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Amazing Andalucia!

Length: 10 Days
Departing: May 2024

Andalucia is one of the most spectacular regions in Spain and steeped in Spanish and Moorish history. It’s one of the regions that most epitomises our classic impressions of Spain – sunshine, flamenco, beaches, fiestas, bullfights and grand palaces – and we’ll be bringing them all alive for you; but there are many more hidden treasures waiting for you to discover!

  • Walk around one of the adorable little Pueblos Blancos, or “White Villages” full of whitewashed buildings and tiny laneways
  • Visit some of the finest examples of Moorish architecture in the world, with the very best (and entertaining) local guides
  • Enjoy some fine examples of Andalucia’s flourishing wine industry at private tastings and a lunch in the vineyards
  • See breathtaking countryside every day
  • Discover an exciting foodie scene that is quite a far cry from the traditional, including lunch at a Michelin starred restaurant;
  • Visit the spectacular palace and gardens that were used in “Game of Thrones”
  • Relax in a beautiful restaurant on the Costa del Sol with a glass in your hand as the sun sets over the Mediterranean…

Another highlight of the trip is a visit to the famous Alhambra Palace, where not only will we enjoy an exclusive private tour with an expert guide, but stay the night in the Granada Parador, located inside the grounds of the Alhambra! A bucket list experience you can cross off your list!

There is no other tour that includes all of these unique experiences and immerses you in the vibrant and colourful culture that is uniquely Andalucian. Our local guides are outstanding; natives of their towns, knowledgeable and entertaining, they paint us a picture that makes their history and culture come alive!

Accommodation on the tour is as special as the experiences…

  • A choice of either a 4* Casa hotel or 5* Palace hotel in beautiful Seville
  • A luxurious rural property surrounded by olive groves near Ronda, where you can relax and enjoy beautiful views of the Andalusian countryside.
  • The unique Granada Parador at the Alhambra Palace complex

I can’t wait to show you this unique and stunningly beautiful part of Spain!

MONDAY 13TH MAY, 2024
Today we meet in Seville, the stunning capital of Andalucia, founded, according to myth, 3000 years ago by the Greek god Hercules. Seville is sunny, spectacular, full of magnificent buildings and exciting restaurants and tapas bars. It’s full of history but radiates the vibrant lifestyle of the modern-day city. On this tour you will have a choice of hotels in Seville, which are a short walking distance from each other; a charming 4* casa with classic Spanish decor & enclosed courtyard, or a 5* sumptuous “palace” style hotel. From this base we will spend 3 memorable nights discovering the delights of this gorgeous city, and be introduced to the delectable cuisine and wines of southern Spain! (D)

TUESDAY 14TH MAY
Seville is an architectural jewel and today we will discover these highlights and its fascinating history with our local guide on a comprehensive walking tour that includes the Santa Cruz Quarter (old Jewish quarter) and the stunning Cathedral. Free time this afternoon to shop or enjoy a carriage ride – it may sound touristy but everyone does it – it’s part of the fabric of the city, and the Andalucian horses are so beautiful! (B)

WEDNESDAY 15TH MAY
Seville’s Alcázar is one of the oldest functioning palaces in Europe, complete with stunning gardens . This morning we discover why this palace is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, how it blends different architectural types, and why it became the setting for “Lawrence of Arabia” and “Game of Thrones”. This afternoon we can enjoy a wander around the most beautiful square in Seville, the Plaza de Espagna. You’ll also have plenty of free time to sit in a tapas bar on the street and watch the world go by!

This evening, a flamenco performance… immerse yourself in the passion of dance! Dinner afterwards at a local restaurant. (B, D)

THURSDAY 16TH MAY
Today we leave Seville and travel to our base for the next 6 nights near the stunning perched village of Ronda, driving via the beautiful and history-soaked city of Cordoba.

During the 10th century and beginning of the 11th century Cordoba was the most populous city in the world, and during this time it became the intellectual centre of Europe. Because of its long and complex history, there is a beautiful mixture of Roman, Moorish & Medieval Western architecture, highlighted in both the Reales Alcazares, built in 1328, and the incredibly beautiful Mezquita. One of the world’s greatest works of Islamic architecture, the Mezquita reflects a refined age when Muslims, Jews and Christians lived side by side and enriched their city with a heady interaction of diverse, vibrant cultures.

