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Spain, Portugal & MoroccoRegional Journey
Duration: 9 days Visiting: Spain
Welcome to Barcelona.
Airport transfers depart from Barcelona airport for your hotel at 09:30, 12:30 and 15:00. Join your Travel Director and fellow travellers at 18:00 for your Welcome Dinner in a local restaurant.
Barcelona, the City of Gaudí.
With your Local Expert, explore the narrow lanes and old squares behind the cathedral in the Barri Gòtic, Gothic Quarter. See the lively Las Ramblas and then head along the Passeig de Gràcia, adorned with elegant wrought-iron street lamps and some of the most flamboyant Modernist buildings. Continue through the Eixample district for a visit inside Gaudí’s extraordinary masterpiece, the Sagrada Família, to see the central nave with its giant, tree-like pillars, spectacular vaulting and the beautiful rainbows flooding in through the intricate stained-glass windows. Enjoy the after at leisure to explore or perhaps join an optional experience to Montserrat & The Black Madonna.
Along the Orange Blossom Coast to Valencia.
Follow the sunny Costa Dorada, past the rice fields of the Ebro Delta to stop at the seaside resort of Peñíscola and see the hilltop castle, used in the film 'El Cid'. Pass through the famous orange groves to Valencia, the City of Arts and Sciences. Pass the Old City and see its ancient gates to reach your hotel. Valencia is home to one of the world's greatest dishes, paella. Meet the chef of a local family-run restaurant in the heart of the Old City and learn the traditional recipe during a Cooking Demonstration, before savouring the delicious flavours of this classic dish, washed down with a glass of sangria, during your Highlight Dinner.
Alhambra and on to Granada.
Travel south toward Andalucía, passing the castle at Lorca and troglodyte dwellings hollowed out of the soft rock near Guadix. Enjoy views of the Sierra Nevada from a distance as you reach glorious Granada. This historical city was a Moorish Kingdom for almost 781 years and was the last stronghold to fall to the Catholic Monarchs of Spain in 1492. Overlooking Granada stands one of the most remarkable fortresses ever built, the Alhambra. Led by your Local Expert, explore this exquisite palace built as a citadel by the Moors in the 13th century - a fantasy of arabesque gardens, fountains and stone cut like lace. Stroll through the elegant exotic gardens of the Generalife, the Royal summer residence.
A Scenic Drive to Seville.
The morning is at your leisure to explore as you wish. Perhaps join an Optional Experience to the Albaicín Quarter with a Local Expert and fall in love with Granada as you learn about its pivotal role in European history. Continue your travels to Seville past gleaming white villages and olive groves that stretch as far as the eye can see. This stunning capital of Andalucía is one of Spain’s most charming highlights and with the evening at your leisure, you are free to explore this delightful city as you wish. Perhaps consider joining an optional experience with a horse and carriage ride and dinner.
Seville, the City of Carmen.
Seville has a distinctive character and presence that is best revealed by a Local Expert. During your stay, visit the Plaza de España in Maria Luisa Park. Then stroll through the fashionable Santa Cruz Quarter with its attractive wrought-iron balconies laden with flowers. Emerge by the well-preserved Alcazar, a Moorish fantasy in stone, set in richly scented gardens. Visit the massive Seville Cathedral, burial place of Christopher Columbus and enriched with the spoils of the New World. The energetic may wish to walk the ramps of the Giralda Tower, the former minaret of the Great Mosque, to enjoy panoramic views over the city. Visit Cristina Heeren Foundation, a beneficiary of a TreadRight Foundation grant. This private dance school is dedicated to promoting the conservation of flamenco and supports young enthusiasts from all over the world with a special focus on new talent from the Andalusian region. Feel the passion behind the choreography as you put your rhythm to the test during a dance lesson before witnessing emotions come to life in a flamenco performance. With some free time for dinner, head next door to Triana market and stroll through the many colourful stalls where vendors are selling tapas made from fresh, local produce. Why not grab yourself a refreshing sangria for a cheers to your new found dancing feet?
Moorish Córdoba and on to Madrid.
Set off early along the Guadalquivir Valley, passing villages and towns studded with Moorish towers and fortresses. Stop in the perfectly preserved Moorish city of Córdoba and see the famous Roman bridge built in the 1st century BC. Meet a local historian and visit the magnificent Mezquita, a beautiful 8th century mosque with a Christian cathedral built inside it. Make the most of your time at leisure and stroll the narrow streets of the Old Jewish Quarter. Follow in the footsteps of Don Quixote as you travel through the Mancha and on to the capital - Madrid.
Madrid of the Bourbons.
Enjoy sightseeing with your Local Expert as they take you along the main historic areas in the capital of Spain known as Madrid of the Bourbons. Your drive continues through the Old Quarter to discover the origins of the city. Visit the Prado Museum with an art historian, a magnificent palace housing works by Velázquez, Goya, Titian, Rubens and others. The afternoon is at your leisure to relax at a cafe, shop in the trendy boutiques or perhaps enjoy an Optional Experience to beautiful Toledo? In the evening, join your Travel Director and newfound friends at a local restaurant in the heart of the city. Toast to your adventures as you enjoy a delicious Celebration Dinner of regional favourites, served with wine.
