Driving routes through France and Spain

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12 Feb 2007 00:00 by jencoo Star rating in east Yorkshire/ Daya.... 130 posts Send private message

 Knowing that many of you have driven down to the costas, can anyone recommend routes which do not or have only minimum tolls, give plenty of dual carriageway or motorways for easy driving and don't go through big towns.

We are planning our drive back to the UK  and have heard that new dual carriageways have been opened fairly recently. Any help in this direction would be appreciated.

Steve



This message was last edited by jencoo on 2/12/2007.



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12 Feb 2007 18:25 by Lauryc Star rating in Was South Devon .. n.... 568 posts Send private message

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I haven't but would like to know if anyone has done the Santander route??

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12 Feb 2007 18:37 by Pitby Star rating in Andalucía. 1903 posts Send private message

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I can't really comment on the UK side, but we drove from Paris down to Duquesa (nr Estetpona) and back last summer and we really didn't find it expensive at all!! We must have paid, maximum, about 125 Euros I think (?? could have been a little more or less) driving there and back. In all honesty, we didn't record it, but can't really remember spending more then between 5 euros (normal) and 10 euros (here and there) between pay stations the whole route.

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12 Feb 2007 20:19 by kelju Star rating in South Yorkshire . 262 posts Send private message

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How long does it take to drive the full distance?

Any recommendations for stop offs and overnight stays? and how much to stay the night?

I would love to make the drive but am put off by imagining long boring roads and nodding off at the wheel, plus I,m sure my missus would moan all the way that it's cheaper and quicker by plane. 




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13 Feb 2007 01:45 by Roberto Star rating in Torremolinos. 3552 posts Send private message

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Laurync, if you mean the route from Barcelona to Santander, I can only say it's best to pay the tolls - the old road is poor and overcrowded with heavy trucks. The ferry is a nice way to go if you have the time. I don't know anything about them, but check out AT Ferries http://www.atferries.com/index.html for Portsmouth - Bilbao, I think you may find a bargain.

Kelju, for overnight stays check out Accor hotels http://www.accorhotels.com/accorhotels/index.html which encompasses IBIS, Etap and Formula 1, according to your budget. Whenever you start nodding off, there'll be one nearby with easy access from your route. They're pet friendly too. If you can plan ahead, you can book by internet. Tell the missus she can pack more frocks if you go by car, then set the cruise control and enjoy the scenery - it may cost more and take longer, but it beats all that airport security crap.


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15 Feb 2007 07:29 by jencoo Star rating in east Yorkshire/ Daya.... 130 posts Send private message

there must be more of you that drive down to your place in the sun. Please reply



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07 May 2009 12:15 by chegar Star rating. 3 posts Send private message

We have already done the Portsmouth - Bilbao ferry trip and the drive down through the centre of Spain via Madrid to our destination at La Cala between Fuengirola and Marbella on the Cota del Sol.

However, in September this year we intend to drive down from Calais and we have plenty of time i.e. about 5 - 7 days to do the trip and we would like to travel no more then 300-400 miles per day. We would like to link up eventually with the coast road from outside Barcelona somewhere and finish our journey from there,

We will be driving a medium sized hatchback and the party consists of just myself and my wife, we have both driven overseas in many different destinations around the world so are fairly well experienced drivers.

Our question is, Has anybody got any ideas as to the most scenic route to take? and also any recommendations of towns/villages and hotels to stay at on route?

 





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07 May 2009 12:49 by sue-g Star rating. 23 posts Send private message

Hi

 

JHavent done it yet but we're doing this in 3 weeks, getting ferry from plymouth to santander then driving down to alicante but missing out the madrid route and going via zaragoza etc.

We are stopping at a motel at teurel outside zaragoza and then finishing the journey next morning. Viamichelin says its only about 9 1/2 hours drive the whole way but we thought we'd break it up. it's going to mainly toll roads or motorways but we think that will be better than getting caught up or going wrong in Madrid.

Anybody done this route?





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07 May 2009 13:09 by sneha Star rating. 6 posts Send private message

The Santader route sounds very picturesque. PLease post when you finalise your route.I'd liker to confer on it,
Arthur

 





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07 May 2009 14:31 by randolph Star rating in Cumbria/San Juan de .... 95 posts Send private message

We drive from the UK to Costa Almeria once or twice a year. We catch the overnight ferry from Portsmouth to LeHavre, docking at 07.30 approx. This means we have a full day driving thorough France. We head for Chartres, Orleans  then Bordeaux and stay overnight at Pau....a beautiful spot at the foot of the Pyrenees. We avoid the tolls, and although the route is not exactly 'scenic' it goes through some lovely countryside and villages . The next morning there is the glorious  trip over the Pyrenees to Zaragoza and then the new motorway to Teurel and then Valencia. Again we avoid the tolls - from Zaragoza there is non-toll  dual-carriageway  down to Alicante and beyond.  We arrive late evening.

 

 

 





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07 May 2009 15:32 by J&N Star rating in Nottinghamshire. 384 posts Send private message

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Hi Sue-g & Arthur

When we moved here last May, (yes, we have been here almost a year!) we took the ferry to Santander and drove through northern Spain towards Zaragoza and stayed over night in Teruel before heading for the coast road which we took all the way down to San Juan de los Terreros. We loved seeing the change of scenery from the lush hills of the north, through the plains where it was unbelievable how flat it was for as far as you could see. Teruel is a lovely picturesque town with some good bars, restaurants and squares, and then onto another scenery change as you get to the coast.

