Essential 10 Day Spain Itinerary For First Time Visitors

This 10 day Spain itinerary is perfect for your first time in Spain. In this Spain itinerary I will show you the best cities to visit in Spain in 10 days and other useful Spain travel information and tips based on my personal experience of living in Barcelona for a summer.

Spain was the first European country I visited and perhaps the best country I visited. This is why I went back to Spain multiple times and even spent an entire summer in Barcelona because Spain is that awesome.

Spain has a rich history, diverse culture, incredible food, and beautiful architecture. It is no wonder it is one of the most popular countries in Europe to visit. It really does offer something for everyone and there are so many cities to choose from.

One great thing about Spain is that since the country is so diverse, you can pretty much visit any time of the year and still find great weather. In addition, different regions of Spain has its own history, culture and food, so you can visit Spain numerous times and not run out of things to do.

With this 10 day Spain itinerary I will show you the best places in Spain to visit as a first timer and give you tips to visit Spain.

This blog contains occasional affiliate links, where I receive a small commission on sales of the products/hotels that are linked at no additional cost to you. In addition, as an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Spain Itinerary: 10 Day Overview

Since there are a lot of places to visit in Spain, this 10 day Spain itinerary is for someone who is visiting Spain for the first time. Therefore this 10 day Spain itinerary will cover some of the most popular cities, including how to get around within Spain and where to stay in these cities.

  • Day 1 & 2 : Madrid
  • Day 3: Day trip from Madrid
  • Day 4 & 5: Barcelona
  • Day 6: Day trip from Barcelona
  • Day 7 & 8: Seville
  • Day 9: Granada
  • Day 10: Córdoba & Depart from Seville

How to spend ten days in Spain | This is a photo of the streets of Madrid on a sunny day

What You Should Know If It’s Your First Time in Spain

If you are coming from North America, most areas of Europe, Africa and Asia, it is important to understand a little about the Spanish lifestyle and how people spend their day.

I was surprised the first time I visited Spain that things were closed in the afternoon and dinner was served very late. Just so you are not caught off guard like I was, here are some important travel tips for Spain.

  • Learn Some Spanish Words: It is always useful to know some Spanish words before you visit Spain. You don’t need to be an expert, but a little knowledge of the Spanish language can go a long way.

    I usually use Duolingo to learn basic words and phrases before visiting a country, but you can also use podcasts, youtube videos and even text books just to know some basic Spanish words.
  • Siesta in Spain: Siesta in short is “nap time” that people in Spain take in the afternoon.

    In the afternoon between 2 – 5pm, many restaurants and shops are not open due to siesta (I don’t know if the owners actually take a nap but they definitely close the shops).
  • Dinners are late in Spain: People in Spain don’t go to dinner until 9 – 11pm. Restaurants are open around 8pm but you will only see tourists eating at that time.
  • Get an Esim card before you travel is the most convenient way to get internet in Spain. If you need a physical sim card in Spain, you can easily get one from the airport or local shops in Spain. Most people use Orange or Vodafone in Spain and there are plenty of official stores all over Spain that sell prepaid SIM cards.
  • Utilize trains to get around Spain is the easiest way.
  • Watch for pickpockets in crowded areas as Europe is known for pickpocketing. I would recommend to NOT wear a backpack and consider getting an anti-theft crossbody bag or a fanny pack to avoid being pickpocketed.
  • Consider an attraction pass to save money on attractions in Madrid and Barcelona.
  • Currency: Spain is part of the European Union so the currency is Euros. You can get Euros from ATMs (at the airport and on the street). If you need to exchange money, there are local “cambio” places in Spain but getting cash from ATMs always have the best exchange rate.
  • Get a no-fee ATM card: If you are from the US, I highly recommend getting a free Charles Schwab debit card and they reimburse all foreign ATM transaction fees. If you are not from the US, then you should consider getting either a Wise Card or a Revolut Card for no ATM fee!
  • Cash or Credit Card in Spain: Most places in Spain accept credit cards, but I highly suggest you carry some cash with you for smaller places, buses, etc.

10 Days in Spain – Detailed Spain Itinerary

10 Days is not a lot of time in Spain, but it is enough time to see all the most famous cities in Spain. Below I will outline a sample itinerary for Spain in 10 days for a first time visitor to Spain.

Spain Itinerary Day 1 & 2: Madrid

Madrid is the capital of Spain therefore it is usually the first city people visit in Spain.

Madrid is a wonderful place to start your first trip to Spain because there are many things to do in Madrid, including visiting museums, strolling through public parks, experiencing cultural activities, eating and drinking amazing food and exploring the different neighborhoods in Madrid.

