Spain- Two Week Itinerary Roadtrip

This was a two-week trip I took with my mom in May, but I guess I wouldn't call it a roadtrip since we weren't driving. We mainly travelled from place to place by train. I recommend buying your train tickets 2-3 months in advance for the best prices. To do this I use the website Rome2Rio, you can put in any starting point and end destination and it will tell you exactly how to get there. For the most part our trip was pretty typical for a 2 week itinerary in Spain, but I did find a little hidden gem village in the mountians of Spain during my research and planning for this trip. I found it by just one photo on Pinterest and then reverse image searched it on google to figure out the beautiful place was Albaraccin. I highly recommend going there if you can it was the highlight of our trip and we wished we had stayed there longer instead of Barcelona. Also, if you are wanting to have a warm beach vacation in Spain I don't recommend going in May it was still a little to cold to lay around in your bathing suit all day.  

All in all this trip was one for the books and I can't wait to dive in and tell you about everything we did. 

How to Get Around

Madrid 

We flew into Madrid through Norweigian Airlines. They have plane tickets to Europe for like half the price of other airlines. They do have limited cities in the US that they operate in, but it can still save you a ton of money! 

Once there we mainly walked and travelled by metro! Their metro is easy to figure out, clean, and has wifi! 

If you are in a rush to get somewhere when you land I would recommend spending a little extra on a taxi. It took us 20 minutes to get from baggage to the metro in the airport. Then an hour of riding the metro to get to our AirBNB.

Albaraccin 

To get to Albarracin we took a train from Madrid to Teruel, and then a taxi from Teruel to Albaraccin. The taxi was about 50-60 euros, but it's well worth the extra expense! I would figure out a taxi situation before you get there or study up on your spanish before you get there. We didn't do that and there was hardly anyone in the train station that knew English, and no wifi in sight to use our phones. 

We eventually figured it out and made our way, but would have saved us 30-45 minutes if we were more prepared.

Tarragona

To get to Tarragona we took a taxi from Albarracin to Teruel. Then a train from Teruel to Tarragona. We ended up getting a taxi to arrive to our Airbnb in a more timely manner at this location.  Also, their wifi didn't work at the Tarragona train station so I couldn't look up directions to get to our airbnb. The taxis will be lined up right outside of the train station you cant miss them. 

Barcelona

Barcelona is just a 30 minutes train ride away from Tarragona. The train station here is huge and right downtown. We ended up getting another taxi to our hotel again for times sake, but Barcelona's metro is also easy to figure out so to ditch the extra taxi expense you can take the metro. 

We mainly traveled around by foot or by Metro in Barcelona. Our hotel was pretty centrally located so we had a lot to do in walking distance. 

Madrid

We stayed in Madrid for the first weekend so just two nights and 3 days. It is a really cool city with a layed back feel to it. Two of the main attractions we went to see was the Palacio De Cristal/ Crystal Palace, which is a giant building with a large dome on top that is completely made of glass. It sits in the middle of a beautiful park, and has large statues arranged inside. It is so beautiful and it is free! I recommend going in the morning as soon as it opens to beat the crowd! We went in the late afternoon and it was pretty crowded. 

Where We Stayed

We stayed at an Airbnb in Madrid. The place was in a great location right down the road from a lot of restaurants, had a cute bar right across from it, and was very clean. 

Now for the bad. I am going to tell you this in hopes you will be more prepared and maybe avoid making the same mistakes I did. This is my one and only bad expereince with Airbnb. I've never experienced anything like it, but I told the host our flight information, and what time we were supposed to land. We have iPhones so we were operating off of wifi. My mom has an auto immune disease and she was extremely tired so we were rushing to get to the AirBnb as fast as we possibly could. It took about 20 minutes to get off the plane because we were in the very back, 20 minutes to wait for our baggage, and then 20 minutes to make our way through the airport to the metro station. Madrid is the capital so the airport is very large which is why it took us so long. We had to wait 10 minutes in line to buy a metro ticket, and then we rode the metro with two transfers to get to the airbnb and it took 45 minutes. Then another 15 minutes from the metro stop up the hill to the building. SO it took us over two hours to get to the airbnb. Our host was absolutely livid at us, and upon arrival he yelled at us. I apologized it took us so long, and he continued to yell at us until I cried. It was a terrible experience and I recommend not booking with him.

