Author Topic: Spending a month in Spain  (Read 6014 times)

mateoSF

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 16
Spending a month in Spain
« on: April 06, 2015, 01:47:37 PM »
Hi - We have recently been thinking about spending a month in Spain in summer 2016 while the kids are out of school.  We've only been to Spain briefly so we are starting from scratch researching where to stay (We're in the US). 
I am picturing a town with decent options for cultural excursions and a few weekend trips, but close enough to a beach we could frequent.  Also, we plan to live like locals, and don't want/need a major tourist destination.  Price-wise, we're hoping to find a place for $1000 to $1200 for the month.

Do any readers have a few recommendations to get us started?

Cheers.

Gimesalot

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 666
Re: Spending a month in Spain
« Reply #1 on: April 06, 2015, 01:56:28 PM »
I really enjoyed Malaga.  There is a lot to do, including beaches.  Since it's part of Andalucia, it is in the cheaper part of Spain.

You can travel by renting a car or taking the train.  I went to Ronda, Grenada, Sevilla, and Madrid, when based there.  I really enjoyed it.

You are traveling in the high season, so you may need to need to reconsider your budget.

kendallf

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1056
  • Age: 52
  • Location: Jacksonville, FL
Re: Spending a month in Spain
« Reply #2 on: April 06, 2015, 02:04:02 PM »
I love Barcelona and that would be the best of the cultural, the beaches, and the rest -- but it's expensive and I think you'd have difficulty with your price goal there.  Maybe areas near Girona and you could drive over to the beach?  As a cyclist I love Girona as the "gateway to the Pyrenees" but I don't think there's a ton to do in Girona itself.

I have driven down the eastern coast through Valencia and other cities but haven't stayed enough to offer advice.

At the far south, the area around Rota has great beaches, you can drive north to Seville or take a ferry across the Straits to Morocco and Tangier (recommended!) and it's fairly cheap.  There are a lot of windsurf camps along the coast and places to stay inexpensively.

One more beach city in Spain I've visited and fell in love with: San Sebastian, at the northwest corner of the country.  I stayed inland in Basque country but even the restaurants in town were expensive.  The landscape is rumpled, green, and amazing; tunnels and cliffside roads everywhere.

I know this is kind of scattered but I love Spain and wish I could go for a few months right now.  :-)

thedayisbrave

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 700
  • Location: Raleigh, NC
  • CFO @ My Life
Re: Spending a month in Spain
« Reply #3 on: April 06, 2015, 03:24:33 PM »
You might enjoy Cádiz.  It is literally on the beach, so you could frequent it all you want.  Beautiful white buildings in the old part of the town.  It isn't super touristy but it's also pretty small, but it's within a few hours bus ride to larger cities such as Sevilla and Granada, with plenty of exploring available in both.  It's pretty much the southernmost tip of Spain, so it's not too difficult of a trek to Gibraltar and Northern Africa (Morocco), depending on how much you really want to see.

I've been twice - once for 3 weeks as a study abroad in high school, and then again for 2 days while studying abroad in Sevilla in college.  I adore it and before grad school, considered taking a year to live there and teach English :) I still want to do that!

JoJo

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1365
Re: Spending a month in Spain
« Reply #4 on: April 06, 2015, 06:53:49 PM »
Airbnb has some good monthly rates.  For the fun of it, I looked at rates for Seville for the full month of June.  Lots of apartments/studios are in the range of $800 for the full month.

If I had a full month in Spain, I would probably walk the Camino de Santiago.

merula

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1242
Re: Spending a month in Spain
« Reply #5 on: April 06, 2015, 07:16:10 PM »
I'd suggest Asturias or somewhere else on the north coast, as it's likely to be cheaper than the south during the tourist season, and also has better cultural and food options. But my husband's family is Basque, so I'm biased.

I'm not sure you're going to be able to find much at that price point in a city sizable enough for cultural stuff, but I'd suggest going to Airbnb and using the map view to drag along the coast until you see something that looks interesting.

Another thing to consider: does it have to be Spain? Because Portugal is cheaper and more of the country is near a beach.

(If you end up going to Barcelona, Madrid, San Sebastián or Bilbao, pm me. I lived in Spain for a few months, and those are the cities I know fairly well.)

iknowiyam

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 178
    • The Honest Yam
Re: Spending a month in Spain
« Reply #6 on: April 06, 2015, 07:27:06 PM »
I really enjoyed Malaga.  There is a lot to do, including beaches.  Since it's part of Andalucia, it is in the cheaper part of Spain.

You can travel by renting a car or taking the train.  I went to Ronda, Grenada, Sevilla, and Madrid, when based there.  I really enjoyed it.

