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A very eventful car tour in two European countries at once - colorful, beautiful, filled with ancient architecture, traditions, culture and exquisite gastronomy. 19 days on the road, every night in a new place, dozens of cities, national parks, mountains, the ocean, capes and beaches, fishing villages and royal palaces, monasteries and castles, ancient fortresses and modern futuristic buildings, mountain serpentines and expressways - all this you will remember for many years, perhaps as the best journey of your life! Let's go?

 

 

 

Day 1

Meeting of the group at the airport of Madrid, transfer to the hotel, free time in the city.

 

Day 2

Madrid is a luxurious city. His visit is a journey into the world of art, elegant architecture and breathtaking gastronomy, as well as an immersion in a vibrant and authentic culture. Unfortunately, due to the richness of the tour program and the many places we want to visit, our acquaintance with Madrid will be short ...

 

We leave for a joint group tour by car. The first point will be a walk near the Royal Palace - the main attraction of the city. This is a real Spanish Versailles, one of the most beautiful royal palaces in Europe. Then we will move to Puerta del Sol, and from it to Plaza de Cibeles, where there is a monumental fountain of the XVIII century and a palace built in the early XX century. We will finish our short tour of Madrid in the Plaza de Castilla, where there are two skyscrapers built at an angle of 15 ° to the surface of the base. The buildings were designed by American architects D. Burge and F. Johnson in 1996. The towers are 114 meters high and contain 25 floors; private helipads are located on the roofs. This attraction has become a symbol of modern Madrid.

 

After a tour of Madrid, in the late afternoon, we drive along the expressway to Segovia - an open-air museum city 100 km from Madrid, where we will see the Roman aqueduct - the longest structure of this type in Western Europe, preserved from ancient times, as well as the royal 9th century Alcazar fortress and Segovia Cathedral - a temple of grandiose size and with a very rich interior.

 

Day 3

In the morning we inspect what we do not have time to inspect in the city in the evening and closer to dinner we leave for Bilbao - 400 kilometers from Segovia. Here, the first thing we go to the Guggenheim Museum is the Museum of Modern Art, which has long become the symbol of Bilbao, one of the most interesting places in Spain, where lovers and connoisseurs of modern art from around the world come specially.

In the evening, independent walks in the city center, the benefit of our hotel will be very close to it.

Day 4

After breakfast, we will stop by for an hour to see the Biscay Bridge - an unusual transporter bridge that transfers passengers from one side of the river to the other with the help of a suspended gondola. The design was erected in 1893 according to the project of a student of the famous engineer Eiffel. Using a special elevator, passengers can climb to the platform and look at the surroundings. There is also the opportunity to go on foot, only it will cost a lot more. Those who wish can ride a gondola or walk across the bridge.

 

A short but fascinating journey through the outskirts of Bilbao - rocky coasts with unique geological formations, picturesque islands with ancient chapels and sea birds, fishing villages with Basque cuisine - will all be in our program today. And also - one of the most beautiful places in Spain - San Juan de Gastelugache - this place was chosen as one of the seven wonders of Spain. The Basque coast in this area is rocky and impregnable, and the sea has carved bizarre formations, tunnels, arches and caves in the coastal cliffs. The island of Gastelugache is located in the center of these geological formations, next to another picturesque islet of Acece, which is known as the Zaitsev Island. On the island sheltered a small old chapel, which can be reached from land by a narrow stone staircase, with 237 steps. According to legend, the one who gets to the chapel should ring the bell three times and make a wish.

 

After us, we will have a long and tiring drive to the city of Santiago de Compostela, which is about 700 kilometers away, but of course we won’t be able to drive all of them that day, stop for the night in one of the roadside hotels when we decide that we are tired and need rest.

 

Day 5

In the morning, having breakfast in a hotel (if breakfast is included in the price) or in a cafe, we continue our journey and arrive in the city of Santiago de Compostela for dinner.

 

This city is placed in importance on the third line of the list of Catholic pilgrimage centers (the first are Rome and Jerusalem). Santiago de Compostela is often spoken of as a Christian Mecca, because the flow of pilgrims has not dried up for hundreds of years, and the historical part of the city is under the tutelage of UNESCO.

 

Here we take a walk through the center of the Old Town, where the famous “St. Jacob's Way” ends, which pilgrims, enthusiasts and people who decide to test their physical and spiritual capabilities use to this day. We will see and examine the cathedral - the most outstanding building of the Romanesque style in Spain and one of the most beautiful religious buildings in the world.

