Mediterranean Country Roads

Carcassonne, France
14 Days from $3,533 per person

Follow the glistening shores of the Mediterranean from Catalunya to the romantic canals of Venice, to experience the varied landscapes, history and culture of some of the smallest independent countries in Europe.

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Tour Pace: Comfortable
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  1. Board your overnight flight (not included).
  2. On arrival at Barcelona Airport, transfers leave for your hotel at 09:30, 12:30 and 15:00. Later, join your Tour Director for a Welcome Reception and the opportunity to mingle and get to know each other over a pleasant evening of dinner and wine.
    hotel:Hesperia Presidente, Barcelona (2 nights).
  3. Join a Local Expert in the heart of the Gothic Quarter and walk through the Roman gate to tour the narrow lanes and old squares. Now along the Passeig de Gràcia, adorned with elegant wrought-iron street lamps and the most flamboyant modernist buildings. Continue through the Eixample district for a visit inside Gaudi's extraordinary masterpiece, the Sagrada Familia church. See the crypt where Gaudi is buried as well as the transept and central nave with its giant, tree-like pillars and spectacular vaulting. The rest of the day is at leisure.
    hotel:Hesperia Presidente, Barcelona.
  4. Enjoy spectacular panoramic views in the morning as you ascend the 'serrated mountain' of Montserrat. Inside the Basilica Real, the mystical Black Madonna is surrounded by an altar of gold. Continue through Catalan mountain villages and tunnels to the tiny Principality of Andorra, capital of the Pyrénées. There will be time here for duty free shopping or a walk around the historic centre.
    meal(s):BB, DW
    hotel:Abba Xalet Suites, Andorra.
  5. Descend the Pyrénées to arrive at the French medieval town of Carcassonne. Entering Carcassonne is like stepping back in time; the city has a complete set of ramparts, a medieval keep, even a sports ground for jousting. Enjoy an orientation tour of the city and see the Château Comtal. The rest of your day is at leisure.
    hotel:Best Western Le Donjon, Carcassonne.
  6. First stop is the incredible Pont du Gard, a superb three-tiered aqueduct dating from Roman times. Head on to Avignon to see the famous Pont d'Avignon, immortalised in song. Walk within the medieval battlements through narrow streets to stand in the shadow of the old Papal Palace, resembling a fortress. In the afternoon, visit a family-owned olive mill to sample its high quality produce. Then, on to Aix-en-Provence.
    meal(s):BB, DW
    hotel:Grand Hotel Roi René, Aix-en-Provence (2 nights).
  7. In the morning, take in the elegant mansions, plane trees and fountains of the Cours Mirabeau. The afternoon is free in this 'most beautiful town in France after Paris'.
    hotel:Grand Hotel Roi René, Aix En Provence.
  8. Take ‘La Provençale', the inland highway, towards the Côte d'Azur. Visit Cannes, playground of the elite and renowned for its film festival. Continue to the beautiful medieval hill-top village of St-Paul-de-Vence - a source of inspiration for artists such as Chagall, Matisse and Cézanne. Next, unlock the secrets of the French perfume industry with a visit to a perfumery, where fragrance experts waft exclusive scents from stoppered bottles. Continue on to your hotel in exclusive Monaco, ruled by the Grimaldi family since the 13th century.
    hotel:Columbus, Monte Carlo (2 nights).
  9. In the morning, drive along part of the Grand Prix circuit to the Old Town. Then walk with your Tour Director to the Royal Palace; see the yacht-filled harbour and visit the tomb of Princess Grace in the cathedral. The rest of the day is free.
    hotel:Columbus, Monte Carlo.
  10. Cross the Italian border and drive along the Riviera of Flowers to Santa Margherita for a short cruise (weather permitting) to the village of Portofino, epitome of La Dolce Vita. Linger in the Piazzetta cafés, shop at upscale boutiques, or watch the yachts moored in the harbour.
    meal(s):BB, DW
    hotel:Grand Hotel Bristol, Rapallo (2 nights).
  11. In the morning, get ready for another highlight, the Cinque Terre, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This wild but hospitable coastline, with its vineyards and fishing villages, at one time could only be reached by boat or train. Explore a couple of the villages hugging the cliff face, where there are amazing opportunities to capture great photographs. Soak up the atmosphere before returning to your hotel.
    hotel:Grand Hotel Bristol, Rapallo.
  12. Take a final glimpse at the Cinque Terre in the morning as you depart for Parma. Stroll through the medieval city centre and see the pink marble baptistery. In your free time for lunch, why not try the local cheese or ham, that the city it's reputation? Continue on to Venice, the Queen of the Adriatic.
    hotel:Bauer Palladio, Venice. (2 nights).
  13. Visit an arts centre and witness the age-old skills of glassblowers. Then cruise by Palladio's San Giorgio Maggiore to St. Mark Square. To the tune of accompanying musicians, you are serenaded through the atmospheric canals by gondola. As evening descends, enjoy a perfect tour finalé - dinner 'alla Veneziana', with good food, wine and company in the most magical of settings.
    meal(s):BB, CD
    hotel:Bauer Palladio, Venice.
  14. Today our tour draws to an end. Departure transfers arrive at Venice airport at 08:00 & 09:30.
    hotel:NH Excelsior Siena.

