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Best of Spain and Portugal

Operated by: Insight Vacations

15 Days from $3,533 per person

Countries Visited

Spain, Portugal ...more Spain, Portugal

Locations Visited

Madrid, Segovia, Salamanca, Porto, Lisbon, Seville, Mijas, Torremolinos, Granada, Valencia, Barcelona ...more Madrid, Segovia, Salamanca, Porto, Lisbon, Seville, Mijas, Torremolinos, Granada, Valencia, Barcelona
  1. Day 1 Welcome to Madrid.

    Your transfer will depart Madrid airport at 09:00, 11:30, 13:30 or 16:00. Join your Travel Director at 18:00 for a Welcome Dinner in a local restaurant and get to know your fellow travellers over a beautiful evening of delicious food and wine.(Dinner with Wine)

    meals Dinner with Wine
    hotel Barcelo Torre De Madrid/Barcelo Emperatriz, Madrid.
  2. Day 2 Madrid 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. A highlight of your trip is a visit to the magnificent Prado Museum with an art historian to admire the paintings of Velázquez, Goya and many others.(Breakfast)

    meals Breakfast
    hotel Barcelo Torre De Madrid/Barcelo Emperatriz, Madrid.
  3. Day 3 Segovia and Golden Salamanca.

    Travel to the fortified city of Segovia where you will walk through the medieval streets and see the magnificent Alcazar fortress, before continuing onto the ancient aqueduct. Journey west, passing the ancient walls of Ávila, en route to Salamanca. During your guided sightseeing tour of Salamanca see some of the golden stone buildings the city is famous for, including the handsome arcaded Plaza Mayor, the honey-coloured cathedral and the 16th century university buildings.(Breakfast)

    meals Breakfast
    hotel Hotel Alameda Palace, Salamanca.
  4. Day 4 Porto, Grande Dame on the Douro.

    Cross the Portuguese border to reach Porto, situated on the River Douro and celebrated internationally as the capital of Port wine. Visit the Vila Nova de Gaia wine stores that house the famous wines and walk along corridors of casks. Get to know your tawnys and vintages during a tasting. Continue your exploration of the city, admire the multi-coloured houses and churches covered in glazed tiles, as well as the iconic bridges designed by students of Gustave Eiffel.(Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)

    meals Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
    hotel Hotel NH Collection Porto Batalha.
  5. Day 5 Holy Fátima, Ancient Obidos and Lisbon.

    Head south for a visit to miraculous Fátima. See the Basilica or visit the Chapel of the Apparitions, which commemorates the appearance of the Virgin Mary to three young shepherds in 1917. Journey to the fortified town of Obidos and walk inside its walls, exploring the narrow, medieval streets with houses covered with flowers. Your travels continue to the Portuguese capital, Lisbon.(Breakfast)

    meals Breakfast
    hotel Dom Pedro Lisboa/Altis Grand Hotel, Lisbon.
  6. Day 6 Lisbon and the Age of the Great Discoveries.

    Sightseeing with a Local Expert takes you along the spacious avenues of the Lower Town and beneath the hilltop Bairro Alto to the Terreiro do Paco, the finest square in the city. Visit the Belém Quarter from where sailing ships once set forth to discover unknown lands. Enjoy a taste of the famous Pastéis de Belém from a traditional patisserie that has managed to hold on to the secret recipe of Portugal's finest pastry for almost 200 years. View the modern Monument to the Discoveries and the more ancient Belém Tower. This fortress was originally set in the middle of the river, but is now left high and dry on the riverbank. Visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Jerónimos Monastery with its beautiful Manueline architecture. With the afternoon at your leisure, perhaps join an Optional Experience to the Portuguese Riviera? It is often visited by surfers, occasionally royalty, and even James Bond.(Breakfast)

    meals Breakfast
    hotel Dom Pedro Lisboa/Altis Grand Hotel, Lisbon.
  7. Day 7 Seville, the City of Carmen.