After lunch in the old town, we continue on to our beautiful hotel nestled amongst the olive groves near the spectacular town of Ronda. (B, L, D)

FRIDAY 17TH MAY
Ronda is one of the most beautiful and historically rich towns in Andalucia, famous worldwide for its dramatic escarpments and views, and for the deep El Tajo gorge that carries the Rio Guadalevín through its centre. From the 18th century Puente Nuevo, or ‘new’ bridge, which straddles the 100m chasm below, you can take in the views over the Serranía de Ronda mountains.

Ronda is also famous as the birthplace of modern bullfighting, today glimpsed once a year at the spectacular Feria Goyesca. Held at the beginning of September, here fighters and some of the audience dress in the manner of Goya’s sketches of life in the region. Legendary Rondeño bullfighter Pedro Romero broke away from the prevailing Jerez ‘school’ of horseback bullfighting in the 18th century to found a style of bullfighting in which matadores stood their ground against the bull on foot. The bullring, Plaza de Toros, is the oldest in Spain and is now a museum, where visitors can stroll out into the arena. Our fabulous local guide is an expert on all things “Ronda” and entertaining into the bargain! You’ll have plenty of free time to wander round the village after our tour, discover the shops and choose one of the beautiful atmospheric restaurants with a view for lunch! Dinner this evening at a local restaurant which is a gourmet’s paradise in a unique setting. (B, D)

SATURDAY 18TH MAY
Today we will get to know the local wines at two different wineries, discover some of the surrounding countryside and enjoy a beautiful tapas-style lunch in the vineyards, which are overlooked by the Roman amphithreatre of Acinipo. The wines from the Ronda region are part of the DO Sierras di Malaga and known for a number of different grape varieties that match perfectly with the regional cuisine and tapas. You’ll love today’s itinerary enjoying delicious wines and soaking up the beautiful countryside!
(B, L)

SUNDAY 19TH MAY
Today a superb day on the Costa del Sol in Marbella, an hour away on the coast, taking a spectacular route through the mountains until we emerge high above the coast with magnificent views to the Rock of Gibraltar and on a clear day, all the way across the Alboran Sea to Africa!

We’ll start in Puerto Banus, the chic marina area, where you’ll have free time to  wander around the luxury boutiques, choose which super-yacht to buy, and perhaps enjoy a glass of wine by the water… then on to the old town of Marbella.

The highlight of Marbella’s pedestrian Avenida del Mar is a collection of ten extraordinary sculptures by Salvador Dali. From there, you can explore Marbella’s historic Old Town in the afternoon. With its picturesque, ancient architecture and maze of narrow cobbled streets full of boutique shops, funky art galleries, bars and eateries, the Old Town is almost like a separate village within Marbella. At the centre is Plaza de los Naranjos, a beautiful and typically Andalucian square full of orange trees and tropical plants.

This evening we’ll dine at a beautiful beachside restaurant and soak up the atmosphere as the sun sets over the Mediterranean. (B, D)

MONDAY 20TH MAY
This morning we’ll visit one of the famous “white villages”, Setenil de las Bodegas, where the homes are built into the surrounding cliffs and the town’s hilltop castle was once an Arab fortress. Setenil is also famous for the cured and dried meats such as a delicious jamon, which are produced in the local area. We’ll lunch at a nearby country bodega before visiting a local ranch which rears bulls for fighting and exquisite Andalucian horses. In southern Spain, bull fighting is still one of the traditions of the region. It’s not for everyone, but this visit is not confronting (there are no fights involved!), rather it’s about learning about the traditions and complexities of the bullfight and the reverence for the bulls that they raise. The horses are exquisite and mainly bred for showing and dressage. Dinner at the hotel this evening. (B, L, D)

TUESDAY 21ST MAY
Today is set aside as a day of gourmet surprises… and no, we can’t tell you or it wouldn’t be a surprise! (B, L)

WEDNESDAY 22ND MAY
Today we leave our accommodation in Ronda to stay for a night in Granada, so that we can enjoy the ultimate visit to one of the world’s most magnificent palaces, the Alhambra. Set against a backdrop of brooding Sierra Nevada peaks, this fortified palace complex started life as a walled citadel before going on to become the opulent seat of Granada’s Nasrid emirs. Their showpiece palaces, the 14th-century Palacios Nazaríes, are among the finest Islamic buildings in Europe and, together with the gorgeous Generalife gardens, form the incredible complex that is the Alhambra.