Some of the places you will hit on this Spain itinerary include:

  • Plaza Mayor
  • Mercado de San Miguel
  • Royal Palace of Madrid
  • Temple of Debod
  • Puerta del Sol
  • El Retiro Park
  • Fuente de Cibeles
  • Different neighborhoods of Madrid

How to get around Madrid

Public transit is awesome in Madrid. You can get around Madrid easily by taking a combination of metros and buses. The buses in Madrid are 24 hours and there are night buses so you will never get stranded.

Where to Stay in Madrid

Artrip Hotel: Located in Madrid’s Lavapiés district, this art hotel is the perfect place for anyone who loves artistic decors. The area is known to have a mixture of non-Spanish restaurants and there is an annual tapas tour in Lavapiés

Dear Hotel Madrid: Located 1 minute’s walk from Plaza de España Metro Station on Gran Via, Dear Hotel Madrid offers boutique accommodations in central Madrid. The hotel features a rooftop plunge pool, terrace and restaurant.

BLESS Hotel Madrid: Located in the Salamanca district, the most emblematic and exclusive neighborhood in the center of the city, BLESS Hotel Madrid stands out for its unique style and timeless design the work of top interior designer Lázaro Rosa Violán, capturing the essence of the capital.

Start your day in Madrid with a cup of coffee and churro with chocolate sauce or toast with crushed tomato at a local cafe.

Chocolate and Churros in Spain

Visit Plaza Mayor

Plaza Mayor is the most popular public square in Madrid.

It was once the center of Spain, therefore you can expect beautiful architecture there. Nowadays there are many restaurants with chairs outside at this plaza, but they generally cater to tourists. If you are not dying to eat here, stop by to take a look before walking to Mercado de San Miguel.

Plaza Mayor in Madrid

Mercado de San Miguel

San Miguel market was my first “official” meal in Spain so it holds a special place in my heart.

Mercado de San Miguel is a public market and perhaps one of the most popular food markets in Madrid. Opened in 1916, San Miguel market is Madrid’s first gourmet market. It now attracts over 10 millions visitors a year.

Inside the market you can find over 30 food stands ranging from tapas to fresh fish and seafood to gourmet cheese, produce and desserts. The market was closed for 9 months during Covid but it has since reopened with even new additions.

Madrid - San Miguell Market

Royal Palace of Madrid

Madrid Royal Palace on your first trip to Spain for 10 days. This is one of the best things to do in Madrid.

Once you are full and happy, make your way over to the Palacio Real de Madrid. The Royal Palace of Madrid is the largest palace in Western Europe and one of the largest in the world. It has over 3000 rooms and it attracts over 2 millions visitors every year.

The Royal palace is still the official residence of the King of Spain, but it is also open to the public and it’s regularly used for official events.

There is an admission ticket that you need to buy to get inside the palace and you can purchase a skip the line ticket to avoid waiting in line in the heat.

I highly recommend doing a tour in the Royal Palace so you understand what you are seeing and the history behind the palace. This tour is also included for free in the Madrid Pass and Explorer Pass.

If you are an EU citizen or meet certain criteria you can visit the palace for free after 4pm or 6pm depending on the month.

After you are done with the Royal Palace, walk to Catedral de la Almudena, a beautiful cathedral in Spain.

Temple of Debod

Madrid - Temple of Debod, one of the best places to go in Madrid during your 10 days to 2 weeks in Spain

Temple of Debod in Madrid is an Egyptian temple dating back to the 2nd century BC. It was donated to Spain by the Egyptian government to save it from floods following the construction of the great Aswan Dam. The temple was then rebuilt in Madrid.

The Temple of Debod is closed every Monday and on major national holidays. There are different opening and closing times depending on the month.

Admission to the Temple of Debod is free but you can not get inside of the monument.

Puerta del Sol

If you have time and are not too tired from all the walking, continue on to check out Puerta del Sol, a lively square full of street artists and shops. Puerta del Sol used to be one of the city gates in Madrid, it is now the most central and famous square in Madrid.

While you are there, check out the famous bear statue el oso y el Madroño and the clock of Puerta del Sol, famous for its role in the New Year’s Eve celebration.

Explore El Retiro Park

El Retiro Park Madrid with the pond and people rowing boats.

El Retiro Park is the largest park in Madrid (covering over 120 hectares); it is an amazing urban oasis (similar to Central Park in New York and Stanley Park in Vancouver). The park is famous for its amazing architecture, interesting monuments and sculptures, beautiful gardens and its artificial lake.

Some of the most noteworthy things to see in El Retiro Park include the rose garden, the Retiro Pond (row a boat on it!), the statue walk, and the Crystal Palace. Be prepared to spend at least a couple of hours in this park and enjoy it as the locals do.