You are traveling in the high season, so you may need to need to reconsider your budget.

I second that.. Malaga is nice. I also recommend ordering tortilla while you are there... it's like an omelette, and they have never heard of the Mexican tortilla/flat bread.

LLCoolDave

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 103
  • Age: 37
  • Location: Vagabonding
Re: Spending a month in Spain
« Reply #7 on: April 06, 2015, 07:53:54 PM »
To be close to the culture and have a nice beach I would say Tarragona. It has a nice beach with clear water and a short train ride to Barcelona. The Northern coast is the bread basket of Spain if you love great (but highly priced) food.

mateoSF

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 16
Re: Spending a month in Spain
« Reply #8 on: April 06, 2015, 11:22:38 PM »
Thank you so much all for the help.  I just checked Airbnb in the Malaga area for June 2016, and there are many places in the $1000-$1200 range, so good news on the price front.  I will be looking into the other recommendations in the coming days, so I may have some follow-up questions then.

Again, many thanks - Matt

mateoSF

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 16
Re: Spending a month in Spain
« Reply #9 on: April 06, 2015, 11:30:15 PM »
Another thing to consider: does it have to be Spain? Because Portugal is cheaper and more of the country is near a beach.

We'll probably stick with Spain since both my wife and I speak enough Spanish to be dangerous...

lovesasa

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 102
  • Age: 29
  • Location: The Wild Wild West
Re: Spending a month in Spain
« Reply #10 on: April 06, 2015, 11:52:42 PM »
I agree with whoever said Cadiz. I spent a summer in El Puerto de Santa Maria (near to Cadiz) and loved it. Great weather, friendly people, fairly small.

Someone mentioned AirBnB. I would also look into houseswapping or housesitting for a cheap month long stay. I can't remember the main websites but a quick google search should help.

Albert

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1254
  • Location: Switzerland
Re: Spending a month in Spain
« Reply #11 on: April 07, 2015, 11:32:10 AM »
Barcelona is the place to be in Spain or actually anywhere in Europe. It's not the cheapest city in Spain, but then again the whole country is fairly budget friendly. Malaga is kind of nothing special, the least interesting of all sizeable cities in Andalusia… I also like Galicia, but maybe not for an entire month.

Daleth

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1201
Re: Spending a month in Spain
« Reply #12 on: April 07, 2015, 11:37:30 AM »
I really enjoyed Malaga.  There is a lot to do, including beaches.  Since it's part of Andalucia, it is in the cheaper part of Spain.

You can travel by renting a car or taking the train.  I went to Ronda, Grenada, Sevilla, and Madrid, when based there.  I really enjoyed it.

You are traveling in the high season, so you may need to need to reconsider your budget.

Yeah, if they're going in the summer, finding deals could be tricky. Northern Spain is probably the best bet for that time of year. Is there an Air B'n'B in Spain?

Albert

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1254
  • Location: Switzerland
Re: Spending a month in Spain
« Reply #13 on: April 07, 2015, 01:22:12 PM »
Yeah, if they're going in the summer, finding deals could be tricky. Northern Spain is probably the best bet for that time of year. Is there an Air B'n'B in Spain?

Yes of course there is AirBnB. Actually Northern Spain might be a good idea in summer. I personally wouldn't go to coastal Andalusia any later than mid-June or earlier than mid-September. It's just way too hot for anything other than laying on the beach plus it's very crowded as well.

mateoSF

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 16
Re: Spending a month in Spain
« Reply #14 on: April 07, 2015, 01:30:30 PM »
I personally wouldn't go to coastal Andalusia any later than mid-June or earlier than mid-September. It's just way too hot for anything other than laying on the beach plus it's very crowded as well.

That's a good point regarding the heat that I hadn't had time to research yet.  Since we have 2 school age kids, we're planning to go somewhere in the June 15 to August 15 time frame.  Will continue to research....

SilveradoBojangles

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 318
Re: Spending a month in Spain
« Reply #15 on: April 07, 2015, 01:48:09 PM »
I spent a week in Valencia last summer in August and absolutely loved it. It had everything - historical city center with narrow cobble stone streets opening on to wide plazas, beautiful palaces and cathedrals, expansive beaches, and excellent parks and outdoor spaces. We found it very bikeable, and it had excellent public transportation. There were lots of museums and activities for kids, as well, and a distinctive culture. We stayed in the old city, and it wasn't too hot in August, because there was a steady breeze. I imagine being closer to the beach would be even cooler. Plus, you are close to Barcelona should you want to train in for a couple of days. A quick airbnb perusal indicated that you would be able to find a 2 bedroom apartment within your price range.