Spanish Heritage end Barcelona (Preview 2020)

Tour Type: Regional Journey
Brochure Type: 2020 Europe & Britain Preview

Asturians drink cider, not sangria! Transcend stereotypical Spain on this in-depth exploration of one of Europe's most diverse countries. The nation's reputation for gastronomic excellence and amazing art will be well justified here.

Authentic Dining
  • Valencia: Meet a local chef of a family-run restaurant in the heart of the Old City and learn the traditional recipe of paella during a Cooking Demonstration before savouring the flavours of this classic dish for dinner, washed down with a glass of Sangria, during your Highlight Dinner.
  • Seville: Get ready for colourful dancers and the rhythmic stomp of flamenco as you experience a fiery evening of Spanish dance and cuisine.
  • Madrid: Honest culinary traditions and a fiesta of fresh ingredients are the hallmarks of your Spanish Highlight Dinner. The perfect accompaniment to good conversation and a chilled glass of beer or wine.
  • Rueda: Some of Spain's finest wines hail from the Rueda region. During your tasting, learn about the Verdejo grape and what to look for in a fresh white.
  • Gijon: Meet Flor, a local of Gijon, to join her for a delicious meal of locally sourced produce that she has prepared just for you.
  • Barcelona: At a typical Catalan restaurant, savour a delicious Celebration Dinner that incorporates classic cooking with the freshest produce.
  • Dining Summary: 17 Breakfasts (B), 1 Lunch with Wine (LW) and 7 Dinners with Wine (DW) all tea or coffee.
Insight Experiences
  • IE E396 BROX Visit Alhambra Palace and Generalife gardens with a Local Expert.
  • Madrid: Witness the world's finest collection of Spanish paintings, plus an impressive foreign collection, as you tour the Prado Museum with an art historian.
  • Granada: Join a Local Expert at the Alhambra Palace, the ultimate in Moorish architecture, an arabesque fantasy in stone, complemented by the glorious Generalife gardens.
Stay in Style
  • Valencia: The Barcelo Valencia hotel is situated right in the centre of the City of Arts and Sciences, opposite the Queen Sofia Palace of Arts, a building designed by the renowned architect Santiago Calatrava and is situated in one of the most modern and attractive areas of the city.
  • Madrid: Located on Madrid's most chic avenue, the Hesperia Madrid is a centrally located, modern hotel offering comfortable and contemporary rooms.
  • Santiago de Compostela: The NH Collection Santiago De Compostela delivers modern luxury in a timeless setting, just minutes from the historic Plaza del Obradoiro.
  • Oviedo: The Barcelo Oviedo Cervantes is situated in the heart of Oviedo, 10 minutes from the Old Town and cathedral. This striking and stylish designer hotel is restored from an early 20th century mansion.
  • Santander: The luxury 5-star Eurostars Hotel Real is at the heart and soul of Santander and is a hallmark of excellence and prestige, facing the Playa de los Peligros beach.
Top Rated Highlights
  • Barcelona: Explore the medieval maze of the Barri Gotic, the Gothic Quarter, with your Local Expert and travel along Passeig de Gracia to see the elegant wrought-iron street lamps and flamboyant Modernist buildings.
  • Barcelona: Venture inside Gaudi's extraordinary masterpiece, the Sagrada Familia and marvel at the contrasts of architecture. Above see its giant, tree-like pillars and spectacular vaulting. Admire the wonderful rainbow of the incredible stained-glass windows.
  • Peniscola: See the castle featured in the film 'El Cid'.
  • Valencia: See the ultra-modern Centre of Arts and Sciences and the huge gates of the old town, Torres de Serranos and Torres de Quart.
  • Granada: Explore 'The City of the Pomegranate' with a Local Expert. During sightseeing you'll see the icons dedicated to this fruit throughout the city.
