Madrid - Segovia - Avila - Salamanca (235 km)
After a buffet breakfast, we will depart Madrid for the old Castile region, visiting the medieval city of Segovia, with its 2000 year old Roman Aqueduct and the impressive Alcazar castle. Our next stop will be Avila, where we will admire the perfectly preserved defensive walls, before continuing to the old university city of Salamanca, where we will take a city tour in the afternoon. In the evening, we will walk through the city?s Plaza Mayor, always lively with activity. We will spend the night in Salamanca.
Being one of the largest Roman structures in Spain, it was built in the period of "Flavio" around 50AD. With a profound culture and history in Segovia, you can visit Segovia Aqueduct, Alcazar de Segovia etc.
Alcazar of Segovia
Like the other Alcazars located throughout Spain, the one in Segovia was a renovated Arab fortress, converted to a magnificent castle after the Christian reconquest of Spain. It rests at the far-northern edge of town, atop a steep cliff.
Avila is a small town in Castile and Leon, Spain. Not much has changed since the Middle Ages, as far as the architecture is concerned, as the town's original medieval defense walls still proudly stand.
The medieval walls that surround the Castilian town of Avila, which boasts one of the highest numbers of Romanesque and Gothic churches in the whole of Spain, still stand, impressively guarding the city.
Salamanca is a major city in Spain that mixes antiquated, medieval architecture with the atmosphere of a college town, with the University of Salamanca leading the way in the teaching of the Spanish language.
Most Spanish cities have a Plaza Mayor, but few are comparable to that of Salamanca. Surrounded by baroque buildings, the centerpiece of this public square is the city hall, with arms of restaurants, cafes, and other shops lining the side.
Standard Hotel: Gran Hotel Corona Sol or similar
Salamanca - Santiago de Compostela (427 km)
Today, we will depart for the mystical pilgrimage city of Santiago de Compostela. In the afternoon, we will enjoy a guided tour of the old city and its beautiful cathedral in the Praza do Obradoiro. In the evening, we will have the option of enjoying a delicious, traditional dinner in our hotel. We will spend the night here.
Santiago de Compostela, SPAIN
Santiago de Compostela has its origin in the shrine of Saint James the Great, now the city's cathedral, as destination of the Way of St. James, a leading Catholic pilgrimage route originated in the 9th century.
Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela
This grand cathedral northwestern Spain is supposedly the burial site of the apostle St. James, built in the Romanesque style of architecture. The exterior is covered with intricate designs of apostles and Biblical scenes.
Praza do Obradoiro
This open, public square in Santiago de Compostela is a great spot to stop for a rest or merely people watch. Once there, your eyes willbe drawn to the exquisite cathedral.
Standard Hotel: TRYP Santiago or similar
Santiago - Viana Do Castelo - Porto (196 km)
Today, we will depart for Portugal, stopping in the town of Viana do Castelo. After a stop here, we will continue our journey in the charming city of Porto, known for its namesake Port wines.
Viana do Castelo, PORTUGAL
Viana do Castelo is a municipality in the Norte Region of Portugal. The population in 2011 was 88,725 in an area of 319.02 km2.
Porto Santo, PORTUGAL
Porto Santo is the northeasternmost island in the Madeira archipelago, located in the Atlantic Ocean southwest of Portugal. It is a popular vacation spot, featuring many hotels and a professional golf course in addition to its wonderful beaches.
Standard Hotel: HF Ipanema Porto or similar
Deluxe Hotel: Crowne Plaza Porto or similar
Porto - Aveiro - Fatima - Lisbon (302 km)
After breakfast, we will depart for Aveiro, the "City of Canals", regarded as the Portuguese Venice. Then we will continue on to Fatima, a Christian pilgrimage center, with free time to visit the Basilica. Afterward, we will drive to Lisbon, where we can enjoy an optional excursion to hear live Fado music while eating a delicious dinner.
Fatima is a civil parish in the municipality of Ourem, in the Portuguese Santarem District.
Basilica of the Santissima Trinidade
One of the largest Christian church in the world, construction on this basilica was completed in 2007. With its thoroughly modern design, it looks completely unique from most other European churches.
Standard Hotel: Double Tree Fontana Park or similar
Deluxe Hotel: Lisbon Marriott Hotel or similar
Lisbon - Merida - Seville (477 km)
Today, we will make our way back to Spain. After we cross the border, we will stop at the Roman ruins of Merida, founded in 25 BCE as "Emerita Augusta," to admire the impressive amphitheater. Afterward, we will continue to Sevilla for the evening.
Standard Hotel: Catalonia Giralda / Confortel Puerta de Triana or similar
Seville - Cordoba - Granada (346 km)
After breakfast, we will depart Sevilla for Cordoba, visiting the Mosque-Cathedral, one of the most marvelous religious buildings in the world. Then, we will continue to Granada, passing thousands of acres of olive groves. It is suggested that we spend our evening visiting the quaint Albaicin Quarter, where we will see the city illuminated beautifully.
Seville is the capital of Andalucia and the cultural and financial centre of southern Spain. A city of just over 700,000 inhabitants (1.6 million in the metropolitan area, making it Spain's 4th largest city), Seville is Andalucia's top destination, with much to offer the traveler.
Standard Hotel: Macia Gran Via / Alixares or similar
Granada - Valencia (497 km)
Before we leave Granada, we will go on a guided tour of the amazing Moorish palacae and fortress complex, the Alhambra, seeing the verdant gardens of the Generalife. At midday, we will depart Granada, traveling along the east coast of Spain until we reach Valencia.
Granada is a mid-sized provincial capital in the Andalucia region of Spain. Rich in history and culture, Granada is arguably the single most worthwhile city in Spain for visitors. Spring and autumn are also both excellent times to visit.
The Alhambra is a massive complex consisting of multiple palaces and fortresses. It originated as a Spanish-Muslim fortress in the 9th century, but subsequent rulers, both Muslim and Christian, continually added additions and renovations.
Standard Hotel: Hotel Melia Valencia or similar
Valencia - Barcelona (303 km)
After breakfast, we will take a tour of the city and the City of Arts and Sciences, Valencia?s museum complex. In the early afternoon, we will drive north to Barcelona. In the evening, we have the option to dine at the Poble Espanyol, an architectural museum which features architectural replicas from all of Spain?s regions.
This gorgeous Spanish city on the Mediterranean is one of the world's most popular tourists destinations due to its rich cultural heritage. Visitors can see medieval buildings or admire modernity at the Museum of Contemporary Art.
The Poble Espanyol is a museum dedicated to the rich architectural history of the Iberian peninsula, the buildings replications of various styles from across Spain. The museum is filled with artisans who can be seen at work any given day.
Standard Hotel: Hotel Tryp Apolo or similar