When taking a trip to Barcelona we dream of immersing ourselves in a unique and fascinating city. Of marvelling at the fantastical architecture of Antonio Gaudi; taking in the colourful sights, sounds and smells at La Boqueira food market; meandering down La Rambla seeing the street entertainers and stopping for a glass of crisp fresh cava at any time of the day!
In Madrid the atmosphere is rather different – here lives The King of Spain and a tour of his palace and a day visiting the Golden Triangle of Art lead by the world famous El Prado Museum sets the scene of Royal grandeur. Then relax as the “Madrileños” do by boating in the park, shopping in the flagship designer stores and finally having a dinner of tapas and beer as you hop from bar to bar in the old quarters.
This holiday can start on any date you request and start from either Madrid or Barcelona
Day One - Arrive Barcelona and transfer to your hotel for 4 nights
Barcelona is a city unique in Spain known for its strong sense of identity, culture and fascinating buildings. Just stepping outside the front door of your hotel and you are in one of the most fashionable areas of the city; just a few metres away from Gaudi’s La Pedrera and the word famous Passeig de Gracia – a large, tree lined avenue lined with designer shops from all over the world including Chanel and Cartier to name a few. Running parallel is La Rambla; probably Spain’s most famous street which cuts through the city in a straight line to the beach and is always buzzing with locals and tourists, street vendors & artists. Just off La Rambla is the Gothic Quarter; a maze of narrow streets lined with cafe bars and restaurants.
Day Two – Guided city walk of Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter
For this morning you will have a guided walking tour of the Gothic quarter of Barcelona discovering the medieval buildings and plazas and also enjoying the bohemian atmosphere of 19th century Barcelona for which the city is world famous.
Afternoon guided tour of La Sagrada Familia
La Sagrada Familia is no doubt the most iconic structure in Barcelona. The church, located in L'Eixample district has been a focal point of Barcelona since construction commenced in 1882 and as building continues today the structure's fame only grows. Antoni Gaudí spent 43 years on this project and since his death in 1926, the duty to finish it has been passed on to several architects. Your tour will include a detailed walk around the outside and then you will be whisked past the queues as you have time to explore the impressive interior of this once seen never forgotten building.
Day Three - A day trip to the Montserrat Monastery and a visit to the famous Cava bodegas of Cataluña
Outside Barcelona in the heart of the Catalan countryside you find the iconic Montserrat monastery, a breath-taking Benedictine monk retreat set amidst stunning mountain scenery. The Holy Grotto is a world pilgrimage site and in the basilica you can also hear the Gregorian chanting choir. On the way back to Barcelona you will pass through the vineyards and stop to visit the vast underground cellars of Codorniu, where you will be given an introduction to how cava is made, including the 2nd fermentation which produces the sparkle. At the end of the visit there will be a tasting session and the opportunity to buy some cava direct from the bodega.
Day Four - A free day to relax and further explore Barcelona
There is so much more to see in the city including a trip to the Parque Güell, a perfect example of the Modernismo period of Barcelona where architects were called to expand upon the trending “Art Nouveau” and build a bourgeois living area for the cities rich and famous. In the afternoon head to the port and beach side of the city where you can enjoy a lunch in one of the many “chiringuito” style beach bars and soak up some Mediterranean sun for the afternoon.
Day Five - Guided walking tour of Seville
Madrid is the Capital city of Spain where all roads leading out across the country start from zero. The main highlights of the city are of course the “Golden Triangle of Art” – three world class museums headlined by “El Prado” where you can see the masterpieces of El Greco, Valazquez, Goya, Picasso and Dali. Your time in Madrid will also include a welcoming tapas tour of the city plus a day trip on the train to the unique city of Toledo, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1986 for its extensive cultural and monumental heritage and historical co-existence of Christian, Muslim and Jewish cultures.
Guided walking tapas tour
For your first evening in Madrid you will get a first-hand experience of the gastronomy, culture and history of the city on a tapas walking tour that takes you off the tourist track, discovering what Madrid is really all about whilst feasting on the local specialities.
Day Six - Immerse yourself in the Golden Triangle of Madrid
In central Madrid, three of the best museums in Europe are located within a ten-minute walk of each other: Museo del Prado, Centro de Arte Reina Sofia and Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza. The most important of the three is the Museo del Prado, where you can see the definitive collection of Spanish art over the past 500 years. The Reina Sofia is a less heavy experience with excellent modern art examples from Dali and Goya and many other examples of weird and wonderful art from the past 100 years. The Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza is a more varied collection as it covers art from medieval times up to the present day and was once the largest private art collection in the world.
Day Seven - A day trip on the train to Toledo
Toledo is a half hour train ride from Madrid and for your time here we will give you guidance notes for a self-guided walk around the medieval part of the city so you can discover for yourself all the hidden gems of the capital of Medieval Spain. Toledo is a living museum of synagogues, mosques and churches which provide outstanding architectural diversity throughout the city and the most famous Gothic cathedral which took over 250 years to complete is not to be missed. After lunch, be sure to visit the imposing Alcazár (fortress) which has played an active part in the city’s history plus The famous artist El Greco settled there in 1577 and his works are scattered around the city. His masterpiece El Entierro del Conde de Orgaz (The Burial of Count Orgaz) can be seen in the Iglesia de Santo Tomé.
Day Eight - Depart Madrid and say farewell to España!
Your hotel in Barcelona is perfectly located just behind La Pedrera gaudi building in the Eixample district and boasts privileged views of Casa Mila’s terrace...
From 1765.00 Euros *
* Price per person, based on two people sharing a standard double or twin room:
Please note these prices do not take in to consideration local and national holidays which may increase hotel rates for certain dates throughout the year, particularly Semana Santa (Holy Week) which in 2021 is from Sunday 28th March to Monday 5th April 2021. The Feria de Abril in Seville and the Festival de los Patios in Cordoba.
Please enquire for an exact quote for your required dates and particular room requirements.
I want you to know that we love Lemon Valley! Every boutique hotel was a delight; well centered, brightly colored and with courteous staff. The city guides were informative and caring, willing to help in any way requested. ALL arrangements for trains and hotels were 100% perfect. We have NEVER had such a wonderful tour.
I just wanted to say thank you for putting together such a wonderful trip. Everything went smoothly and the tours were wonderful. My granddaughter loved the Tapas tour in Madrid(so did my wife and I) and please be assured that we will recommend you to all our friends. We look forward to having you plan a trip to the south of Spain in the future.
We can’t thank you enough for all you did to make our trip to Spain so amazing. The hotels all were great --- and your flexibility with the day change in Barcelona was much appreciated. We love Spain and we love you. Though the trip got off to a rocky start –everything else was smooth and wonderful. The hotel in Valencia was awesome and we did love our hotel in Peniscola as well. Our tour guides in both cities were incredible – and the timing was perfect. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. I will also be writing a newsletter about our journey and will be sure to site you in that as well.
Just thought I'd let you know how much we enjoyed our holiday. All the arrangements you made for us worked out perfectly. We were very impressed by how easy it was to navigate the Spanish rail system and by the comfort and punctuality of the trains. The information booklet you prepared for us was really helpful and we were soon referring to it as "Nicola's bible". We ate at a number of the restaurants suggested in it and enjoyed the food in all of them. The guided walks also really added to the holiday experience. Thanks for creating such a stress-free holiday for us; we will be recommending you to our friends and family and we also hope to return before too long.
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