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Welcome to Lisbon! At 6 pm, meet your Tour Director and traveling companions for a welcome dinner at your hotel.
Lisbon was the center of Europe’s longest-lived overseas empire. Portugal’s imperial ambitions date back to Prince Henry the Navigator’s 15th-century discoveries in West Africa. Morning sightseeing with a Local Guide features a drive through the Baixa quarter’s main squares, followed by a pleasant walk through the cobblestone alleys of quaint ALFAMA, the quarter of the seamen and Fado singers. Drive along the grand Avenida da Liberdade up to Pombal Square, stop for pictures of Belem Tower and the Monument to the Discoveries, and visit JERONIMOS MONASTERY with the tomb of Vasco da Gama. An optional excursion is available to the royal palace of Queluz, as well as dinner at a traditional taverna with Fado-style entertainment.
Visit the SANCTUARY OF OUR LADY OF THE HOLY ROSARY in Fátima, where Mary appeared to three shepherd children in 1917. Next is Porto, where sightseeing with a Local Guide includes a panoramic drive to the mouth of the Douro River, the soaring cathedral, and the Church of São Francisco. Also visit the STOCK EXCHANGE with its contemporary ARABIAN HALL, inspired by Granada’s Alhambra. LF A PORT WINE TASTING has been arranged at the famous Sandeman & Co. Port Wine Cellar to sample the delicious wine produced from grapes of the Douro Valley.
Today’s Distance: 217 mi / 350 km
A scenic drive along the coastline brings you to Galicia and to the city of Vigo, which was built over a Roman settlement. See the remnants of the former city walls, and hear about its turbulent history during your walking tour. Continue to La Toja, a small island just off the shore, which has become a popular holiday destination. Enjoy LF a coffee at the Gran Hotel La Toja. The island is famous for its spring waters, discovered in the early 19th century. Marvel at the unusual church that is completely covered with seashells before returning to the mainland to continue your journey to Santiago de Compostela. This evening, dinner has been prepared at one of the city’s fine local restaurants.
Today’s Distance: 199 mi / 320 km
Santiago de Compostela has been a pilgrim destinations since the Middle Ages. For over a thousand years, pilgrims have been walking the Camino de Santiago. Guided sightseeing includes a visit to the CATHEDRAL, where the relics of St. James the Apostle, brother of St. John the Evangelist, are held. Later, an optional excursion is available to La Coruna.
Along the Asturian coast is Luarca, a renowned peaceful town of white houses. Time to wander around the port or to have a coffee in one of the many taverns. Enter España Verde (Green Spain) and arrive in Oviedo, capital of Asturias. Guided sightseeing features a visit of the CATHEDRAL OF SAN SALVADOR, where the Way of St. James began. Then, LF visit a traditional Sidreria for a CIDER TASTING.
Today’s Distance: 217 mi / 350 km
After a stop in the seaside town of Santander, arrive in Bilbao, the great port city of the Basque region, and enjoy a special highlight: a guided visit of the GUGGENHEIM MUSEUM, an amazing feat of construction created by North American architect Frank O. Gehry. Proceed to lovely San Sebastian, the “Pearl of the Cantabrian Coast.”
Today’s Distance: 249 mi / 400 km
San Sebastian attracts tourists from everywhere—not just for its picturesque location and harbor, but also for the many festivals that are held here annually, like the San Sebastian Film Festival. Follow your Local Guide for a walking tour of the Parte Viejo OLD QUARTER, with time to try tasty pintxos snacks, which you will find in many bars. You may wish to join an optional excursion to the beautiful French resort of Biarritz.
In Pamplona, at the foot of the Pyrenees, a special treat awaits: LF a walk along the Calle Estafeta, where the famous “running of the bulls” takes place, and a lunch with traditional tapas and Rioja wine at Basaburua restaurant. Then, continue to Saragossa where you will visit PLAZA DEL PILAR, one of Spain’s grandest squares. Time to see the Basilica of Our Lady of the Pillar, where, according to the legend, the Virgin Mary appeared to St. James.
Today’s Distance: 162 mi / 260 km
Arrive in Barcelona, Spain’s second-largest city and host of the Olympic Games in 1992. Choose from a range of optional excursions to make the most of your stay.
Today’s Distance: 193 mi / 310 km
A morning optional excursion to Montserrat can be arranged. In the afternoon, sightseeing with a Local Guide features the Columbus Monument, Plaza de Cataluña, and Paseo de Gràcia. Highlights are a visit to the spectacular SAGRADA FAMILIA BASILICA, Gaudí’s masterpiece, and a panoramic view of the city and harbor from Montjuïc Hill. Tonight, enjoy a special farewell dinner at La Fonda del Port Olimpic restaurant to say adios to your traveling companions.
Travel by high-speed AVE TRAIN (first class) to Madrid. Your Local Host can help you make the most of your stay.
Morning guided sightseeing includes a visit to the Prado Museum.
Your Local Host will have many suggestions for your day at leisure.
Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning.
It may occasionally be necessary to use alternative hotels of a similar standard to those shown.
Set at the heart of Lisbon, opened May 2003, is the Real Palácio Hotel, a Hotel that combines charm and sophistication with the comfort of a 5-star Hotel.
A modern 212-room high rise hotel near the historical Porto city centre with a chic atrium bar and culinary concept restaurant serving traditinal Portuguese cuisine. Amenities include a gym, spa and Free Wi-Fi access is available throughout.
With an excellent location in the new city area, the Hesperia Peregrino hotel in Santiago de Compostela puts you within reach of everything that makes this city so desirable. You can easily explore the historical center and its famous cathedral - both are just a 10 minute walk away.
A modern 155 room property offering Free Wi-Fi access in all areas and a fitness center. Traditional Spanish cuisine is served in the main restaurant and an international menu and drinks are on offer at the hotel's bar and outdoor terrace.
Modern hotel situated in the Square of Pio XII, 10 minute walk to Concha Beach, the Quarter and commercial and financial zone.
Modern hotel with restaurant, bar and meeting facilities is located near the Basilica Del Pilar and the Exhibition Palace.
A modern 314 room hotel located in the heart of Barcelona with Free Wi-Fi internet access in all rooms and public areas. Delicious snacks can be enjoyed at the Tapas Bar whilst the lobby bar serves refreshing drinks and cocktails.
Located in Madrid's exclusive Salamanca district, next to the beautiful Retiro Park, this 146-room modern property enjoys a privileged central location with Free Wi-Fi access available throughout. The welcoming restaurant serves a selection of Mediterranean and international dishes and the garden view bar offers the perfect place to relax with drinks and snacks.
Our expert Tour Directors help you get the most out of every place you visit - and have a 96% customer satisfaction rating.
We’re delighted to have achieved the Good Housekeeping Reader Recommended endorsement for customer experience.
We are a member of ABTA and our flight-inclusive holidays are protected by ATOL. If your holiday is cancelled for any reason, you’ll receive a full refund.