In just one week, you can enjoy the perfect family holiday in Spain by visiting the two most iconic cities in the nation: Madrid and Barcelona. You and your family will enjoy the highlights of each and have plenty of opportunities to try Spain's world-famous (and inherently kid-friendly) cuisine and even take a day trip to the always entertaining medieval fortress city of Toledo.


  • Discover the highlights of Barcelona on a family-focused tour
  • Enjoy amazing views with a cable car ride to Santa Maria de Montserrat
  • Be royalty for a day in Madrid and enjoy delicious, kid-friendly Spanish grub
  • Learn how to make sweet marzipan in the medieval city of Toledo

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Barcelona, Family Food Tour Barcelona
Day 2 Visit Park Güell & Sagrada Família Barcelona
Day 3 Santa Maria de Montserrat Cable Car Ride & Private Tour Barcelona
Day 4 Train to Madrid, Madrid for Kids Walking Tour Madrid
Day 5 Family Tour of Madrid's Royal Legacy Madrid
Day 6 Family Day Trip to Toledo Madrid
Day 7 Depart Spain  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Barcelona, Family Food Tour

Welcome to Barcelona
Barcelona is a fun and energetic outdoor playground perfect for families

Welcome to Spain! Upon arrival at Barcelona's El Prat Airport, a private driver will take you and your family into the city, where you can check into your hotel and unwind. If the kids are peckish and you're eager to get out and explore, then this afternoon's family-focused food tour is the perfect way to engage the younger ones with the local food scene, discover the city's sights, and fill up on delicious Catalan dishes. 

Immerse yourselves in the local culture as you stroll the medieval Born district and the historic fisherman's quarter of Barceloneta with your friendly, knowledgeable guide. There's plenty to keep the kids occupied with various fun activities that encourage them to spot key landmarks and even learn a little Spanish while you discover Barcelona's fascinating food history. 

Tour the vibrant local food markets and experience the sights, sounds, and tastes, with opportunities to try Spain's iconic Iberian ham, patatas bravas, croquettes, and mouthwatering paella. Even the pickiest little eaters will find something they love in this food-obsessed city. Tummies full, return to your hotel in anticipation of tomorrow's adventures. 

Day 2: Visit Park Güell & Sagrada Família

The gothic-modernist marvel that is the Sagrada Familia
The gothic-modernist marvel that is the Sagrada Família

After breakfast at the hotel, you'll meet your guide, who will whisk you and your crew away in a chauffeured vehicle for a fun and entertaining half-day tour of works by the legendary Catalan architect Antonio Gaudí. First, visit the colorful and whimsical Park Güell. The park covers 42 acres (17 ha), and your kids will love to marvel at every unique building as you stroll the walkways and gardens. Kid favorites tend to be the stone palm trees, the covered Laundry Room Portico, the colorful bench and gingerbread houses at the pavilions, and the dragon staircase. 

Next up is Sagrada Família, the iconic Roman Catholic basilica that's an impressive mix of Gothic, Catalan-modernism, and Art Nouveau architectural styles. Despite work on the church beginning in 1882, it's still technically under construction and was only consecrated in 2010. Upon arrival, your guide will reveal insight into Sagrada Família's fascinating history, and you'll glean even more info as you explore the interior. Watch your kids' eyes light up as they witness the sky-high ceiling meant to look like a forest as colorful light streams in from the stained glass windows.

Around lunchtime, it's time to part ways with your guide. On your own, you can visit Ciutadella Park. Open since 1881, this green lung of Barcelona includes 70 acres (28 ha) and features sculptures, lakes, gardens, playgrounds, and the Barcelona Zoo. You could easily spend the remainder of the afternoon here and not run out of things to do!

Day 3: Santa Maria de Montserrat Cable Car Ride & Private Tour

Montserrat Monastery
Don't miss a trip to the incredible Montserrat Monastery

After breakfast, you and your family will take a day trip to the 16th-century Benedictine monastery of Santa Maria de Montserrat. It's a fun journey as you and the kids board a train to Montserrat and then scale the mountain by cable car, witnessing spectacular views of the famous serrated mountains and the Catalan lowlands. Reach the top—the abbey sits atop a 4,055-foot (1,336 m) mountain, and there'll be plenty of time to take photos before meeting your guide for a private tour.

First up is a guided walk through the site's 16th-century basilica, which features a statue of the Virgin of Montserrat (the Black Madonna) hanging from the altar. And don't worry about the kids; your guide will have plenty of interactive activities planned to keep the younger ones occupied while older kids will be captivated by tales of the monastery's 1,000-year-old history. If your kids are into art, they'll be excited to visit the Museum of Montserrat, which has works by Caravaggio, Dalí, and Picasso, as well as several key archaeological finds. 

