Alhambra

 
bike
 
Eiffel bottom
 
Notre Dame
 
Chenonceaux Castle 2
 
Accordeon player
 
Narbonne 2
 
Carcassonne
 
Parc Guell
 
Flamenco
 
Seville
 
Alhambra
 
Alhambra generalife
 
Spanish Town
 
Madrid

France Spain Tour ItineraryFrance Spain Tour Itinerary

france spain tour

The France Spain Tour for independent travellers can start at any time, can be shortened, extended or combined with other tours to create a unique itinerary.

(Inclusions in italics)

Day 1 - Paris: Start your familiarization with the city on the ‘Paris Grand Tour’ and enjoy the view from the open top deck of the sightseeing bus with a local, multi-lingual tour guide. See the Champs-Elysees, Louvre, Notre-Dame, Eiffel Tower, Palais Royal and many other attractions.

Day 2 –Paris: View the city in all its glory from the viewing platform of the iconic Eiffel Tower. Then spend some time to explore the many treasures of Paris, Montmartre, Sacre Coeur or the many open-air fresh food, collectibles and arts markets and take the Grand Boulevard Tour’. In the evening enjoy a meal and some music in the Latin Quarter.

Day 3 – Paris: The day is yours to see more of the sites of Paris. Visit Versailles Palace with its royal Apartments, Hall of Mirrors and the Gallery of Battles in the world’s most magnificent and glorious palace. Explore the palace gardens visit the Queen's Hamlet, where Marie-Antoinette played at being a shepherdess in the 1780s. Watch the famous fountain show which is accompanied by music composed at the time of Louis XIV.

Or admire the three world-famous works in the Louvre: the Venus de Milo, the winged Victory of Samothrace and Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa painted at the beginning of the 16th century.

Day 4 – Loire valley – Amboise: Take the afternoon to enjoy delightful Amboise. Stroll on the esplanades located along the docks by the Loire, the best place to take in the fantastic views of the river. Visit the royal castle, the Chanteloup pagoda and Clos-Lucé, where Leonardo da Vinci spent his last days and many of his inventions are on display.

Day 5 – Loire valley - Amboise: During this all day excursion into the Loire valley and the visit to 2 castles witness the glamour and grandeur of French royalty and aristocracy, and gain insights into "castle life" in these Renaissance riverside castles. The largest of the Loire castles, the turreted Chambord Castle was built for King Francois I as a hunting lodge. The intricate stone "double helix" staircase leading up to the spires and turrets of the rooftop terrace is thought to have been designed by Leonardo da Vinci.

Cheverny Castle is the most beautifully furnished of the Loire Valley castles, with a fine collection of 17th-century furniture. Chenonceau Chateau was built in 1513 over the River Cher in traditional Renaissance style, and is known as the Chateau des Dames (the Ladies' Castle) because of the influence of the famouswomen who lived there.

The tour includes the visit to one or two castles (varied throughout the week), visits to picturesque towns and gardens, a wine tasting in a cellar cave and lunch in a family estate vineyard.  (Itineraries vary throughout the week).

Day 6 – Bordeaux: The city of Bordeaux is a UNESCO World Heritage listed site thanks to more than 350 historic buildings, including 3 religious World Heritage buildings, and is a French part of the Routes of Santiago de Compostela. Take time to visit Palais Rohan, the imposing neo-classical Grand Theatre and the enchanting facades of the quays that extend for more than a kilometre along the river. Its buildings feature high arches and slated roofs with the very slim stone chimney stacks rising above them all.

Day 7 - Bordeaux: During a small-group tour from Bordeaux you will discover the beautiful medieval village of St Emilion. Named after an 8th century Breton monk whose followers started wine production in the area, St Emilion is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Walk along the original city walls and climb the steep cobblestone streets, exploring wine cellars, artisan studios and art galleries. You’ll also have free time to enjoy a wine tasting, or you can pay a visit to the famous underground church carved out of solid limestone.

Extend your stay in Bordeaux and explore more of its surrounding countryside. Take an excursion into the famous wine-growing regions or to the fishing village of Arcachon.

Day 8 - Narbonne: The heart of Narbonne is the town’s port on the La Robine canal, a UNESCO World Heritage site. You'll very quickly find yourself back in the Middle Ages walking around Narbonne with its courtyards, cloisters, gothic choirs and works of art. Visit the Bourg quarter (old merchants’ quarter) and sample the regional delicacies at the famous covered market with more than 70 stalls offering locally produced goods and wines.

Day 9 – Narbonne - Carcassonne: Explore Carcassonne and its medieval walled inner city with its 52 towers. Take a boat trip on the Canal du Midi. Pass through the locks, discover the towpaths and enjoy the views of the medieval city and the vineyards.

