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  1. #1
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    Barcelona or Madrid?

    I am receiving funding for my school to go on a trip to Spain in the fall and, unfortunately, I am only there for a week. The trip is a pseudo-immersion coupled with sociology research, but I can choose any city I want. My family is from Santander and I can visit that area another time; I am picking either Barcelona or Madrid but change my mind each week and the deadline for my decision is approaching soon. I am an adamant Barca soccer fan, although Madrid's appeal as the capital city (especially its cultural, political, and social implications) is throwing the scales in its way.

    Any advice or comments would be much appreciated!

  2. #2
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    Go to Barcelona! It is much more lively there and the night life is just vibrant. The sightseeing spots are also far superior compared to Madrid.
    Oh, and good luck with your research!

  3. #3
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    I would definitely say that Barcelona would be better for a school trip. It is full of places like Tibidabo Amusement Park as well as educational places. My daughter went on a school trip to Barcelona and the list of things to do was just endless.

  4. #4
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    I would definitely say Barcelona. The fantastic architecture (think Gaudi and La Sagrada Familia!), great food and friendly people make it all worthwhile. Tibidabo Amusement Park is great as well for kids and teenagers. I remembered that the Zoo was pretty great as well. There's also the beautiful Aquarium at Moll d'Espanya del Port Vell.
    Walk down Las Ramblas to take in the amazing sights and you might want to bring the kids to the amazing Magic Fountain of Montju´c.

  5. #5
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    Well I'm going to put my vote in for Madrid. I've been to both and they are great cities but Madrid has a feel of older Spain about it. The way that narrow streets suddenly open out onto little plazas with cafes is quintessential Spain for me. It also has less tourists so you get more of a local vibe. It also has Plaza Major, Palacio Real and the Retiro parc for sightseers. Barcelona has somewhat geared itself to the stag/hen party scene whereas Madrid is just that little bit more authentic.

  6. #6
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    Compare Barcelona And Madrid From A Tourist Point Of View

    Based on your reasons for going (pseudo-immersion coupled with sociology research), Madrid is the obvious choice, despite everyone else telling you to go to Barcelona and party. Barcelona is beautiful, with fascinating architecture, and a great city for meeting travelers. I'd recommended it for a fun vacation over Madrid. But Madrid seems to have a more authentic culture, and you'll be more likely to be able to immerse yourself in the language/culture.

  7. #7
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    I would go to Barcelona! I've never been there, but my family is from Pamplona. I've always wanted to visit. I had a friend growing up who would visit Galicia and Barcelona, and she said they were both beautiful. I agree with what previous poster(s) said, the nightlife is definitely better in Barcelona, or so I've heard. It looks so beautiful there, I would definitely choose Barcelona as my destination!

  8. #8
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    I'm attracted to major cities because I love art .The main thing that would make me prefer Barcelona is the Picasso Museum. It's nice also to be near the Sea and be able to have day trips to the Pyrenees or France.

  9. #9
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    I love both cities, but I would have to say you should go to Madrid. Since this is supposed to be a school trip Madrid makes more sense as it is more historic, less filled with tourists, and you are much more likely to get real cultural immersion. Besides which I doubt you'll get much social commentary out of Barcelona besides - "Wooh! Party time!~ I think Imma be sick..."

  10. #10
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    MADRID!!!! IF you want an authentic Spanish experience go to Madrid. Barcelona is very nice, don't get me wrong, but it is very different than the traditional Spanish way of life. The food and culture is much richer in Madrid. Barcelona does have the ocean, which is a big plus. However, Madrid has the culture, museums, food, and everything else that you think of when Spain comes to mind.

  11. #11
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    Oh there is no competition for me here - Madrid every time. Barcelona is a bit tacky and is well geared up for drunken stag and hen parties. Madrid on the other hand has, as others have noted above, that sense of Spain without the tourists, at least not the loud, brash, drunken ones. It's easier in Madrid to get under Spain's skin and more opportunity to do the ordinary things that Spaniards do, like eating in ordinary rather that tourist-tailored restaurants, easier to find places where you can wonder about and hear only Spanish spoken.

  12. #12
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    I'd say visit both cities, they're both really nice and to travel from Barcelona to Madrid and vise-versa should not be more than 3 hours by train. If you want my opinion in of the better city, I'd say Madrid, but it depends on what your after. You'll find some great architectural features in Barcelona, its more lively and more metropolitan, I think its slightly more expensive than Madrid too. Madrid has a lot of world class museums, great wine, nice restaurants, its a bit more conservative as compared to Barcelona.

  13. #13
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    I personally loved Barcelona and hated Madrid, but different strokes for different folks I loved the Gaudi architecture in Barcelona and the Sagrada Familia was awesome. Madrid to me was like a poor man's Paris. The only think I thought was neat about it was the bullfights (though after seeing one, I am now totally opposed to them- I found it so depressing).

  14. #14
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    They're both great cities, and I agree that seeing them both is a good idea. But if you have to choose, I'd say Madrid. Barcelona is fantastic, but at the end of the day Madrid contains the Prado museum, which is second only to the Louvre in my opinion.

  15. #15
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    u can read my other lengthier post on the madrid v barcelona forum describing why madrid is a far better city than barcelona. in short. far superior nightlife. more variety of restaurants fantastic shopping museums parks and architecture.

  16. #16
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    If you have enough time why not do both?but if you want to know my point of view i voted to Madrid is best for the other cities the train trip between Madrid and Barcelona has gotten much quicker over the past few years...
    Must visit the site helpful for the visitor..new york to charlotte bus

  17. #17
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    without any doubt, my vote is for Barcelone, it has whole world to show you. it is modern city.This city is full of colors, culture art, architecture. it is a metropolitan city and it has alot of historic heritage.

  18. #18
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    Barcelona is a great place for visit. It offers a lot of incredible attractions to visit. It is a most famous holidays destination around the world. I have been there a year ago to enjoy the beauty of this amazing place. I saw many fabulous attractions there. It is an ideal place for all kind of visitors. I would love to go there again and again. What will you say about it?

  19. #19
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    Barcelona is such an darling place to visit. I have been visited this amazing city and in love with this. I'm sure that it will be great again to be there if i'll find the chance o explore that city once again further also. I'm sure that i will have so much fun again there. just tell me that which places you guys loved at the city the most?

  20. #20
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    GUYS! I have no idea about Barcelona and I have never been to there. I feel it is a nice place to visit and you have a great time there. Guys! Would you like to share your Barcelona's experience and of this place with me? So I can go there in my next free time. I hope I will spend a great time there.

  21. #21
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    I visited once in my life Barcelona. I like to say this is a really nice destination for the sports lover. I have some knowledge about Barcelona, which help you Arran! This is a Football Club and Barcelona is also known as Barcelona and familiarly as Barša. It is a professional football club, based in Barcelona, Spain.

  22. #22
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    Re: Barcelona or Madrid?

    Barcelona one of Europe's most interesting cities. Whatever you're looking for you can find it there a beautiful old town, art museums, world class architecture, beach, shopping.

 

 

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