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Spain, Madrid, Barcelona

4 days in Spain - Madrid and Barcelona

My friend and I are doing a multicountry trip to Europe. We have four days to spend in Spain. We were thinking of doing two days in Madrid and two days in Barcelona. If we do this what should we do in those two cities and what is the best way to travel between them without wasting too much time? If there are two other cities that you think are more worthwhile please let us know! Any ideas/tips are greatly appreciated. Also if any of you have any recommendations on a great cheap hotel or hostel in Barcelona please let us know. 

6 Answers

top answer by
Emily from United Kingdom

First of all I would definitely fly between the two - Easyjet and Ryanair are just two very cheap airlines. In 4 days you would waste far too much precious time travelling over land. In Madrid there is so much to see: , Parque del Retiro is a must, Royal Palace of MadridTemplo de Debod and Museo del Prado are just a few of the other sights. It is a beautiful city! Find one of the little back street tapas restaurants they will have the best food :)

(Templo de Debod)

In Barcelona you should visit Basílica de la Sagrada FamíliaParc Güell, La RamblaMontjuïc fountain show, the gothic quarter but also there are lots of incredible buildings by Gaudi that are mind-blowing - I don't really get into architecture much but I loved Barcelona for it!

(Sagrada Familia Church)

Can't really recommend a hostel it's been too long since I went but I would say these are 2 of my fave cities in Spain so good choice :) Obviously there is more to see elsewhere but you can only do so much in 4 days! Have fun x

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Madrid (city)
  2. Parque del Retiro (attraction)
  3. Royal Palace of Madrid (attraction)
  4. Templo de Debod (attraction)
  5. Museo del Prado (attraction)
  6. Barcelona (city)
  7. Basílica de la Sagrada Família (attraction)
  8. Parc Güell (attraction)
  9. La Rambla (attraction)
  10. Montjuïc (attraction)
8 thanks

answered by
Ross from Fort Collins

I would do one or the other! That is not enough time to do both and then figure in travel time you will be losing at least a whole day! Do yourself a favor and pick one, and dive in! I liked Madrid much more than Barcelona, but that's just me. The people weren't as fussy in Madrid but you can see how close Barcelona is to the Côte d’Azur so that answers that lol.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Côte d’Azur (region)
7 thanks

answered by
David from Júzcar

Best transport between Madrid/Barcelona is the AVE and apparently prices have dropped significantly.

In Madrid, don't miss the Mercado de San Miguelnear the Plaza Mayor, lots a good food stalls.

In Barca near the marina are many small streets filled with eateries as well, cheap cava and a sausage bocata, delicious.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Madrid (city)
  2. Barcelona (city)
  3. Mercado de San Miguel (attraction)
  4. Plaza Mayor (attraction)
5 thankscomments (1)

answered by
Tiffany from Corvallis

I'd definitely take the train. The AVE is the high speed train and it may end up being cheaper and faster than a plane with the time you have to arrive early. Plus, you see a bit more of the country and Spanish train stations are often beautiful. You can look them up at the Renfe website and see what your options are.

There isn't much to add to the above as far as recommendations go. I do love Barcelona and there is much more to do in both those cities than you can possibly do in 4 days, so you won't have a difficult time filling the hours. Decide what's important to you - to check off the "must-see" sites, to see museums, to eat unique foods... and prioritize that way.

As far as other cities, that is difficult given your time constraints. Each region of Spain is incredibly unique, so the cities are also very different. My favorites are Valencia and Seville because of the culture, celebrations, architecture, and history, but in Spain, there's no going wrong anywhere. Barcelona is loved - by Spanish as well, so it's almost always crowded which is the only downside.

Enjoy your days. You'll have a marvelous time.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Barcelona (city)
  2. Spain (country)
  3. Valencia (city)
  4. Seville (city)
4 thanks

answered by
Damian from Rosario

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Parque del Retiro (attraction)
  2. Puerta del Sol (attraction)
  3. Plaza Mayor (attraction)
  4. Royal Palace of Madrid (attraction)
  5. Plaza Cibeles (attraction)
  6. Gran Vía (attraction)
  7. Puerta de Alcalá (attraction)
  8. Almudena Cathedral (attraction)
  9. Estadio Santiago Bernabéu (attraction)
  10. Palacio Real De El Pardo (attraction)
  11. Templo de Debod (attraction)
  12. Museo del Prado (attraction)
  13. Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía (attraction)
4 thanks

answered by
Laura from Buenos Aires

You should take the overnight train. 

In Barcelona I've stayed in Equity Point Centric - Hostel Barcelona which is great

1 thanks

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