 

Overnight at the hotel near the city center.

Day 6

Today we are changing the country and the journey through the cities to nature. And for this, in the morning we leave for the Peneda-Gerês National Park on the border of Spain and Portugal. The National Park is primarily famous for its oak and Mediterranean pine forests (pine) located on the slopes of the relatively low mountain ranges of Peneda and Gerês in the Lima Valley. Since the park is located in the transition zone between the Mediterranean Sea and the European-Siberian region, its climate is unique, which means that it is inhabited by very rare (or even not living anywhere else in Portugal) animals and plants. For hundreds of years, the ecosystem and lifestyle of the park have not changed. And there are terraced fields (almost like in Asia), well-preserved medieval castles, two monasteries of the 12th century, a reservoir with a very high dam and a village flooded by it, on the site of which there is an open-air museum of Vilarinho dash Furnas.

 

Here we take a walk along the shepherd’s paths, enjoying the beauty and coolness of the waterfalls, look at the ridges and valleys from several observation platforms and go further - to the Portuguese city of Braga.

 

The ancient city of Braga is one of the most beautiful cities in Portugal and the spiritual center of the country. There are numerous religious attractions, palaces, museums and green areas. Until the evening, as time permits, we will walk around the center of this city, and then spend the night in one of the hotels in the hospitable city.

 

Day 7

In the morning we will continue exploring the city of Braga, and then, getting on a car and driving literally half an hour, we will find ourselves in the first capital of Portugal, the cradle of the Portuguese nation and statehood, the city of Guimaraes. The city is small and two hours will be enough for us to visit, which we will devote, firstly, to the Guimaraes castle, it is the Portuguese who consider it the cradle of the nation, and secondly, we will visit the Bragança Palace - a magnificent royal residence, and, of course, Largo da Oliveira - The ancient square, which is the historical center of old Guimaraes and a symbol of the city.

 

Then we drive a car for another half hour and find ourselves in the second largest and most important city in Portugal - Porto. In addition to the title of "northern capital" of Portugal, Porto is a real treasure for tourists. This city is so atmospheric and authentic that most people fall in love with it at first sight. Old houses, shabby walls and curved streets excite imagination, excellent port is hot for blood, and simple and satisfying Portuguese cuisine will always remain in the heart of any guest.

 

Immediately upon arrival in the city, we will go to the colorful central quarter of Ribeira, located near the Douro River. It is inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Many houses here are 300 years old or more, but they are still residential. The quarter goes down to the promenade of Cais da Ribeira using a system of steep stairs and narrow streets, among which it is easy to get lost. On the promenade there are taverns and restaurants with traditional Portuguese fishermen cuisine and viewing platforms with benches. Here we have dinner and stay for the night in a cozy little hotel.

Day 8

For breakfast, we will go to the famous Majestic cafe with a magnificent Art Nouveau interior, where you can taste many varieties of aromatic coffee and order delicious pastries. The cafe was opened in a building built at the beginning of the 20th century, very quickly gained popularity with the local aristocracy, and was later noticed by the guests of Porto. Then we take a walk along Santa Catarina Street, where the maximum number of shops, souvenir shops, cafes and pastry shops are concentrated. Here you can buy shoes, bags and other products from the local cork oak, the original Portuguese port, taste a variety of pastries or drink a glass of excellent wine from the grape varieties of the Douro River Valley. And then we take a car tour of the city, making stops and taking a little walk on Freedom Square, we go to the Livraria Lello bookstore, famous not so much for its assortment, but for the interior decoration and architecture of the building in which it is located (this store is considered the most beautiful bookstore in the world!) and go around the House of Music - the main concert hall of Porto, with a unique futuristic design, which is compared with the building of the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao and the Berlin Philharmonic.

 

Well, after that we’ll go to another Portuguese national park - Serra da Estrela. Here we will stay for the night in the magic village of Montegash, and leave the inspection of the beauties of the park for tomorrow, since this day we are unlikely to have time for this.

 

Day 9

Everyone who is ready to get up very early in the morning will have a fantastic sunrise (if the weather is favorable, of course) overlooking the mountain valley and the village of Montegash, all of whose houses are painted white and the roofs are bright orange.

 

The park has 375 kilometers of hiking trails, but we will choose the lightest and take a walk in the morning 3-5 kilometers, slowly exploring some of Portugal's most beautiful mountain landscapes. Then we continue the inspection of the park by car, since its territory is huge and even by car we can see only a small part, but the main one.