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We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

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Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

  • Professional Travel Director Professional Travel Director
  • Sightseeing with Local Experts Sightseeing with Local Experts
  • Cultural Enrichment Cultural Enrichment
  • Expertly Selected Hotels Expertly Selected Hotels
  • VIP Access VIP Access
  • WIFI on Coach and in Hotels WIFI on Coach and in Hotels
  • Hotel Tips Hotel Tips
  • Most Meals Most Meals
  • Personal Flight Options Personal Flight Options


12 Buffet Breakfasts (BB); plus 1 Welcome Dinner (WD), 3 three-course table d'hôte Dinners (DW) and 1 Celebration Dinner (CD) all with wine, plus tea or coffee.

Signature Experiences


  • With a Local Expert, visit Gaudi's extraordinary masterpiece, the Sagrada Familia Basilica.


  • Ascend the ‘serrated mountain', enjoy the spectacular panoramic views, and visit the Basilica Real to see the mystical Black Madonna.


  • Your orientation tour will show you the Château Comtal and the Basilique Saint-Nazaire, a gothic church from the 1100s.

Pont du Gard:

  • See the superb three-tiered aqueduct, the Pont du Gard, which dates from Roman times.


  • Cruise from Santa Margherita and get a taste of the 'sweet life' in this elegant fishing village.

Cinque Terre:

  • With a Local Expert take a short boat cruise to visit two of the villages of this UNESCO World Heritage Site.


  • To the tune of accompanying musicians, you will be serenaded through the atmospheric canals by gondolas.
Definite Departure
Depart Date Return Date Price Discount AvailabilityPrice
3 May 17 16 May 17 $3,995$3,596pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 12
$3,995 $3,596 pp
17 May 17 30 May 17 $4,125$3,713pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 12
$4,125 $3,713 pp
31 May 17 13 Jun 17 $4,125$3,713pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 12
$4,125 $3,713 pp
14 Jun 17 27 Jun 17 $4,125$3,713pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 12
$4,125 $3,713 pp
28 Jun 17 11 Jul 17 $3,995$3,596pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 12
$3,995 $3,596 pp
12 Jul 17 25 Jul 17 $3,975$3,578pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 12
$3,975 $3,578 pp
26 Jul 17 8 Aug 17 $3,975$3,578pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 12
$3,975 $3,578 pp
9 Aug 17 22 Aug 17 $3,975$3,578pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 12
$3,975 $3,578 pp
23 Aug 17 5 Sep 17 $4,025$3,623pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 12
$4,025 $3,623 pp
30 Aug 17 12 Sep 17 $3,975$3,578pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 12
$3,975 $3,578 pp
6 Sep 17 19 Sep 17 $4,050$3,645pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 12
$4,050 $3,645 pp
13 Sep 17 26 Sep 17 $4,050$3,645pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 12
$4,050 $3,645 pp
20 Sep 17 3 Oct 17 $4,050$3,645pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 12
$4,050 $3,645 pp
4 Oct 17 17 Oct 17 $4,050$3,645pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 12
$4,050 $3,645 pp
18 Oct 17 31 Oct 17 $3,925$3,533pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 12
$3,925 $3,533 pp
25 Oct 17 7 Nov 17 $3,925$3,533pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 12
$3,925 $3,533 pp

August 30th departure will be staying at the Hotel Fenix Les Escaldes in Andorra. May 17th, September 6th, September 20th and October 4th departures will be staying in alternative accommodation of similar standard in Côte d’Azur.