You can get more of an idea of our journey by checking on my blog here

http://relocatetospain.blogspot.com/search/label/The%20drive%20to%20Spain.

There are some photos of the journey and of Teruel.

We limited our driving time to about 6 hours each day, mainly because we had the pups with us and thought that was as long as they should be in the car, but even though we were in 'the wreck', we thoroughly enjoyed the journey (and 'the wreck' is still being driven around San Juan!

Hope you have a good journey.

 


 



This message was last edited by J&N on 07/05/2009.

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http://relocatetospain.blogspot.com our adventure from deciding to move to Spain to being here and moving back to the UK.


 




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08 May 2009 10:33 by chegar Star rating. 3 posts Send private message

Thanks Randolph for the advice about Chartres, Orleans and Bordeaux as stop off points and then Pau by the Pyrenees, the Pyrennes stop is particularly important for us as we do not have a clue where to stay in that area and your recommendation of the town of Pau sounds interesting, can now check these towns out on the net and see how they compare to the route we want to take.

Once again many thanks for the advice.





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08 May 2009 23:42 by jp2002parry Star rating. 8 posts Send private message

hello last september we done the same thing.we drove from Santander to near salou but because of the very heavy traffic on the daul carraigeways going about 40/50 kmph not MPH so we went onto the toll road and quickly got on but it cost quite a bit .It took about 6 hours .And i do reccomend anyone to do it we stayed at a place called las palmas in a bungalow on the beach thru hostelworld com very cheap only £20 per night

also i can reccomend anyone staying in santander it is just like devon with the nice weather but it does rain thats why they call it the green side

 

good luck anyway and keep us informed on your travels





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12 Mar 2010 18:55 by KP Star rating. 250 posts Send private message

We use the formula 1 www.hotelformule1.com   rooms from 29e per night sleep 3, although the toilets and showers are out in the hallways, they are always very clean, rooms do have sinks, but if you just want a cheap room for the night these are great, most of these hotels lock the car park at night and can only be accessed by guests with pin numbers to the compound.

 





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12 Mar 2010 22:55 by lifeline Star rating in Murcia. 352 posts Send private message

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 Etap hotels are cheap too. They all sleep 3, allow 1 dog per room and have toilet, shower and wash basin in every room.

The breakfasts are really good.



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09 Nov 2010 17:25 by Foxilady Star rating in surrey. 285 posts Send private message

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Hello everyone, we are setting off to spend 6 months in Spain down Vera way.  We plan on getting the ferry to Santander and I thought I had mapped out a good route, but i do not see that anyone has used this route ie Santander, Logrono, Arcos de Jalon Cuenca, Albacete. Also I hadn't considered toll charges!  I see that a couple of people have used the route via Saragossa instead of Madrid.  I would prefer a route that isn't too busy ie to take in some scenery and don't fancy driving on roads full of trucks!.  Can anyone advise please?   This will be our first trip down through Spain.  I shall be driving the car and hubby on a motorbike.  I would really appreciate any advice please.  Many thanks Tricia



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09 Nov 2010 17:25 by Foxilady Star rating in surrey. 285 posts Send private message

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Hello everyone, we are setting off to spend 6 months in Spain down Vera way.  We plan on getting the ferry to Santander and I thought I had mapped out a good route, but i do not see that anyone has used this route ie Santander, Logrono, Arcos de Jalon Cuenca, Albacete. Also I hadn't considered toll charges!  I see that a couple of people have used the route via Saragossa instead of Madrid.  I would prefer a route that isn't too busy ie to take in some scenery and don't fancy driving on roads full of trucks!.  Can anyone advise please?   This will be our first trip down through Spain.  I shall be driving the car and hubby on a motorbike.  I would really appreciate any advice please.  Many thanks Tricia



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09 Nov 2010 18:01 by GuyT Star rating. 284 posts Send private message

If  not in a hurry, Santander, Valladolid, Salamanca, Caceres, Merida, Sevilla is a great drive through Roman Spain. Once near Valladolid it's fabulous empty motorway - through dehesa - all the way to Sevilla. I haven't driven cross country Sevilla - Vera so can't speak for that leg. It's about 8 hours driving time Santander-Sevilla.





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09 Nov 2010 18:59 by Foxilady Star rating in surrey. 285 posts Send private message

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Hiya Guy, thanx for that but looking at the map that route is to the left of Madrid and takes us much further away from where we are heading.  We are heading down towards Murcia direction.  Again many thanx sounds like a lovely route.



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09 Nov 2010 20:54 by foxbat Star rating in Granada. 1109 posts Send private message

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See viamichelin link...most direct routing avoids central Madrid using the M50 which routes between the Barajas airport and Torrejon Airforce base. This is where you are most likely to meet heavy traffic but its only as bad as the M25 on a Sunday!  Variable speed limits apply on the M50 depending on traffic flow. Be advised that at the moment Spain is experiencing some very heavy weather off the northern coast and snowploughs are on standby for the Cantabrian mountains passage.

Hope this helps....travel time is quoted at 9hrs 45 mins for 947kms.

Take your time, dont forget the Hi-viz vests, spare bulbs and original documentation for the car and bike.

Good luck

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