 

Well, after we go to the city of Obidos. Only three thousand inhabitants live in it, and this is literally a city-museum. Since the XIII century, the city has not changed much, and to this day the atmosphere of the distant past reigns in it. We will plunge into it, having spent the rest here for and a night in a lovely little hotel.

 

Day 10

In the morning we move to the city of Sintra, consisting of magnificent palaces, exotic parks and picturesque natural landscapes. There are a lot of places to see, so, despite the small size of the city, we will spend almost the whole day in it, along with other tourists who are plentiful here, absorbing the beauty and measured rhythm of life in the Portuguese province. Pena Palace, Sintra National Palace, Quinta da Regaleira Park Complex, "Well of Initiation", Moors Castle, Montserrat Palace, Countess Edla Chalet - these are just the main attractions of the city that we will try to see, and how much more is interesting there!

 

And in the evening, we will go by car to Cape Roca to meet the sunset there, at the extreme point of the Eurasian continent!

Day 11

All this day we will spend in the capital of Portugal - Lisbon. This is a very atmospheric and picturesque city, keeping the memory of the former greatness of one of the most powerful maritime powers in the world. Therefore, it is best to start exploring the city from Prasa do Comerciu Square or Palace Square, which for several centuries has been the front gate of Lisbon and the whole of Portugal. Ships with wealth taken out of the Portuguese colonies pestered here and royal delegations arrived. Majestic monuments and strict administrative buildings testify to former glory.

 

Well, then - everyone will go independently to what the soul lies. Someone will go along the street Augusta - the central pedestrian boulevard of the city, absorbing the atmosphere and free spirit of Lisbon. Someone will go to the Alfama district - the only area preserved after the devastating earthquake of 1755 with medieval buildings and the interweaving of narrow streets. Someone will want to visit the Jeronimos Monastery, in which the remains of the great navigator Vasco da Gama rest, and the monastery itself, included in the UNESCO World Heritage List, is closely connected with the grand period of the Great geographical discoveries and the power of Portugal. Some people like museums and there are more than enough of them: an art gallery - the museum of Galust Gyulbenkyan, which contains beautiful examples of European, antique and oriental art, the National Museum of Ancient Art, the National Museum of Carriages, the Museum of Electricity, the Maritime Museum - all visit, unfortunately, is impossible in one day, it is necessary to make a difficult choice.

 

Day 12

In the morning we leave the capital and go first to Cape Espichel, and then to the city of Evora.

 

The landscapes of Cape Espichel are formed by high cliffs and cliffs, from which the sea winds have formed the most bizarre images, and the mighty waves of the formidable Atlantic Ocean are continuously breaking with the roar and roar of their feet. But besides the impressive landscapes, this breathtaking but gloomy cape has a number of interesting sights: the Sanctuary of the Virgin and the pilgrim house, the lighthouse, the chapel of Remembrance, the footprints of dinosaurs on the Donkey Rock, the footprints of dinosaurs on Lagostyrush Beach.

 

Evora is rightfully included in the list of the most beautiful cities in Portugal. A walk along its center will take us to the distant past, envelop us in the atmosphere of rapidly changing historical eras. And besides this, Efora is considered the best place in the country where you can (and should!) Drink exquisite wine and taste local varieties of cheeses and sweets - all of this is a lot like anywhere else - for every taste.

 

Day 13

In the morning we are waiting for a three-hour transfer to the city of Faro - the last Portuguese city on our route. It is the southernmost city of continental Portugal, a seaport and resort. Although it is believed that the city is located on the coast, the city blocks are separated from the Atlantic Ocean by the natural park Ria Formosa, consisting of dunes, lagoons, salt lakes and swamps. Here we will not visit castles and palaces, but we will go to Faro Island, connected to the mainland by a road bridge, where we will sunbathe and swim on a magnificent beach with fine golden sand - after all, let us make a small but pleasant break in the rapid rhythm of our trip! There is no doubt that such a break will appeal to all participants of the tour :)

 

In the evening we return to the city, check into a hotel and walk along the evening Faro, where, as in any city in Portugal, there is something to see.

Day 14

Breakfast, coffee and croissants and we continue our rapid movement, returning today to Spain. About two and a half hours by car on the expressway and we will find ourselves in the city of Seville - the capital of one of the most interesting and authentic provinces of Spain - Andalusia. A spectacular bullfight and incendiary flamenco were born here, the very spirit of the Spanish south lives here and the ancient traditions of ancestors are carefully preserved.

