Arrive at Barajas airport and meet your driver as you leave customs. We’ll drop you off at your hotel where you’ll start your first small group Segway tour of the Madrid “Letters and Arts” District. Later in the day begin a walking tour at Plaza de Oriente, the center of 15th century Madrid. This walking tour will lead you through streets and squares belonging to the times of the Hapsburg royalty. Pass the Royal Palace, Royal Theater and Opera. Your guide will tell you the legends and history of the commoners and nobility during the Spanish Renaissance. A few other stops along the way are the Tower of Lujan, San Miguel Market, Plaza Mayor where bullfights were once held and Plaza de España. During your tour, make stops at classic tapas bars and cafés to sample local fare paired with excellent wine.
Catch the train to Toledo. The ancient capital is well-preserved and full of cultural wonder. As you approach, notice how the entire city crowds onto a high, rocky perch protected by the Tajo River. Your guide will meet you near the Bisagra Gates, the entrance to the Arabic city, before leading you through the Old Town and Arabic Quarters. Visit Zocodover Square where the main market was once set up. Enter the Cathedral, El Salvador Mosque and the nearby Cristo de la Luz Mosque. Along your way, the guide will tell you the store of Toledo’s 3 religions and people groups that lived in harmony during a time when the rest of the country was at war. End the tour at an artisanal swordmaker, Toledo’s famous trade that was set in motion by the Umeyyad Dynasty.
Meet your driver for the ride to Atocha train station. Catch the AVE south to sunnier weather and the land of flamenco. Your driver will hold on to your luggage while you try out some of the local venues in the Jewish Quarters. In the early afternoon, your guide will meet you to begin your tour of what was once the most culturally advanced city in Europe. Enter the mosque, converted into a cathedral after the Reconquest in 1236 and listen to the stories of the sultans and commoners who built it together. Wander the Jewish Quarters, known for their jewelers, strolling among the whitewashed houses and red gardenias.
Your guide will explain why the Jews lived in such cramped quarters and explain some of their customs. End the tour of Cordoba with a visit to a classic medieval Jewish home. After the tour, your driver will take you to your hotel in nearby Ronda.
Meet your driver in the hotel lobby for the drive through the mountains and sunflower country. Discover a small corner of Spain where traditional village life goes on as it has for thousands of years. Begin at Zahara de la Sierra, a fortress town towering above the surrounding plains. Climb its cobblestoned streets to the fortified castle for excellent views. As you descend again, make a stop at a 300-year-old olive mill for a tour and tasting. Next stop on your guided tour is the tiny village of Grazalema, a town within a natural park.
Finally, we’ll take a break for lunch just outside Ronda with a tour and wine tasting at a countryside winery. After lunch, take a late afternoon tour of Ronda, the birthplace of bullfighting. Go inside the bullring to step into the matador’s shoes. Later cross the New Bridge spanning a plunging gorge that separates Ronda’s New and Old Quarters. Once across the bridge, your guide will continue the tour down cobblestone streets into the Collegiate Church and Don Bosco’s medieval palace.
Meet your driver in the hotel lobby for the drive to nearby Estepona port. Your captain will be waiting to welcome you aboard our Bénéteau Oceanis 351 sailing yacht. Head out into the Mediterranean for a day of dolphin watching, swimming out at sea, deep sea paddle surf and snorkeling. There will be drinks, sandwiches and snacks on board. When you return to port, you’ll have the chance to try the local seafood and wander the old town before returning to Ronda.
Meet your driver for the ride up through the Guadalhorce Valley to El Chorro and the massive hydroelectric dam. Begin your walk on what was once the service road for the dam works. Built at the beginning of the 20th century and named for King Alfonso XIII, the trail was recently completely renovated to allow hikers access once again. Climb on narrow pathways high above the river into the Desfiladero de Gaitanes, enjoying the views and wildlife along the way. Continue to Granada in the afternoon.
Wake up in Granada – the last Arabic kingdom in Spain until 1492. Your guide will be waiting at the entrance to the Alhambra. We’ll go back 900 years to visit the 11th wonder of the world. Gardens of Paradise, Alcazar Fortress and the renowned Nasrid Palaces are just some parts of the Alhambra Forbidden City that you’ll visit on tour. After leaving the palaces, take some time to try the tapas in Granada center. In the afternoon, join your guide and small group for a Segway tour of the Albaicín and Sacromonte quarters. In the evening, drive to Sevilla.
Wake up in Sevilla, once the royal port for all ships arriving with riches from the Americas to Spain and Portugal. Your guide will meet you for a morning biking tour. Begin at the city walls, passing the Murillo Gardens with several stops in Barrio Santa Cruz, the background to the opera “Carmen”. See the Alcazar fortress, the Cathedral and the Giralda prayer tower. Your tour will end at the Tower of Gold on the river where you’ll take a slow cruise up and down the Guadalquivir. Finish the day with an intimate flamenco show at Casa de la Memoria on Calle Cuna.
Catch the train to Jerez. Today, learn about Spanish cuisine from start to finish in the small town of Jerez de la Frontera. Your guide will meet you near the Alcázar in the old town. Walk through the local fresh and fish market to purchase the ingredients you’ll cook with. Continue through the Jewish Quarters and the city center to Bodegas Díez Mérito where the local sherry is made. Taste and select the perfect vintage to add to your meal. Arrive at a typical Andalucían home in the center of town. Here your chef will teach you the perfect combination for mouthwatering Andalusian dishes. Finally dig into your own 3-course meal, accompanied by local wine. Return to Sevilla.
Meet your driver in the hotel lobby for the drive along Spain and Portugal’s coast north to Lisbon. We can stop for lunch in Doñana National Park or in the first little coastal town as you enter Portugal: Tavira. Arrive in Lisbon after midday. Your guide will pick you up in the evening for a food and wine tour. Learn about Lisbon’s café culture near Rossio Plaza, try codfish cakes, stop at a wine bar in Bairro Alto for the local white wine. Visit Castle Hill to see the best views of the city and discover Lisbon’s best sausages and cheeses, paired with a glass of port. Finish with a gourmet meal in one of Lisbon’s traditional restaurants.
Meet your driver in the hotel lobby for the drive along the Tagus River and through the Arrabida wine region. You’ll pass through vineyards, cork and olive trees. Visit a beautiful, family-owned winery in the heart of Arrabida Park. Try some of the local vintages. Continue to the highest point of the park for views of the Atlantic Ocean extending before you. We’ll take some time to walk along Portinho da Arrabida beach before enjoying lunch at Sesimbra fishing village. On our way back to Lisbon, we’ll finish the day with a stop in a wine cellar in Azeitao.
Meet your driver for the ride to Lisbon airport to end your Spain and Portugal trip.
Local 49P Puerto de Estepona
29680 Estepona Málaga Spain
Mon - Fri 09.30 - 18.00 Saturday CLOSED
Other times by appointment.