  • Seville: Explore with your Local Expert visiting the Plaza de Espana in Maria Luisa Park, strolling through the Santa Cruz Quarter and see the gates to the Alcazar.
  • Seville: Step inside the impressive cathedral, passing the altarpiece dripping with gold and marvel at the Tomb of Columbus, held aloft by four kings. Afterwards, perhaps walk the ramps of the Giralda Tower for views over the city.
  • Cordoba: See the 2,000-year-old Roman bridge and spend some time exploring the town.
  • Cordoba: Explore the incredible Mezquita with your Local Expert. Admire the forest of horseshoe arches and learn how this building symbolises many of Cordoba's religious changes over the centuries.
  • Madrid: With your Local Expert, see the Royal Palace, the monument to Cervantes in the Plaza de Espana, the grandiose Cibeles Fountain, Parliament and Puerta del Sol.
  • Santiago de Compostela: The Romanesque interior of the cathedral is magnificent. Let a Local Expert take you through the Gateway of Glory to witness the final stage of one of the world's most ancient pilgrimages.
  • Santiago de Compostela: Enjoy an guided tour of the Old Town.
  • Oviedo: Led by your Local Expert, see 1,000-year-old wall paintings in some of Europe's oldest churches. Admire the incredible altarpiece, one of the finest in Europe, when you visit the Cathedral of the Holy Saviour.
  • Picos de Europa National Park: Visit the holy cave of Covadonga and see the tomb of Pelayo who is celebrated for winning the Battle of Covadonga against the Muslim Moors in 722 and later became the first King of Asturias.
  • Santillana del Mar: Step back in time when you visit this perfectly preserved and 'most beautiful village in Spain.'
  • Bilbao: See the spectacular modern Guggenheim Museum designed by Frank Gehry and sites of this Basque region gem during your orientation with your Travel Director.
  • Getaria: See the rock known as El Raton, or the mouse.
  • San Sebastian: Led by your Local Expert, enjoy a guided walking tour of the Old Quarter including Plaza de la Constitucion.
  • San Sebastian: Ascend Monte Igueldo to marvel at the views of the town and La Concha Bay.
  • Pamplona: Spend free time exploring this city, known for its annual Running with the Bulls festival.
  • Scenic Drives: Relax and enjoy the views as your travel along Costa Dorada, Ebro Delta, Costa Blanca, through Sierra Nevada, Andalucia, the Guadalquivir Valley and across the Plains of La Mancha. Experience the gorgeously green beauty of Spain's northern coast as you drive through Asturias and witness colourful fishing towns on the coast. You'll enjoy some of Spain's best scenery as you travel through the Rueda wine region, through Picos de Europa, along Costa Vasca and Costa de Cantabria and through the La Rioja region.
Included Insight Services
  • Our highly-skilled Travel Director will ensure your journey is seamless, serving as your expert guide, consummate organiser, and friend overseas.
  • Enjoy the comfort of Insight's luxury, air-conditioned, 40-seat coach with double the standard legroom and onboard washroom.
  • Personal radio headsets give you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert's fascinating commentary.
  • We carry your bags for you and promptly deliver them to your hotel door.
  • Hotel and restaurant tips are included - you'll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. We also include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
  • Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel Wi-Fi (where available).
  • From time to time, your Travel Director will enchant you with an Insight Flourish, which is a local specialty representing the destination.
  • If your arrival and/or departure flights are as per the itinerary start and end dates, then transfers are available at scheduled times. If your flights are outside these times, or you have booked additional nights accommodation with Insight Vacations, you may purchase transfers or make your own way from/to the airport.

