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Ronda, Andalucia, Spain

‭Iberian Inspiration‬‬‬

12-day escorted tour from £2,995 pp incl. flights

Summary

Short description

Explore a heady mix of treasures that range from Arabic palaces and Roman temples to Catholic cathedrals and attention-grabbing cuisine

Highlights

  • Enjoy everything from flamenco dancing shows to tapas and wine tasting
  • Enjoy the delights of Spain and Portugal in a small group
  • Visit the jaw-dropping town of Ronda, pictured above
  • Compare Moorish architecture, Roman Ruins, Jewish quarters and classical squares
  • Try the region’s renowned gastronomy throughout

In Brief

  • 1 Night Madrid
  • 1 Night Toledo
  • 2 Nights Córdoba
  • 1 Night Baeza
  • 2 Nights Granada
  • 1 Night Ronda
  • 2 Nights Seville
  • 1 Night Estremoz

About

Recommended for:
Escorted tour | Food & wine | History & culture

Iberia is a peninsula shared. But it’s not just Spain and Portugal that divide its spoils; east meets west in heritage towns and architectural statements while a varied past is complemented by a considered present, epitomised by the region’s superlative gastronomy. You’ll take it all in on a rural road trip that starts with the headlines – bookending nights spent in Granada and Seville with both the Spanish and Portuguese capitals – before moving onto the region’s hidden gems. There’s everything from Moorish mosque cathedrals to towns that perch precipitously on the edge of gaping gorges. Along the way, tapas lunches, olive oil tastings, castle stays and Jamón Ibérico samples will bring it all to life with help from your local guides.

Day by day itinerary

Day 1
Madrid

Fly to the Spanish capital where a private transfer will take you to your pre-tour accommodation. The rest of the day is free to relax or explore the city at your own pace.

Stay: Superior Accommodation, Madrid

Day 2
Toledo

Our road continues south across the vast plains of La Mancha, where Cervantes’s Don Quixote jousted with windmills. We pause in Valdepeñas to visit a local bodega for wine and tapas, before continuing on to Córdoba – our home for the next two nights. 

Stay: Hotel Carlos V, Toledo

Meals: D

Day 3
Valdepeñas/Cordoba

Continue south across the vast plains of La Mancha, where Cervantes’ Don Quixote jousted with windmills. You’ll stop off at Valdepeñas to visit a local bodega for a wine and tapas lunch before arriving in to Cordoba. A thousand years ago, this city in southern Andalucía was the most important Islamic cultural centre in Western Europe, echoed today in its distinctive architectural style. Your home for the next two nights is right in its historic centre.

Stay: Casas de la Judeira, Cordoba

Meals: B L

Day 4
Cordoba

On a walking tour of Cordoba’s old town, you’ll step back into the days of Islamic Iberia. The UNESCO-listed Mezquita is a particular highlight; at once a cathedral and a mosque, it’s regarded as one of the finest examples of Moorish architecture, combining Islamic detailing with grand proportions. You’ll then have the afternoon to explore at your own pace, seeking out hidden squares and local cafés, or pampering yourself at a traditional hammam.

Stay: Casas de la Judeira, Cordoba

Meals: B

Day 5
Cordoba/Ubeda/Baeza

Today you’ll hold court with the two great women of Andalucía, Ubeda and Baeza. Termed ‘Queen’ and ‘Lady’ respectively by poet Antonia Machado’, they come replete with spectacular Renaissance palaces and a centuries-old ceramics industry. In between the two, you’ll pause to taste the local olive oil delicacies in a peaceful grove before settling in to your hotel in Baeza.

Stay: Hotel Puerta de la Luna, Baeza

Meals: B D

Day 6
Baeza/Jaen/Granada

Your first stop today is Jaen Cathedral, with its towers set against a backdrop of bucolic hills and olive groves. After some free time to explore this charmingly compact town you’ll then continue on to Granada, the last stronghold of the Moorish empire in Spain before it finally fell to the country’s Catholic kings in the 15th century. You’ll have two nights here to unravel its secrets.

Stay: Villa Onira, Granada

Meals: B

Day 7
Granada

Intricately carved archways, lush gardens and lavish interiors that host brightly coloured tiling characterise Alhambra, a truly stunning Moorish palace perched on a hilltop just outside Granada. It’s a tribute to the beauty of North African architecture and one of Andalucía’s finest gems. You’ll take the full morning to explore it before returning to the city centre for an afternoon free. Don’t miss out on the cathedral or the chance to take some time out in atmospheric cafés, hidden among architecture that tracks the city’s heritage.

Stay: Villa Onira, Granada

Meals: B

Day 8
Granada/Ronda

Turn east to pass through parched countryside and reach Ronda. This historic town enjoys a dramatic setting on the edge of a deep canyon, providing the perfect old town plaza frame for those pinch-yourself views. 

Stay: Reina Victoria, Ronda

Meals: B D

Day 9
Ronda/Jerez/Arcos/Grazalema/Seville

Today drive to Jerez to visit a local winery with a private gallery followed by a tapas lunch and wine tasting. Later, we visit Seville where tonight we enjoy a traditional flamenco show.

Stay: Casas de la Judeira, Seville

Meals: B

Day 10
Seville

Seville is your next stop, where you’ll spend the night enjoying a traditional dinner and flamenco show. This famous dance with its bright costumes and evocative guitar music is a real south Spain icon.

With its rich history, Seville demands a full day. First, a local guide will introduce you to the city’s main sites including the Jewish Quarter and its impressive cathedral. You’ll also stop off at Europe’s oldest royal palace still in use, Alcázar de Sevilla. The rest of the day is left free; perhaps search out Roman ruins, Moorish mosaics and classical squares, or take yourself on a tapas tour, hopping from bar to bar and sampling a new speciality in each

Stay: Casas de La Judeira, Seville

Meals: B

Day 11
Seville/Sierra de Aracena/Estremoz

The city rooftops disappear as we head into the great outdoors. Our first stop is Ibéricos, a farm in the Sierra de Aracena and Picos de Aroche National Park where black Iberian pigs roam. After working up an appetite, we sample the famous Jamón Ibérico, before making a visit to Castle Vila Vicosa. We continue to Estremoz to end the day.

Stay: Pestana Pousada de Estremoz, Estremoz 

Meals: B D

Day 12
Estremoz/Evora/Lisbon

On the last day of your tour, you’ll pause in UNESCO-listed Evora to take in its unique combination of medieval churches and stately Roman temples. You’ll then finish among the terracotta-roofed history of Lisbon for the tour’s end.

Meals: B

Map

Pricing

Any element of this itinerary can be adjusted to suit your needs. Just contact us to find out more.

Accommodation rating: Superior

12-day escorted tour from £2,995 incl. flights

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