|Subject: Re: Driving in Spain &Portugal|
Good Morning Richard ( at least in San Diego it is)!
I have to echo Graciela's feelings about driving and traveling in Spain#I love it. In fact, all these recent posts regarding travel there is driving me crazy with desire to get back.
My driving experience in Spain was a positive one. We picked up the car in Barcelona drove north along the Costa Brava and crossed into France. We spent a couple of days in the Languedoc-Rousillon before heading back across the Pyrenees by way of Andorra (through a snowstorm I might add). We then drove along the western slopes of the Pyrenees heading north through Iruņa (Pamplona) and on into Bilbao, where we dropped off the car.
Navigating the streets of large cities can be difficult due to the flow of traffic, one-way streets, unfamiliar street signs, lack of parking, etc. But we rose to the challenge and triumphed. And actually enjoyed the challenge. Of course, the benefits of having the car in the countryside far outweigh the hassles in the city. And like you say you can just park it for your stay in the cities. I suggest getting a good map study your routes and learn the traffic signs to help alleviate problems. Still, you're going to get lost, drive in circles, and ask a local for directions. Just like a navigationally-challenged Spaniard in his own country. You'll have a blast.
As for driving on the left side of the road, I've done it but it was definitely not under normal circumstances. ;-)
I think your choice of areas is fine. A week around Madrid and a week in Andalucia will give you the taste of Spain which will bring you back to see the other regions.
John Green with envy in San Diego