    Leave Lisbon via the modern Tagus Bridge and cross the border to reach Seville. With your Local Expert, visit the immense cathedral to see the Tomb of Christopher Columbus and the slender Giralda Tower, the former minaret of the Great Mosque. Explore the labyrinthine Santa Cruz Quarter and see the Alcazar. This evening, why not join an optional experience with dinner and a horse and carriage ride?(Breakfast)

    meals Breakfast
    hotel Ayre Hotel Sevilla (Superior Rooms), Seville.
  8. Day 8 Free Time and Flamenco in Seville.

    Enjoy a relaxed start and a day to unwind, shop or continue exploring this fascinating city at your own pace. Our suggestion is to join an Optional Experience to the ancient city of Córdoba, where you will visit the magnificent Mezquita, see the old Jewish Quarter, and enjoy some free time to shop or explore as you wish. 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. 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? Later, share in the dancers’ devotion as you witness emotions come to life in a flamenco performance.(Breakfast)

    meals Breakfast
    hotel Ayre Hotel Sevilla (Superior Rooms), Seville.
  9. Day 9 Head for Gibraltar, the Costa del Sol and Mijas.

    Head south to Gibraltar, part of mainland Spain yet an overseas territory under British control since 1704. With your Local Expert, visit the Rock of Gibraltar and St. Michael’s Cave to see the Barbary Apes, legendary guardians of the colony. Relax as you travel the scenic route along the Costa del Sol through exclusive resorts where the rich and famous holiday. Your journey continues through the green hills to the white-washed village of Mijas. Stroll through the old streets and gardens and take in the views of the coast.(Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)

    meals Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
    hotel Meliá Costa del Sol, Torremolinos.
  10. Day 10 At Leisure on the Costa del Sol.

    Enjoy the following day at leisure on the sun-drenched Costa del Sol. Relax by the blue Mediterranean waters, stroll along the promenade, savour the specialities in the local restaurants or consider exploring Malaga, the birth city of Picasso.(Breakfast)

    meals Breakfast
    hotel Meliá Costa del Sol, Torremolinos.
  11. Day 11 Dining with Locals and the Alhambra.

    Continue to Alfarnatejo, a quiet white washed village with a population of just 500 people and surrounded by stunning mountainous landscape. Walk the town centre to see the 18th century Iglesia del Santo Cristo de Cabrilla. Travel to the oldest olive grove in the region and stop at the rural mill-factory to taste a selection of different oils with locally made farmer bread. In small groups, you are invited into the home of a local family to join them for a delicious Highlight Lunch made of fresh, local produce with flavours typical of the region. Continue to Granada to visit the magnificent Alhambra Palace with your Local Expert. Built as a citadel by the Moors in the 13th century, it is a wonder of beautiful gardens, fountains and stone cut like lace.(Breakfast / Lunch with Wine)

    meals Breakfast, Lunch with Wine
    hotel Vincci Albayzín, Granada.
  12. Day 12 On to Valencia.

    Journey to Valencia, the City of Arts and Sciences. Pass through the Old City and see its ancient gates. In your free time perhaps take a stroll to the Cathedral and El Miguelete? Or sit back with a drink and watch the Valencian’s go about their day. 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 town 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)

    meals Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
    hotel Barceló Valencia.
  13. Day 13 Along the coast to Peñíscola and on to Barcelona.

    Follow the coast to Peñíscola to view the sea-lapped castle used in the film 'El Cid'. Continue along the Costa Dorada to the Cava Bodegas at Sant Sadurni d'Anoia. During a delicious light lunch, enjoy a tasting as you learn the sparkling secrets of Spanish bubbly. Continue along the coast to reach Barcelona.(Breakfast / Lunch with Wine)

    meals Breakfast, Lunch with Wine
    hotel Meliá Barcelona Sarrià.
  14. Day 14 Barcelona Sightseeing

    A Local Expert joins you for a drive 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 to visit inside Gaudi’s extraordinary masterpiece, the Sagrada Família. See the central nave with its giant, tree-like pillars, spectacular vaulting and the beautiful rainbows flooding in through the intricate stained-glass windows. At a local restaurant, join your fellow travellers to toast newfound friends and a wonderful journey as you enjoy a Celebration Dinner with wine.(Breakfast / Dinner with Wine)

    meals Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
    hotel Meliá Barcelona Sarrià.
  15. Day 15 Depart Barcelona.

