• Save $100 on Airfare to Europe – Ends Oct 26

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Best of Spain & Portugal (Winter Season)

Operated By:
Tour Pace: Comfortable
Alahambra Palace, Granada
Tour Style: Premium
16 Days from $3,016 per person

Follow the fortunes of the Spanish, Portuguese and Moorish Kingdoms through their grand castles, stupendous religious buildings and incredible works of art. An ideal journey of discovery in autumn, winter or spring.

This page shows Winter Season departures and itinerary; click here to see the main season version of this tour!

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  1. Board your overnight flight to Europe (please ask about our great deals).

  2. At Madrid Airport, transfers depart for your hotel at 9:00 am, 11:00 am, 1:30 pm and 4:00 pm. Later, join your Tour Director for a Welcome Reception and a beautiful evening of dinner and wine.

    meal(s):WD
    hotel:Barcelo Torre, Madrid
  3. Guided sightseeing takes you past Madrid's most famous fountain in the Plaza de Cibeles. Drive down the Gran Via to the Royal Palace and Cervantes Monument before crossing the Puerta del Sol. The highlight of your tour is a visit to the magnificent Prado Museum.

    meal(s):BB
  4. The morning is devoted to Toledo. With your Local Expert, walk through the maze of narrow, cobbled streets. See El Greco's paintings in the Church of Santo Tome. Later, pass the ancient walls of Avila, en route to Salamanca.

    meal(s):BB
    hotel:Hotel Alameda Palace, Salamanca
  5. Cross the Portuguese border to reach Porto. See the Vila Nova de Gaia wine stores that house the famous wines. Walk along corridors of casks and get to know your tawnys and vintages during a tasting. Admire the multi-colored houses and churches covered in glazed tiles, as well as the iconic bridges.

    meal(s):BB, DW
    hotel:Hotel NH Collection Porto Batalha, Porto
  6. In Fatima, see the basilica or visit the Chapel of the Apparitions. Then continue to the hilltop town of Obidos, where you'll walk inside the city walls to explore the flower-bedecked houses and narrow, medieval streets. Your next destination is the Portuguese capital.

    meal(s):BB
    hotel:Dom Pedro Palace, Lisbon
  7. Sightseeing with a Local Expert takes you along the spacious avenues of the Lower Town, hilltop Bairro Alto to the Terreiro do Paco and Belem Quarter. Stop by an old patisserie and enjoy a tasting of the famous ‘Pasteis de Belem'. See the Monument to the Discoveries and the more ancient Belem Tower. Next, visit Jeronimos Monastery with its beautiful Manueline architecture.

    meal(s):BB
  8. With your Local Expert, tour the immense cathedral, burial place of Christopher Columbus, and the slender Giralda Tower. Explore the labyrinthine Santa Cruz Quarter and see the Alcazar. At night, settle back for a Signature Evening of dinner and entertainment featuring a fiery flamenco show.

    meal(s):BB, SE
    hotel:Ayre Hotel Sevilla, Seville (Executive Rooms)
  9. The day is completely yours to relax, explore, or continue sightseeing in this fascinating city.

    meal(s):BB
  10. Head to Gibraltar, attached to Spain yet an independent colony under British control since 1704. With your Local Expert visit the Rock of Gibraltar to see St. Michael's Cave and the Barbary Apes. Later, take the scenic route along the Costa del Sol.

    meal(s):BB, DW
    hotel:Melia Costa Del Sol, Torremolinos
  11. Enjoy the following day at leisure on the sundrenched Costa del Sol.

    meal(s):BB
  12. Drive to the white-washed village of Mijas. Continue to Granada to visit the magnificent Alhambra Palace. With a Local Expert, see the Lion Court and the water gardens of the royal summer residence. In the evening, choose your own personal ambience and cuisine from our Dine-Around selection of restaurants.

    meal(s):BB, DA
    hotel:Vincci Albayzin, Granada
  13. Journey to Valencia the 'City of Arts and Sciences'. In the old town, pass the City Gates of Serranos and Quart. Learn the authentic recipe of paella in a fun cookery demonstration for dinner.