You can also join a Retiro Park bike tour or Segway Tour to learn more about this beautiful park. The bike tour is included in the Madrid Pass and the Segway Tour in the Explorer Pass.

Prado Museum (Museo Nacional del Prado)

Not far from El Retiro Park is the famous Prado Museum, the main Spanish national art museum.

Prado Museum has one of the best collections of European art as well as the best collection of Spanish art. The collection at Prado Museum includes works by Francisco Goya, Titian, Peter Raul Rubens, El Greco, etc.

You have to buy a skip the line ticket to get into the Prado Museum, but there are some days/times that’s free. Check the official website for more detail but it’s usually the last two hours before closing.

If you don’t really know art too well but still want to enjoy the museum, I highly recommend that you book a museum guided tour to get the most out of your visit to Prado Museum. The Prado Museum guided tour is free with both the Madrid Pass and Explorer Pass.

Fuente de Cibeles

Madrid Fuente de las Cibeles | what to do and see in Madrid during 10 days Spain trip

Not far from Prado Museum is Fuente de Cibeles, perhaps the most famous fountain in Madrid. Fuente de Cibeles was designed to actually provide water in Madrid but now it’s a symbol of Madrid.

The fountain depicts the Roman goddess Cibeles, who represents Earth, agriculture and fertility. If you happen to be around, it is worth stopping by for a quick photo.

Take a food and wine tour in Madrid

If time permits, you can take an old Madrid food and wine tour to enjoy some Spanish tapas while learning about the history of Madrid.

Salamanca

If you want to check out one of the nicest and most expensive neighborhoods of Madrid, head over to Salamanca. Salamanca used to be the residential area of politicians and nobles, now it has one of the highest property values in Madrid. There are a ton of designer shops and Michelin Star restaurants in Salamanca.

Neighborhood Of Chueca

Chueca is one of the most vibrant neighborhoods in Madrid and is known as the gay neighborhood. Chueca is a 12 min walk from Puerta del Sol.

There are tons of bars, restaurants and shops in Chueca.

From July 1 to July 10th, Chueca hosts the annual Pride parade, by far the largest gay parade in Spain and one of the largest in Europe. If you want to party and have fun, you cannot miss Chueca during your 10 days in Spain.


Spain Itinerary Day 3: Take a day trip from Madrid

There are a few nice day trips you can take from Madrid if you think you’ve seen enough of Madrid.

Day Trip From Madrid #1: Zaragoza (best for October)

If you are visiting Spain in early to mid October, Zaragoza would be a wonderful day trip from Madrid to add to your itinerary for Spain.

Zaragoza is the 5th largest city in Spain and is mostly off international tourists’ radar. Zaragoza is the capital of the Aragon region of Spain with its own cuisine and large Islamic influence outside of Andalusia.

Zaragoza fiestas del pilar | best day trips from Madrid for any itinerary for Spain

Fiestas del Pilar is an annual festival in Zaragoza in honor of the patron saint of the city, Our Lady of the Pilar. This festival takes place every year generally beginning the 2nd weekend of October.

During this annual fiesta, the city of Zaragoza has a ton of fun activities and entertainment for at least a week. There are performances, concerts, bullfights, and fireworks during Fiestas del Pilar.

On October 12th, there is a mass Floral Offering where people are dressed in traditional costumes and leave flowers before the Virgin at Plaza del Pilar Square. I personally did not go to Zaragoza but one of my friends went and loved it.

Day Trip From Madrid #2: Avila and Segovia

Avila and Segovia are two stunning cities to visit as a day trip from Madrid.

Both cities are very historical, with rich history and culture and lots to see and do. You can take a full day tour from Madrid to visit them.

Avila is located approximately 100 kilometers northwest of Madrid and is known for its well-preserved medieval walls that surround the city.

The walls were constructed between the 11th and 14th centuries and are still in excellent condition, making them a must-see attraction for visitors.

Inside the walls, there are many other historic buildings to explore, including the impressive Gothic cathedral and the Royal Monastery of Saint Thomas, which houses an impressive collection of art and religious artifacts.

Avila city wall in Spain is one of the best day trips from Madrid
Avila City Wall

Segovia is located approximately 90 kilometers northeast of Madrid and is famous for its stunning Roman aqueduct, which is one of the best-preserved ancient Roman structures in the world.

Segovia Aqueduct in Spain is a wonderful day trip from Madrid
Aqueduct

The aqueduct was built in the 1st century AD and is an impressive 28 meters tall in some places. Segovia is also home to the stunning Alcazar, a fairy tale-like castle that was once the residence of Spanish monarchs. Visitors can explore the castle and take in its stunning views of the surrounding countryside.

