Spain is a vibrant and popular European travel destination. In fact, over 71 million tourists visited Spain in 2022. It is an incredible place to travel with family, a partner, or even solo.
If you want to visit Spain in 2023 or 2024, I recommend spending 10 days there. Let’s look at the top tips for your 10 Day Itinerary Spain.
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Spain Travel 101
If you’re planning to spend 10 days in Spain, there are a few basic things you should know before embarking on your adventure. First, Spanish is the official language of the country, so it’s worth brushing up on some basic phrases to make your trip more enjoyable.
The currency used in Spain is the Euro, so be sure to have some cash on hand or plan to use your credit card for purchases.
When it comes to getting around, the most popular forms of transportation include buses, trains, and rental cars. It’s worth noting that Spain drives on the right side of the road, so if you’re planning to rent a car, be prepared to adjust to this.
To find incredible flight deals to Spain, check out Going, Booking.com or Expedia bundle deals. I typically find flights under $600 for Spain for the Spring and Fall.
Popular Spanish Foods
Spain is a food lover’s paradise, with a rich culinary tradition that includes a wide range of delicious dishes. Some of the most popular foods in Spain include:
- paella, a rice-based dish typically made with seafood, chicken, and vegetables;
- jamón ibérico, a type of cured ham made from acorn-fed pigs;
- tortilla española, a thick omelet made with potatoes and onions;
- and churros con chocolate, a sweet treat made of fried dough served with a rich chocolate sauce for dipping.
Food specialties will also vary depending on where you go. In Northern Spain, the cuisine is heavily influenced by the region’s proximity to the sea and the mountains.
Seafood is a staple, and dishes like bacalao al pil-pil, a dish made with salt cod and garlic, are popular. Northern Spain is also known for its cheeses, with varieties like Cabrales and Idiazabal hailing from the region.
Meat dishes like Asturian bean stew and Basque-style grilled steak are also popular. In terms of drinks, Northern Spain is home to the wine regions of Rioja and Ribera del Duero, which produce some of the country’s most famous wines.
In Southern Spain, the cuisine is heavily influenced by the region’s hot, dry climate and Islamic heritage.
Tapas are a popular way to eat, with dishes like gazpacho, a cold soup made with tomatoes and peppers, and tortillitas de camarones, a small fritter made with shrimp, being popular choices.
Seafood is also prominent, with dishes like paella and grilled sardines being common.
In terms of drinks, Southern Spain is famous for its sherry, which is produced in the towns of Jerez, Sanlúcar de Barrameda, and El Puerto de Santa María.
What to Pack for Spain 10-Day Trip
What to pack for a 10-day trip to Spain will depend on what month you will be traveling to. If you go in the winter, you will need winter clothing, and in the summer, it can get super hot, so pack wisely.
Here are some basics you don’t want to forget in your luggage for your trip to Spain:
- Charger adaptors. I always get the universal charger adaptor from Amazon.
- Comfortable shoes. You will do a lot of walking in Spain, so comfort is key. I don’t recommend heels unless it’s for an evening dinner.
- Toiletry bag. So you can take your makeup and skincare items. I love the Tarte compact blushes, Tula sunscreen, and ordinary skincare products. They are all easy to carry. And I love this toiletry bag from Amazon.
- 4 Pairs of Socks or more.
- 10 pairs of underwear or more
- Neutral-colored t-shirts like black, white, and tan
- Neutral colored tanktops
- Maxi Dress for women
- Flip-flops for hotel floors or swimming if traveling in the summer.
- Light jacket.
- Comfy pants.
- Camera for pro photos optional.
- Baseball hats for men.
Cities to Vist In Spain
Barcelona and Madrid are the top two destinations to consider when visiting Spain for the first time. Your personal preferences and the specific sights you want to see will determine which other cities you should visit.
For instance, we adored paella and had a great time in Valencia, which wasn’t too far from Madrid. Additionally, it had wonderful beaches.
So answer the following:
- What do I want to see?
- What foods do I want to try?
- What do I know about Spain?
- How do the others traveling with me feel?
Here are the places I would visit on a 10-day trip to Spain if you want my recommendations.
- 4 Days in Madrid with day trips to Toledo and Segovia
- 3 days in Barcelona with a day trip to Costa Brava
- 2 days Valencia
- Back to Madrid forHere departure home
For an itinerary featuring Southern Spain, check out my road trip from Lisbon to Seville blog post.
Before leaving for Spain, 10 Day Trip
Make sure your accommodations are exactly as you want them before departing for Spain. When traveling with your family, you should confirm the following:
- There is an elevator in the building (check reviews and ask them in a message). This has been a problem for us in the past.
- Inquire about the sofa beds. Since there are 5 people in our family, a sofa bed is always necessary.
- Find out where they recommend eating by asking them.
- Ask questions about parking if you plan to rent a car
- Get a recommendation for private transportation to and from the airport from them.
- Ask if there are any early check-in options available, or at the very least, if you can leave your luggage there while you go sightseeing.
Usually, we book our transportation through an Airbnb or hotel. The prices are generally reasonable. You can also look into your options for trains.
Where should I stay in Madrid?
We enjoy staying in areas where Puerto del Sol is accessible on foot. Here are some places to stay nearby.
We have stayed in the Malasana neighborhood in addition to Plaza De Santa Ana, where we most recently stayed. Remember that Madrid will serve as your home base since you plan to take some day trips.
Check out fill list here.
Let’s begin your 10-day itinerary Spain
Day 1 : Arrive in Madrid and head to your hotel or apartment. Drop off your luggage and start exploring close to where you are staying.
Find a place for breakfast, and if you can’t check in yet, then head over to Retiro Park. You can rent a boat and row around the lake, visit the Crystal Palace, or simply stroll around the park and enjoy the peaceful surroundings.
