Spain & Portugal Grand Spring Tour

LISBON . BELEM . NAZARE . OBIDOS . MADRID . TOLEDO . CORDOBA . SEVILLE . GRANADA . ALHAMBRA . VALENCIA . BARCELONA

May 6 - 19, 2019

 
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Day 1 - Wednesday, May 6, 2020 Departure Travel Day

Overnight Flight You are on your way to a colorful cultural adventure featuring the best of Portugal and Spain.

MEAL KEY: B (breakfast), L (lunch), D (dinner) included in the price of the trip.

Day 2 - Thursday, May 7, 2020 Lisbon, Portugal

Tour Begins Welcome to Portugal, where quaint farming villages and cork & olive tree plantations dot the landscape. Begin your journey in Lisbon, Portugal's vibrant capital city. Tonight, meet your fellow travelers and enjoy a welcome dinner. (D)

Day 3 - Friday, May 8, 2020 Lisbon

A tour of Lisbon features the Moorish Alfama Quarter, Jeronimo’s Monastery (a UNESCO World Heritage site), the Monument to the Discoveries and the Tower of Belém (UNESCO). The afternoon is yours to enjoy. Or, perhaps you will opt to join an optional tour of Portugal’s Estoril Coast. (B)

Day 4 - Saturday, May 9, 2020 Lisbon - Nazare - Obidos - Lisbon

Your day on Portugal’s “Silver Coast” begins with the quaint seaside town of Nazare, famous for its dramatic cliffs. Continue on to the charming medieval walled town of Obidos. You will have free time to explore each town independently and take in their beauty. (B)



Day 5 - Sunday, May 10, 2020 Lisbon - Madrid, Spain

Depart Lisbon and cross the border into Spain. Soak in the countryside before arriving into Spain’s capital city – Madrid. (B, D)

Day 6 - Monday, May 11, 2020 Madrid - Toledo - Madrid

During a locally guided tour of Madrid’s historic center, see the Puerta del Sol and Plaza Mayor, where events have been held since the 17th century. An expert-led tour of the monumental 18th-century Royal Palace* reveals lavish halls, banquet rooms, the throne room, royal armory and the impressive courtyard. This afternoon, travel to Toledo (UNESCO), the capital of medieval Spain until 1560. A comprehensive tour highlights the magnificent Gothic cathedral and a visit to the Church of Santo Tome to view El Greco’s masterpiece painting, The Burial of Count Orgaz. (B)

Day 7 - Tuesday, May 12, 2020 Madrid - Cordoba - Seville

Travel to the extraordinary Moorish city of Cordoba. You may opt to take the AVE high-speed train to reduce travel time and increase leisure time in Cordoba. Upon arrival, embark on a walking tour of the Mezquita. This UNESCO site, an architectural marvel built by the Moors in the 8th century as a magnificent mosque, was converted into the city’s cathedral in the 16th century. Continue your exploration of Cordoba in the city's well-preserved and historical old Jewish Quarter. Later, transfer to Seville, considered Spain’s “cultural capital.” (B, D)

Day 8 - Wednesday, May 13, 2020 Seville

Decide how you see Seville today because it’s your choice! Walk along the cobblestone streets of the Santa Cruz Quarter with an expert guide, admiring the white washed houses and aromatic orange trees before continuing to the stunning Plaza de España -OR- get a glimpse into the city from a different perspective with a boat ride on the Guadalquivir River, gently drifting by timeworn bridges and towers. Later, visit the ornate Seville Cathedral (UNESCO), the largest gothic church in the world, and see Columbus’ tomb and the Giralda Bell Tower. This evening, enjoy an authentic flamenco show (UNESCO) featuring Seville's top performers. (B)

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Day 9 - Thursday, May 14, 2020 Seville - Granada

Travel along the peaceful Sierra Nevada to Granada, the last great capital of the Moors in Spain before it fell to the Catholic monarchs in 1492. Upon arrival, join a local expert for a tour of the world-famous Alhambra (UNESCO),** a stone fortress overlooking the entire city and serving as a mesmerizing example of Islamic architecture. (B, D)

Day 10 - Friday, May 15, 2020 Granada - Valencia

Travel through Spain's amazing landscape, viewing rolling hills dotted with picturesque olive groves, while en route to the Mediterranean coast. Arrive in the city of Valencia, a treasure trove of Roman and Arabic architecture, surrounded by citrus groves. (B)

Day 11- Saturday, May 16, 2020 Valencia - Albufera - Valencia

See the City of Arts and Sciences; an ultramodern, multi-faceted educational institution, on your way to Valencia’s historic old town, where you will enjoy a walking tour guided by a local expert. View the ornate 14th-century Serranos Tower and imposing 15th-century Quart Tower; then arrive at the bustling central market, one of the largest in Europe, where you’ll shop side-by-side with the locals before concluding your tour at the impressive 13th-century Gothic cathedral. Later, travel to Albufera, the area where paella cuisine originated. A paella experience awaits you. Enjoy a boat ride on the canals surrounding rice field plantations, a visit to a traditional fisherman’s home known as a barraca, a paella-making demonstration and an authentic paella lunch. The remainder of the day is at leisure. (B, L)

Day 12 - Sunday, May 17, 2020 Valencia - Barcelona

Travel to Barcelona, one of Europe’s most beautiful and exciting cities. The afternoon is at leisure to explore Barcelona’s fascinating boulevards including the famous Las Ramblas, dotted with colorful bird and flower stalls. (B)

Day 13: Monday, May 18, 2020 Barcelona

Today, get an in-depth look at vibrant and lively Barcelona. Your panoramic tour showcases the Columbus Monument, Parc de Montjuic, Antoni Gaudi’s UNESCO World Heritage sites including La Sagrada Familia, Batllo House and the unconventional Casa Mila building with a guided visit to Parc Güell. Gather this evening for a farewell dinner celebrating the end of an unforgettable trip to Portugal and Spain! (B, D)

Day 14: Tuesday, May 19, 2020 Barcelona - You return home with vivid memories of a spectacularly beautiful land with an old, rich and diverse cultural heritage. (B)