    meal(s):BB, SE
    hotel:Barcelo Valencia
  14. Follow the coast to Peniscola to view the sealapped castle used in the film El Cid.

    meal(s):BB
    hotel:Hilton Barcelona
  15. Join a Local Expert to drive along the Passeig de Gracia. Continue through the Eixample district for a visit inside Gaudi's extraordinary masterpiece, the Sagrada Familia Basilica. In the evening, enjoy a Celebration Dinner with wine.

    meal(s):BB, CD
    hotel:Pullman Skipper, Barcelona.
  16. Departure transfers arrive at Barcelona Airport at 7:00 am, 9:00 am and 11:00 am. The 9:00 am transfer will continue to Madrid, scheduled to arrive early evening at Madrid Airport, followed by the Madrid tour hotel.

    meal(s):BB
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30 Day Refund Guarantee

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.

Add air to your reservation

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.
  • Definite Departure
  • Festive Celebrations
  • Alternative Hotel
Depart Date Return Date Price Discount Availability Price
Alternative Hotel
3 Nov 17 18 Nov 17 checkmark $3,150pp Call 1-877-622-9109
10 Nov 17 25 Nov 17 checkmark $3,150pp Call 1-877-622-9109
19 Dec 17 3 Jan 18 checkmark $3,375$3,206pp Early PaymentPay by Oct 26 Call 1-877-622-9109
26 Dec 17 10 Jan 18 checkmark $3,425$3,254pp Early PaymentPay by Oct 26 Call 1-877-622-9109
Festive Celebrations
26 Dec 17 10 Jan 18 checkmark $3,425$3,254pp Early PaymentPay by Oct 26 Call 1-877-622-9109
5 Jan 18 20 Jan 18 checkmark $3,175pp Call 1-877-622-9109
9 Feb 18 24 Feb 18 checkmark $3,175pp Request Quote Book Now
9 Mar 18 24 Mar 18 checkmark $3,175$3,016pp Early PaymentPay by Oct 26 Request Quote Book Now
16 Mar 18 31 Mar 18 checkmark $3,175pp Call 1-877-622-9109
23 Mar 18 7 Apr 18 checkmark $3,195pp Call 1-877-622-9109
  • Festive Celebrations: Christmas and/or New Year Celebrations have been arranged for these departures.
  • Alternative Hotel: This departure may include alternate hotels in select cities.

Additional Visa Requirements: Passengers who require visas for the UK will also need a separate visa for Gibraltar.

 

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 $800 p.p.

Gratuities: Option to pre-pay gratuities for Travel Director and Driver $132 per person.

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.

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

Included Quality Dining

14 Buffet Breakfasts (BB); plus 1 Welcome Dinner (WD), 3 three-course table d'hôte Dinners (DW), 1 Signature Evening (SE), 1 Dine-Around (DA), 1 Highlight Dinner (HD) and 1 Celebration Dinner (CD) all with wine, plus tea or coffee.

Departures on tour for Christmas and New Year's Eve enjoy a festive Highlight Dinner.

Signature Experiences

MADRID:

  • Witness the world's finest collection of Spanish paintings as you tour the Prado Museum with an expert art historian.

TOLEDO:

  • With a Local Expert, visit the Church of Santo Tomé and see El Greco's masterpiece.

LISBON:

  • Stroll through the old Belém Quarter with a Local Expert and visit Jeronimos Monastery.

GRANADA:

  • Best interpreted with the help of a Local Expert, the Alhambra Palace is the ultimate in Muslim architecture.

BARCELONA:

  • Explore Gaudi's extraordinary masterpiece, the Sagrada Família Basilica, guided by a Local Expert.

Top Rated Highlights

FÁTIMA:

  • Join the faithful at one of the world’s holiest sites and pay homage at the Chapel of the Apparitions.