Details

Tour Operator
Insight Vacations
Offer
Offer valid through 9/30/2019
Duration
18 Days
Escorted
Escorted - Yes
DayDestinationDescription
Day 1BarcelonaWelcome 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. (Dinner with Wine)
Barcelo Sants, Barcelona.
Day 2BarcelonaBarcelona, the City of Gaudi.: With your Local Expert, explore the narrow lanes and old squares behind the cathedral in the Barri Gotic, Gothic Quarter. See the lively Las Ramblas as you head along the Passeig de Gracia, adorned with elegant wrought-iron street lamps and some of the most flamboyant Modernist buildings. Continue through the Eixample district for a visit inside Gaudi's extraordinary masterpiece, the Sagrada Familia, 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 a free afternoon to explore. (Breakfast)
Barcelo Sants, Barcelona.
Day 3ValenciaAlong the Orange Blossom Coast to Valencia.: Follow the sunny Costa Dorada, past the rice fields of the Ebro Delta to stop by Peniscola and see the sea-lapped 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 the city's 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. (Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)
Barcelo Valencia.
Day 4GranadaSierra Nevada, Alhambra and on to Granada.: Travel south toward Andalucia, passing the castle at Lorca and troglodyte dwellings hollowed out of the soft rock near Guadix. Enjoy views of the Sierra Nevada from the 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. (Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)
Melia Granada.
Day 5SevilleA Scenic Drive to Seville.: The morning is at your leisure to explore as you wish. Perhaps join an Optional Experience to the Albaicin 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 Andalucia 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. (Breakfast)
Melia Sevilla, Seville.
Day 6SevilleSeville, 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 Espana 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. In the evening, enjoy dinner with wine and be entertained as you share the passion of Spain's most fiery region during a flamenco show. (Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)
Melia Sevilla, Seville.
Day 7MadridMoorish Cordoba 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 Cordoba and see the famous 2,000-year-old Roman Bridge. Meet a local historian and visit to the magnificent Mezquita, a beautiful 8th century mosque with a Christian cathedral built inside it. Make the most of your time at leisure and perhaps 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. (Breakfast)
Barcelo Torre de Madrid/Hotel Hesperia Madrid.
Day 8MadridMadrid of the Bourbons.: Enjoy sightseeing with your Local Expert as they take you along the main historical areas in the Capital of Spain known as Madrid of the Bourbons. Your drive continues through the Old Quarter discovering the origins of the city. Visit the Prado Museum with an art historian, a magnificent palace housing works by Velazquez, 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 Highlight Dinner of regional favourites, served with wine. (Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)
Barcelo Torre de Madrid/Hotel Hesperia Madrid.
Day 9MadridFree Time in Madrid.: Your last day in Madrid is completely at your leisure for shopping or exploring at your own pace. (Breakfast)
Barcelo Torre de Madrid/Hotel Hesperia Madrid.
Day 10Santiago de CompostelaThrough the Guadarrama Mountains to Santiago.: Journey through the Guadarrama Mountains to the infinite horizons of Old Castile and continues past the impressive Castillo de la Mota, conquered by Queen Isabella. Some of Spain's most fashionable white wines are produced in Rueda and this morning we have the opportunity to learn how they are made and sample the delights of the Verdejo grape. Travel on to Santiago de Compostela, where the tomb of the Apostle St. James was miraculously discovered in the Middle Ages. (Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)
NH Collection Santiago de Compostela.
Day 11Santiago de CompostelaSaintly Santiago de Compostela.: Become acquainted with some of Europe's finest historical buildings during an orientation with your Local Expert. The monumental square, Praza do Obradoiro, is pure grandeur in granite. Look up from the steady trickle of present-day pilgrims to the cathedral facade to see an ensemble of soaring towers, arches and windows, festooned with architectural frills. Venture inside and you're privy to the same vision that has greeted pilgrims since the Middle Ages. The faithful may choose to pass behind the ornate high altar to touch the giant 13th century gilded effigy of St. James and follow in the steps of the pilgrims along The Way of St. James. Relax during your free time or explore the narrow streets and old squares of this city. (Breakfast)
NH Collection Santiago de Compostela.
