17 days in Spain, Portugal & France Itinerary

17 days in Spain, Portugal & France Itinerary

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Madrid, Spain
— 4 nights
Lisbon, Portugal
— 3 nights
Barcelona, Spain
— 3 nights
Paris, France
— 4 nights


Madrid, Spain — 4 nights

Madrid is known for its cultural and artistic heritage, lively nightlife, and a dynamic culinary scene.
Museum-lovers will get to explore Prado National Museum and El Transito Synagogue and Sephardic Museum. Deepen your sense of the past at sights like Royal Palace of Madrid and Monastery of San Juan de los Reyes. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Madrid: Toledo (Museo de Santa Cruz, MQM Museo del Queso Manchego Toledo, &more). There's much more to do: steep yourself in history at Plaza Mayor, explore the ancient world of Templo de Debod, explore the world behind art at Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, and see the interesting displays at Museo Nacional Thyssen-Bornemisza.

For traveler tips, more things to do, reviews, and more tourist information, read Madrid trip itinerary tool.

New Orleans, USA to Madrid is an approximately 14.5-hour flight. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 7 hours traveling from New Orleans to Madrid. Traveling from New Orleans in June, expect colder with lows of 61°F in Madrid. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 20th (Mon) early enough to fly to Lisbon.
Historic Sites · Museums · Wineries · Tours
Side Trip
Find places to stay Jun 16 — 20:

Lisbon, Portugal — 3 nights

Built on seven hills, Lisbon has experienced a renaissance in recent years, making it the cultural star of Portugal.
Do some cultural sightseeing at Quinta da Regaleira and Mosteiro dos Jeronimos. Museum-lovers will appreciate Museu Nacional do Azulejo and Museu Colecao Berardo. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Lisbon: Sintra (Castelo dos Mouros, Park and National Palace of Pena, &more). There's much more to do: explore the historical opulence of Castelo de S. Jorge, brush up on your military savvy at Museu de Marinha, steep yourself in history at National Palace of Queluz, and meet the residents at Lisbon Oceanarium.

To see photos, more things to do, ratings, and other tourist information, you can read our Lisbon holiday maker website.

You can fly from Madrid to Lisbon in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. The time zone changes from Central European Standard Time to Western European Standard Time, which is usually a -1 hour difference. While traveling from Madrid, expect little chillier days and about the same nights in Lisbon, ranging from highs of 81°F to lows of 60°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 23rd (Thu) so you can fly to Barcelona.
Historic Sites · Museums · Parks · Neighborhoods
Side Trips
Find places to stay Jun 20 — 23:

Barcelona, Spain — 3 nights

Barcelona, the country’s second-largest city, is a cosmopolitan urban center known for its throbbing youthful energy and stellar architecture.
Let the collections at Museu Picasso and Museu De La Cuina De La Costa Catalana capture your imagination. Get a sense of the local culture at Basilica de la Sagrada Familia and Casa Batllo. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Barcelona: Tossa de Mar (Museu Municipal de Tossa de Mar & Vila Vella (Old Town)). There's still lots to do: walk around Parc Guell, take in the architecture and atmosphere at Barcelona Cathedral, examine the collection at Carrer del Mirador del Palau Nacional, and wander the streets of Las Ramblas.

For traveler tips, where to stay, other places to visit, and other tourist information, read Barcelona holiday tool.

You can fly from Lisbon to Barcelona in 5 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a train. The time zone difference moving from Western European Standard Time to Central European Standard Time is 1 hour. Traveling from Lisbon in June, Barcelona is a bit warmer at night with lows of 66°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 27th (Mon) so you can catch the flight to Paris.
Museums · Historic Sites · Neighborhoods · Parks
Side Trip
Find places to stay Jun 23 — 27:

Paris, France — 4 nights

A beautiful and romantic city fit for any itinerary, Paris brims with historic associations and remains vastly influential in the realms of culture, art, fashion, food and design.
Your inner history buff will appreciate Eiffel Tower and Cathedrale Notre-Dame de Rouen. Louvre Museum and Musee d'Orsay will appeal to museum buffs. Get out of town with these interesting Paris side-trips: Palace of Versailles (in Versailles), Fondation Claude Monet (in Giverny) and Rue du Gros-Horloge (in Rouen). There's much more to do: take in the architecture and atmosphere at Basilique du Sacre-Coeur de Montmartre, step off the mainland to explore Île de la Cité, wander the streets of Montmartre, and visit Le Marais.