Segovia Alcazar Palace is a cool day trip from Madrid in Spain
Alcazar

Other notable attractions in Segovia include the Gothic cathedral and the Jewish Quarter, which has a rich history dating back to the 13th century.

Day Trip From Madrid #3: Toledo

Another great day trip you can take from Madrid is to visit Toledo, an hour south west of Madrid.

Toledo Spain

Toledo is a stunning and historic city and it’s considered one of the most picturesque and charming cities in Spain.

Toledo is a UNESCO heritage site and it is known as the “imperial city” because it was the main venue of the court of Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor in Spain. The city also has strong influences by Christians, Muslims and Jews.

Toledo is known for its artworks by El Greco as well as its museums, churches and architecture. The most famous things to see in Toledo include the Cathedral, Alcazar, and the amazing bird’s eye view of Toledo on the city hill.

Toledo is also home to a vibrant Jewish Quarter, which is home to many historic synagogues, including the famous Sinagoga del Tránsito.

A full day tour to Toledo and Segovia is also an option and it is included in the Madrid Pass.


Spain Itinerary Day 4 & 5: Barcelona

Traveling From Madrid to Barcelona

Barcelona is in the Catalonia region, with Catalan as the primary language in the city (if you are interested in why that is, you can google the history of Catalonia to find out). You may see names of attractions in Barcelona spelled differently from regular Spanish.

You can take a train from Madrid to Barcelona which takes 2.5 hours.

There are so many things to do in Barcelona and this 10 day Spain itinerary will try to highlight a few of the most popular attractions in Barcelona:

  • La rambla & Mercado de La Boqueria
  • Explore the Gothic Quarter
  • Beach at Barceloneta
  • Visit Gaudi’s famous architectures
  • Explore Park Güell 

I highly suggest getting the Barcelona Pass, so you can save money on attractions in Barcelona.

How to get around Barcelona

Similar to Madrid, public transportation is the best way to get around Barcelona. Metro and buses are great to get to the popular touristy attractions in Barcelona. If you plan to do day trips outside of Barcelona you can take the train. Uber works well in Barcelona as well.

Best Places to Stay in Barcelona

Hotel 1898: Located on Barcelona’s famous La Rambla, this restored 19th-century building features a rooftop pool with a sun terrace. 

Ohla Eixample: Offering a year-round outdoor pool with city views, Ohla Eixample is a stylish boutique hotel located 10 minutes’ walk from two of Gaudi’s major works, La Pedrera and Casa Batlló. 

Praktik Vinoteca: This modern and stylish hotel is in the perfect location in Eixample, it is only a few minutes walk to Casa Batllo and Passeig de Gracia.

If you happen to visit Barcelona in the spring, check out this wonderful post on Barcelona during spring.

La Rambla & Mercado de La Boqueria

La Rambla is the most popular (and touristy) pedestrian street in Barcelona in the Gothic Barrio.

la rambla is one of the most famous streets in Barcelona.

There is a very famous food market on La Rambla called Mercado de La Boqueria that I do love and would highly recommend.

There are tons of tapas, juice vendors and other raw produce in Mercado de La Boqueria. When I was living in Barcelona to study Spanish I went to La Boqueria quite often to eat.

Mercado de la boqueria barcelona

LA Boqueria Market Barcelona fruits | How to spend 10 days in Spain

Another place worth checking out when you walk around La Rambla is Placa Reial. It’s a lively square and you can sit there to people watch.

Plaça Reial La Rambla Barcelona what to do on a trip to Spain

La Rambia is best visited during the day or during dinner time because it is lively. Try not to walk on it at night after the shops are closed because it can be a little sketchy and I have seen hookers trying to get business from male tourists.

Gothic Quarter (Barri Gòtic)

Since La Rambla is between the area of El Raval and Gothic Quarter in Barcelona I recommend that you walk around the Gothic Quarter in the afternoon.

Gothic Quarter in Barcelona alley way
Gothic Quarter

The Gothic Quarter is a historic neighborhood in Barcelona, located in the city’s old town. The area is famous for its narrow streets and alleys, which are lined with medieval buildings and Gothic architecture as well as restaurants and bars.

There are two famous Cathedrals in the Gothic Quarter: Santa Maria del Pi and Barcelona Cathedral

Barcelona Cathedral
Barcelona Cathedral

Barcelona Cathedral is the more famous of the two churches. You can get in for free during certain hours of the day otherwise you will need to make a donation. Make sure to cover your shoulders when entering. 

