South Spain, Madrid, San Sebastian, and Barcelona!

When were we there
26 days, March 1-26

Where did we go
✈️ Flight from Lisbon to Sevilla
🏨 Hotel Palacio de Villapanes
🚗 Drove from Sevilla to Gibraltar
🏨 The Rock Hotel
🚗 Drove from Gibraltar to Ronda
🏨 Catalonia Reina Victoria Wellness & Spa
🚗 Drove from Ronda to Granada
🏨 AC Palacio De Santa Paula, Autograph Collection
🚗 Drove from Granada to Madrid
🏨 Only YOU Hotel Atocha
🚗 Drove from Madrid to San Sebastian
🏨 Hotel Maria Cristina, a Luxury Collection Hotel
✈️ Flew from San Sebastian to Barcelona
🏨 Hotel 1898


  • Metropole Parasol in Sevilla
  • Royal Alcázar of Seville
  • Plaza de España
  • Salvador Church
  • Tour of bullfighting ring
  • Hike up Mediterranean steps in Gibraltar up to the rock
  • St Micheal cave at the top of the rock
  • Hotel in Ronda
  • Alhambra tour
  • Basilica de San Juan de Dios (skulls!)
  • Gin and Tonics at Ten Con Ten
  • Museo Reina Sophia
  • Lunch at Arzak in San Sebastian
  • Day trip to Bilbao: Guggenheim Museum and Lunch at Azurmendi
  • Hike around San Sebastian
  • Day trip to Figures: Dali Museum and Lunch at El Cellar de Con Roca
  • Park Güell
  • Casa Batllo
  • Casa Mila
  • Sagrada Familia
  • Dinner at Disfrutar – molecular gastronomy

We loved Spain! In particular it was great to see the Islamic art and history in the south part of the country. We drove through Andalusia, stopping in Seville, Gibraltar, Ronda, and Granada. We learned about how the region changed under Roman, Visigoth, and Moorish rule until it was reclaimed by Spain in 1492.

Gibraltar was a weird place, a little slice of Britain! Seeing the Rock of Gibraltar was incredible (one of the Pillars of Hercules, historically thought to be the end of the world). The city itself kinda sucked: lots of British tourists who are too scared to travel anywhere else :(.

We drove to Madrid and spent a week there, and then continued up to San Sebastian, a surf town known for incredible food.

From San Sebastian we did a day trip to Bilbao to visit the Guggenheim. It’s housed in a beautiful building designed by Frank Gehry. The interior is as crazy as the exterior! The museum has an amazing collection of modern art and sculpture. We loved it!

That day we had lunch at Azurmendi. It was one of the most unique and wonderful dining experiences of our lives, full of fun surprises from start to end! Michelin 3 star restaurants are supposed to be “Exceptional cuisine, worth a special journey”. I would definitely recommend visiting Bilboa and San Sebastian just to go to Azurmenfi.

You start with a tour of the building: the garden, the kitchen, and the greenhouse. Along the way you meet the staff, learn about the restaurant and its sustainability efforts, and eat a bunch of little snacks.

Then you move on to the dining room. We had ~10 more courses while looking over the beautiful Basque countryside. Foie, egg, oyster, uni, mushroom, truffle, lobster, fish, pork.

Every dish incredibly creative and playful. Even though you saw the menu, you didn’t know what you were going to get. 👍🏾 bread and wine too! Totally blown away.

Our last stop on the trip was Barcelona, and of course it was spectacular. It didn’t hurt that we got a free upgrade to a $1000/night room with a private rooftop pool!