Costa del Sol
Explore the wonders of Madrid and Andalusia, Spain's mythical south on a mix of private guided, or independent days mixed in with a multi-day small group tour. Spend time in Madrid availing of private guided tours or explore by yourself at leisure. Then join a small group multi-day tour taking you from the splendours of Madrid through wonderful Andalusia - a land of history, culture, stunning vistas and coastlines, flamenco and fiestas! Not only has it inspired such celebrated painters as Picasso and Velasquez, but it has also held an enduring fascination for writers – as well as being the true setting for Bizet’s “Carmen”, perhaps the most famous opera of all time. It is a unique area where East meets West in an exotic melting pot of Jewish, gypsy, Moorish and Christian cultures. You will delight in the wines and cuisine, be beguiled by the stunning sights and sounds, from the vibrancy of Seville, the beaches of the Costa de la Luz and the Costa del Sol to the magnificence of the great Alhambra.
In general, the small group tours depart every 2nd Tuesday from May 14, 2013 until October 8th, 2013, with only 1 departure in August (August 27th) with a maximum of 16 people per trip.
Consider adding additional days to your trip with the services of a private guide and/or driver to see more of the country - your time on either side of your small group tour can be customized to suit your needs (and private guided tours can be added throughout your small group experience as desired). Spain has perhaps the richest cultural heritage of any European country and, particularly in the southern province of Andalusia, which boasts a fantastic blend of Roman, Catholic, and Arabic influences. This tour takes you from the splendours of Madrid through to wonderful Andalusia, visiting many well-known sights as well as lesser-known gems along the way. Sample wine and tapas in Valdepeñas, taste sherry in Jerez, enjoy a flamenco show in Seville and dine in one of Granada’s top restaurants, with stunning views of the Alhambra.
Meet your driver for a private airport transfer in Madrid.
A welcome package with your vouchers, a city map, train tickets (if relevant) and any other touristic information that we deem you may find useful will be waiting for you upon your arrival at your first hotel on your trip.
Your guide will meet you at your hotel and take you through the narrow and steep streets of the oldest part of Madrid, discovering the history and emblematic locations such as Plaza Mayor, Puerta de Sol and Plaza de la Villa. (No entrance fees included).
The Hotel Regente (3*) is a hotel in Madrid located on Gran Vía street and only a few minutes walk from the Puerta del Sol, Plaza Mayor and Madrid de los Austrias old. Featuring 154 rooms, this hotel displays traditional hispanic charm. The hotel is surrounded by theaters, cinemas, restaurants and boutiques and public transport, either by metro or city bus is close and convenient.
See and do exactly what you feel like today with your 24 hour Madrid Card. The Card is an electronic smart card offering free admission to more than 40 museums in and around Madrid, including the major ones. Your ticket can be used on the 'Madrid Vision' sightseeing bus, allowing you to get on and off the bus as many times as you wish for a day. The card also entitles you to visit the Planetarium, a guided walking tour from the "Discover Madrid Program", use of a Cable Car, visit Faunia Biologic Park and Imax Cinema. You can also benefit from discounts in more than 100 establishments including shops, restaurants, shows, rent a car and leisure centres for adults and children. You will also obtain a guidebook with information on the museums and establishments that are included on the scheme and a map of the city. Exchange your voucher for a Madrid Card at: Madrid Tourist Board, Plaza Mayor 27 between 9.30am and 8.30pm or at Metro Travellers Information Centre. Your pass is valid from 9am until 7pm.
Meet up with your tour companion and fellow travellers of your small group tour this afternoon. The rendezvous is at 14:00pm at the Hotel Vincci Capitol, Gran Via 41, 28013, Madrid, Spain.
Enjoy a half-day tour of Spain’s impressive capital, Madrid, including a visit to the Real Palace.
This evening you will enjoy a welcome dinner with the rest of the group in a traditional Spanish restaurant.