For reviews, traveler tips, maps, and other tourist information, use the Paris online trip itinerary planner.

You can fly from Barcelona to Paris in 5 hours. Other options are to take a train; or drive. Traveling from Barcelona in June, expect Paris to be a bit cooler, temps between 74°F and 55°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 1st (Fri) so you can catch the flight back home.
Historic Sites · Museums · Neighborhoods · Shopping
Side Trips
Find places to stay Jun 27 — Jul 1:

Spain travel guide

Architectural Buildings · Beaches · Landmarks
A colorful country known for its relaxed lifestyle, vibrant nightlife, excellent food, and world-famous folklore and festivals, Spain boasts a huge number of World Heritage Sites and other spectacular places to visit. It also deserves its reputation as a beach vacation destination; the Western edge of the Mediterranean Sea is home to some of the world’s top beaches. But Spain’s geography is so much more than just soft, sandy shores. Its landscapes are as diverse as its people, ranging from lush meadows and snowy mountains to huge marshes and sprawling deserts. The countryside bursts with unspoiled villages of timeless beauty and old-world charm, as well as vast and varied nature preserves.

Portugal travel guide

Landmarks · Castles · Beaches
Small in size but rich in history, culture, and natural beauty, Portugal features contrasting landscapes that include long beaches, lush vineyards, verdant valleys, and rolling hills dotted with tiny settlements where old traditions still prevail. The country's serene interior, often overlooked by foreigners, remains largely unspoiled by mass tourism and offers visitors a chance to discover this less-trodden part of Europe at their own pace. Ripe for leisurely adventures on foot or by bicycle, Portugal's fertile countryside boasts well-preserved medieval castles and outstanding wineries, producing some of the world's finest ports. The country's cities offer a lively culinary scene known for its many award-winning restaurants, topping the itineraries of foodies from around the globe.

France travel guide

Architectural Buildings · Landmarks · Historic Sites
France has been the world's most popular tourist destination for decades, and geographically, it is one of the most diverse countries in Europe. Its cities are holiday hot spots and contain some of the greatest treasures in Europe, its countryside is prosperous and well tended, and it boasts dozens of major tourist attractions, like Paris, the French Riviera, the Atlantic beaches, the winter sport resorts of the French Alps, as well as the castles of the Loire Valley, Brittany, and Normandy. The country is renowned for its gastronomy, particularly wines and cheeses, as well as its history, culture, and fashion industry.

You'll find that the French people are very polite and may react coldly to you if you forget this. You might be surprised as you're greeted by other customers and the proprieter when you walk into a restaurant or a shop. Be sure to take your sightseeing off the beaten path in France. Besides the famous Eiffel Tower and the chic resorts of the Côte d'Azur (French Riviera) you'll find many places to visit in the form of museums filled with fine art, crafts, and archaeological relics, wonderful medieval villages and castles, diverse national parks, and local shopping direct from artisans themselves.

Whether you're touring the Christmas Markets or going skiing during winter, viewing the springtime influx of color in Provence, sunbathing on the Mediterranean coast in the summer, or watching the fall foliage against the backdrop of the châteaux in the Loire Valley, you're sure to find just the right place to be. Spring is a time when the tourist attractions are just starting to expand their hours, but it may still be cold in the mountainous regions and the north. Summer is the busiest time in France with the longest hours for many museums and attractions, but it's often when you will experience the most crowds. Winter in France is filled with winter carnivals, Christmas Markets, and of course, skiing. Fall is a time to celebrate the release of Beaujolais nouveau wine in November, as well as experience Nuit Blanche, a day in October when major attractions, museums, galleries, parks, and swimming pools remain open all night.