While I tried to post something about each of our days in Spain, I thought it might be worth summarizing our trip with an overall impression of the country. So after talking with DJ, here are a few of things that stood out to us during our time there.
For our last full day in Spain, we had no tours scheduled. Usually when we travel, we don’t make a lot of plans. That allows us to factor in environmental elements like the weather, events, etc. as they occur. Having seen most of the sights we wanted to see in Madrid, we decided to just do a “walk-about”. And the first place we headed was across the street from the hotel, El Retiro Park.
We are nearing the end of our time in Spain, just a couple of days left on our trip. My Missus is getting a little depressed at the thought of having to go back to the “real world”. We have one more tour left on our itinerary: a trip to Toledo. It is about a 50 mile trip from Madrid to the former capital city of Spain, so we have to get an early 9:30 am start. Typically, that is not late, but we still dragging from the flamenco show the night before. Anyway, we met our personal guide Rossana, our driver Juan, and we headed out.
With no tours scheduled and only dinner/show at night, we had the day to ourselves. Our legs were feeling a little worn out after a couple of weeks marching through Spain. So we planned a light day since we knew we had a long tour to Toledo scheduled for the next morning. We slept in an extra hour to rest our weary legs. Then after a late breakfast and a couple of cups of strong Spanish coffee (the only type the Spanish make!), we set off for Palacio Real de Madrid, the Royal Palace of Madrid.
Packing our bags and leaving Seville, I was a little disappointed. Before the trip I had little interest in visiting the city, but it surprised me. I really enjoyed my time in Seville, so now I was sad to leave it. But we had one more city on our itinerary and it was time to see it. We were heading to the capital city of Spain…. Madrid.
Whenever we travel, we like to build in some “downtime” in our itinerary. This gives us time to relax and perhaps see some sights in our own time. While the personal tour guide concept on this trip has been a great idea so far, part of traveling is to mingle with the citizens of your host country. On this day in Seville, with nothing on our schedule, we slept in a little to catch up on our sleep a little bit. One of the few drawbacks of traveling in Spain is that their daily schedule stretches late into the evening. A lot of people are settling down to eat dinner there when most Americans are getting ready for bed. For us, our days have been pretty long. While we have been enjoying a daily siesta nap, that doesn’t compete with a good night’s sleep.