 

The majestic Plaza of Spain, the Seville Alcazar, the quarter of Santa Cruz, the Seville cathedral and the Giralda tower, the house of Pilate, Piazza Encarnacion with a futuristic structure made of wood Metropol Parasol - there is something to see, which we will do until late in the evening.

 

Day 15

We will devote half a day to continuing the tour of Seville, and after lunch we will go to another old and extremely interesting city in Spain - Cordoba.

 

Cordoba is the pearl of Andalusia, an ancient city in which for centuries three cultures harmoniously coexisted: Christian, Jewish and Muslim. Founded even before the arrival of the ancient Romans, Cordoba reached its heyday in the Early Middle Ages under the rule of powerful Moorish rulers. Conquered from the Arabs by Christians, it gradually turned from the brilliant capital of the caliphate into a charming, picturesque city, literally drowning in the scent of spring flowers, in which three different cultures organically blended and organically coexist.

 

Today we only have time to inspect Mesquite - a grandiose structure in the style of traditional Moorish architecture. In the VIII century, under Emir Abdar-Rahman I, the best masters of the Islamic world were invited to build and decorate Mesquita, who eventually created a masterpiece that survived centuries.

 

In the evening, take a walk through the busy tourist center and go to sleep at the hotel.

Day 16

The first half of the day - a detailed inspection of Cordoba. The ancient fortress - Alcazar of Christian kings, an authentic Jewish quarter with a 14th-century synagogue, which is now a museum, the Roman bridge, Calahorra Tower, the ancient gates of Puerta del Puente, the Roman temple and Madina az-zahra - you will not be bored!

 

Towards evening we set off for the city of Toledo, which is 350 kilometers away, which means we will arrive very late in the evening and all we have time to do is have dinner and stay for the night at the hotel.

 

Day 17

We will devote the whole day to exploring this city. The appearance of the historical center of Toledo has remained virtually unchanged since the 15th century. Powerful city gates, walls of impregnable fortresses and labyrinths of narrow streets never cease to delight guests of Toledo. Check it out? Admire!

 

Day 18

Transfer to Madrid, hotel accommodation. Free time in Madrid. We examine everything that I wanted to see, but did not have time on the first day of my stay.

 

Day 19

Transfer to the airport and flight home. Those who wish can independently stay in Madrid for one or more days.

 

 

 

Route Map:

 

 

The author and organizer of the tour Evgeny Androsov:

 

 

Travel Information

How much IT costs

EURO 1500 per person

 

What is included in the price

  • accommodation in tourist class hotels, apartments and guest houses all days of the route,
  • all transfers and movements on the route in a comfortable minibus, including all expenses for its operation, as well as payment for parking lots, toll roads, bridges, tunnels,
  • the work of a guide-instructor
  • group and individual photographs of each participant taken during the entire trip to professional photo equipment and provided in electronic form
  • What is NOT included

  • flights to Spain,
  • food,
  • entrance fees to museums, parks, zoos, temples, etc.,
  • consular fee and other expenses for obtaining visas,
  • medical insurance,
  • souvenirs and other personal expenses of participants,
  • other expenses not indicated in the section “included in the price”
  •  

    How to participate

    1. If you are interested in this tour, leave a request through the form below or call the indicated phones, me, Evgeni Androsov or my assistants will tell you in detail about the route and answer all your questions.
    2. To reserve a place, you must pay a deposit of 30% of the cost of a hike / tour if it is more than 45 days before the start and 50% of the cost if before the start less than 45 days. The prepayment is refundable for 45 days or more before the start of the trekking tour and unfortunately, less than 45 days before the start of the tour / tour, if the refund is related to your refusal to participate (for any reason). If the hike / tour does not take place due to our fault, due to an unformed group or due to force majeure circumstances, prepayment will be guaranteed to you in any case.
    3. In the hike the group moves with the speed of the last participant, the participants are trained by the instructor to prepare the food and install the tents.
    4. The instructor reserves the right to refuse participation in any person if he sees that a person is physically or mentally not ready for a trip. On the route the instructor has the right to interrupt the movement of the group and to stop the trip in case of danger of further advancement, as well as due to the state of health of one or several participants. These circumstances are for force majeure, there is no provision for money for the campaign and other financial compensation.
    5. If you change your mind / lost the opportunity to participate in the campaign, please, inform us about this as soon as possible, because transport and products for the whole trip are purchased, calculated and distributed for each participant of the trip.

     

    Enroll in this tour

    The cost of participation is EURO 1500 per person

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