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11-Days Tour of Northern Spain
Madrid ~Santiago de Compostela ~ Oviedo ~ Santander ~ San Sebastian ~ Barcelona

Day 01 & 02 Madrid of Bourbouns

Welcome to Madrid! On arrival at Madrid airport, transfer to your hotel stay. Relax and settle in.

In the monring, A LOCAL EXPERT GUIDES YOU ALONG THE NOBLE AVENUES past the Cibeles Fountain and down the Gran Via to the statue of Don Quixote in the Plaza de Espana. Cross the Puerta del Sol and continue to the PRADO MUSEUM, A ROSE COLOURED PALACE HOUSING WORKS BY VELAZQUEZ, GOYA, TITIAN, BOTTICELLI, RUBENS, AND OTHERS. Then free time to relax at a cafe or shop in the boutiques.

Day 03 & 04 Saintly Santiago de Compostela

Away today through the Guadarrama Mountains to the infinite horizons of Old Castille. Some of Spain's most fashionable WHITE WINES are produced in the Rueda region, SO STOP FOR A TASTING! Continue past the impressive Castillo de la Motta, conquered by Queen Isabella and on to Santiago de Compostela, where the tomb of the Apostle St James was miraculously discovered in the Middle Ages.

In the morning, become acquainted with some of Europe's finest historical buildings with a local expert. The monumental square, Praca do Obradoiro, is pure grandeur in granite. Look up from the steady trickle of present-day pilgrims to the CATHEDRAL FACADE, an ensemble of soaring towers, arches and windows, festooned with architectural frills. ONCE THROUGH THE "GATEWAY OF GLORY", YOU'RE PRIVY TO THE SAME VISION THAT HAS GREETED PILGRIMS SINCE THE MIDDLE AGES. The faithful can pass behind the ornate high altar to touch the giant thirteenth-century gilded effigy of Saint James. Then free time to explore the narrow streets and old squares at your leisure.

Day 05 Along the Costa Verde to Oviedo

Get your cameras ready for a scenic drive along the Costa Verde. This Green Coast of Asturias is one of Spain's most beautiful named after the colour of the sea and the pine and eucalyptus trees that line the shore. Your route reveals glorious coastal vistas before turning inland to the modern town of Oviedo. A LOCAL EXPERT shows you the 9th century chruches built when the city was captial of Christian Spain. VISIT THE CHURCH OF SAN JULIAN covered with 1,000 year old wall, paintings and the cathedral in the stately square of Plaza Alfonso II. One of the best ways to get a feel for the local culture is to visit a market and El Fontan in the centre of Oviedo is no exception. Round off the day wiht AN INTRODUCTION TO NORTHERN SPAIN'S DRINK OF CHOICE in the "Boulevard of Cider".

Day 06 Peaks, Caves & Waves to Santander

See the unique Roman bridge in Cangas de Onis as you head into the foothills of the Picos de Europa, a National Park encompassing spectacular mountain and gorge scenery. VISIT THE HOLY CAVE OF COVADONGA, a shrine to Pelayo, who achieved the first Christian victory over the Moors in 722. Continue to SANTILLANA DEL MAR, arguably, "the most beautiful village in Spain". Stroll through the rustic cobblestone streets with stone houses decorated with carved heraldic symbols and reach the delightful church square. After time to explore, drive along the corniche road, with views of the Costa de Cantabria to reach the sophisticated beach resort of Santander.

Day 07 & 08 Bahia de la Concha & San Sebastian

Drive to nearby Bilbao to admire the striking modern architecture of the Guggenheim musem, one of the world's most spectacular buildings. Now a pleasant drive along part of the Costa Vasca, dotted with small coastal fishing villages. Pause in Zumaia, at the mouth of the Urola, where you can see 'el raton'; the mouse shaped rock. Continue to San Sebastian, pearl of the Cantabrian coast, set on its shell-shaped bay. The city harbour is filled with fishing boats and pleasure craft and you can enjoy a number of sporting activities on its large sandy beach. Spain's northern Basque country has evolved into the best place to eat in the Western world! DISCOVER THE CITY'S RICH GASTRONOMIC TRADITION tonight, at a DINE-AROUND evening in the old city's pintxos (tapas) bars, all washed down with the local sangria.

In the morning, admire the beauty of San Sebastian on A GUIDED WALKING TOUR OF THE OLD QUARTER. See the numbered balconies of the Plaza de la Constituction, a reminder of the days when bullfights were held in the square. Ascend Monte Igueldo for beautiful views of the town and La Concha Bay. The afternoon is at leisure to stroll along the San Sebastian's broadwalk. Maybe partake in an excellent dinner with drinks in a restaurant in the heart of Lo Viejo (Old town) tonight.

Day 09 & 10 Pamplona & Barcelona, the City of Gaudi

After breakfast, your first stop is in Pamplona, the city of the running of the bulls. Perhaps take a stroll to the famous Estafeta Street before moving on past the famous Rioja wine producing region. Continue to Barcelona, vibrant capital of Catalonia, a land that retains its own distinctive language, culture and traditions.

Wake up ready to embrace the city's artistic heritage. JOIN A LOCAL EXPERT IN THE HEART OF THE GOTHIC QUARTER. See the cathedral in the Placa Nova and walk through the Roman gate to tour the narrow lanes and old squares. Now along the Passeig de Gracia, adorned with elegant wrought-iron street lamps and the most flamboyant Modernist buildings. Continue through the Eixample district to stand beneath the soaring facade of Gaudi's extraordinary, unfinished Sagrada Familia church. A mix of Gothic spires, fruity mosaics and sinuous sculpture - it defies belief! Also spend some time in La Boqueria, one of Europe's largest and most famous food markets. The afternoon is free at leisure. This evening, raise your glasses at a finale CELEBRATION DINNER with wine at a local restaurant.

Day 11 Depart Barcelona

After breakfast, departure transfer arrive at Barcelona Airport.


Bon Voyage!

Remarks :
Every effort will be made to adhere to the planned itinerary.  However, due to weather conditions and reasons beyond our control, changes to the itinerary might occur, for which the company accepts no responsibility.


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