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European Travel: Spain & Paris


Distinguished Member
Jan 29, 2003
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My girlfriend and I are attempting to plan a trip to Europe in early June. We were originally going to do a Royal Caribbean cruise, but the time and travel schedule are a bit too hectic for the vacation that we envisioned. We would like to travel to Spain foremost and then add a day or two in Paris. As far as Spain, Barcelona and/or Madrid are top priorities. Previous trips and recommended websites would be greatly appreciated.

FWIW, our rough budget is around 1.5-2k for flight and lodging for 7-days/nights (per person). We would be leaving from NYC.


Distinguished Member
Feb 12, 2008
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Spain is probably my favorite country and Paris is my favorite city. Have fun. As for plane tickets, I flew out of DC and a R/T ticket cost me a little under 1K to Madrid. I think it is cheaper to fly into Barcelona or even Paris.

I missed out on Barcelona, but went to some pretty awesome cities in Spain that is worth checking out. Toledo is somewhat overrated, even though it is close to Madrid. I highly recommend San Sebastian, Valencia, Seville, and Granada.

I didn't really stay in any spectacular hotels (I was a student), but my GF and I did splurge on a 2 night stay in a parador (sp?) in Granada in the Alhambra, which was about 250 euros/night for a standard room. It was pretty badass, but looking back, we could've spent that money elsewhere. BTW, the Alhambra is ridiculous, even moreso if you wake up and go right when it opens up at 7-8AM. I feel as though if you go to Spain you have to see it. It is like going to France and not seeing the Eiffel Tower.

Anyway, I'm not sure any of this helped you but I just wanted to say have fun!


Senior Member
Oct 16, 2006
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If you have a .edu email address, check out Lufthansa. ~$150 to Barcelona, one way, for students, and they might have some form of discounts for other education folks, should that apply.


Distinguished Member
Jul 2, 2006
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After many years since my last visit, and a recent viewing of Vicky Cristine Barcelona, I booked an August flight to Barcelona. Looks amazing. Otherwise I'd rec. Seville for a day or two if poss. Probably not so far if connected by the high speed train system. Paris anytime. Have fun.!


Senior Member
Jul 20, 2008
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You can do Toledo in half a day.

I would suggest if possible to get a car and start driving south of Madrid for a couple days. I drove South into Andalusia (southen most part of spain) so I am biased towards the following

Places South worth seeing:

Jerez De frontera - If you want the full Flamenco experience this is the place. Also wonderful Tapas and home to the Tio Pepe sherry. The place comes alive at night. If you are lucky enough to be there during a religous festival even better as they put on quite a show.

Alhambra - For the Moorish Architecture and influence

Cadiz - Historic city with Sun and Beach

Tarifa - Southern most city/town in spain. Can see Africa supposedly on a clear day. Also known as the Windy City as it attracts enthusiasts of wind sports. Great coastline. Some of it is untounched by the type of development you see along Costa Del Sol.

The Rock/ Gibraltar - This is technically part of the UK however also worth visting quite simply for the Rock and if you want to hang out at an English Pub and enjoy your fish and chips. I managed to thwart a terrorist attack when I was there however that's another story.

Barcelona - This sure aint Southern Spain but definately worth visiting. The catalans seems a little different to the rest of Spain. The city is a little grotty and considered one of the more dangerous cities in Europe (so switch your brain on while there) however well worth the visit. I didn't mind one of the beaches, the Santa Eulalia Cathedral, and the La Ramblas (main tourist strip where you should switch your brain on at all times)

Would love to return again oneday.

Good luck with it.

Also, make sure you find a decent Tapas bar.

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