Mitali and Tarun – Spain and Portugal
From calm cathedrals to cool clubs, Tarun and Mitali's honeymoon in Spain and Portugal involved driving to diverse locations and experiences
Mitali and Tarun knew each other for a long time before they decided to tie the knot in August 2016. Since both are travel buffs, they decided to devote time to exploring a region completely during their month-long honeymoon. So they chose Spain and Portugal.
The main criteria for choosing their honeymoon destination was quite clear. Mitali shares, “When we were planning our honeymoon, both of wanted to go someplace neither of us had visited, so we opted for Spain and see as much of it as we could. We planned on seeing the country extensively so we wouldn’t have to go back there in the future.”
Going south meant Lisbon was on the way so the couple went to Portugal as well for a few days. They decided to drive to most of the places they planned to visit. The route followed was Barcelona- Madrid – Lisbon – Seville – Malaga- Marbella – Granada – Cordoba – Valencia – Ibiza – Barcelona. At most of the places they stayed at the NH hotels. In Lisbon, the couple stayed at the Novotel Lisboa, and in Ibiza, they put up at the Bellamar Hotel Beach & Spa.
Mitali and Tarun took the train to Madrid from Barcelona and stayed at the NH hotel where they enjoyed not only the luxurious amenities, but also the luxury of being conveniently situated. Everything was central and close by. “We took the hop-on and hop-off coaches to see the city. There are a lot of architectural structures by the Spanish Catalan architect Antoni Gaudi, and we enjoyed visiting the many cathedrals in Madrid which is known for its beautiful buildings. We didn’t go into the museums housed in some of these buildings but we did see the famous cathedral La Sagrada Familia.”
In the evenings, Mitali and Tarun visited numerous bars and relished tapas with beer. These places had a very good vibe and because the trip didn’t have a planned itinerary, the relaxed pace was enjoyable.
From Madrid, they went to Lisbon. There are trains you can take – an overnight one or the fast one – which get you to capital of Portugal and its largest city, which the couple say is more compact than Madrid, and it also had a totally different vibe. “The streets are very beautiful here and we chose to drive around. It was the best decision we could have made because it was very convenient. The challenge was that the streets were very narrow and they have the left-hand drive system. We took to the wheel and explored the city which is all lit up at night. Even the nightlife here is very different,” recalls Mitali.
Their trip then extended to Seville, Malaga, Marbella, Granada and Cordoba. These were short visits and the couple spent more time in Valencia which, according to Mitali, had some beautiful restaurants no one talks about. After that, the travel-loving couple flew to Ibiza which is best known for its cool parties, DJs and clubs.
Mitali shares, “During the day, this place is dead as everyone parties till early morning. Taxis are very expensive so we chose to drive around. We partied only one night, and we took a cab back to the hotel that night. The highlight here was the club Ushuaia – it is something else! Ibiza is a very expensive place, though it does have some fabulous beach resorts , and poolside parties . Café Del Mar is one of the famous ones. There were boat parties too but I am hydrophobic so we didn’t go.”
From here, they flew back to Barcelona and spent a few days in Dubai. Mitali shopped a lot in Spain because they have the popular Zara and Mango brand outlets in every area since they are local brands.
Mitali insists she is very fussy and hates eating local cuisines when she travels. Plus, she is mostly vegetarian and only eats chicken so she did have a bit of a problem with food as most places in Spain don’t even serve chicken. Spanish food consists of mostly seafood, ham and beef. She says, “I don’t recall any places where the food was really memorable. And Tarun refused to eat at Indian restaurants. We used to eat at random places and sample their sangria which is made very differently from here. At Café Savannah in Ibiza, Tarun did eat a lobster and I took a picture of that. He claimed it was one of the best meals he’s ever had.”
Most Romantic Moments
Mitali laughs and admits, “Neither of us is romantic by nature so there were no such moments. We had spent so much time with each other but never this long alone, so we did have our arguments but it was mostly good fun. What did happen on that trip was that I got obsessed with the selfie stick and Tarun would get annoyed that I would keep taking pictures.”
The couple found Madrid the most beautiful city in Spain and recommend visiting the cathedrals. They missed the famous bull fights so do check the schedule before you book your hotel – if bull fights are something you and your partner would like to watch.
“Some of the smaller cities and towns can be skipped as they are all alike so it is more of the same,” shares Mitali.
“Don’t visit Spain in September. It is very hot at that time of the year — worse than New Delhi’s heat and there is a lot of walking around to be done while sightseeing. So choose a better time of the year if you are planning to visit Spain,” adds Mitali.
Where They Stayed
Novotel Lisboa, Lisbon
Bellamar Hotel Beach & Spa, Ibiza
NH hotel, Barcelona
To book a bespoke romantic trip for two, click here