotel options. Hey Sher! The Algarve usually remains especially pleasant and sunny and can attract European visitors looking for a winter getaway. Thanks! I liked the small town feel of Seville more and the excellent local tapas scene, but Granada has more sights so usually people do at least 2 days in seville and 3 in Granada. so we wont be dragging our luggage behind. The itinerary above is just an example and I structured it so that if you have more/less time you can consider the day trips – essentially you can spend however many days you wish in each city! I’ve been wanting to visit Spain and Portugal together for years so this guide was fantastic! Cordoba really comes alive in early May for the flower festival.. I would recommend cutting out lisbon. Hi Jessica, Hm I don’t remember exactly what we spent but what I usually do is book the flights, hotels & transportation first – those are usually the bulk of the trip cost. […] That made me expand my possibilities and search what there was to do in both countries. Which month did you visit and as per you which would be the ideal time to travel to these places? Also, we are there for 11 days 10 nights, flying in and out from Barcelona. Flights and hotels are cheaper, and there are fewer tourists around than during peak summer months. We were thinking of driving. I definitely want to do them all but don’t want anything to feel rushed or missed because I’m on a strict itinerary. I plan to leave on 10 June and return on 24 June. In Barcelona, we booked day trips to nearby Montserrat and Girona using the train. for my trip and dates, i found that flying to lisbon was easier from Barcelona, as it was a larger hub. Happy to help. Or would it better to start Barcelona, then over to Portugal and then to Mardrid and fly home from there? Wish I had gone but it was nearing 3 weeks at that point and I had to get back to work! We recommend Catalonia Plaza Mayor, a comfortable hotel that's centrally located in the heart of old Madrid. Sher than you for sharing your wonderful itenerary. I’m planning to buy train tickets in advance (traveling to Spain and Portugal) but since my itenerary is not finalized so how do I go about making reservations? It's the largest distributor for European train tickets and accepts international credit cards. Thanks. hm what do you mean by a particular operator? There are some colorful palaces and mansions there which are really unique. my special favorite, patatas bravas (fried potato wedges served with a mayo aioli)! The houses look amazing then. i usually book guided tours through viator and they connect to a local company. I’ve been to Madrid and Toledo already, so I am OK missing these. Hoping you would be kind enough to recommend an agency to help us with logistics and reservations for Portugal and Spain trip I am planning for four people. I heard once that it’s because of mountains.. but I’m not sure. A very well arranged guide for the travel you have experienced. Check flight deals for your dates here. Practical tips for traveling to Portugal, from social protocols to guidance on money matters, with a link to the latest government travel advice. Fantastic and comprehensive post! There’s no direct train route to Granada from the other 3 cities, so we’ll have to keep on backtracking to Córdoba or Seville to get to Granada and Malaga which will be a waste of time. It's difficult for non Spanish users to book. The winters, though colder, still offer a good amount of sun. No. I’m a bit overwhelmed with the planning. After thoroughly explored Spain's capital, we headed south for a loop through Andalusia. We were thinking of staying in Barcelona for 4 nights and then heading out to Libson. If you have the time I would do both, but if you only have time for 1, it depends what you think you’d like more. In summer, beach-goers will enjoy hot days in the south and east, and sight-seers might prefer Atlantic cities like Bilbao and Santiago de Compostela where temperatures are lower. Thank you so much for your itineraries :). I spent 5 days in just Barcelona, since its a big city and there are lots of sights to see. If you have a short time, Madrid and Barcelona are definitely the 2 cities you want to visit! Where to go, how long to stay, should I do this city or that one. to join one of the Camino routes finishing at Santiago de Compestela. Is that ok? Call one of our experts or arrange a video appointment for ideas and advice. The average high during this season is between 61.3°F (16.3°C) and 58.1°F (14.5°C). Meanwhile, Madeira and the Azores are influenced by the Gulf Stream, which accounts for a subtropical climate. Your photos are beautiful! The best time to visit both of these countries tends to be in summer or spring, since fall and winter bring lots of rain. What Not to Miss We loved how relaxing this experience was! The historic sights are all located within the compact Old Town and easily walk able. The tapas bars were my favorite – they have some very authentic “stand at the bar and order” type of tapas bars and more modern, fancier tapas restaurants so you could easily spend the full 2 days eating! That said, I am more interested in unwinding rather than exploring…. We have no specific itinerary for Portugal yet except to be in Fatima by Oct 11-14 for the Fatima Centennial events. As the heat of summer reaches its peak, so too do the crowds. I am planning at trip to Spain (Barcelona, Madrid, and Lisbon) for my birthday in April. I have printed it for the trip to Spain in next two years. Awesome trip! Hi Namrata, glad my posts were helpful! Andalusia has Moorish history so there’s lots of beautiful arabic-influenced sights like the Alhambra. Hi Marcie! 