Boasting unbeatable location in the heart of Madrid, the hotel Vincci Capitol is within a short walking distance from main landmarks the Spanish capital has to offer. From your doorstep on the Gran Vía and Plaza Callao you will reach in few minutes the Puerta del Sol, famous Plaza Mayor, the magnificent Royal Palace and sumptuous Royal Theatre. The breathtaking architectural statement in Deco style within which the hotel is housed is also famous for the cinema Capitol, on the ground floor. At the Vincci Capitol a welcoming invitation to unwind is offered by its outstanding rooms and suites, tasteful ambiances equipped by the latest amenities. Choose the Vincci Capitol and enjoy your time in Madrid at best.
Please note that your hotel may be the above or a hotel of similar standard and will be confirmed prior to departure.
Today you will head south out of Madrid to Toledo, the former capital of Spain before the south of the country was reconquered from the Moors. Toledo is brimming with hundreds of years of history and is still known locally as the “Imperial City”. You will see the magnificent Cathedral as well as the Synagogue of Santa Maria la Blanca, the Jewish Quarter and the Monastery of San Juan de los Reyes. After the tour concludes you will return to Madrid.
You have the afternoon free to enjoy the many pleasures this wonderful city has to offer.
Bid farewell to Madrid this morning and travel south across the vast plains of Central Spain and the La Mancha region, famous for its fairy tale castles, delicious wines and, of course, Don Quixote. This region produces some of Spain’s finest cheese, Manchego. You will stop in Valdepeñas where you visit a local bodega to sample wines and tapas before you continue to the beautiful city of Cordoba, where you stop for the night.
Hotel Las Casas de la Juderia (5*) situated in a privileged setting opens its doors after undergoing a restoration to overlook the Jewish Quarter, the Xth century Caliphate’s Baths, in the garden of Campo Santo de los Mártires, right in front of the hotel; and in the same area, there are the Alcázar de los Reyes Cristianos (Alcázar of the Christian Monarchs), the Royal Mews and just 200 metres away, the Great Mosque of Córdoba.The history and architecture of the building have been strictly respected in its restoration into a hotel. The outcome has been an especially charming hotel with all the facilities and services demanded by today’s traveller in a really beautiful setting where to enjoy peace and quiet. They believe it’s the small things that make a difference. That is why all 64 rooms of Hotel Las Casas de la Juderia in Cordoba are filled with original and period furnishings and decorative art, specially the works of cordoban , ancient moorish leather craftsmanship. This attention to detail and elegance enhance the experience and emotions. The building was originally called “Casa Palacio de las Pavas” and was structured around several moorish courtyards of mudejar style, a garden and an orchard. However, by the end of the 16th century an important Renaissance style refurbishment took place, leaving amongst other fine examples the Crucero courtyard and the present Renaissance courtyard.
Enjoy your first taste of the rich North African architectural heritage left in Andalusia with a walking tour of Cordoba. Visit the Mezquita, or Mosque, of Cordoba. This UNESCO World Heritage building was originally born as the Christian Visigothic Church of St. Vincent in around 600 AD, but was converted into a Mosque by the Moorish conquerors between 784 and 987 AD. Today, the Mezquita has been reconverted into a Christian place of worship and is the Cathedral of the Diocese of Cordoba. Afterwards you head to the Jewish Quarter for a visit to Cordoba’s historic Synagogue.
This afternoon you leave Cordoba and head for Seville, the largest city in the Andalusia region and your base for the next three nights.
Becquer Hotel, located in the historical center of Seville, invites you to have a walk through city streets, to get to know its corners, admire its architecture. The Cathedral, the Giralda Tower of Santa Cruz Neighborhood are within five minutes on foot. Totally equipped rooms with the maximum comfort decorated with current classical style in different tonalities. Becquer Hotel knows how to satisfy your needs with two well-equipped restaurants: "Maese Pérez" and "Las Golondrinas". The hotel also provide a swimming pool and a spa.
In the morning you will enjoy a walking tour of this fascinating and vibrant Spanish city. Highlights include Seville’s impressive Cathedral and the Alcazar, a Royal Palace that was originally built as a Moorish fort.
In the afternoon you will have some free time to explore Seville at your own pace.