Santa Maria del Pi in Barcelona is another wonderful church to visit when visiting Spain for ten days
Santa Maria del Pi

I recommend you walk around the Gothic Quarter, especially around the two cathedrals. Be aware since the Gothic Area is quite touristy there are a lot of pickpockets and thieves. 

La Barceloneta 

Depending on what season you are in Barcelona, you may have time to squeeze in a quick trip to La Barceloneta, an area not too far from the Gothic Quarter.

Barceloneta Beach Barcelona

La Barceloneta is a lively neighborhood in Barcelona that’s situated along the coast of the Mediterranean Sea. It was originally a fishing village, but it has now become a popular tourist destination, known for its man-made sandy beaches, seafood restaurants, and nightlife.

There are also a lot of restaurants in La Barceloneta. I personally liked this tapa bar called La Cova Fumada but there are a few other nice ones in that area.

Gaudi’s Architectures in Barcelona

Barcelona is renowned for its vibrant art scene, which has been shaped by the city’s rich cultural history and unique architecture.

One of the most significant figures in Barcelona’s art scene is the famous architect Antoni Gaudi. Gaudi’s work has had a tremendous impact on the city and many of Gaudi’s buildings are considered masterpieces of modernist architecture, and they continue to inspire contemporary artists and designers.

Some of his most famous work in Barcelona include Casa Batlló, Casa Mila (La Pedrera), La Sagrada Familia and Park Güell.

Casa Batlló (~1 hour)

Casa Batlló was designed by Gaudi and is one of the most popular Gaudi houses to visit. The exterior of the building is beautifully decorated by colorful mosaics (one of Gaudi’s specialties) and the interior of the house resembles the back of a dragon.

Casa Batlló Barcelona

You can (and should) book tickets online to avoid waiting in line and it’s cheaper to buy tickets online than at the ticket office. Tickets are also included in both the Barcelona Explorer Pass and Barcelona Pass.

Casa Mila (La Pedrera) (~1.5 hr)

Casa Mila is another famous Gaudi masterpiece apartment down the street from Casa Batlló. Casa Mila does not have the beautiful mosaic appearance on the outside but it’s a larger place compared to Casa Batlló. The most famous part of Casa Mila is the roof, with multiple geometric shapes that resemble soldiers.

Casa Mila (La Pedrera) by Gaudi in Barcelona

Similar to Casa Batlló, you can buy tickets online and pick a time slot. Note that Casa Mila also offers night tours whereas Casa Batlló doesn’t because Casa Batlló can be rented out at night for private events (someone I know had a pre-wedding party there).

Casa Mila skip the line tickets are included in both the Barcelona Pass and Explorer Pass.

La Sagrada Familia (~1.5 hrs)

La Sagrada Familia (the Holy Family) is the iconic symbol of Barcelona and a place in Barcelona that everyone needs to visit at least once.

Sagrada Familia is one of the top tourist attractions in Barcelona. It is a must do on any Spain itinerary

Designed by Gaudi, Sagrada Familia is a Roman Catholic church that was never finished. Unfortunately during construction of Sagrada Familia Gaudi was run over and killed by a tram so the church was never finished.

There are three facades at La Sagrada Familia: Nativity, Passion and Glory. You can visit La Sagrada Familia without going up the towers, but I do recommend that you purchase the towers tickets to enjoy everything Sagrada Familia has to offer.

Sagrada Familia Barcelona

There are many questions from people visiting Sagrada Familia on which tower to go up, either the Nativity tower or the Passion Tower.

The Nativity Tower was actually built by Gaudi himself and there is a bridge that connects 2 out of the 4 towers at the Nativity facade, so you can see more diverse detail and views. However some also argue that one should go up the Passion tower because they are taller and the view is directly over Barcelona.

Buying Tickets To Sagrada Familia

You should definitely buy Sagrada Familia tickets online!! During high season you either won’t be able to get a ticket in person or the time slot will be 1-2 hours later, so please buy your tickets online to avoid disappointment.

If the general admissions tickets are sold out, you can try to get a guided tour to get in. Note that the Sagrada Familia Guided Tours are included in the Barcelona Pass and Explorer Pass.

Sagrada Familia stairs

Park Güell

Park Güell is the most famous park in Barcelona and another masterpiece of Gaudi’s. It was built as a housing development originally but has since then been converted to a municipal park on Carmel Hill in the Garcia district of Barcelona.

Imagine of Barcelona from Park Guell

The Park is free to enter but the most famous area is in the “Monumental Area“, which requires an admissions ticket. As with all the other Gaudi masterpieces in Barcelona, you need to buy tickets with a time slot in order to enter.

When I was living in Barcelona, I remember that people buying tickets at the entrance would have to wait for 2-3 hours to get their time slot, so I highly recommend you buy tickets online.