Day 10 - Barcelona: After an exciting train journey from France into Spain and checking into your hotel, one of the highlights of our holiday awaits you: a guided tour of the Sagrada Familia, one of the most visited buildings in the world and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This as yet unfinished cathedral by Antoni Gaudi with its rich ornamentation and 70m high vaults was consecrated and proclaimed a minor basilica by Pope Benedict XVI

Day 11 - Barcelona: During a two-hour walking tour of Barcelona's Gothic Quarter, you will visit the district's streets, squares and old buildings, and learn about the quarter's history and people. Alongside Barcelona's medieval buildings are the remains of the ancient Roman city, and the walking tour includes a visit to the Temple d'August, the best preserved Roman relic in Barcelona. You will visit the Placa del Rei, where you will see many medieval buildings.

Alternatively you can choose to explore the sites of Barcelona with a guided bicycle tour. Late in the tour there will be a break at an outdoor beach bar to relax for a bit while taking in the sights and atmosphere of the Mediterranean. Remember to bring a swim suit if you want to take a dip in the sea.

Day 12 - Barcelona: Spend the day seeing more of the exciting art and architecture of Barcelona, including Gaudi’s famous Pedrera, Casa Batllo or Parc Guell. Stroll down the Ramblas and soak up the vibrant Catalan atmosphere or take an excursion into the countryside surrounding Barcelona to medieval Girona, the Dali museum at Figueres, the Royal Basilica at Montserrat or visit the famous wine producers of the Penedes region.

Day 13 - Seville: Take a panoramic night-time tour through the lamp-lit streets of Seville, and then feel the passion of a flamenco show, or "tablao". Enjoy wine and tapas while you soak up the atmosphere and rhythm.

Day 14 – Seville: Discover the history and secrets behind this magical orange-scented city on an informative morning tour. Beautiful Seville has many impressive monuments dating back over the centuries. The Moors' legacy of marvelous architecture includes the Gothic cathedral with its Giralda, a minaret transformed into a Christian bell tower.  

Extend your holiday by another day in Seville. Combine your love for sherry and horses on a day trip to the fabled city of Jerez. Enjoy a wine tasting and watch an equestrian ballet at the Royal Andalusian School of Equestrian Art. Then continue by coach to El Puerto de Santa Maria for lunch. Later, join a boat trip (or coach, subject to sea conditions) from Puerto de Santa Maria to Cadiz, the oldest populated city in Europe.

Day 15 - Granada: After checking in to your hotel set out in the afternoon to explore the hills and the old district of the Albaicin with its narrow street, nooks and crannies and marvelous landscapes. Make sure you don’t miss a visit to the ‘Cuevas’ or caves of the monastery of Sacromonte, still inhabited today.

Day 16 - Granada: Combine history and indulgence on an unforgettable excursion into Granada’s Moorish heritage.

In the morning, visit one of the most visited monuments in the world, the Alhambra. Built on the red hill known as Assabic, overlooking Granada, construction of this Moorish fortress began in the 13th century. The remarkable garden and courtyard complex also includes the 16th-century palace built by Charles V. You then have the afternoon free before making your way to indulge in an Arab bath. Relax to the soothing murmur of water, glistening Arabic tiles, essential oils, jasmine perfume and mint tea.

Extend your visit in Granada by adding a day excursion to Cordoba. Begin by visiting the Catholic Cathedral, converted within an original Mosque when the Christians conquered Cordoba in 1236. With nearly one thousand pillars, the original Gothic style is combined with Baroque and Renaissance elements. Then visit the old Jewish Quarter that dates back to the time of the Romans and Goths.

Day 17 - Madrid: Madrid comes truly alive after nightfall. Sample Spanish nightlife and Madrid's tasty tapas on an evening walking tour that will tantalize your taste buds! Led by an entertaining foodie guide, this tour is the best introduction to the laid-back Madrileno lifestyle. You'll visit Madrid's tucked-away corners and feast on tasty treats you would never discover on your own, leaving you with a lasting feeling for Madrid and its people, and an appetite for its fabulous food and drink! Along the way, your guide will explain the traditions behind Madrid's food and wine and provide interesting facts about Madrid's history and customs.

Day 18 - Madrid: Marvel at the sights of Madrid on a guided walking tour of the city including the Royal Palace. Learn about Madrid’s past and the events that have shaped the city you see today. Discover Madrid’s multi-faceted history, from its Arab origins to the reigns of Phillip II and Charles III, and finally to present day Madrid. Madrid's Royal Palace, built in the 18th century on the site of an ancient alcassar (Arab-fortress) in the classical Italian baroque style, is one of the most beautiful and best preserved palaces in Europe. Your tour of the palace reveals rich tapestries and exquisite china in every room.

In the afternoon visit Toledo, Spain's medieval capital. You will discover a glorious city filled with amazing medieval architecture, and take a walk into the past along its cobblestone alleyways. Toledo is a National Monument to Spain's art and history, combining Arabic, Gothic and Renaissance architecture. Tour highlights include the amazing 13th-century cathedral and the medieval castle.

Day 19 - Madrid: On your last morning of your France Spain tour make time for a last visit to the magnificent Plaza Major before being driven to the airport.

Average travel time between destinations: 3 hours and 30 minutes

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