MADRID, BARCELONA, SEVILLE, TOLEDO, GRANADA, CORDOBA AND VALENCIA
The Spaniards adore their tapas, and this wonderful culinary tradition reflects the spirit of our escorted Best of Spain tour. You’ll sample the most appealing, intriguing sights from a sextet of cities, savoring Spain’s incredible legacy of art and architecture, its dramatic history and grand passions. Along the way, you’ll get a taste of the Spanish way of living, like el paseo, the leisurely evening stroll that often leads to a glass of wine and some tapas! From the Prado in Madrid to Granada’s Alhambra Palace and La Rambla in Barcelona, this “best of” tour serves up a multicourse feast of sights and experiences that are simply unforgettable.
- 2 nights in Madrid
- 1 night in Cordoba
- 2 nights in Seville
- 1 night in Granada
- 1 night in Valencia
- 3 nights in Barcelona
- Round-trip airfare from New York (JFK)
- Airfare taxes, fees & fuel surcharges
- Ground transportation in air-conditioned motor coach
- Accommodations at first-class hotels
- 16 meals: 10 buffet breakfasts (B) and 6 dinners (D)
- Wine and mineral water with dinners
- Comprehensive sightseeing tours including admission fees as indicated in the itinerary
- Professional English-speaking Tour Director throughout
Click the Day by Day itinerary above (or swipe on mobile devices) to see the experiences that await on each day of your tour.
Depart from the U.S.
Take off on a nonstop overnight flight to Madrid.
Arrive in Madrid
After a morning arrival in Madrid, Spain’s grand capital and cultural heart, you’ll be greeted at the airport and escorted to your hotel, where your Tour Director will lead a get-acquainted walk around the surrounding neighborhood. Enjoy the rest of the afternoon at leisure before meeting your Tour Director for a welcome cocktail, orientation and dinner.
Novotel Madrid Center or similar | Dinner
Our morning features a guided tour of this splendid city. As we travel along the Gran Via, Madrid’s equivalent to New York City’s Broadway, we’ll marvel at the Opera district, Plaza de Colon, the monumental 18th-century Royal Palace (entrance included), Puerto del Sol Plaza and Plaza de España, Madrid’s main square, where we’ll see an imposing statue of Spain’s literary giant, Miguel de Cervantes. We’ll end at the enormous, impressive Prado Museum, which holds one of the world’s top collections, including masterpieces by El Greco, Velázquez and Goya. The balance of the day…
Today we leave the current capital and stop in Toledo, the former medieval capital. Set on a hilltop overlooking the Castilian Plains and Tagus River, Toledo is the setting for many of El Greco’s paintings. We’ll take a guided walk through Toledo’s atmospheric cobbled streets, stopping at Santo Tome Church, home of El Greco’s masterwork, The Burial of the Count of Orgaz, as well as Santa Maria la Blanca. Formerly the Iben Shushan Synagogue, this 12th-century structure is considered the site of the oldest synagogue in Europe still standing and a symbol of the harmonious…
Cultural gem Cordoba hosts some of Spain’s most impressive monuments. It was also the birthplace of the great 12th-century Jewish philosopher Moshe Ben Maimon (Maimonides). On our guided tour, we’ll marvel at the Mezquita (Great Mosque) built in the 10th century during Cordoba’s glory days as the capital of Moorish Spain. The mosque was later converted to a cathedral, but the fine original architectural details are stunning. We’ll also view the reconstructed Roman Bridge, as well as the beautifully restored 14th-century synagogue that survived the expulsion of Spain’s Jews….
On an included guided tour, we’ll discover the passions of the city that is the backdrop for the great operas Carmen and Don Giovanni. Highlights include the Seville Cathedral, the biggest Gothic cathedral in the world, and landmark Giralda Bell Tower, the remaining part of the mosque built by the Moors. Our tour winds through the narrow streets and plazas of the well-preserved Barrio Santa Cruz, the old Jewish Quarter, where we’ll delight in the whitewashed buildings, quaint shops and colorful flowers. Later, we’ll drive to the Plaza de España, passing the…
This morning, we journey on to Granada, the former Moorish stronghold and site of the region’s crown jewel, the Alhambra. Sprawled over a hilltop overlooking the city, the awe-inspiring Alhambra is an impressive castle and fortress with its romantic Generalife gardens. We’ll have time to marvel at the views of the city below and snow-capped Sierra Nevada Mountains in the distance, as well as walk through the acclaimed gardens, beautifully designed with courtyards, waterfalls and secret smaller gardens.