BUT what I learned was to make sure to map out how long it will take you to get from the airport to the airbnb before your trip so you have a better idea of what time your arrival to the Airbnb will be, and not just your arrival to the city. He asked me what time our flight landed so that is the information I gave him. I assumed he would know how long it takes someone to get to his apartment, but never assumer. 

Where We Ate 

Okay so this was my favorite part of this trip, THE FOOD and the wine of course. We did not hold back on this trip for either of these things and it was incredible. A lot of times we just stopped at places that looked good, so a lot of places we ate I don't know the names of, but I will tell you about the ones I do know.

I am a big fan of Anthony Bourdain, and so before this trip I looked up places he had been in Spain, one of the was Mercado de San Miguel. This is a large crowded market where you can get coffee, drinks, food prepared for you and food for you to take home to cook. We just walked around and tried a little bit of everything. 

Right down the road from our AirBnb was a long strip of restaurants and bars. It seemed to be a place a lot of locals went. We ended up at a pizza place called Primadonna. Service was good there, the food was amazing, and they had a good wine selection. We ended up going there for dinner our second night in Madrid too. 

The third place that stuck out to us was this cute and cozy bar that right across from our apartment, Viralata Bar. The staff was super welcoming and the ambiance in there was nice. They have an area in the back that was cozy where they had a couple of board games, and then the bar area up front. They also have some bar food if you need a snack.

Where We Shopped

Soooo if you don't like thrifting/vintage shopping then you probably won't like where we went shopping, but if you do then you are in for a treat! Madrid had the best vintage shopping I've experienced while traveling. Anytime I go to a place I always look up vintage stores there and get something as a souvenir. I got so much while in Spain, but Madrid was definetely a highlight for vintage shopping! 

My favorite store we found was Magpie Vintage which was on Calle Velarde, which is a road that is just a strip of vintage stores! I didn't know it was going to be like that, but once I turned the corner I was in heaven. We just spent the afternoon zig-zagging our way down the road. 

After going through those stores, we explored this area and ran into an outdoor market, and several stores that featured items made from local makers. 

Albaraccin

Albaracin was by far our favorite part of the trip and we wish we stayed there longer than two nights. It felt like we were in King's Landing from the Game of Thrones. It's a sleepy town in the middle of mountains surrounded by castle remains. We fell completely in love with this place so if you can it is worth the extra trip to get out there and off the beaten path. Definitely brush up on your Spanish because no hardly anyone speaks English there!

Where We Stayed

We stayed at the most amazing little hotel that was full of charm and had an incredible view! The staff was so nice and I could really relax here. 

Be sure when you are booking to put that you want a good view so you can get a room with a window. The other rooms don't have a good view at all. 

They have a common room with big comfy couches and a patio that is nice to hangout in! They also have really good breakfast.

Where We Ate

We ate breakfast at the hotel, but we also went to a couple of restaurants. None of the restaurants we went to were amazing, but they were decent, and you really don't have too many options here in this remote little village. 

La Taberna is were we ate when we first arrived. Its a cute little tavern next to the town square. They had good hearty food.

Senorio De Albarracin is a cute little bar/restaurant. We didn't eat here, but we had a drink at the bar and the staff was super nice. She even let us play whatever music we wanted since no one else was there at the time. 

We ate at the restaurant Tasca Tipica El Rosa. It was good with a great wine selection.

What We Did

We spent a lot of time walking the winding streets here and taking photos. While doing this we discovered a stream a river at the bottom of the hill. There is a boardwalk that will take you all the way up and around the village. The museums weren't open while we were there, but they do have them they just have specific hours. We also went and explored around the top of the hill where the castle wall was at sunset. It was absolutely stunning and one of the best views I've seen.