    Your journey ends after breakfast. Departure transfers arrive at Barcelona airport at 07:00, 09:00 and 11:00.(Breakfast)

    meals Breakfast
route_map
Price Includes

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.

Authentic Dining

  • Porto: Sample a selection of famous Port wines at a tasting at the Vila Nova de Gaia wine stores.
  • Lisbon: Delight in a taste of the famous Portuguese delicacy, Pastéis de Belém.
  • Alfarnatejo: Taste a selection of freshly pressed olive oils with locally made farmer bread when you stop at Almazara, the oldest olive grove in the region.
  • Alfarnatejo: Hear the stories of local life as you are invited into the home of a local family to join them for a freshly prepared, traditional lunch, with wine.
  • Valencia: Learn the authentic recipe of paella when you join a local chef for a Cooking Demonstration. Savour the flavours of this classic dish for dinner, washed down with a glass of Sangria, during your Highlight Dinner.
  • Sant Sadurni d'Anoia: Join a wine expert when you visit Cava Dorada. Enjoy a tasting at the great Cava vineyards during your delicious Highlight Lunch.
  • Barcelona: With fantastic sea views, be seated for an exceptional Catalan Celebration Dinner incorporating classic cooking with only the freshest produce.
  • Dining Summary: 14 Breakfasts (B), 2 Lunches with Wine (LW) and 5 Dinners with Wine (DW) all with wine tea or coffee.

Insight Experiences

  • Madrid: Witness the world’s finest collection of Spanish paintings plus an impressive foreign collection as you tour the Prado Museum with an expert art historian.
  • Seville: 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. Later, share in the dancers’ devotion as you witness emotions come to life in a flamenco performance.
  • Granada: Best interpreted with the help of a Local Expert, the Alhambra Palace is the ultimate in Muslim architecture, an arabesque fantasy in stone, complemented by the gardens of the Generalife.

Top Rated Highlights

  • Madrid: With your Local Expert, travel along the Paseo de la Castellana and see the Cibeles Fountain, the Royal Palace and the monument to Cervantes in the Plaza de España and cross the Puerta del Sol.
  • Segovia: Walk the medieval streets of this fortified city with your Local Expert and see the 14th century Alcazar Palace.
  • Salamanca: See the handsome arcaded Plaza Mayor, the honey-coloured cathedral and the 16th century university buildings as you explore the city with your Local Expert.
  • Porto: See the iconic bridges and buildings decorated in tiles.
  • Fátima: Join the faithful at one of the world’s holiest sites and pay homage at the Chapel of the Apparitions.
  • Obidos: Lead by your Travel Director, walk through the picturesque narrow streets up to the main square of this ancient walled town.
  • Lisbon: Explore with your Local Expert, from the Lower Town, beneath the hilltop Bairro Alto to the Terreiro do Paco. Visit the Belém Quarter to see the modern Monument to the Discoveries and the ancient Belém Tower.
  • Lisbon: Visit the Jerónimos Monastery with its beautiful Manueline architecture, reflecting Portugal’s trade over the centuries and UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • Seville: From the Moorish Patio de los Naranjos, guided by your Local Expert step inside the cathedral and pass the altarpiece dripping with gold, to the Tomb of Columbus, held aloft by four kings.
  • Seville: Alongside your Local Expert you will visit the Giralda Tower and lead you through the streets of the Santa Cruz Quarter to the Alcazar.
  • Gibraltar: With your Local Expert, explore the Rock of Gibraltar, one of the pillars of Hercules, affording magnificent views and see the meeting of the Atlantic, the Mediterranean and the Spanish Sierra. Visit St. Michael’s Cave and see the Barbary Apes.
  • Mijas: Journey to this white-washed village and stroll the streets to admire the coastal views.
  • Alfarnatejo: Visit the beautiful, quiet town and walk the town centre to see the 18th century Iglesia del Santo Cristo de Cabrilla.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Peñíscola: See the castle featured in the film 'El Cid'.
  • Barcelona: A Local Expert will show you the narrow lanes and old squares of the Barri Gotic, the Gothic Quarter. View the lively Las Ramblas, see the wrought-iron street lamps and Modernist buildings as you travel along Passeig de Gràcia.
  • Barcelona: A Local Expert will take you inside Gaudi’s extraordinary masterpiece, the Sagrada Família, to admire the beautiful architecture.
  • Scenic Drives: Enjoy the scenery as you travel along the River Douro, Costa del Sol, through the Provence of Malaga, across the Sierra Nevada and along the Costa Dorada.