Head back to the hotel, but stop by a local market and grab some snacks or groceries. Now it is time to check in and shower. Head off and visit Puerto de Sol for a drink and snack.
This is where you can find the famous clock tower and the statue of the bear, and the strawberry tree. You can also visit some of the nearby shops and cafes.
Enjoy the architecture as you make your way over. Make sure you stop by the oldest restaurant in the world, Sobrino de Botín and take a selfie.
Paella in Madrid
Day 2 in Madrid
Morning: Start off your day by visiting the famous Prado Museum, where you can see some of the world’s most incredible artworks. Don’t miss out on the works of Goya, Velázquez, and El Greco. The museum opens at 10 AM.
Afternoon: After the museum, you can head over to the Royal Palace of Madrid, which is just a short walk away. The Royal Palace is a stunning display of the opulence of the Spanish monarchy, and it has over 3,000 rooms.
You can take a guided tour of the palace to learn about its history and see some of its most beautiful rooms. You can also catch the Changing of the Guard ceremony at 12 PM.
The area has some great old bars for tapas and cold beer like El Anciano Rey.
For lunch, you must visit Mercado San Miguel. We have now been twice to this food market, and it sure has been a delight. The cava price is affordable and the food is so fresh.
After you leave, we recommend you check out the amazing cafe at the Madrid Stadium called Real Cafe Bernabeu! Check to see hours and if it’s open as we went there in 20018.
We were amazed by the views! We could eat while seeing the whole stadium.
Evening: For an adventurous evening, head over to Casa Patas, which is a flamenco club where you can see some of the best flamenco dancers in Madrid. Here, you can enjoy a show while sipping on some Spanish wine.
Recommended Restaurants: For lunch, try La Vaca y La Huerta, which is a farm-to-table restaurant that serves delicious Spanish cuisine. For dinner, try La Venencia, which is a sherry bar that has been around since the 1920s.
Ernest Hemingway is said to have enjoyed a few sherries there.
Recommended Restaurants: For lunch, try Café de Oriente, which is located right next to the Royal Palace. For dinner, try Botín, which is the oldest restaurant in the world according to Guinness World Records.
Day 3 Toledo
Toledo Morning: Take a train to the UNESCO World Heritage city of Toledo, known for its medieval architecture. Afternoon: Visit the Alcázar of Toledo and the Cathedral of Toledo. Evening: Enjoy dinner at Restaurante Adolfo or El Trébol.
Day 4: Segovia
1 Day Segovia Spain Itinerary
9:00 AM – Arrive in Segovia Start your day by taking a stroll through the city’s historic center, admiring the ancient architecture and soaking up the atmosphere.
10:00 AM – Visit the Aqueduct Head to the Plaza del Azoguejo to see the impressive Roman Aqueduct, one of the most recognizable landmarks in Segovia. Take a moment to snap some photos and learn about the history of this incredible structure.
11:00 AM – Explore the Alcazar Next, make your way to the Alcazar, a stunning castle that sits atop a rocky crag overlooking the city. Inside, you’ll find a museum that showcases the history of the castle and the city of Segovia.
1:00 PM – Lunchtime Take a break for lunch and enjoy some local cuisine at one of Segovia’s many restaurants. Roast suckling pig and lamb are local specialties that are not to be missed.
2:30 PM – Visit the Cathedral After lunch, head to the Plaza Mayor to visit the Segovia Cathedral, a gothic masterpiece that dates back to the 16th century. Be sure to take a guided tour to learn about the history of this stunning structure.
4:00 PM – Walk through the Jewish Quarter Finish up your day in Segovia by exploring the city’s Jewish Quarter, which features narrow streets and charming courtyards. Take in the unique architecture and learn about the city’s Jewish history.
6:00 PM – Depart from Segovia
Day 5 Valencia
Now it is time to head to Valencia by train.
I recommend you stay very centrally located so you can visit more places during your stay. We loved staying at Causel Del Cine, which was a thematic hotel decorated with famous movie scenes. It is located at Ciuta Vella, close enough to buses and restaurants.
Read more about our 2-day itinerary in Valencia.
One thing to know about valencia is that when you order an Uber, it will actually be a taxi. Don’t be alarmed, they work together there which is pretty cool.
Valencia Morning: Take a train to Valencia. Drop off your luggage and take a bus or uber to the beach. You can rent a chair at the beach, which is pretty affordable.
Have lunch at for the most delicious paella. Relax at the beach, then also walk around and check out the shops.
Next head over to Explore the Albufera Natural Park, famous for its rice fields and wetlands. Afternoon: Take a boat ride on the Albufera lake and enjoy a paella lunch. Evening: Head back to Valencia for dinner at El Poblet or Restaurante La Sucursal.
There are many other things to see in Valencia, so if you could stay one more day I would.
Day 7 Barcelona
Day 8: Park Güell and Sagrada Familia Morning: Visit the iconic Park Güell, designed by Antoni Gaudí, and then visit the stunning Sagrada Familia. Afternoon: Take a stroll along La Rambla and visit the Boqueria Market. Evening: Enjoy dinner at Els Quatre Gats or Tickets.
We stumbled upon this restaurant which is set in a Cave, when we visited in 2018. The food was delicious, and we loved the wine.
Day 9: Costa Brava Morning: Take a day trip to the Costa Brava, known for its beautiful beaches and coastal towns. Afternoon: Visit the picturesque town of Cadaqués and the Dalí Theatre-Museum in Figueres. Evening: Have dinner at Miramar or El Celler de Can Roca.
Day 10: Back to Madrid for the flight home.
I will be updating this blog post with more things to do in the above cities as well as other 10-day Spain itinerary options.