Break for lunch at one of the on-site cafés or restaurants, and afterward, the kids will be treated to an ice cream tasting experience, where well-behaved parents can get to join in the fun too! Ride the funicular to Santa Cova, a mountain cave and important pilgrimage site known as the "Holy Grotto," where the Virgin of Montserrat was hidden during the Moorish invasions until being discovered by shepherds in 880. At the end of the tour, you'll return to Barcelona, where you have plenty of family-friendly eating options to enjoy your last night in the city. 

Plan your trip to Spain
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.

Day 4: Train to Madrid, Madrid for Kids Walking Tour

Eat churros and explore! Returo Park, Madrid
Eat churros and explore! El Retiro Park, Madrid

Bid Barcelona farewell this morning as you transfer to the train station to embark on a 3.5-hour journey to the nation's capital. Upon arrival in Madrid, check into your downtown hotel and waste no time heading out to explore. Meet your guide and experience key landmarks such as the Royal Palace, Plaza de la Villa, San Miguel Market, Plaza Mayor, and the Puerta del Sol. Little ones will be enthralled with tales of the city's exciting history as stories of explorers, artists, princes, and princesses capture their hearts and feed their imaginations.

Stop for the best child-friendly snacks in town as you feast on prized hams and cured meats at a family-run deli while adults can sample the local cava. Next up, the kids can try their hands at making bocadillos, a Spanish-style sandwich, while hearing all about Spanish life for kids their age. Finish the tour at one of Madrid's most famous spots for delicious churros (a deep friend doughnut sprinkled with sugar) and chocolate—sure to be a hit with kids big and little. 

When night falls, indulge in Madrid's world-class culinary scene. If you want to dine amid history, head to the city center and Botín, listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the oldest restaurant in the world—it first opened its doors in 1725. Kids are always excited to eat here, and adults will love it, too. 

Day 5: Family Tour of Madrid's Royal Legacy

Plaza Mayor, Madrid
The beautiful and massive Plaza Mayor in Madrid

Today you and the family will be honorary royalty and enjoy a tour of Madrid's royal legacy led by an expert local guide. One area you'll visit that's awash in regal splendor is Madrid de los Austrias, built in the 16th century during the reign of the Hapsburg Dynasty's first ruler, Charles I. It's home to one of the grandest plazas in Spain, the Plaza Mayor, which was once the heart of Old Madrid. Today, this is a kid-friendly square with street performers, street food, and lots of room to run around.

Of course, your little royals will explore the Royal Palace, which was the official home of the Spanish monarchs until 1931. You'll tour the exterior and interior of this 3,418-room monument of luxury, entering the parade grounds, the chambers of Charles III, several salons, the Royal Chapel, and the Hall of the Crown, which displays Charles I's crown, scepter, and throne.

After the tour ends, consider a visit to El Retiro Park. This 308-acre (125 ha) expanse of foliage is the green lung of Madrid, abounding with sculptures, fountains, and an artificial lake perfect for a family boat trip. There are also must-visit gardens here, including the Jardín de Vivaces (Garden of Vivacious Plants), Jardines de Cecilio Rodríguez (inspired by the Andalusia region), and a garden home to over 4,000 roses (best to see these blooms from May through June). Kids love visiting the tiny house known as Casita del Pescador and exploring the Crystal Palace, a structure made almost entirely of glass with free art exhibitions.

Day 6: Family Day Trip to Toledo

Toledo's waterfront
View of the Alcázar of Toledo

A half-hour train ride south of Madrid lies Toledo, a historic city that served as Spain's capital in the 16th century. It enjoys a scenic location atop a gorge overlooking the Río Tajo, an impressive sight for even the youngest travelers.

In the Middle Ages, Toledo was the "city of the three cultures," a place where—legend has it—Christian, Muslim, and Jewish communities peacefully coexisted. You can see remnants of this in the old Arab, Muslim, and Christian monuments that still stand. These include the 15th-century Monastery of San Juan de los Reyes, the former Roman palace Alcázar de Toledo, and the Moorish Synagogue of Santa María la Blanca, which dates to the 12th century.

Enjoy visiting these historic landmarks and more in this incredible city that many describe as an open-air museum—perfect for curious kids—and listening to exciting stories and tales of Toledo's history. Then, take part in two kid-friendly activities. You'll first explore the world of Toledo steel and visit a foundry where ancient blacksmiths forged unique swords. Lastly, visit a cigarral, a manor estate, to learn how to make the city's famed (and perfectly sweet) marzipan.

Day 7: Depart Spain

Retiro Park, Spain
Goodbye, Spain!

It's time to say farewell. After a leisurely breakfast, a car will pick you up and transfer you to the airport, where you'll catch your flight home. This concludes your great family Spanish adventure. Adiós!

More Great Spain Itineraries

Looking for more inspiration for your trip to Spain? Check out these other Spain itineraries, explore different ways to spend a week in Spain with your family, or discover the best time to visit Spain.


Map of Family Trip to Spain: Barcelona & Madrid - 7 Days
Map of Family Trip to Spain: Barcelona & Madrid - 7 Days
Written by Ramon Tormos, updated Apr 28, 2023