If you want to understand more about the artistic designs at the park, you can also book a Park Güell guided tour. The guided tour is included in the Barcelona Pass and Explorer Pass.

Depending on what type of photos you want at Park Güell, if you care more about the Instagram photos and want yourself to be in the photo, then i recommend purchasing the 8am (or 8:30am in low season) ticket.

If you care only about landscape, then I recommend you go to Park Güell during sunset time. Note that once you purchase tickets, if you do not enter the Monumental Area within 30 minutes of the assigned time, you won’t be able to get in anymore.

Park Güell Barcelona

Read Next: Barcelona itinerary and travel guide!


Spain Itinerary Day 6: Day Trip from Barcelona: Montserrat or Mount Tibidabo or Montjuïc

There are many things to see in and outside of Barcelona, I’m going to suggest the three most popular things to do.

Barcelona Day Trip # 1: Montserrat

Montserrat is one of the most popular day trips from Barcelona. It takes about an hour on the train from Barcelona to Montserrat.

There is a Benedictine monastery on top of the mountains overlooking Catalunya. Montserrat has religious significance because it houses a statue of the image of Our Lady, one of the few Black Madonnas in Europe.

Montserrat Barcelona

Black Madonna at Montserrat near Barcelona. It is the top thing to see at Montserrat.

You can also spend a lot of time hiking around Monserrat or visit the surrounding area by funicular.

I didn’t have time to take the funicular up from the monastery or visit Sant Miquel’s Cross or Sant Jeroni, the highest peak of Monserrat. But if you go there for the whole day you can do all of the above!

Montserrat Barcelona

Day Trip from Barcelona #2: Mount Tibidabo

Mount Tibidabo is not really a day trip from Barcelona per se, but it is a cool getaway from the Barcelona City Center. The first time I visited Barcelona I didn’t have time to go to Mount Tibidabo, but I could see it from the city center and had always wondered what it’s like there.

Mount Tibidabo Amusement Park Barcelona

While I was living in Barcelona I finally got the opportunity to visit Mount Tibidabo. It takes about an hour from Barcelona with a combination of subway and buses to reach the top of Mount Tibidabo.

There is a famous church called Sagrat Cor church on the top of Mount Tibidabo adjacent to an amusement park. The church and amusement park both have a fantastic view of Barcelona.

Sagrat Cor church at Mt. Tibidabo

Barcelona Day Trip #3: Montjuïc

Montjuic is a hill located in Barcelona, near the city center, which has played a significant role in the city’s history and culture.

Situated in Barcelona overlooking the harbor, you can take a cable car, funicular or bus up to Montjuïc.

Montjuic cable car in Barcelona

Montjuic Castle in Barcelona

Most popular attraction on Montjuïc (besides the cable car itself) is the Montjuïc Castle which offers a stunning view of the city, the Olympic Stadium and Pool where the 1992 Summer Olympics took place.

Other noteworthy attractions on Montjuïc include Greg Theater Gardens, National Art Museum and the Magic Fountain show at night.

Montjuic Olympic Park in Barcelona

Montjuïc is quite big and can take a bit of time to explore. You can take a walking tour to understand more about Montjuïc and see the important sites. Both the cable car and walking tour are included with Go City Barcelona passes.


Spain Itinerary Day 7 & 8: Seville

Seville is the capital of the Andalucia region in Southern Spain. It is a vibrant and historic city and it’s one of the most popular tourist destinations in Spain.

Seville has a rich Moorish heritage and is known for its interesting history, beautiful architecture so it’s no surprise that it attracts millions of visitors every year.

Most of the sights in Seville are within the historical center including the most famous cathedrals, gardens, and palaces including the following:

  • Seville Bullring
  • Catedral de Sevilla & Giralda
  • Las Setas de Sevilla
  • Royal Alcazar of Seville
  • Bario de Santa Cruz
  • Plaza de España.

Besides the activities that I just mentioned, you can also check out this post on the magical things to do in Seville.

Random Fact: One thing you will notice in Andalusia is that there are a lot of orange trees!

Travel from Barcelona to Seville

You can either fly or take the train from Barcelona to Seville. Flight takes about an hour and train takes 5.5 hours. I personally would recommend that you fly from Barcelona to Seville and pick up a rental car in Seville for your day trips later on.

Best Place to Stay in Seville

Hotel Colon Gran Melia: This designer hotel is luxurious, modern, and has an amazing location. It is a few minutes walk to the Giralda Tower and Seville Cathedral. It has a wellness spa with sauna, hammam, and shower and there is also a terrace with a boutique rooftop pool.