Dates & Prices
Airfare is not included, but can be added to quote upon request
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Optional Add-Ons

Optional Experiences are subject to change. Your Travel Director will supply you with a final list of Optional Experiences available on your trip. Optional Experiences cannot be booked online; they can be purchased during your trip through your Travel Director.

Madrid

Toledo Excursion

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: €45

Madrid by Night

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: €19

Madrid by Night with Dinner

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: €61

Lisbon

Cascais, Estoril & Queluz Excursion

Like the Kings of Portugal before you, travel to the glamorous resort of Cascais, a veritable jewel in the crown of Portugal. Via the wealthy playground of Estoril, with its famous Casino, we'll continue with our Local Expert to the Portuguese Riviera and through the forest of Sintra to visit one of the Royal summer palaces before heading back to Lisbon.
Adult Price: €46

Fado Evening

Known as ''the soul of the Portuguese identity'', Fado is the emotive national song. Take in an unmissable performance of this UNESCO-recognised art in one of the country's famed fado houses. To complete the experience, savour a typical Portuguese dinner with wine included.
Adult Price: €66

Lisbon by Night

Drive to the Bairro Alto, the old quarter of Lisbon, to admire the beautiful views over the city. Then take a funicular ride to the downtown Baixa area where cobblestones sparkle in the light of the shops, bars and cafes. Returning to your hotel, you'll pass monuments and buildings, lit up in all their glory.
Adult Price: €19

Seafood Dinner by the Tagus River

Across the mighty Tagus River await Lisbon's famous seafood restaurants and wonderful views of the city. Board your ferry to cross the wide blue waters for a delightful evening of Portuguese seafood and fish specialities. After dinner, encounter more sweeping views over the Portuguese capital, as you return to your hotel via the impressive suspension bridge.
Adult Price: €53

Seville

Dinner in Seville With a Horse and Carriage Ride

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: €66

Cordoba & the Mezquita

Join your local expert for a walking tour of the perfectly preserved Moorish city of Cordoba. The highlight is undoubtedly the magnificent Mezquita, an 8th-century mosque with a Cathedral built inside. Walk with your local expert through the forest of horseshoe shaped arches to the Baroque choir stalls of the Cathedral and the richly ornamented Mihrab prayer niche.
Adult Price: €45

Costa Del Sol

Highlights of Malaga

A short drive brings you to Malaga, the thriving capital of the Costa del Sol. We'll enjoy sweeping vistas over this little known Mediterranean jewel from the Gibralfaro Castle perched above. Then, in a guided tour of the old town, we'll visit the house in which Pablo Picasso spent his early years. The town is also famous for its sweet, full-bodied wines and our tour concludes with a taste of the recent vintage.
Adult Price: €40

Mediterranean Dinner

Join us for a delicious Mediterranean style dinner in a delightful family restaurant on the Costa del Sol. We'll sample fresh Mediterranean fare, including some of the restaurant's signature dishes such as "fritura malagueña" and sea bass baked in sea salt, a traditional recipe since Roman times. Your meal will be accompanied by local wine.
Adult Price: €53

Barcelona

Gaudí's Park Güell and Port Olympic

Enter a strange fantasy world at Parc Güell, Spain's most impressive public park! Here Gaudí designed mushroom-like houses, "bird nest" pillars and a stunning mosaic dragon. The huge central terrace is enveloped by a ceramic-encrusted serpentine bench (reputedly the world's longest seat) and offers panoramic views of Barcelona and the bay. We then head to the coast and Port Olympic, built for the athletes of the 1992 Olympics, where we'll have free time to try one the numerous waterfront restaurants.
Adult Price: €38