1.How did you travel from Madrid to Cordoba? Thank you – I think you just helped make my decision! As we do not want to be too stressed on the trip. You helped me a lot. I booked all of my trains ahead of time, except my Portugal day trip to Sintra. Thanks so much for the kind words. You can read about everything you need to know regarding Alhambra tickets in this post here. Jenni. We did a mix of flights and trains – you can see the specific breakdown in my individual spain posts! Start planning your tailor-made trip by contacting one of our Portugal specialists. My other question are: We would like to include Fatima. We prefer exploring the cities over spending lots of time in museums. Hi Sher! Hi Sher, […], Hi! Yes I’m so glad I took a detour to Sintra on this Portugal trip, it was a really fun day trip and actually 2 days would have been better! Spring is a time for celebration with many important festivals and holidays taking place and adding an extra splash of liveliness. Hope that helps and have a fantastic trip! I have my list of must-sees made after reading this post! Your vacation looks AH-Mazing!!! Now that I’m looking back and can compare them, I enjoyed Barcelona more (but am still glad I went to both! Is it hard to make same day /2dayreservations in advance for train seat reservation? North of Lisbon, in particular, experiences the worst of the weather but this is still only relative as temperatures are never freezing unless youre heading to the higher plains of the Serra de Estrela where snow lasts into March and April. I don’t drive so I’ll probably be commuting my entire trip. i loved it, sintra was unreal. Me and my daughter with 2 other friends are planning to go to Portugal and Spain this coming November for 2 weeks. Your photos are stunning! Planning a trip always takes the longest. The current baths are built over the ancient bath site and gorgeously decorated. Did you feel you got adequate time everywhere or were you just concerned with the planning and packing process to get to the next place? What routes are better traveled by train and those by plane? There'll be less crowds and more comfortable temperatures! Any insight you have would be wonderful!! Thanks for your help! Lisbon is budget friendly but again, just depends how you travel. Spain gets quite crowded as early as May and certain popular places will sell out. So it just depends on the kind of atmosphere you like. Seville is a fantastic town for foodies. Tapas are really good in Sevilla! Only other point is with your assertion that the Pena Palace inspired Disney’s Cinderella Castle. It has been very helpful so far, very detailed and organized. Im already thinking of flying to Madrid from Singapore(where i come from) and do the same itinerary as yours then go back to Singapore either from Barcelona or Lisbon( I cant decide yet). Thank you for the tickets tip, I will keep it in mind and book them at least 2 months in advance. Today the city retains much of its North African flavor and is an absolute must see on any southern trip through Spain. Hello Sher! Festival de Sintra (mid-May): the town of Sintra hosts a festival dedicated to classical music and opera, with events held in the town’s palaces or gardens. Spain is mainly a highland plateau with mount… Shoot me an email with some more details about what you’re looking for specifically! Some of the more famous sites in Spain can be booked online in advance too. Hi May – glad it was helpful! In Spain, the weather is good everywhere in May, I’ve never been to Barcelona for carnival but it sounds like a lot of fun! I found this clear and easy to understand with structure of information and pictures coming along with. The summer months of July and August are the best to visit northern Spain. Any advice is a great help thanks;). I want to do some shopping as well. your proposed itinerary sounds great. I’m also more a fan of Barcelona than Madrid. Only a 40-minute train ride from Lisbon, this little hilltop town is an … Barcelona was by far one of the highlights of my trip – I enjoyed it a lot more than Madrid! This is Portugal before the summer heat and crowds, and the first time in the year that visiting the beach is a viable option. any thoughts? Unfortunately, I already booked my tickets from/to Barcelona. The best time to visit Portugal is in spring (March-May), when the country is in bloom and waking after the winter. Both have rolling hills, quaint trolleys and well worn cobblestone streets. Hi Sher. Too bad you didnt see Porto, such a nice city as well. What I usually do is price out the cost of flights + hotels and that’s usually the two most expensive things. I am planning an 8 day trip to Europe in April and am torn between two different itineraries: I’m planning a 11-day trip to Spain and, possibly, Portugal. The train routes in Spain are set, so like you said you sometimes have to backtrack. Thank you so much, Thanks Julian! Hi Mona – Not sure what your specific plans are but you could fit it in before or after! Hi Pinky – sounds like a great trip! On average, it rains or snows a fair amount: consistently 6 times per month. That is a concise and well planned itinerary. Don't Miss: dinner at Cervejaria Ramiro, a local favorite of Anthony Bourdain that completely lived up to my seafood heavy anticipation. Hi Sher your blog was really insightful! :), […] Spain and Portugal Itinerary Advice for 10 Days […], Hi Sher! Would it be doable to fly into Barcelona and spend 2 nights there, flying out to Madrid and exploring Madrid for a couple of days (3 nights) including a day trip before heading to Portugal? That means less queuing and an overall more authentically Spanish experience. your itinerary is perfect! We're now back from our trip to Spain and Portugal so we thought we'd share a summary of our itinerary. After thoroughly exploring Seville, we hopped on a (10 euro!) Best Time to Visit Spain To avoid the summer heat and winter cold temperatures, high season prices and tourist crowds, travel to Spain during the spring and fall. Yea – I keep seeing Porto all over now. I’ve been to all these cities and I can say that you pretty much covered everything for a first time trip. Holy Week (March/April): strongly Catholic Portugal celebrates by holding reverent street parades, usually accompanied by lively song and dance. Best time to visit Spain and Portugal. from Seville to Lisbon. Driving in Spain is tough, but I think you can see even more if you drive! My friend and I want to spend 14 days in Spain and Portugal end of the year. It will be much slower. I covered transportation in my posts but for specific detailed advice, I highly recommend Rick Steves’ Spain book – relied on it heavily to plan my own trip – or a travel agent to plan all the little details! Also are you able to “beach” it anywhere along these stops? 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Ticket prices will get more expensive best time to visit portugal and spain time, I will fly into Barcelona on 10...

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