See the cultural highlights of Spain's most captivating cities on this 10-day itinerary, showcasing Barcelona, Granada, and Sevilla. You'll start in Barcelona, fly to Granada where you will pick up your car rental and drive to Ronda, before ending your stay in Sevilla. Along the way, you will drive through the Andalucían mountains, explore colorful cities, and marvel at ornate Islamic architecture.

Highlights

  • Step back in time in Barcelona's Gothic neighborhood, Barri Gòtica
  • Marvel at the intricate details of the Alhambra palace and fortress in Granada
  • Navigate the narrow medieval streets in Granada's ancient Moorish quarter
  • Rent a car and drive to the mountaintop village of Ronda
  • Feast on tapas while taking in a flamenco show in Sevilla

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Barcelona Barcelona
Day 2 Half-day city tour; Free afternoon Barcelona
Day 3 Explore Barcelona Barcelona
Day 4 Flight from Barcelona to Granada Granada
Day 5 Visit the Alhambra Granada
Day 6 Pick up rental car - Drive to Ronda Ronda
Day 7 Explore Ronda Ronda
Day 8 Drive from Ronda to Sevilla, via the Pueblos Blancos Sevilla
Day 9 Walking tour - Tapas & flamenco show Sevilla
Day 10 Depart Sevilla  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Barcelona

Barcelona, Spain
There's something for everyone in Barcelona

Welcome to Barcelona! Upon your arrival in Barcelona, you'll be greeted by your driver before transferring to your hotel in the heart of the city. Settle in before heading out to explore the neighborhood.

Day 2: Half-day city tour - Free afternoon

La Sagrada Familia, Barcelona, Spain
Gaudí's famous, still under construction, La Sagrada Familia

Meet your guide this morning for a half-day walking tour of Barcelona and its most popular attractions, including the iconic, La Sagrada Familia church—this jaw-dropping masterpiece is still under construction to this day. You will visit some of the city's most popular attractions and hidden corners, as well as learn all about Antoni Gaudí and his modernist vision. Enjoy lunch at a recommended tapas bar or restaurant before taking the rest of the afternoon to explore Barcelona at your speed.

Day 3: Explore Barcelona

Spain - Barcelona - Las Ramblas waterfront
Stroll along La Rambla passing by the Christopher Columbus monument

Today is yours to spend as you like. You might want to consider a stroll along the tree-lined La Rambla, relaxing on the beach, or people watch from a café on the waterfront. Lose yourself in Barri Gòtica, the center of Barcelona's old city before ending the day in the whimsical Parc Guëll, watching the sunset over the city or taking in a busker performance. Whatever you decide, you can't go wrong.

Day 4: Flight from Barcelona to Granada

Granada, Andalucía, Spain
A typical street in Granada

It's time to leave Catalonia behind and make your way to Andalucía, in the south of Spain. Meet your driver outside your hotel and head to the Barcelona airport for the short flight to Granada. Transfer to your hotel in the heart of this medieval city, check-in and venture out to explore your surroundings.

Day 5: Visit the Alhambra

Spain - Granada - The Alhambra Palace and Sierra Nevada in the background
The Alhambra Palace and Sierra Nevada mountains in the background

Rise early for your full morning of exploring the Alhambra palace complex. What began as a small fortress in 889 CE (built on top of Roman ruins) eventually turned into what you see today with the significant influence of the Islamic Nasrid dynasty. Lose yourself amid fountains, pools, intricate tessellation work, arabesques, and stone and wood carvings. With as many myths and legends as there are arches and fountains, the Alhambra is genuinely captivating.

Afterward, make your way to the city center and spend the rest of the day at your leisure. Navigate the labyrinth of streets in the ancient Moorish quarter, Albaicín, shop for souvenirs in the Alcaicería (Arab bazaar), visit the 16th-century Cathedral of Granada and the Madraza (old Koranic school).

Day 6: Pick up rental car - Drive to Ronda

Ronda, Spain
Enjoy the sweeping views over the Sierra de las Nieves National Park

Pick up your car rental at the Granada train station and continue the self-driving portion of your trip. Drive through Andalucía's olive tree-covered mountainous terrain to your accommodation in Ronda, the capital of the Pueblos Blancos (White Towns). Drop your luggage off and settle into your hotel before venturing out to explore the town, its spectacular views and rustic way of life.

Driving duration: 2.5 hours
Driving distance: 111 miles (178 km)

Day 7: Explore Ronda

Ronda, Spain
Puente Nuevo (bridge) connects the two halves of Ronda

Take the morning to explore Ronda and its environs with a hike through the stunning landscape. You'll want to have your camera with you as the area is home to spectacular vistas. There are many great hiking and walking routes to choose from, though a great place to start is hiking to the bottom of the El Tajo Gorge and the Río Guadalevín (river).

Reward yourself with a delicious lunch of tapas in nearby Setenil de las Bodegas, before checking out its whitewashed houses built into the surrounding cliffs. If there's time, dip your feet in the refreshing waters of Cueva del Gato and explore other local villages such as Montejaque before returning to Ronda for your final afternoon and evening at leisure.

There are alternative options to take advantage of if you're feeling more adventurous, like visiting Via Ferrata for rock climbing, canyoning, and kayaking.

Day 8: Drive from Ronda to Sevilla, via the Pueblos Blancos

Arcos de la Frontera, Andalusia, Spain
Arcos de la Frontera sits quietly atop a sandstone ridge

After breakfast, leave Ronda behind and drive to Grazalema, another Pueblo Blanco in the heart of the Sierra of the same name. Other notable Pueblos Blancos to check out are Zahara de la Sierra, Arcos de la Frontera, and Ubrique. Once you have taken enough photos of the beautiful scenery and whitewashed villages, continue your journey north to Andalucía's capital, Sevilla.

Return your rental and hire a taxi to transfer to your accommodation in the historic core of Sevilla's Old Town. Check-in before readying yourself to enjoy an evening on the town.

Driving duration (Ronda directly to Sevilla): 2 hours
Driving distance: 80 miles (129 km)

Day 9: Walking tour - Tapas & flamenco show

Spain - Sevilla - Fine mudejar architecture in Sevilla's Alcazar
Beautiful Mudéjar style architecture in Sevilla's Alcázar

Today starts with a tour of Sevilla's most noteworthy landmarks. Your private guide will collect you from your hotel to show you, among other gems, the largest Gothic cathedral in the world (Cathedral of Saint Mary of the See), Christopher Columbus' tomb and the magnificent Alcázar with its Mudéjar (Neo -Moorish) palaces and oasis-like gardens. Take a post-tour break in a tapas bar and then explore at your own pace until the evening.

You'll meet your guide and learn the history and cultural significance of flamenco before watching the masterful dance for yourself.  Take in the classic Andalucían music and dance performance, then join your guide for more tapas and drinks and a discussion of life in Andalucía.

Day 10: Depart Sevilla

Plaza de Espana, Sevilla, Spain
 Plaza de España

After making sure you have all your souvenirs and gifts, meet your driver at your hotel and transfer to Sevilla's airport for your onward journey. 

Map

Map of Barcelona, Granada & Sevilla - 10 days
Map of Barcelona, Granada & Sevilla - 10 days