Wanderlust Series: Barcelona & Madrid, Spain
The next stop in our Wanderlust Series: Barcelona & Madrid, Spain! I asked for your feedback to know where we should go next, and this was the most popular answer. So without any further delays, here is a break down of how I would spend 10 days between Barcelona and Madrid!
I am not actually going on this trip, but if I were, I am packing for the weather in the Spring and early Summer. Here is some information on the climate in Spain so you can pack accordingly to your travel date:
Madrid and Barcelona have a Mediterranean climate, characterized by mild, wet winters and hot, dry summers. However, there are some differences in the weather patterns between the two cities.
In Madrid, the summers are hot and dry, with average temperatures ranging from 21°C (70°F) in June to 26°C (79°F) in August. The winters are much cooler, with average temperatures ranging from 6°C (43°F) in December to 10°C (50°F) in February. Madrid receives most of its rainfall in the spring and autumn months, with relatively little precipitation during the summer.
In Barcelona, the summers are also hot and dry, with average temperatures ranging from 21°C (70°F) in June to 26°C (79°F) in August. However, the winters are milder than in Madrid, with average temperatures ranging from 9°C (48°F) in January to 13°C (55°F) in March. Barcelona receives most of its rainfall in the autumn months, with relatively little precipitation during the summer.
The best time to travel to Madrid and Barcelona depends on your preferences. If you enjoy warm weather and outdoor activities, the summer months of June to August are ideal. However, be prepared for high temperatures and crowds of tourists. If you prefer milder weather and fewer crowds, the spring and autumn months of April to May and September to October are good options. The winter months of November to February are the least popular for tourism due to the colder weather and shorter daylight hours, but they can still be a great time to visit if you enjoy winter sports or cultural events.
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Day 1: Arrive in Madrid
Check into Mandarin Oriental Ritz Madrid and get ready to have lunch at Botín. You will be arriving in the morning, so you have to resist jet-lag and stay awake. Get moving and keep busy by visiting the Prado Museum that afternoon, and wrap up your day with dinner at DiverXO.
Day 2: Madrid
Have breakfast at Mercado de San Miguel and enjoy the beautiful sites. Today we are staying local and taking a tour of the Royal Palace of Madrid, followed by lunch at Casa Mono. Walk off that delicious lunch with a nice stroll through Retiro Park. Head back to the hotel to change for the evening, and enjoy dinner at Paco Roncero Restaurante, formerly La Terraza del Casino.
Day 3: Toledo
We are venturing a little further today, get up early and take a day trip to Toledo, a historic medieval town. Have lunch at Adolfo Toledo and look at a map to ensure you hit everything you want to see. Don’t miss Toledo Cathedral, famous for its architecture. When you are ready, return to Madrid for dinner at La Biblioteca.
Day 4: Transfer to Barcelona
Today we are taking the train approximately 3 hours north to Barcelona. Check in to Hotel Arts Barcelona and enjoy lunch in the hotel. Visit the Sagrada Familia and stroll around the local market. Head back to the hotel and change for dinner at Cinc Sentits.
Day 5: Barcelona
We are staying local in walking distance in Barcelona today, eat breakfast at La Boqueria and explore the history and architecture of the Gothic Quarter. When you are ready for a break, have lunch at El Salón, and then head to Park Güell for the rest of the afternoon. Change at the hotel and have dinner at Arcano.
Day 6: Montserrat
Take a day trip to a monastery located in the mountains surrounding Barcelona. This mountain range provides breathtaking views of the city! Have lunch at Can Jubany and be sure to visit the Montserrat Basilica. Return to Barcelona for dinner at Disfrutar and a night out!
Day 7: Barcelona
We are staying local again on our last day in Barcelona, if there is anything you wanted to see, do it today! Visit the Picasso museum and have lunch at Bar Canete. Visit Casa Batlló and explore the market on Diagonal Street, a famous market situated on the only diagonal street in this city. Enjoy dinner at Enoteca Paco Pérez.
Day 8: Wine tasting in Penedès wine country!
Take a day trip to the Penedès wine region for local cava. Visit Freixenet or Cordorniu wineries and have lunch at Cal Ton in the town of Vilafranca de Pendès. Return to Barcelona for dinner in the beautiful farmhouse Can Travi Nou.
Day 9: Back to Madrid
We are heading back to Madrid for the last few days of our trip. We structured the trip this way because you are probably flying to and from Madrid, not Barcelona. Take the train back to Madrid and check into Hotel Villa Magna. Have lunch at Ramón Freixa Madrid and visit the Thyssen-Bornemisza museum. For dinner, go to Smoked Room.
Day 10: Last day!
Depending on when your flight is leaving, this day can be as busy or relaxing as you want. Have breakfast at Café de Oriente and then shop at the Gran Via. If you have time, your final dinner in Spain will be at Botín.