Hotel Alfonso XIII: This luxury hotel is located next to the Real Alcazares, and offers an outdoor swimming pool, gym and a garden courtyard with fountain. If you are looking for the ultimate luxury and convenience then this is the place for you.

La Bella Sevilla: If you are looking for a more budget friendly yet fun and modern accommodation, then definitely consider La Bella Sevilla. It is located next to the Seville Cathedral on a quiet pedestrian street.

Seville Bullring (Plaza de Toros de la Real Maestranza de Caballería de Sevilla)

Seville is known for its bullfights and during the annual Seville Fair, many people come to the Bullring to witness the bullfighting festival. However on most days there is no bull fight, but you can visit the building and take a tour of the museum.

Seville - Bullfighting Museum

Catedral de Sevilla & Giralda

Catedral de Sevilla or known as The Cathedral of Saint Mary of the See is a Roman Catholic cathedral in the Seville old town.

It’s one of the largest cathedrals in the world and the resting place of Christopher Columbus. You need to pay an entrance fee to see the inside of the Cathedral. You also have the option to climb to the top of the Giralda for a beautiful view of Seville.

Seville La Giralda

Las Setas de Sevilla

Las Setas de Seville

Las Setas de Sevilla, also known as Metropol Parasol, is a large wooden structure in the old quarters of Seville.

The structure was finally completed in 2011 and it is one of the largest wooden structures in the world. If you look at the photo below, you will notice that the wooden structure looks a lot like a bunch of mushrooms, that’s why it’s called “Las Setas”.

There are elevators within each structure so you can go to the top and enjoy a nice view of the city. There is also a museum in the basement that you can check out.

Royal Alcazar of Seville

Royal Alcazar de Seville

The Alcazar of Seville was originally built in the 10th century as a Muslim Fortress. It later became a royal palace after expansion and renovation by different monarchs throughout history. Since different monarchs were involved, the Alcazar has a mix of architecture styles, including Gothic, Mudejar and Renaissance style.

The Alcazar is not only known for its stunning architecture style but also the beautiful garden attached to it. The gardens also have a mixture of Islamic and Christian influences with fountains, pools and smaller gardens.

I really loved this space since it was so pretty and not nearly as crowded as Alhambra in Granada. If there is only one place you can visit in Seville then this has to be it.

Bario de Santa Cruz

Santa Cruz is a popular touristy area located next to the Seville Cathedral and the Royal Alcazar. You should spend some time walking around this area as there are beautiful architecture and a lot of shops and restaurants here.

Santa Cruz Seville

Plaza de España

Plaza de España is one of the prettiest places in Seville in my opinion. You may have seen Plaza de España featured in films like Star Wars and Lawrence of Arabia.

Plaza de España, Seville

Located at the end of Parque de Maria Luisa, Plaza de España was built for the Ibero-American Exposition World’s Fair in 1929. Nowadays Plaza de España is mostly used for government buildings.

If you are looking for the best photo opportunities in Plaza de España, be sure to come really early (think sunrise) to avoid the crowds.

Plaza de Espana Seville


Spain Itinerary Day 9: Granada

If you have a car it would make it much easier to take a day trip to Granada from Seville. By car it takes about 3 hours to drive to Granada from Seville. Although it’s kind of a long drive, I do think given the time limitation it is the best way to visit Granada.

If you do not have a rental car, don’t worry, you can take a tour from Seville to Granada and see Alhambra and the historic district of Albaicin or also take a train then Uber.

Alhambra

The Palace of Alhambra is the most famous attraction in Granada, if not in the entire Andalusia region. Alhambra used to be a fortress during the Muslim rule.

After the expulsion of the Moors in 1492, Charles V rebuilt portions of the palace in Italian style and there were many destructions and damages done to the building either because of war or natural disaster. Eventually the palace was repaired and rebuilt.

Alhambra Granada Spain

Similar to the Royal Alcazar of Seville, Alhambra has heavy Islamic influence in terms of architecture and decoration. If you liked the Royal Alcazar of Seville then you will be even more impressed by Alhambra.

You absolutely should book your Alhambra tickets online way in advance.

The Alhambra in Granada

If you want to take nice photos of Alhambra without anyone around then you should do the first time slot in the morning. If you choose to do this, then you will need to change the itinerary around.

You will then take the train from Barcelona to Granada directly on Day 7 of your 10 day Spain itinerary and visit Granada on the morning of Day 8. Go to Seville after Granada on Day 8.

Some of my favorite areas in Alhambra include the Charles V Palace, the Nasrid Palaces and the Generalife, a beautiful garden that became the leisure spot for the kings of Granada.