Macia Real de La Alhambra Hotel or similar |…
You’re sure to be captivated by the rolling terrain and groves of olives, almonds, lemons and oranges on our way to the Mediterranean coast and Valencia, a city of great culture and beautiful gardens. On our afternoon guided tour, we’ll see architecture both ancient (Roman, Arabic and the gothic Cathedral) and modern—or should we say futuristic? Renowned architect Santiago Calatrava designed the City of Arts and Science, a “city within a city” that is an eye-popping sight, as well as a peek into what the future might look like.
Sorolla Palace Hotel or…
The next leg of our Best of Spain journey hugs the coastline of Catalonia. We’ll stop at the base of the Prades Mountains to visit a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the majestic Monastery of Santa Maria de Poblet, one of the largest and most complete Cistercian abbeys in the world. Later, we’ll arrive in Barcelona and settle into our centrally located hotel.
Catalonia Plaza Catalunya Hotel or similar | Breakfast
The capital of Catalonia, Barcelona mixes medieval charm with avant-garde style. We’ll join a local expert for a fascinating tour that begins at the old harbor with a drive along Barcelona’s iconic boulevard, Las Ramblas. We’ll see the city’s lively heart, Plaza Catalunya, and picturesque Plaza de España before taking off on foot to explore the charming Gothic Quarter, Barcelona’s old city. Of course, a Barcelona tour isn’t complete without admiring buildings designed by the celebrated Catalan architect Antonio Gaudi. We’ll see one of his most famous works, the unfinished La…
Today you’ll have a full day to explore vibrant Barcelona on your own. You could return to the enchanting Gothic Quarter and soak up its magical atmosphere of cafes, street musicians and quaint shops. Seek out more of Gaudi’s masterpieces in the city center or stroll along Las Ramblas, stopping at the colorful Boqueria Market for freshly squeezed juice, a snack or more tapas! We’ll gather in the evening for a farewell dinner at a famous local restaurant.
| Breakfast, Dinner
Transfer to the airport for your return flight to the U.S. Your Best of Spain tour comes to an end as you land in the U.S. later today.
Price includes round-trip airfare from the U.S. (Land-only pricing available upon request.)
|Depart||Return||Depart - Return||Best Value Pricing - Reserve by Sep 30, 2020||Reserve after|
Sep 30, 2020
|2021||2021||w/ eCheck Discount||Sale||After Sale|
|April 10||April 21||Apr 10 - |
|May 29||June 9||May 29 - |
|August 14||August 25||Aug 14 - |
|September 18||September 29||Sep 18 - |
|October 16||October 27||Oct 16 - |
Rates are per person based on double occupancy.
2021 Departures: Single room supplement is $899.
For more information on this tour, please contact us here or call us during business hours (Mon-Fri, 9:00-9:00 EST and Sat-Sun, 10:00-6:30 EST) at 800-337-7773.
Reservations and Payments
Reservations can be made by phone (1-800-337-7773) and will be confirmed upon receipt of $300 per person non-refundable, non-transferable deposit which must be received at the time of reservation*. A second non-refundable, non-transferable deposit of $300 is due 60 days after the date of your reservation. Full payment is due 90 days prior to departure. *If the reservation date is within 70 days of the final payment due date, both first and second deposits are due at the time of reservation. Baggage fees may apply. Space and prices subject to availability. For complete booking information and terms & conditions click here.
Optional Tours Customize your trip with these optional tours.
The optional tours must be paid in cash. Optional tours are subject to a minimum number of participants and may be cancelled if the minimum is not met. Additional optional tours may be added for your enjoyment, and the optional tours listed below may not be available on all departure dates. Please note that optional tours are nonrefundable.
Walking Tapas Tour
- From approx. 75 Euro Per Person
Experience the food culture of Madrid like a local. You’ll sample Spain’s delicious tapas tradition on a three-hour foodie walking tour of Madrid. Go on a culinary journey through the regions of Spain, learning the origins of tapas and how each is made.
- From approx. 65 Euro Per Person
Immerse yourself in Spanish culture by enjoying an authentic flamenco dance performance.
