Monday, August 16, 2010

trying to organize my brain which is skittering in ten thousand directions

I have four (4!) unplanned weekends left in Spain. (As well as the weekend in Paris and the weekend in Barcelona. Phew.) Then, I have realistically 7 days at the end of my stay -- October 1-8. (I fly out out on the ninth.)

So, what to do with these weekends?

I have approximately a thousand ideas -- and am anxiously torn between seeing the most famous things possible -- the sorts of things that were in my history of architecture class -- and seeing some out-of-the-way things (I want to go see Don Quijote's windmills!), or unusual things, completely random things (oh boy! I want to go see the only monkeys native to Europe at Gibraltar!), or perhaps places that are cheap because they are close to Madrid (Segovia and Avila come to mind.)

So, without further ado, what I am considering:

1. A weekend trip to Sevilla and Cordoba. They are relatively close to one another; I would take the bus to one of them, spend the day there, take the bus to the next one, stay overnight, spend the day there, take the bus back to Madrid.

2. Two days walking on the Santiago de Compostela trail. It's experiential! It's in northern Spain (where I haven't been yet!) It would a nice counterpart to the torturous climb up Mt. Fuji from last summer!

3. Segovia. It's so close to Madrid. And there are those aqueducts. Also, it would be a day trip. I like day trips; they leave me less completely totally exhausted than all-weekend extravaganzas.

4. Avila. Ditto on the closeness. Also, it's a UNESCO World Heritage site. Lots of Romanesque architecture. If I really wanted to see both of the above, they could potentially be combined into one weekend. . .

5. Lisbon. (as in, Portugal.) Potential for meeting a friend there? Not sure how this will pan out.

6. San Sebastian. Also in northern Spain (where I haven't been yet!). Supposed to be very pretty.

7. Go to Barcelona again, by bus.

#1 on this list is Cordoba. Everything else is squishy.


  1. Sevilla and Cordoba for sure.
    Santiago de Compostela is nice...I walked part of it way back in high school. Isn't Pamploma worth going to too?

    I think S. Sebastian is okay, but not amaaaazing. The beach is crowded, but I also went there when I was 16 and had way less appreciation for...more sophisticated things.

    Anyway, I am jealous of all your options!

  2. That's awesome. . .how much did you walk? Were you with someone else or by yourself? (I'm still thinking about doing the Santiago de Compostela thing, because I don't think it would cost that much.) Just out of curiosity, how long were you in Spain for?