One Week in Madrid, Toledo & Barcelona // Vibrant Escape

One Week in Madrid, Toledo & Barcelona // Vibrant Escape


Despite the heavy competition with neighboring France and Portugal, Spain somehow marches to the beat of it’s own flamenco guitar and offers visitors something so unique and memorable that most leave dying to return. Some visitors, so enamored by the seas of tapas and sangria, do come back… permanently. One such traveler is my girl, Courtney Likkel, a Seattle-native now calling Madrid home in enviable expat bliss.


With the release of my first batch of Escape Guides in January my goal has been to expand the series to include more routes through Europe, covering destinations I’ve found especially enjoyable. From the beginning I knew that Barcelona and Madrid needed to be represented but wanted the help of an insider to make sure the one week itinerary was the best it could possibly be. If you’ve ever read her blog, Adelante, Courtney is the perfect contact for the region and travels just the way I love – being active (even skydiving), eating great food, and digging deep into the local flavor and culture.The expat blogging community is a GREAT one (and the main reason I’ve kept blogging all these years!) so I’ve known Courtney for some time now but, nonetheless, I was still a little nervous about approaching her to collaborate on an Escape Guide. Instead of scuffing, she totally embraced it! By the end our glorious guide has become one of my favorites, bubbling with personality and unique, creative ideas for experiencing Madrid, Toledo and Barcelona.

Vibrant Escape-The Overseas Escape

With the Vibrant Escape, travelers start their journey in the capital of Madrid where the name of the game is tapas, exploring grandiose plazas and experiencing the Golden Triangle of art. Next, it’s on to the charming village of Toledo to tour some of Spain’s most beautiful cathedrals and enjoy sunset at Mirador del Valle. The final stop in none other than bustling city of Barcelona to channel Gaudi and more tapas. After a day on the peaks of Monserrat you’ll cap off the week with rooftop sundowners.

Escape Guides are quite honestly top-to-bottom complete trips wrapped up in 30+ pages including: packing lists, hotel/Airbnb recommendations, logistical info, tour details, local instagram hashtags (something I’m always on the hunt for during my travels!), insight on local tipping practices, helpful checklists to make sure nothing slips through the cracks and destination insight. For the Vibrant Escape a tapas guide was, of course, also in order!

Interested? Check out all the details over here.

(Oh, and per usual, if you’re not in love with the Escape Guide then you can return it for a full refund ;))

Many, many thanks to Courtney for ALL her hard work on this! It was SO fun collaborating about a region that we both love so much! For those that haven’t yet, go check out her beautiful blog asap!