Day 12OVIEDOThe Costa Verde to Oviedo.: Pass through the ancient forests of Galicia and cross to the Green Coast of Asturias - one of Spain's most beautiful, named after the colour of the sea and the pine and eucalyptus trees that line the shore. Your route reveals glorious coastal vistas before turning inland to travel through old villages and deep valleys en route to Oviedo. Meet a true local, Flor, who will invite you to join her for lunch. Hear about daily life as you enjoy a delicious meal, typical of the region, that Flor has freshly prepared from locally sourced ingredients, accompanied by delicious local cider. Continue on to Oviedo where a Local Expert will show you the 9th century churches built when the city was the capital of Christian Spain. Visit the Cathedral of the Holy Saviour in the stately square of Plaza Alfonso II. Admire the incredible altarpiece, one of the finest in Europe. (Breakfast / Lunch with Wine)
Barcelo Oviedo Cervantes.
Day 13SantanderPicturesque Santillana del Mar and on to Santander.: See the unique Roman bridge in Cangas de Onis as you head into the foothills of the Picos de Europa, a national park encompassing spectacular mountain and gorge scenery. Visit the holy cave of Covadonga, a shrine to Pelayo, who achieved the first Christian victory over the Moors in 722. Enjoy views of the Costa de Cantabria while travelling to Santillana del Mar, arguably the most beautiful village in Spain. Stroll through the rustic cobblestone streets, admiring stone houses decorated with carved, heraldic symbols and reach the delightful church square. Continue on to the sophisticated beach resort of Santander where you have free time in the evening to enjoy this luxurious hotel. Why not take the time to explore the hotel terrace with stunning views of the bay below or relax with one of the many therapy treatments offered at the hotels spa? (Breakfast)
Eurostars Hotel Real, Santander.
Day 14San SebastianBilbao, Costa Vasca and San Sebastian.: In nearby Bilbao, admire the striking modern architecture of the Guggenheim Museum, one of the world's most spectacular buildings. Enjoy the views as you are driven along part of the Costa Vasca, dotted with small coastal fishing villages. Pause in Getaria, at the mouth of the Urola, to see El Raton, the mouse-shaped rock. Continue to San Sebastian, pearl of the Cantabrian coast, set on its shell-shaped bay. Admire its beauty as you walk with your Local Expert through the Old Quarter. See the numbered balconies of the Plaza de la Constitucion, a reminder of the days when bullfights were held in the square. Atop Monte Igueldo there are breathtaking views of the town and La Concha Bay. (Breakfast)
Barcelo Costa Vasca, San Sebastian.
Day 15San SebastianSan Sebastian, Pearl of the Cantabrian Coast.: Enjoy a day at leisure to stroll along San Sebastian's boardwalk and with the city harbour filled with fishing boats and pleasure crafts, you can enjoy a number of sporting activities on its large sandy beach. Perhaps you'll want to explore the nearby French village of Saint-Jean-de-Luz, also known as Little Paris? Maybe stroll the promenade of the famous La Concha bay or enjoy the boutiques of the Old Town? (Breakfast)
Barcelo Costa Vasca, San Sebastian.
Day 16BarcelonaPamplona and on to Barcelona.: Journey to the famed town of Pamplona, known for its Running of the Bulls festival. With time free for you to explore, perhaps take a stroll to the famous Estafeta Street or visit Cafe Iruna, immortalised by Ernest Hemingway in the 'The Sun Also Rises.' Your travels continue to Barcelona, the vibrant capital of Catalonia, a land that retains its own distinctive language, culture and traditions. (Breakfast)
Hotel NH Hesperia Barcelona Presidente.
Day 17BarcelonaBarcelona at Leisure.: Enjoy a relaxed start and a day completely at leisure for last minute shopping or to perhaps revisit some of Gaudi's unusual creations? Walk along the leafy Las Ramblas or why not take an Optional Experience to the ancient Monastery of Montserrat, dedicated to the Black Madonna? In the evening, join your Travel Director and newfound friends at a local restaurant. Raise your glass and toast your travels during your delightful Celebration Dinner. (Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)
Hotel NH Hesperia Barcelona Presidente.
Day 18BarcelonaDepart Barcelona.: After breakfast departure transfers arrive at Barcelona airport at 07:00, 09:00 or 11:00. (Breakfast)
Dates/Pricing

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Disclaimer
Notes: This is a 2020 Preview itinerary. Please refer to the Preview booking conditions pageĀ for full terms and conditions.

- These prices are correct at the time of the website going live, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking.
- All tour information is correct at time of tours going live, however is subject to change, please confirm all details at time of booking.
- For full terms and conditions, please refer to our Conditions page.
- Hotel Class Key: D: Deluxe SF: Superior First Class F: First Class

Tours


  • Spanish Heritage end Barcelona (Preview 2020)

    Tour Type: Regional JourneyBrochure Type: 2020 Europe & Britain PreviewAsturians drink cider, not sangria! Transcend stereotypical Spain on this in-depth exploration of one of Europe's most diverse countries.

 
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