Montserrat & Cava Winery Visit
- From approx. 135 Euro Per Person
After driving through picturesque little villages you will arrive at the incomparable setting of the craggy mountain of Montserrat, which rises majestically from the plain to 4,051 feet (1,235 meters) and has amazing views. The mountain gets its name from the rock formations which look like they have been sawed and sculpted, the result of thousands of years of wind and rain. You will visit the Royal Basilica of Montserrat with its 12th-century carving of the Black Virgin and, after hearing its history from a guide, enjoy free time to explore on your own before you continue your day with…
Novotel Madrid Center
Newly renovated hotel located in the heart of the city, five minutes from Retiro Park.
O Donnell 53, 28009 Madrid, Spain
Hotel Eurostars Palace
Set on the border of new town and the old city, this modern hotel features a rooftop pool and solarium.
Paseo de la Victoria, Cordoba, 14004, Spain
Melia Lebreros Hotel
Contemporary style, city center location and an outdoor pool enhance this hotel located in one of Seville’s most distinguished neighborhoods.
Calle Luis de Morales, 241018 Sevilla, Spain
Hotel Macia Real de La Alhambra
Modern hotel with a pool sits near the Alhambra, just 10 minutes from downtown.
Calle Mirador del Genil, 2, 18008, Granada, Spain
Hotel Sorolla Palace
Well-located hotel features a range of amenities.
Avinguda Corts Valencianes, 58, 46015 Valencia, Spain
Catalonia Plaza Catalunya
Bergara, 11, 08002 . Barcelona
Your departure flights from the U.S. and back are the following airlines with the corresponding schedules. We recommend you arrive no later than 3½ hours before your scheduled departure time.
Please make sure to allow sufficient time for clearing immigration and customs if you are planning a connecting domestic flight. We recommend at least 3½ hours. Please keep in mind that flight schedules are always subject to change.
|2020: Sep. 13, Sep. 19, Oct. 3, Oct. 10||American Airlines||7:00PM||2:00PM|
|2021: All Departures||TBA||TBA||TBA|
ADVANCE SEAT ASSIGNMENT
Iberia Airlines and American Airlines do not assign seats in advance. Seat assignments can only be arranged at the airport upon check-in, and smarTours is not involved with assigning seats. If you have a preferred seating choice, please make sure you check-in for your flight as early as possible.
International flights to/from the U.S. are not included. Land-only travelers are responsible for arranging entry and exit flights, as well as their arrival and departure transfers. smarTours cannot be held responsible for any damage caused by air schedule changes and delays. Unused land services are non-refundable.
Main Tour: Land-only services start upon independent check-in at Madrid hotel on Day 2 of the itinerary listed on the tour page. Land-only services end after breakfast at Barcelona hotel on Day 12 of the itinerary listed on the tour page.
PASSPORT AND VISA INFORMATION
You must be in possession of a passport valid for at least 6 months after the date of travel. Visa is not required for American passport holders. Non-U.S. citizens should check with the respective consulates as to the most current visa requirements to all their travel destinations. Please remember that it is your responsibility to obtain the necessary travel documents before the trip.
TICKETS AND FINAL DOCUMENTS
Your airline tickets along with final instructions and additional travel tips will be sent to you 7–10 days before the scheduled departure of your tour. Please make sure to advise us in case your address changes.
Immunizations are not currently required. However, you may wish to consult your personal physician or local public health authorities about to their suggestions.
Expect daytime high temperatures in the 60s to 70s in April and October, 70s to 80s in May and September, and 80s to 90s in June.
The hotels used on this tour offer several dining choices from casual to specialty restaurants. Average cost for dinner (excluding drinks) in the casual restaurant is about $20-25 per person. Your hotel will accept credit cards for your non-included meals. Optional activities will be offered.
CREDIT CARDS AND LOCAL CURRENCY
Hotels and some stores will accept major credit cards. However, for “street shopping,” you will need local currency. You can either exchange U.S. dollars into local currency in advance of your trip or use your debit card to withdraw local currency from an ATM. It is recommended that you bring along cash in small denominations.
Each passenger may bring one piece of checked-in luggage (suitcase) max. 44 pounds and one carry-on, not exceeding 18”x10”x8”. We recommend that you do not overpack and that you take a variety of casual separates with climate and comfort in mind.