Charles V Palace Alhambra Granada Spain
Charles V Palace
Nasrid Palace Granada Alhambra
Nasrid Palace

Alhambra Nasrid Palaces Granada Spain
Nasrid Palaces – Court of the Myrtles

After visiting Alhambra, stop by Mirador de San Nicolas for a view of Alhambra from the viewpoint before grabbing dinner and heading back to Seville.

Mirador de San Nicolas Granada

Spain Itinerary Day 10: Córdoba and Fly Out

On your last day in Spain take a quick day trip to Córdoba in the morning before returning to Seville to fly out. 

Córdoba is a very popular day trip from Seville because it’s only about an hour drive away from Seville. Córdoba is a important Roman city and a major Islamic Center back in the Middle Ages. 

Córdoba: La Mezquita Mosque-Cathedral

La Mezquita Mosque-Cathedral is the most important architecture and tourist attraction in Córdoba. The most prominent feature of La Mezquita Mosque-Cathedral is its red and white columns and arches in the prayer hall.

It is said that these arches were inspired by those in the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem. Similar to other mosques and fortresses in Andalucía, La Mezquita mosque has been converted to a Roman Catholic Church after the Christine Kingdom took over Andalucia.

La Mezuita Mosque Cordoba

Alcazar of the Christian Monarchs

Not far from the Mosque-Cathedral of Cordoba is another major tourist attraction, Alcazar of the Christian Monarchs. This was always a military compound and now a part of the UNESCO World Heritage.

Cordoba Alcazar of The Christina Monarchs

Alcazar of the Christian Monarchs

Before heading back to Seville, stop to grab a quick photo of the Roman Bridge of Cordoba.

Roman Bridge of Cordoba

Is 10 Days Enough to See Spain?

10 days is the perfect amount of time to get a taste of Spain and see the major cities and popular tourist destinations.

Of course you cannot see the entire country in 10 days, but 10 days give you enough time to experience beautiful architecture, charming old towns, delicious cuisine and friendly locals in Spain.

If you want to see more Spain outside of this 10 day itinerary, then I would actually suggest spending at least a month or two in Spain so you can visit its islands and some of its smaller cities.

Other Information Regarding Visiting Spain

Best Time to Visit Spain

Short answer is that Spain is great to visit any time of the year, depending on which region you are visiting during your 10 days in Spain.

Spring (April or May) and fall (September or October) are both awesome months to visit Spain regardless of where you are going.

These shoulder seasons have more mild temperature and less crowd, therefore you can expect cheaper hotels and rental cars.

Spain is also known for its sunny days. In general you can expect amazingly sunny days when you visit. The only except is if you visit northern Spain such as San Sebastian in the shoulder month or in the winter, then you can expect rain and coldness.

I have been to Spain in February, May and October and the weather during these months were comfortable (February was good because I was in Andalucía (Southern spain) so it was warm).

However, the worst time to visit Southern Spain (Andalucía) is in the summer because it can be very hot there (40C+).

If you do end up visiting Spain in the summer, be sure to go out only in the early morning and at night since it can be quite unbearable during the day to walk around under the scorching sun.

10 days in Spain itinerary - photo of Barcelona at dawn with Sagrada Familia in the background

How to Get Around Spain

Spain is a very easy country to travel to as it is super easy to get around!

Get Around Spain by Train

One of the easiest ways to get around Spain is to take the train. With the high speed train it takes as little as 2.5 hours to travel between Madrid and Barcelona as an example.

The best website to book train tickets in Spain is Omio, it shows you all the options and what 1st Class and 2nd Class includes. You can even change your seating preferences when you book your tickets.

Flying within Spain

It is cheap to fly within Spain with budget airlines such as easyjet and ryanair and vueling. Flights can be as cheap as $40 USD one way if you are trying to travel across Spain.

Renting a Car and Drive in Spain

Lastly you can always rent a car to do a road trip during your 10 days in Spain or you can always just rent a car when you are in Southern Spain in Andalusia.

We used Discover Cars when we were in Andalusia because we had a larger party so it was cheaper to rent a car than to pay for train tickets and Uber. Having a car also gave us a lot of flexibility to go whenever and wherever we wanted to in Andalusia.

Final Thoughts on 10 Day Spain Itinerary

Spain is a diverse and amazing country. It is actually one of my favorite countries in Europe and I wish I had spent more time there. This 10 Day Spain Itinerary attempted to show you the best cities of Spain in 10 days in a very packed manner.

Some of the “optional” day trips should give you a good idea of other things you can do in Spain. No matter what you do in Spain, you will love the food, people, history and culture of this amazing country.

Other Spain Planning Blogs

Check out my other Spain travel articles to plan your perfect holiday in Spain!

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