Board your onward flight, taking home memories of this exciting journey. Departure transfers arrive at Madrid Airport at 07:00, 09:00 and 11:00.
Most Insight trips already include a host of bonus highlights and comprehensive sightseeing. There may also be an exciting array of Optional Experiences which will turn an already amazing experience into the trip of a lifetime! These are entirely optional and can be booked through your Travel Director/Local Representative at the commencement of your trip. Please note, many Optional Experiences are operated by independent third party suppliers, not Insight Vacations.
Prices and availability of Optional Experiences are subject to change.
Ascend the sacred mountain of Montserrat, Catalonia's most important pilgrimage site for a thousand years. Enjoy the spectacular panoramic views before entering the dark, ornate “Basílica Real” and reaching the mystical Black Madonna, surrounded by an altar of gold.
Adult Price: EUR 40.00
We enjoy the beauty of Barcelona as the day ends, including a drive up to Montjuïc hill to enjoy an incredible panorama over the city and its impressive harbor. Also, enjoy free time for dinner with your new-found friends.
Adult Price: EUR 28.00
Take a leisurely walk with your local expert through the Albaicín neighbourhood, the last bastion of Islam in Spain. Explore the intriguing maze of narrow streets with whitewashed houses and patio gardens of bygone Moorish splendour. After a photo stop at one of the most famous views of the Alhambra Palace, visit the Royal Chapel housing the tombs of the ‘Catholic Monarchs’, Ferdinand and Isabella.
Adult Price: EUR 37.00
Seville is Spain's most majestic city and an evening out is a must! Tonight we'll enjoy a lovely array of traditional Andalusian specialities, served in a local restaurant with wine, beer & soft drinks included. As well as a wonderful meal, we'll experience a magnificent horse & carriage ride through the old town of Seville, which is especially magical in the evening.
Adult Price: EUR 66.00
Visit the fabulous Real Alcázar - a Moorish fantasy in stone, set in richly scented gardens. Wander through the Arabesque domed halls, horseshoe arches and jewel box courtyards of this royal residence, while the garden fountains and terraces provide an oasis of tranquility. Afterwards, see the fanciful pavilions built for the Ibero-American Fair of 1929 on the way to the romantic Plaza de América in Maria Luisa Park.
Adult Price: EUR 41.00
An evening drive to the most historic area of Madrid including stops for wonderful views of the city and a walk through the lively streets and squares of old Madrid. Enjoy free time for dinner in one of the many restaurants and return home along the grand Avenida Castellana with its spectacular fountains.
Adult Price: EUR 19.00
Enjoy an evening out in the nation's stately capital city. Tonight we'll enjoy a wonderful dinner out on the town in a carefully chosen venue, accompanied by Spanish wine and great local entertainment. What a wonderful introduction to Madrid
Adult Price: EUR 61.00
A specialist guide takes you to the unique city of Toledo, Spain's capital during the golden era, and where El Greco lived and worked. Walk through the narrow cobbled streets to visit the fine Gothic cathedral and admire the old city views along the Tagus gorge. We'll also visit a specialist workshop where artisans create authentic Damascene ware, an ancient art perfected by the Moors and passed down over the centuries.
Adult Price: EUR 46.00
Barcelona (Contemporary) - Spain
The NH Collection Barcelona Constanza, created by Pritzker-winning architect Rafael Moneo, is set in the heart of Barcelona's business district and showcases sleek, contemporary interiors. With easy access to the city's main sights and located beside L’Illa Shopping Centre on Avenida Diagonal, this hotel is the ideal base for your three night stay. Your comfortable room is furnished in a minimalist-style, while the top-floor swimming pool and sun deck are the perfect place to unwind after a day out and about.
NH Collection Constanza/ Hilton Barcelona.
Valencia (Contemporary) - Spain
The Barceló Valencia hotel is situated right in the centre of the City of Arts and Sciences opposite the Queen Sofia Palace of Arts, a building which was designed by the renowned architect Santiago Calatrava and is situated in one of the most modern and attractive areas of the city of Valencia.
Granada (Traditional) - Spain
The centrally located Meliá Granada is perfectly positioned in the heart of Granada and within walking distance to exclusive shopping centres and boutiques. The classic-style décor brings a sense of elegance to the hotel while the modern designed rooms will ensure your stay is comfortable.
Seville (Contemporary) - Spain
Perfectly positioned beside the city's historic entre, the Meliá Sevilla is just a few minutes walk from the beautiful Parque de Maria L'uisa and Plaza España. Spacious rooms with modern décor and furnishings will ensure your two night stay is very comfortable.
Madrid (Contemporary) - Spain
Centrally located beside Plaza de España, the Barceló Torre de Madrid is set within one of the capital's most iconic buildings, designed by internationally renowned Spanish designer Jaime Hayón. With key sights within walking distance, spacious rooms with modern style and free WiFi throughout, you will easily be able to make the most of your two night stay.