Reviews

Thursday, October 19, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Very responsive and organized!
Vacation : Good value for the price. We were very satisfied with our tour, accommodations, attention to detail, itinerary, etc.
Monday, October 16, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Very professional he conducted, great service, nice personal touches
Vacation : It was the perfect way to see all of the highlights of Spain and Portugal!
Response from Grand European Travel:
Thank you for your review. We're glad you enjoyed your trip to Spain and Portugal.
Friday, October 20, 2017
Saturday, October 14, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : We had a wonderful time. Tour Director and bus driver were very professional and did an excellent job. Bus was clean and comfortable.
Vacation : Unclear which purchases this is referring to. Optional tours were very good.
Saturday, September 30, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Well planned, many stops & places to visit. Great guide! Yes, I will recommend.
Vacation : Great trip! Well worth the money.
Friday, September 29, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Tour director Philippe was great. He went the extra mile to make sure we saw the best sights, and planned added excursions. He has great personality and was easily able to keep our different personalities cohesive. Our bus driver was exceptional. I was amazed how well he drove, even with tight curves in the mountains. His personality was very pleasant. The only down side was hotel accommodations. Although they were 4 & 5 star properties, the layout of the rooms were tight, rooms were all twin beds pushed together, and the bathrooms had difficult shower controls and shallow tubs.
Vacation : See comments in previous section.
Monday, September 25, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Great trip through Insight! Super advice and very timely administration of our plans/purchase were provided. There was no attempt to "oversell" anything. Just good, solid customer service.
Vacation : A very comprehensive tour hitting the important experiences of Spain, Portugal and Gibraltar in comfort. The tour director, driver and local guides were Superior. Great value was provided.
Saturday, September 23, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : I can definitey reccommend them. The itineraries were comprehensive and excellent. The hotels were great. Our tour guide was fantastic knowlegeable, enthusiastic and organized. Our local guides were well chosen. Our bus driver could not have been better.
Vacation : I asked for help and was given it. Our tour guide was so patient with travellers that needed extra help.
Sunday, September 3, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : The tour guide was knowledgeable he seemed to know a lot of history. Joked a lot. In the past I have traveled with you my disappointment was no lunches and only a few dinners were offered. For the most part they were all optional. I found the food to be extremely salty. The optional tours I was disappointed in the types of fish we were getting The hotels although they were modern the bathrooms were tiny
Vacation : The purchase was equitable for the trip
Monday, July 31, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : The travel plans to the US was horrific. The 9-10 hour trip from Spain to Canada was in an old plane (Air Canada lines) with very limited leg room and no entertainment screen. The crew was lazy and inattentive and the ride was very bumpy throughout like they could not change altitude. The trip from Canada to Seattle was in an excellent plane for 6 hours (no food or snacks included). However, we did not get aisle seats as requested (we changed to the Canadian flight because our plane was changed four times before we left and we had to grapple for aisle seats each change. Air Canada chose to change our seats without ANY notice. We have medical conditions that receive some relief by being able to get up and move around throughout the flight. Being by the window and in the middle does not lend itself to do this without disrupting the entire row over and over. Horrible flights.
Response from Grand European Travel:
We are terribly sorry to hear about your poor experience with Air Canada.  Grand European cannot control what happens with the airline directly but we will be happy to report your experience directly to Air Canada if you have not already done so.  We do book the most direct flights available at the time you make your reservation, but if you have a preferred airline that you like to fly, we can certainly make those arrangements.
Friday, August 4, 2017
Vacation : The tour was excellent. Hotels were wonderful. The bus was also perfect. The tour guide was top-notch.....was organized and met everyone's needs. He treated the entire group with individual attention. Some credit for a great trip was also due to the group itself. We only had late members ONCE! The only drawback was the oppressive heat in Spain......the tours by the local guides should have been adjusted to shortening the time we were exposed to outdoor sun and heat along with limiting the gathered talks in building without air conditioning.
Sunday, July 30, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Our flight home was terrible. Instead of flying us home on United they put us on Air Canada. The flight from Barcelona to Toronto was on a plane with no audio players. An older plane with a terrible crew who did not service the plane like most airlines do. The layover in Toronto was over 5 hours. The trip from Toronto to Seattle had a better crew and plane. However, we were not allowed to pick our seats until we got to the airport. When we arrived at the Barcelona airport, they said that all seats were assigned for the Toronto to Seattle flight. Both my wife and I had the middle seats in different rows. For months we had tried to get aisle seats because of my blood clots and my wife's double hip and knee replacements. Grand European had the ability to get us on aisle seats, and would not get us decent flights on the way home.
Response from Grand European Travel:
