Spain is an experiential country full of traditional tapas bars and tempestuous old fortresses, atmospheric flamenco and enigmatic pueblos blancos, old Moorish beauty and contemporary Spanish flair, reliving the conquistadors and remembering El Greco. Handcrafted to take you beneath the surface, this ten-day tour dives into the heart of Spain, taking you through Madrid, Toledo, Cordoba, Seville, Ronda, Malaga, and Granada. It’s authentic at every turn.
Madrid – Easing into the Spanish Experience
Madrid is easy on the eye and easy to get around as the Spanish capital is compact and laid-back, and completely different from what you may have experienced in Paris or London. Tourists are also relatively thin on the ground, surprisingly so you may think when wandering around the city’s heart. After meeting your guide at the airport, you will be transferred to your hotel just beyond the Plaza Mayor, and footsteps away from streets once lived in by Cervantes and Velazquez. Grab some chocolate and churros at a famous street-side haunt then get a sense of how Spain ticks as the locals come out late and make the most of each evening. There are no specific sights planned, but you will ease into the Spanish way of doing things.
Madrid – The Museums and Magic of Madrid
Madrid – A Day Trip to El Greco’s Medieval Toledo
Cordoba – More Than the Mezquita in Enigmatic Cordoba
Seville – Traditional Tapas and Flamenco
Seville – Glories of the Conquistadors
Ronda – Private Tour Through Andalusia’s Famous Pueblos Blancos
Granada – A Misunderstood Beauty on the Coast: Romance in the Mountains
Granada – An Old Moorish City From a Dream
Granada – Departure
- Appreciate true tapas as guides take you round Andalusia’s best tavernas
- Marvel at exquisite Moorish remains, like the Cordoba Mezquita and Granada Alhambra
- Spend a day discovering Andalusia’s Pueblos Blancos, whitewashed villages hidden in the mountains
- Explore the best of medieval Toledo, using El Greco as a lens in one of Europe’s finest medieval cities
- Experience true flamenco with a night in a traditional Seville bar plus an evening with Granada’s gypsy flamenco-style
- Ease into the Spanish experience with three nights in Madrid, including grand plazas, superb architecture, and the unbeatable Prado
- Dive beneath the surface as local guides show you the authentic side to each destination, Malaga just one example of a city that’s misunderstood by most visitors
- Discover the wealth and beauty brought back to Seville by the conquistadors
Spain is less a country that you visit and more a country that you experience. Even the heart of capital city Madrid is authentic, populated by locals rather than overcrowded with tour buses. This is a country that you explore with all of your senses and where the highlights are much more than the sights. The poignant voice of a flamenco singer seeps out from an Andalusian tavern as smells and sounds guide you down small alleyways and towards the traditional tapas bars. Exquisite art hangs in the churches and cathedrals, looking down on serene Catholic followers. Tiny white-washed villages appear unchanged, tucked away on mountain peaks, blurring into their surroundings. Even the journeys are authentic, such as taking an evening paseo or walk, over a Plaza Mayor, or main square.
Look forward to the magnificence of the Moors, most famously at Cordoba’s Mezquita and Granada’s Alhambra, yet found all across Andalusia. Surrounding the majestic old mosques are atmospheric neighborhoods, where the history seems alive, and you can walk the mazy lanes. In Toledo, the sights are harmonious with many religions coming together in Europe’s best-preserved medieval city, El Greco’s artwork adding an extra dimension. Madrid’s museums are worthy of worldwide fame while across the country you can find many superlative sights barely even mentioned in guidebooks, like the Roman theater that stands proudly in Malaga. Such an abundance of sights also helps to absorb Spain’s abundance of visitors, so most do not feel too crowded, and the most popular have implemented strict daily visitor limits in order to preserve the experience.
This handcrafted tour is all about taking you beneath the surface, using local guides to show you around seven different destinations. Start with three nights in Madrid, a very relaxed capital city that helps you unwind into the country’s atmosphere. Day two focuses on Madrid’s sights and local streets, before a day trip to nearby Toledo on day three. Then it’s off into Andalusia as you take the fast train to Cordoba and find out that there’s more to this enigmatic city than the Mezquita. A short railway hop brings you to Seville, the home of true tapas and flamenco, and you will experience both on your first evening in Seville.
Seville grew wealthy thanks to the conquistadors, and its old city deserves a full day of exploration. You will need a good guide because so many of the stories are contradictory, and much is hidden behind the old city walls. The pueblos blancos or white villages are an old Andalusian highlight, places of unchanged tradition in gloriously remote settings. Visit two of them en route to the biggest of them all, Ronda. Malaga is misunderstood and an intriguing little stop on the route to Granada, where you end this handcrafted ten-day tour in a fairytale world of Moorish architecture and mountaintop escapism. Consider learning more about our travelers’ favorite Spain travel experiences by reading their Spain travel reviews.
$3,115 per person (excluding international flights)
Your Zicasso trip is fully customizable, and this sample itinerary is a starting place for your travel plans. Actual costs are dynamic, and your selection of accommodations and activities, your season of travel, and other such variables will bring this budget guideline up or down. Throughout your planning experience with your Zicasso specialist, your itinerary is designed around your budget. You can book your trip when you are satisfied with every detail. Planning your trip with a Zicasso travel specialist is a free service.
- In-country transportation
- Some or all activities and tours
- Expert trip planning
- 24x7 support during your trip
Your final trip cost will vary based on your selected accommodations, activities, meals, and other trip elements that you opt to include.
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