The Art Walk in Madrid is every art lover’s dream. In one small stretch you can browse the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum, the Reina Sofia and the Prado, one of the world’s most celebrated galleries. It’s easy to be consumed by the architecture, culture and vibrant nightlife of Barcelona, but the food will also leave you salivating. Traditional Catalan dishes such as fideua (similar to seafood paella) and botifarra amb mongetes (haricot beans served with sausage) taste a little like heaven. The wine isn’t bad either.. Gaudi’s modern basilica, La Sagrada Familia, is like no other building in the world. Still under construction after 130 years, this Gothic masterpiece embodies Barcelona’s artistic and progressive heart. Logrono is bursting with delicious local produce and wine, just waiting to be enjoyed on an optional pintxos crawl. Delicioso!
Want to get a taste of Spain’s enviable culture, cuisine, gorgeous cities and sunny beaches but are short on time? This week-long Spanish adventure has got you covered. After getting your fill of world-class art at Madrid’s renowned museums, head to the medieval town of Logrono, the capital of La Rioja wine region. Continue through Basque County to beautiful San Sebastian, a seaside town with great beaches, great surf and an even better food. Wrap up the journey in Barcelona, a wonderful mix of Gothic and Gaudi architecture, cultural riches and non-stop nightlife.
Breakfast Included: 4 Lunches Included: Dinner Included:
Welcome to Madrid, Spain’s metropolitan capital. Your tour begins with a welcome meeting at 7 pm where you’ll meet your tour leader and fellow travellers. After this important meeting, why not get your first taste of Madrid’s vibrant nightlife and head out for some tapas and rioja with your new travel crew. Your tour leader can point you towards the barrios and hangouts favoured by Madrilenos. If you arrive early, make sure to get out and discover some of the city's rich cultural offerings. You could easily spend a week simply strolling Madrid’s world-class galleries and museums, so maybe tick one off the list today – the Museo Nacional del Prado, or simply the Prado, is a good place to start.
Today is a free day to discover Madrid at your own pace; which side of this diverse city you’d like to explore is up to you. Art lovers will soon find they’ve come to the right place – Madrid’s galleries are world-renowned. The Prado, the Riena Sofia and the Thyssen-Bornemisza are the heavyweights – both in terms of the sheer size and quality of works that line their walls – and make up Madrid’s renowned ‘Golden Triangle of Art’. Browse works by Spain’s most acclaimed pre-20th-century artists (like Goya and Velazquez) at the Prado, modern Spanish art the Reina Sofia (Picasso and Dali) and eight centuries of European paintings at the Thyssen-Bornemisza. Foodies won’t want to miss a visit to Mercado de San Miguel, one of the oldest markets in the city and a great place to sample local specialties, like seafood paella. Ask your tour leader and food-oriented Urban Adventure day tours available. Sports fans will want to take a pilgrimage to the Santiago Bernabeau Stadium for a tour, and if you’re lucky, to witness a Real Madrid match. Or, you may simply choose to while away the day strolling Madrid’s beautiful streets, admiring its elegant boulevards, manicured parks and photogenic mix of architectural styles.
After breakfast, take the 1.5-hour journey by public bus to the charming town of Logrono. Located on the banks of the Ebro River, Logrono is the capital of Spain’s renowned Rioja wine region and a favourite stop of pilgrims en route to Santiago de Compostela. This buzzing town also boasts fantastic architecture and a growing culinary reputation; some of the best tapas bars in all of Spain are crammed into its small medieval centre. After checking in to your accommodation, the rest of the day is free to explore. Stroll the pretty, Insta-worthy streets to discover the town’s lovely gardens, fountains and tree-studded squares. In the evening, perhaps do as locals and head out on a pintxos crawl around the town.
Today you’ll hop a bus and travel two hours north to the seaside town of San Sebastian. More than just gorgeous beaches arching around the Bay of Biscay, San Sebastian’s world-class food scene, packed festival calendar and grand architecture make it the jewel of Spain’s Basque country. The day is yours to spend how you please upon arrival. Maybe spend some time in the sun and sand at one of San Sebastian’s three urban beaches: La Concha, Zurriola and Ondarreta. If La Concha looks familiar, it’s because it’s frequently featured on travel blogs and often tops ‘Europe’s best beaches’ lists. Or perhaps hit the beach tomorrow and use today to explore the bustling streets of the Old Town, packed with pinxto bars, historic buildings and a range of shops. You’ll soon discover this is a city obsessed with food, and it’s no wonder, considering San Sebastian is home to some of the world’ best restaurants helmed by experimental chefs. In the evening, why not head out for a txikiteo of pinxtos, a Basque-style tapas crawl. Make sure to wash your meal down with the region’s signature drop, txakoli (slightly fizzy white wine).
Enjoy another free day to delve further into all San Sebastian has to offer. Maybe take a cable car to Monte Igueldo for a fabulous view of La Concha. Find a patch of sand at Zurriola Beach and watch the surfers riding the waves of Biscay Bay. For a dose of Basque history, check out the San Telmo Museum. Alternatively, venture further afield and visit the medieval, fishing village of Getaria for a more low-key taste of coastal Basque charm. Bilbao, with is interesting architecture and Frank Gehry-designed Guggenheim museum, is also an easy 1.5-hour bus ride away.
Today take the train up the coast to Barcelona (approximately 4 hours). Barcelona's quirky character and fabulous Catalan cuisine mixes seamlessly with a groundbreaking art scene, Gothic architecture, superb dining and a non-stop nightlife, making it a city you won't soon forget. In the afternoon, there are plenty of options to keep you busy. Wander the labyrinthine streets of the old Gothic Quarter and navigate your way through the throngs of tourists along La Rambla, Barcelona's famous tree-lined boulevard. Perhaps pay a visit to the Picasso Museum, the National Art Museum of Catalonia or the Museum of City History to brush up on your local knowledge. Take the funicular to the top of Montjuic or Tibidabo for panoramic views of Barcelona and the harbour. The heart of Catalonia prides itself as a gastronomic centre and so this evening perhaps head out to taste the reputation for yourself. Take a tapas crawl through rustic Catalan dishes in the funky neighbourhood of El Born.
Today’s a free day to discover all Barcelona has to offer. In the morning, maybe check out one of Barcelona’s other markets; Mercado de Santa Caterina is usually less crowded than La Boqueria and is a great place to pick up a cheap breakfast and mix with locals. Afterwards, you may want to check out more of Gaudi’s famous buildings. You could easily spend a half day just at Park Guell, exploring its fairytale-like patchwork of buildings, statues and sculptures, not to mention the incredible view of the city from the central placa. A visit to Gaudi's masterpiece, the modern basilica of La Sagrada Familia, is a must, even if it's just to see the outside. Maybe check out some of Barcelona’s museums such as the Picasso Museum, the Nation Art Museum of Catalonia or the Museum of City History. Another option is to take the funicular to the top of Montjuic for panoramic views of Barcelona and the harbour. Barca fans will want to pay a visit to Camp Nou, and of course, there’s always Barcelona’s legendary beaches. Ask your tour leader for advice if you’re not sure how to make the most of your free day. Tonight, why not gather the group and enjoy a final tapas-style meal together to celebrate the end of a great trip.
Your Spain adventure comes to an end this morning; there are no activities planned for today. As there is much to do and see in Barcelona, you may wish to spend a few more days in this exciting city. Our reservations team can help book additional accommodation (subject to availability).