FUN-travel: Toledo to Cordoba to Sevilla, Spain

August 21, 2012 by · Comments Off on FUN-travel: Toledo to Cordoba to Sevilla, Spain 

Trip Day 38 – Friday, August 17 – Toledo to Cordoba to Sevilla, Spain


Inside La Mezquita

  •  Paradores in Spain have been very consistent – all 4 or 5 ****
  • staff in Toledo is the most personable & helpful
  • our Mercedes has 2, 12 volt plugs so we can use the Garmin & play the IPod!
  • 9:45 depart for Cordoba
  • countryside is rolling hills with olive orchards in every direction as far as the eye can see
  • 1:30 arrive Cordoba
  • made good time
  • find free parking
  • La Mezquita – named as a Wonder of the World but didn’t make the top 21 – massive remarkably well-preserved 10th-century mosque – now with a 16th-century church rising form the middle – once the center of Western Islam & heart of a cultural capital that rivaled Bagdad & Istanbul – a definite wonder of the medieval world !
  • 2:30 – depart for Sevilla
  • 4:00 – arrive
  • made good time
  • no tolls at all today
  • wonderful man @ bar on teeny, tiny, road asks us where we are going – jumps on his bike and directs us to our hotel
  • Casa 1800 is in the heart of the Old Town
  • able to drive & find parking garage

La Mezquita

  • 5:00 Beer stop
  • 8:30 dinner @ La Burra – locals favorite – order hamburger, seared ahi, chicken – nice red wine only $18 Euro
  • cafe patrons spilling into the streets
  • Casa 1800 is in the heart of everything!


  • drive to Cordoba takes 4 hrs
  • then Sevilla is another 2 hrs
  • teeny, tiny, twisty, narrow, cobblestone streets on the Old Town
  • parking costs $20 Euro a day in Sevilla
  • La Burra food just so-so
  • 5:00 Beer stop has no free tapas

FF (FUN-fact) – There are an abundance of service areas on Spain’s major roads that have gas and food.


FUN-travel: Madrid to Toledo, Spain

August 20, 2012 by · Comments Off on FUN-travel: Madrid to Toledo, Spain 

Trip Day 37 – Thursday, August 16 – Madrid to Toledo, Spain


  • 7:30 Starbuck’s for wake up
  • nice cool morning
  • ready for next adventure
  • 9:30 taxi to Hertz downtown location instead of airport

  • save time & money
  • $10 vs $30 Euros
  • 9:45 arrive
  • get Mercedes instead of Ford (last car was uncomfortable for long rides)
  • should have better seats
  • Garmin is working
  • very easy to get out of Madrid
  • two turns & into underground tunnel 3 lane road
  • 11:30 arrive Toledo
  • Parador is 40 yrs old & very charming
  • fabulous views of town from veranda
  • quick lunch of club sandwich on veranda

  • take taxi $7 Euro to old town
  • explore Toledo – more narrow cobblestone streets that wind up and down the hill
  • go into Santo Tomé – simple chapel has El Greco’s famous painting “The Burial of the count of Orgaz” – incredible as it looks 3D
  • 3:00 beer break – free tapas is tasty – hot mushrooms stuffed with ham
  • 5:00 taxi back to Parador
  • siesta
  • 8:45 dinner on veranda – order “typical” menu items from region – white beans & clams – sautéed bass with vegetables – dessert of sorbet trio – apple, mango, watermelon – only $32 Euro – wine from Antonio Banderas Winery (so we’re told)

Toledo From The Parador


  • have to schlep bags across and down the street to parking garage 3rd level
  • no elevator on top floor
  • have to carry bags down steps
  • no one in garage to help
  • really dark & hard to see
  • Mercedes control panel & controls are confusing & don’t make sense
  • it’s much hotter in Toledo

FF (FUN-fact) – Renting cars at the airport is much easier. No garages, luggage carts are there and you have access to all major freeways. In hindsight, it’s worth it to us to spend more on a cab for less hassle and stress.