Elegance, Culture & Reconquista Spain: Madrid to Barcelona

13 Days: Madrid, Santiago de Compostela, Oviedo, Bilbao, Pamplona, and Barcelona

Sightseeing Tours:

  • MADRID: Guided city tour includes a drive through Gran Via, Plaza de Espana & many more attractions
  • SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA: Explore old town and the Cathedral museum followed by a seafood dinner
  • OVIEDO: Scenic tour of Cabo Ortegal and the Asturian coast
  • BILBAO: Visit an architectural masterpiece, the Guggenheim Museum
  • PAMPLONA: Stroll down Getaria, a charming Basque coastal village
  • BARCELONA: Tour inclues Cathedral Sagrada Familia and Guell Park

Included Features:

  • Arrival transfer from Madrid airport to the hotel
  • Departure transfer to Barcaelona airport
  • 13 day/12 night guided tours
  • Centrally located first class hotels
  • Breakfast daily
  • Welcome reception in Madrid (tapas hors d’oeuvres, a glass of wine, beer, or soft drink)
  • 3 dinners (coffee or tea included)
  • Touring by modern air-conditioned motor coach
  • Professional English-Speaking Tour Director throughout
  • Licensed Local Guides
  • Baggage handling at hotels
  • Whisper technology enhanced touring
  • Admission included where indicated in bold letters
  • Hotel taxes and service taxes


  • MADRID: Santos Agumar or similar
  • SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA: Gran Hotel Santiago or similar
  • OVIEDO: Gran Hotel Espana or similar
  • BILBAO: Ercilla or similar
  • PAMPLONA: Maisonnave or similar
  • BARCELONA: Exe Cristal Palace or similar

Not Included:

  • International airfare (can be priced separately)
  • Any travel and document fees including Visa requirements
  • Optional tours as outlined in itinerary (minimum number of people required to operate)
  • Costs of a personal nature such as laundry, telephone, liquor, souvenirs, etc.
  • Tips to local guides and other staff along the route (suggested Tipping amounts will be advised)
  • Any increases in costs due to unforeseen circumstances such as: additional fuel surcharges, exchange rates or Government imposed taxes and fees not known at this time
  • Travel Insurance (strongly recommended)

Click here to see our full terms and conditions.

Day 1, Arrive in Madrid, Saturday (WR)

You will be met and transferred to your hotel. The day is at leisure to begin exploring. Later, join your fellow travelers and your tour director for a welcome reception. 

Day 2, in Madrid, Sunday (B)

We begin with a guided half-day city tour of Madrid. Our drive takes us through the Gran Vía and the Passeo de Castellana, past the Plaza de España, Plaza de Oriente, Plaza Mayor, Puerta del Sol, Atocha Station, the fountain of Neptune, Cibeles fountain, the Bullring, the Santiago Bernabeu soccer stadium, and many more. The afternoon is at leisure or join and optional tour. 

 Optional Tour: Prado Museum

Day 3, in Madrid: Excursion to Toledo, Monday (B)

We visit Toledo, a city with a wealth of monuments. It is known as the “city of the three cultures” because Christians, Arabs and Jews lived there together for centuries. During our guided tour we visit the Santo Tome Church and the Synagogue of Santa María. From Toledo, we return to Madrid where the afternoon is at leisure or join an optional tour. 

 Optional Tour: Flamenco Show with Dinner

Day 4, to Santiago de Compostela, Tuesday (B)

We Depart for Santiago de Compostela. On the way, we stop in Salamanca, an ancient city famous for its university founded by Alfonso IX in the early 1200’s. There is time for lunch on your own and thereafter, we continue to Santiago de Compostela along the Camino. Many pilgrims follow this ancient route also known as the Way of St. James. In Santiago de Compostela, the evening is at leisure. 

Day 5, in Santiago de Compostela, Wednesday (B, D)

Santiago de Compostela’s center is called “Casco Histórico” (old town), an area once surrounded by walls in the 11th-century. We visit the Cathedral and the Cathedral museum and view the tomb of St James the Great. In the afternoon we visit Cap Finisterre where pilgrims ceremoniously burn their boots. The day finishes with an early seafood dinner accompanied by Albariño wine. 

Day 6, to Oviedo, Thursday (B)

After breakfast, we head to North Galicia. Our scenic drive takes us past the Cabo Ortegal and the Asturian coast to Oviedo. 

Day 7, in Oviedo, Friday (B)

A half-day guided city tour of Oviedo takes us to the Cathedral, the Palacio de Valdecarzana, the ruins of the San Tirso Church, and the Porlier Plaza which is flanked by the El Conde de Toreno and Camposagrado Palaces. The afternoon is at leisure. 

 Optional Tour: Visit Cider House with Dinner

Day 8, to Bilbao, Saturday (B)

After breakfast, we continue our journey towards Bilbao. On the way, we stop in Santillana del Mar, one of the North Coast’s most picturesque villages. Its architecture dates to the Middle Ages. In its vicinity, we visit the famous Altamira Caves where prehistoric art is well preserved. After our visit, we proceed to Santander where we have free time for lunch on your own. From there, we continue to Bilbao where we have a tasting of local tapas called pintxos.

Day 9, in Bilbao, Sunday (B)

On our visit to Bilbao, we see the vibrant old town with many shops, squares, and typical Basque tavernas. We enter the Guggenheim Museum, an architectural masterpiece designed by Frank Gehry. The collection includes large-scale and site-specific art by such contemporary artists as Jeff Koons and Willem de Kooning. The remainder of the day is free or join an optional tour.

Optional Tour: Visit the Basque Coast

Day 10, to Pamplona, Monday (B, D)

After breakfast, we depart for San Sebastian. En route, we visit Getaria, a charming Basque coastal village. Upon arrival in San Sebastian, we see the Maria Cristina Hotel. It is here, at the Kursaal, that the film festival takes place. We also see La Concha beach, a crescent-shaped urban seaboard. In the afternoon we arrive in Pamplona. Dinner is served later that night. 

Day 11, to Barcelona, Tuesday (B)

After breakfast, we have a half-day guided sightseeing tour of Pamplona featuring the Ciudadela, the City Walls, parks, and gardens. We will hear about the ‘Running of the Bulls’ race, part of the San Fermin festival. From Pamplona, we continue to Zaragoza for lunch on your own. Later that afternoon, we arrive in Barcelona and the rest of the day is at leisure. 

Day 12, in Barcelona, Wednesday (B, D)

Our guided half-day sightseeing tour includes Barcelona’s most important artistic sights: Gaudi’s Batlló, Casa Milá, the Cathedral Sagrada Familia, and Guell Park, declared an artistic monument and mankind’s heritage by UNESCO. In the afternoon you are free to explore more on your own or join an optional tour visit of Montserrat. In the evening join your fellow travelers and your tour director for the farewell dinner. 

Day 13, depart Barcelona, Thursday (B)

Transfer to Barcelona airport after breakfast.