Price is per person and is based on two people sharing a twin bedded room. Single rooms are available at a supplement.

Single Room Supplement: from $1,340 p.p.

Gratuities: Option to pre-pay gratuities for Travel Director and Driver $108 per person.

Early Payment Discount: Pay in full to save the amount listed above. For details, click here 

AARP Members are entitled to an exclusive Member Benefit Discount on all Grand European Travel vacations. Plus receive a free travel gift!  Call Toll Free: 1-866-847-3858 for details.

Past Travelers: Save an additional 5% off the Land Only price of the vacation.

  • U.S. citizens traveling to Spain, France and Italy must have a current passport valid for six months beyond the conclusion of their trip. You can find information on how to apply for a passport here, and how to renew a passport here. No visa is required for U.S. citizens entering these countries.

  • The currency in Spain, France and Italy is the Euro (€). While it’s a good idea to bring some euros for when you first arrive, you’ll usually find a better exchange rate when you arrive in your destination.  The most convenient way to obtain cash is to use your ATM card at local banks. We recommend you also bring a valid credit card for purchases while you are traveling.  It is important that you inform your financial institutions of your travel plans before you leave home so they don’t flag your purchases as potentially fraudulent charges.

  • One of the most enjoyable parts of traveling is sampling the local cuisine.  Spain offers a delicious selection of cured hams, chorizo sausage, seafood, cheeses, and more.  Try traditional dishes such as tortilla española (Spanish omelet), paella, and desserts such as flan, churros, and Catalan cream.

    Lunch is the largest meal of the day in Spain, with many restaurants offering multi course menus at a fixed price.  For a quick lunch at a reasonable price, stop by a café, outdoor market, or food cart for a bocadillo, a traditional Spanish sandwich made with baguette-style bread, ham and cheese. Tapas are small bites served in bars and restaurants that can be enjoyed as an appetizer or a meal. Try a variety of marinated olives, potatoes, croquettes, grilled octopus, and toasted bread with various toppings.

    The French have an ongoing love affair with food and wine. Meals are lovingly prepared and consumed leisurely through a bevy of appetizers and main courses, usually accompanied by a number of wines. Boeuf bourgignon (beef stew with wine, herbs and vegetables), coq au vin (chicken cooked with bacon in a white wine and herb sauce) and bouillabaisse (fish stew) are featured on many menus. Cheese lovers will not be disappointed with hundreds of varieties to choose from.  And no visit would be complete without a visit to a pâtisserie, with its delicate pastries you will definitely be tempted.

    Wine is the most popular drink in France and is consumed at both lunch and dinner. Coffee is generally served black, unless a café au lait or café crème (with milk) is requested. For a simple and inexpensive lunch or snack, stop by a local bakery or food cart for a baguette au jambon (ham sandwich), crêpes, or a buckwheat galette filled with melted gruyère cheese and mushrooms. Many restaurants also offer a simple three course menu at a reasonable price.

    While Italy is most famous for pizza and pasta, few travelers are aware of just how varied the country’s culinary offering actually are. In fact, each of the 20 regions has its own distinctive cuisine. Traditionally, lunch (pranzo) is the most substantial meal of the day. A full meal consists of antipasto (starter), a primo piatto (pasta, rice or soup), a secondo piatto (meat or fish) with a side, or contorno (vegetable or salad), then frutta (fresh fruit). Finish with espresso and maybe a limoncello or grappa.  Wine is usually served with the meal, accompanied by mineral water. Tap water is safe to drink, but not always tasty. We recommend you buy bottled mineral water.

  • In Italy, the weather changes very quickly, with temperatures varying from morning to night. We suggest bringing a variety of lightweight clothing items that can be layered to save space in your suitcase and give you more options for how to dress. Keep in mind that your shoulders and knees should be covered while visiting religious sites. For more helpful information please refer to our Packing Tips & Packing List.

  • At bars and restaurants, tipping is less common or generous as in the U.S. When dining out, it’s appropriate, although not required, to leave an extra euro or two for your waiter.

    At the end of your guided vacation, it’s customary to offer your motor coach driver and Travel Director a gratuity. We recommend €3.00 per person/per day for your driver and €5.00 per person/per day for your Travel Director.  Recommended gratuity for a Local Host and Local Specialist is 1-2 euros per person, paid at the conclusion of each guided visit.  A convenient option is to prepay your tips before your departure.