We are terribly sorry to hear about your poor experience with Air Canada.  Grand European cannot control what happens with the airline directly but we will be happy to report your experience directly to Air Canada if you have not already done so.  We do book the most direct flights available at the time you make your reservation, but if you have a preferred airline that you like to fly, we can certainly make those arrangements.
Friday, August 4, 2017
Vacation : The trip was well planned and the tour director and driver did a great job. Some optional tours were to long at some of the locations when the weather was 110 degrees. A few of the optional tours should have been included in the price of the package.
Thursday, July 13, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Our family thoroughly enjoyed this vacation with Insights Travel. Our tour guide (Phillipe) was extremely knowledgeable of all the cities/towns we visited and you could tell he does his homework to share little facts and tidbits with the group that made things interesting. The hotels and food were great.
Vacation : Would have preferred that many of the optional/add-on trips be included in the package price up front as most of the group did them anyway.
Sunday, June 25, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : I enjoyed the whole experience. The services were excellent and the accommodations were very satisfactory. Due to the large numbers of people trying to see the attractions we were hurried through the attraction and I got left behind a couple of times while trying to catch the desired photograph. I did not get left at the spot though.
Vacation : There were more choices than could be attended to in the time allotted.
Saturday, June 24, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : The places to visit were Great with a lot of history. The city guides were knowledgeable and answered questions. Some of the hotels were not up to your usual quality. The regular Bus driver was outstanding. The replacement driver for two days was not as good. Almost hit a tour bus but we hollered for him to stop in time. Some of the food was not up to par. The tour director was not A+ like most of your directors are on other trips.
Vacation : Worth every bit of the price.
Monday, June 19, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Our trip was organized well and our tour director, Toni, did an exceptional job of keeping everything running smoothly. We would recommend this trip to our friends.
Vacation : The trip gave us a real sense of the culture of Spain and Portugal.
Saturday, June 17, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Yes covered a lot in two weeks. Motor coach was great as was drive and tour director.
Vacation : Very reasonable cost for what we received.
Sunday, June 4, 2017
Best of Spain and Portugal
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : We had the best trip ever! Daniel our tour guide was super He met everyone needs with charm , ease and so knowledgeable ! Our driver, Helgar , took such great care of us ! Great comfortable bus and great hotels ! Will definitely do another trip with insight guides ! Perfect
Response from Grand European Travel:
We're so glad to hear your trip was the best ever! Thanks for taking the time to let us know.
Friday, June 9, 2017
Vacation : Great itinerary , guide , driver, hotels , weather, tour group ! Would have loved to have stayed longer !
Sunday, June 4, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : I would definitely recommend Grand European and would use them again. In fact, I have used them before. They handled everything and everything went off with no problems.
Response from Grand European Travel:
Thanks for the kind comments! Glad to hear you enjoy our customer service.
Friday, June 9, 2017
Vacation : Some of the options should have been included. Lots of walking, stairs and inclines. Fast paced trip.
Sunday, June 4, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Excellent tour guide Emma Holmes was the best! She was well informed well prepared very knowledgeable looked after us very well gave us many perks Played beautiful and informative videos do we knew ahead of time what we were going to experience - arranged very nice optional tours and is the only guide to date who was up at the crack of dawn to see us off. Kudos to her The deSousas
Response from Grand European Travel:
Thank you very much for the feedback! We agree, Emma is one of our very best  Travel Directors.  Glad you had such a lovely time in Spain and Portugal.
Friday, June 9, 2017
Vacation : Saw all that we had set out to see
Saturday, June 3, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Passed on savings and always quick to respond back.
Vacation : Trip and excursions were well worth the money. Knowledgeable tour guides.
Response from Grand European Travel:
Thanks for the positive feedback! We appreciate it.
Friday, June 9, 2017
Friday, June 2, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : It was an incredible experience, the guide was great, also the driver.
Vacation : It was a good deal, and Tees Diaz help us a lot.
Response from Grand European Travel:
Thank you for taking the time to write.  We will be sure to let Tess know and hope to be able to help you plan your next trip.
Friday, June 2, 2017
Sunday, May 28, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : I was quite impressed with Grand European from the first phone call to the completion of my trip. I hadn't done a bus trip in many years, and I was very pleased with the roominess of the coach, and I loved having Wi-Fi available during our trip. The hotels were beautiful and well-located. Our tour guide Dominic was superb!
Vacation : This trip was a wonderful experience. However, I think some of the "extra" excursions should have been included in the basic trip -- almost 100% of our group went on all the extra excursiions.
Monday, May 22, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : The agents are always polite and helpful. They take their time with the clients completing the transactions efficiently and thoroughly.
Vacation : The tour was fabulous. Our tour director, Betty Griffiths, was personable, very well-organized and extremely professional. She was very approachable and gave everyone multiple opportunities to ask questions or express concerns on an individual basis. The hotels were excellent and all but one meal (Betty dealt with this) were great. Even though it took extra work and flexibility, Betty was able to secure coveted Alhambra tickets!
