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To Portugal & Spain 2000 Home Portuguese Algarve Granada, Spain (Alhambra) Barcelona, Spain

Spain & Portugal 2002

In april & may of 2002, Eric and I drove down to Portugal and Spain for a two-week vacation. We spent the first week at the beach near Monte Gordo, in the Portuguese Algarve, at just a few kilometers from the Spanish Border. In the second week, we visited Granada (with the famous Alhambra palace) and Barcelona, in Spain.

You can find some practical info on this trip in general further down on this same page.

For photographs, and a more personal description, go to the following pages:
Monte Gordo & around (Portuguese Algarve)

Practical info

Getting there & away
We drove the 2500 km from our home in the Netherlands to the Portuguese Algarve; our little Peugeot 205 did a perfect job. We drove down to Burgos, Spain (about 1500 km) in one very long day, so as to arrive in Portugal on late afternoon of the second day. On the way back, we drove to Granada, spent 3 nights there, then drove to Barcelona, spent another 3 nights there, and finally drove back home from Barcelona.
The first and last days, in which we drove 1500 km or more, were long and exhausting days. The highways in Spain are good, and they're mostly very good in France, if you're prepared to pay toll. Don't underestimate the toll: I think it cost us close to 400 euro for the entire trip. Our trip is roughly indicated in the map below.

Euro. The trip took us through the south of the Netherlands, Belgium, France, Spain, and Portugal, and although I've always opposed the euro, I must confess that it came in very handy now. Otherwise, we'd have had to deal with five different currencies. We used a credit card a couple of times, and got money from automatic teller machines. The latter was a bit of trouble in Granada - a lot of the ATMs seemed to be out of order.

Dutch, French, Spanish, and Portuguese; I'm sure you can figure out what language is spoken where.

Time zones
Portugal is on a different time than the rest of western continental Europe; it is one hour behind (which puts it at GMT).

Where to stay
In Portugal we stayed at a beautiful and very large privately owned house, which will soon be available for rent. I know the owners, so contact me for more information (via my home page).
We booked our six nights in Granada and Barcelona in advance, so we wouldn't have to waste time searching for a hotel. We booked the hotels through the internet. We weren't satisfied with the one in Granada - it didn't come close to offering all it promised - but the manager didn't make a fuss over that. He was very kind and booked us into another hotel (same company) that was more suitable for us, and cheaper too.

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