Tonight we will stay at the Granada Parador, in a 15th Century convent building – the only hotel that is actually inside the grounds of the Palace complex! Seeing the Alhambra by night is a “bucket list” item! Dinner at the Parador restaurant overlooking the beautiful gardens. (B, D)

THURSDAY 23RD MAY
Today you can either transfer to Malaga for convenient international flights, or back to Seville for a few extra days enjoying that magnificent city! Please note transfer costs are not included in the tour price, but we can arrange this for you. (B)

On this tour there is a choice of two hotels in Seville; the Hotel Alfonso XIII (5*) or the Hotel Casa del Poeta (4*). There is an easy 10 minute walk between the two hotels, through the old town. Please note that pickups each day will be from the Alfonso XIII, for easier bus access. 

INCLUDING THE ALFONSO XIII:           INCLUDING CASA DEL POETA:
€6320 per person twin/double share        €5960 per person twin/double share

€2150 per person single supplement        €1930 per person single supplement

Prices are in euros and we convert to Australian dollars at the current exchange rates one week prior to days of payment, ie deposit date and final payment date.

INCLUSIONS:
10 nights’ accommodation as per itinerary; breakfast each day; seven gourmet dinners including wine; three lunches including wine; all tours, entries & tastings as per itinerary;  exceptional local tour guides; private coach with driver; and the full-time services of your tour director Sue Heine.

All of the hotels offer a range of room categories and we can book the category of your choice, with an adjustment to the tour price. Please have a look at the hotels listed in the “Hotels” tab and let us know if you would like to upgrade to a different room category in any of them.

TERMS & CONDITIONS

Deposit to secure your place for the tour is €700 euros per person.

  • A further deposit of €575 euros will be due on 13th May, 2023.
  • The final balance is due 90 days prior to departure.
  • Full Terms & Conditions will be provided with booking form at time of booking.

Please ensure that you have taken out appropriate travel insurance – we can offer insurance with Covermore or Go Insurance and offer a 10% discount for tour guests.

HOTELS

Alfonso XIII, Seville:
Commissioned by the King of Spain to play host to international dignitaries during the 1929 Exhibition, Hotel Alfonso XIII remains an iconic cultural landmark, centrally located in the historic quarter of Santa Cruz, next to Reales Alcázares and Seville Cathedral. The hotel’s distinguished architecture and Moorish detailing showcase native Andalusian design and heritage to the discerning traveller. The hotel’s elegant décor, from the lobby to the inner courtyard, continues to reflect the most spectacular Sevillian style.

OR

Casa del Poeta, Seville:
In a fantastic central location 3 minutes walk from the Seville Cathedral, the Casa del Poeta is located in a delightful restored 17th Century mansion with classic Sevillian architecture. The beautiful central courtyard, where guests enjoy breakfast, evening cocktails, or just relax during the day, is overlooked by elegant columns and archways. The rooms are tastefully decorated and spacious, and there is a roof terrace to enjoy the sunshine during the day and sunset views over some of Seville’s most iconic buildings.

La Fuenta de la Higuera, Ronda:
La Fuente de la Higuera is an exquisitely restored ancient olive mill decorated in elegant style with beautiful views of the Andalucian countryside, offering a luxurious tucked-away retreat near the spectacular town of Ronda. With outstanding staff and an excellent restaurant on-site, La Fuenta is the superior choice of accommodation in the region.

Parador de Granada:
“Paradors” are luxury hotels in Spain which are located in buildings of historical importance such as fortresses, monasteries and castles, and also new buildings set in nature reserves and areas of outstanding beauty. The Granada Parador is the only hotel located inside the Alhambra complex, among gardens and fountains that evoke a past in which the Arab and the Christian intermingled. The Parador is located in a former monastery built on the orders of the Catholic Monarchs on the site of a Nasrid palace, the remains of which have been preserved in the Nazarí Room. The hotel has an enchanting interior, in keeping with the magic exuded by every corner of the city. Works of art and exceptional furniture decorate the cloister and interior rooms and there is a dining room and summer terrace overlooking the beautiful gardens.