Enjoy an unforgettable Andalusian dinner and flamenco show tonight.
Visit today is of Jerez de la Frontera, a city whose roots date back to Roman times and, which is now most famous for being the hub of sherry wine production in the area. After lunch continue to Cadiz, the oldest continually-inhabited city on the Iberian Peninsula. Cadiz has an impressive Old Town and was the departure point for many of Christopher Columbus’s expeditions to the New World. Return to Seville.
Bid farewell to Seville and drive south-west into the towering mountains that overlook the southern Spanish Coast. You arrive in Ronda, a beautiful town perched on the edge of a deep canyon cut out by the River Guadalevín. Ronda is most famous for the three bridges that span this canyon, one of which dates back to Roman times. There will be time for you to enjoy this pretty city at leisure this afternoon.
The Hotel Maestranza is situated in the centre of the historic city of Ronda, 200 metres from the amazing Bridge over the Gorge. A modern hotel but decorated in the classic style typical from Ronda designed to offer its guests a welcoming accommodation, rooms are fully equipped with all the features for your comfort which provides a comfortable and pleasant stay. The hotel also has his own private parking, coffee shop and an excellent restaurant 'Sol y Sombra' that offers a menu mixing their traditional Andalusian cooking prepared with highest quality local products and modern cooking.
This morning you head further west to the unforgettable city of Granada. Granada was the last stronghold of the Moorish Empire in southern Spain until it finally fell to the Catholic Kings in 1492. Surrounded by the snow-capped peaks of the imposing Sierra Nevada, it is said that the last Nasrid ruler of Granada, Boabdil, loved his city so much that he wept as he left looked back at it as he fled back to North Africa.
This afternoon your guide will introduce you to this fascinating city which you will then enjoy at your leisure.
The Hotel Casa del Capitel Nazarí is an ancient Renaissance palace built in 1503 and located in the picturesque area of the Albaicin, in front of the Alhambra in Granada and in the city centre, close to the cathedral. It is a palace with lintels and Tuscan columns, Corinth capitals, Arabic chromium-plated beams, Renaissance decorated wooden ceiling and two Roman columns. The hotel has 18 rooms full of history and attention to details. His calmness and serenity bring you everything you need to enjoy your stay and make it highly comfortable.
Visit the magnificent Alhambra, a breath-taking Moorish palace and fortress perched on top of a steep hill adjacent to the city centre. A true tribute to the beauty of North African architecture in Andalusia, the Alhambra is a huge network of beautiful rooms, patios and gardens, which enjoy fantastic views out over the mountains above and down onto the city below.
You will have the afternoon at leisure.
Tonight you will enjoy a farewell dinner in one of the city’s top restaurants with your fellow travellers.
Leaving Granada behind you travel towards the Mediterranean coast. You will stop en route in the beautiful village of Frigiliana, a tangle of narrow cobbled streets lined by whitewashed houses, typical of this mountainous region of Spain. Afterwards you wind your way down to the coastal city of Malaga, where your tour ends.
Your Small Group Tour ends this afternoon upon arrival at Hotel Petit Palace Plaza Malaga at approximately 4:00pm. Bid farewell to your Guide and fellow travellers as you close the chapter on this part of your travels.
Offering comfortable accommodation and convenient facilities, the AC Malaga Palacio Hotel provides you with all of the quality amenities to make your stay a memorable one. The AC Malaga Palacio Hotel is a perfect location between the Malaga Cathedral and the Paseo del Parque, combined with its spectacular views of the marina. It is ideal for business trips or simply to enjoy the wide range of recreational and cultural activities on the Costa del Sol. The hotel has cosy guestrooms that are well furnished and equipped with modern amenities. The restaurant is located on the second floor of the hotel, offering magnificent views of the Paseo del Parque. Cuisine is based on regional and top class international dishes. Breakfast is a highlight, with a wide range of Mediterranean and local products.
Enjoy your private airport transfer.
Citizens of other countries may require a visa. Please ask your Sales Advisor. These requirements change often and therefore it is best that you check with the Embassy of Spain for the most up to date visa information.
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