Response from Grand European Travel:
We take a lot of pride in our Travel Directors and it sounds like Betty Griffiths was able to make your trip even more memorable.  We appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts.
Tuesday, May 23, 2017
Saturday, May 20, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Service was excellent! Always on time, gracious and helpful. Dealt with situations in a professional way
Vacation : Saw the very best of both countries
Friday, May 19, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Our Insight Travel Guide, Toni Aguilar was excellent, very knowledgeable, professional, humorous and related to all the various personalities. The hotels were excellent, the included meals very good and included tours very varied. Our only complaint was there was very little down time to relax and have time to reflect on all that we had seen. Also, too many one night stays which demanded very early wake ups and departure times. Would recommend more two night stays. In all we would recommend the tour but not to the faint of heart.
Vacation : It was certainly worth the time and money spent.
Sunday, May 14, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Original booking messed up, but GET fulfilled obligations
Vacation : Great tour guide (Tania). Lots of up and down hills and stairs. This probably should be rated as "Active".
Saturday, May 6, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : It was great to see all the places, but this is the first time we have ever taken a bus tour so were not prepared for all the time on the bus or getting up early to get our bags out. I must admit that the bus was the best on we have ever been on. We loved all the space annd the driver was terfic.
Response from Grand European Travel:
This trip does cover quite a bit of ground and there can be some long travel days.We're glad that you found the motor coaches comfortable for those travel days and that you enjoyed yourself overall. 
Monday, May 8, 2017
Vacation : It was good value for the money
Response from Grand European Travel:
Thank you so much for your feedback
Monday, May 8, 2017
Saturday, May 6, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : The service was great and informative. Excellent program director and bus driver. Having 41 seats on a regular size bus provided lots of leg room, especially for my husband who is 6' 6"! The cities/towns that we stopped in were excellent and great choices! Enjoyed the countryside and had been looking to book this trip for last two years! No regrets and would recommend this trip to everyone.
Response from Grand European Travel:
We appreciate your kind words! VEry happy that you enjoyed Spain and Portugal and we hope to see you on another trip in the near future.
Monday, May 8, 2017
Vacation : Could not have rated this anything but--this was a wonderful trip with no regrets!
Monday, April 24, 2017
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Our trip was with Insight but I booked it last fall through Grand European and had a wonderful agent who worked with me on selecting the date and arranging air travel, an extra night in Madrid and our transportation from the airport to the hotel in Madrid. All of these reservations worked out perfectly. I had further contact with Grand European agents closer to the start of the trip, and in all cases the people I spoke with were helpful and friendly.
Vacation : This was a wonderful trip, in spite of the fact that I developed bronchitis and required the services of a doctor in Lisbon. Our tour director made all of the arrangements for me and the doctor arrived at my hotel room 30 minutes after I checked in. Our tour was extensive and varied. Our tour director was beyond excellent and our fellow travelers quickly bonded into a cohesive group. We enjoyed the experience of meeting people from around the globe.
Wednesday, November 23, 2016
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Very good selection. As is typical of travel guides, stop to let the stragglers catch up but then takes off again before the stragglers can catch their breath. Found it very taxing trying to keep up with the group.
Vacation : saw so many marvelous places.
Saturday, November 19, 2016
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : All in one ease of booking.
Vacation : Optional excursions should have been part of the tour instead of add ons. If it's worth seeing, it should be included in the itinerary. No other tour operator we've used did this. It added $500.00/each to cost of tour.
Saturday, November 5, 2016
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Everything handled and excellent service
Vacation : Fabulous!
Tuesday, November 1, 2016
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Insight Vacations ran the tour and the bus was very comfortable and tour director very knowledgeable and professional. The only hitch was the amount of time between landing, customs, and our connecting flight home. You booked with only 1:45 minutes. We really needed 2-1/2 to 3 hours inbetween in order to make our flight (which we did not - nor the next one).
Response from Grand European Travel:
Thank you for bringing this to our attention. We will certainly review our connection times for flights moving forward. We hope to see you on another trip very soon! Grand European Travel
Tuesday, November 8, 2016
Vacation : Great tour and hotels. 99% of the stops were great. As always we booked additional tours but on retrospect, could have used the free time in some of the fabulous cities.
Sunday, October 23, 2016
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : liked the additional knowledge and lectures by the guide.
Vacation : Excellent guide and bus driver. Did not like the additional expenses of adding the many excursions which should have been in the up front costs.
Sunday, October 23, 2016
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : I wish we had had a list of participants and introductions at the beginning of the tour. With 40 folks and only first names it was hard to remember where people were from or their last name.
Vacation : Excellent
  • U.S. citizens traveling to Spain and Portugal 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 visiting Spain and Portugal.