  • Baggage on our trips is restricted to one large suitcase per person with dimensions not exceeding 30x19x10 inches and a maximum weight of 50 pounds. You are also permitted one piece of hand luggage, which should be small enough to fit under your coach seat or on the small overhead shelf compartment. Please note that luggage with an adjustable handle and wheels will not fit in the overhead compartment of the coach. Hotel porterage is included in your vacation.

  • You will need to be comfortable on your feet, walking and standing for up to three hours in various weather conditions.  All of our vacations involve walking, often on cobblestone and uneven surfaces in historic city centers.  In order to get the most out of your vacation you need to be able to comfortably walk 1-3 miles unassisted in one day, be in good condition and be able to keep pace with the group. 

    If you need any medications, it is important that you bring enough to last you the whole trip and keep them in your carry-on bag while you travel.

  • We highly recommend our optional Travel Protection Plan, which allows you to cancel for any reason up to 48 hours before departure. The plan also includes trip interruption, baggage loss or delay, and medical and emergency assistance. Click here for a summary of coverage details, terms and conditions.


Tuesday, September 29, 2015
Principalities of Europe Vacation
Service rating : I booked my air arrangements through Grand European, however when I got to my departure airport, the airline had no record of me, and said I did not have a ticket. This was despite me and my traveling companion both having called Grand European 3 or 4 times, because we couldn't access the airline's website, and Grand European assured us that everything was fine, air was all confirmed. In the end, we had to wait 5 anxious, awful hours in the airport, hoping you would be able to rebook me that night so I could arrive in Barcelona in time for the start of the trip. (The plane I was originally supposed to be on was full, so they couldn't just issue me a ticket on that flight -- your customer service people had to try to find another route.) I did eventually get rebooked, but left 7 hours later than I should have. At the other end of the trip, there were also problems with the air. My Tour Director said he did not have our names as having bought our air through you, so we were not entitled to the free airport transfer. I showed him the paperwork, on Grand European letterhead, that proved we had booked through you, so he put us on the transfer, but he said again that no one at the company had informed him that we were to be included. I am thoroughly dissatisfied with this, my first experience with using Grand European. It was very poorly handled.
Product : The tour was actually run by Insight, a sister company of Grand European. They did a good job. So I'm satisfied with Insight's part of the trip, but the administrative end of things that was handled by Grand European was terrible.
Response from Grand European Travel:
We are sorry to hear about the glitch with your airline ticket on Air Canada and their lack of customer service to get it resolved. Our GET airline department worked very hard to make alternate arrangements for you in the meantime. We understand how stressful those situations are and we can assure you that everything was in order on our end and properly communicated to the airline and to your Travel Director. We appreciate your business and hope that even though you were delayed in arriving, that you enjoyed your trip.

Grand European Travel
Thursday, October 1, 2015
Wednesday, September 23, 2015
Principalities of Europe Vacation
Service rating : Liked the extra legroom and smaller groups
Product : enjoyed visiting the smaller countries of Europe
Response from Grand European Travel:
Thank you for sharing your feedback with us. This is quite a unique trip with the places that you visit. I am glad to see that you enjoyed it.

Liz, Grand European Travel
Wednesday, September 23, 2015
Sunday, November 16, 2014
Principalities of Europe Vacation
Overall, the arrangements were handled in a professional manner. Tour director was well informed, but in some circumstances, could have offered more detailed info (advised that venue was within short walking distance and in fact was not). Tour was touted as offering 3-4 star hotel properties; two were less then budget motel quality.
Sunday, September 7, 2014
Principalities of Europe Vacation
Service rating : Trip was great overall. Didn't like some of the decisions our tour guide made during the trip. Also we were told how much to tip. This is not a good practice.
Product : We have always liked Grand European Travel and will travel with them again. The Principalities of Europe is the more upscale travel we like.
Saturday, September 6, 2014
Principalities of Europe Vacation
Service rating : All aspects of preparation for the tour and air travel were handled exactly as expected. As this was the 5-6th time I have experienced this with Grand European Tours I give them the highest grade.
Product : This is a relatively new tour and it was very enjoyable in most cases. A few hiccups transpired at a few hotels which cause me to not grade it higher. Their handling of gluten and lactose intolerant diets was perfect, a difficult task in so many diverse countries and cities.

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