Montserrat & The Black Madonna

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: €40

Reviews
Service
Vacation
Independent Reviews
Ishwarlal Bhuta
Saturday, November 16, 2019
Service
when I got to Madrid the tour was taken over by Insight Vacation, I was surprised to see option tour was offered 9 of them with average cost of 50 dollars. I agree it was optional but if I did not take it I was left to explore the city and sight by myself. this is because coach or bus was used for option choice. we were not dropped from hotel to city center to explore further. The day option tour were available we were left to tour in the afternoon for two to three hrs. so my thinking priority was given too who took option tours.
Vacation
overall was good. some of the travelling could be done in evening time from 6 to 8 pm so next day driving could be shorter. hotel accommodation was excellent. coach services were very good . good driver and tour director excellent.
Lucille Effinger
Monday, November 4, 2019
Service
Always willing answered my questions and were pleasant about it.
Vacation
Especially enjoyed MOnsterrat. Always interesting to learn the history of the various areas and meeting people from around the world.
Dennis Schwerzler
Saturday, November 2, 2019
Service
Excellent tours and a outstanding tour guide.
Vacation
Outstanding tour guide Angela
Ezequiel
Tuesday, October 29, 2019
Service
Our booking experience with GET was easy and our Travel Specialist kept us informed with updated information for our trip.
Vacation
We were happy with most of the places we visited, however we were disappointed that we were not able to spend more time in Valencia and Granada. We feel less time should have been spent visiting The Alhambra.
Ronald Kereston
Monday, October 28, 2019
Service
Would recommend but would fully explain what t to expect- the good and bad
Vacation
Very busy trip although not strenuous. Places and sites were spectacular but not enough free time since we opted for all extras. The hotels were 4or 5 star but their location were not around the tourist sites. Therefore, We were back at hotel earlier without anything to do.
Trusted Customer
Monday, October 14, 2019
Service
Tour director was very knowledgeable, friendly, helpful, enthusiastic, made the trip a lot of fun. The travel group was also a lot of fun to be with.
Response from Grand European Travel:
It's always a plus when you have a great group of people traveling with you. We're so happy to see that you had a fun, although tiring trip.
Wednesday, October 23, 2019
Vacation
It was great that we got to cover so much. However, in order to cover so much ground, there were places that we hardly got to see and the hours (up at 6:00 or 6:30 and arriving at the hotel after 7:00) were very grueling. We needed a vacation to rest when we got home!
Trusted Customer
Sunday, October 6, 2019
Service
Not our first trip and yes I always recommend you. We always are greatly satisfied with our experience.
Response from Grand European Travel:
We greatly appreciate your recommendations and your business. Thank you.
Thursday, October 24, 2019
Vacation
We enjoy the schedule of the days covering so much territory but with so much interest.
Vicki Porell
Sunday, October 6, 2019
Service
My agent or someone else was always available to answer my questions. The booking procedure was straight-forward and uncomplicated. I liked not be pressured to buy insurance or excursions.
Vacation
The trip exceeded our expectations. Philippe De Olivera, our travel director was cool, calm and collected whatever the circumstance . He was knowledgeable and professional with a generous, kind spirit; it was easy to trust his advice. Our driver Antonio was amazing! He was a well-skilled professional and most polite and helpful. The hotels were very comfortable, attractive, and modern; some were luxurious and spa-like. Several of the local experts were fascinating, breathing life into their subject like Gema in Cordoba or Sergio in Madrid. We were so impressed with the first extra, the opera dinner in Madrid, that we signed up for everything else because we didn't want to miss a thing. The itinerary was much like tapas, a little bit of everything.
Response from Grand European Travel:
We love to hear about exceeded expectations. We're so glad you enjoyed Span and Portugal. Thank you!
Thursday, October 24, 2019
Trusted Customer
Saturday, September 28, 2019
Service
they know their stuff
Vacation
Very physically demanding tour. Saw so many highlights of Spain and Portugal. Tour guide (Kristy) was very good, organized, passionate about Spain and Portugal plus an Aussie to boot.
Trusted Customer
Saturday, September 14, 2019
Service
All went very well.
Vacation
Could have hotels closer to center of city. Map of city center with hotel location should be made available on bus.
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