  • The currency in Spain and Portugal is the Euro (€).  While it’s a good idea to bring some money for when you first arrive, you’ll usually find a better exchange rate in your destination.  The most convenient way to obtain cash is to use your ATM card at local banks in Spain and Portugal. 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.

  • 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. For a quick lunch at a reasonable price, stop by a café or food cart for a bocadillo, a traditional Spanish sandwich made with baguette-style bread, ham and cheese.  In the evening, try a selection of tapas – small bites served in bars and restaurants that can be enjoyed as an appetizer or a meal. 

    With Portugal’s long coastline, seafood is featured prominently on their menus. Popular dishes include sopa de mariscos (a shellfish soup) and bacalhau (dried codfish), and Portuguese grilled chicken prepared with chili, garlic and olive oil. For dessert, don’t miss out on the famous pastéis de nata custard pastry or arroz dolce (rice pudding) and a glass of port wine. 

  • We suggest bringing a variety of lightweight clothing items that can be layered to save space in your suitcase.  This will also give you many options for how to dress in Spain and Portugal’s varying climates. It’s a good idea to bring a lightweight scarf to wear at religious sites and in the evening when temperatures cool off. For more helpful information please refer to our Packing Tips & Packing List.

  • Tipping in Spain and Portugal is much less common than in the U.S. When dining out, it’s appreciated, although not required, to leave a few extra euros for your server, and up to 10 percent for particularly good service.  Leave your tip on the table rather than adding it to your credit card slip to ensure that your waiter receives it. 

    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.

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