Highlights of Spain & Morocco - 16 days    *alt*

16 days, from £3045
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Description

Highlights
- Small group tour, with maximum group size of 16, and unique hotels
- Barcelona - visit the city's most famous landmark, the Sagrada Familia
- Castell Del Remei vineyard - learn about the production of local wines and enjoy wine tasting at this historic winery
- Pamplona -enjoy a walking tour in this beautiful Basque city close to the Pyrenees mountain range with a bustling old town.
- San Sebastian - explore Spain's beautiful gastronomic capital, with its incredible Old Town tapas and our wonderful mountain-top hotel
- Bilbao - discover wonderful contemporary art at the world famous Guggenheim Museum
- Bodegas Marques de Riscal vineyard - taste the fine wines of the Rioja region
- Salamanca - visit Spain's oldest university, with its stunning architecture
- Avila - roam around one of Spain's oldest towns, surrounded by an imposing, medieval wall, with more than 2500 turrets
- Madrid - take in the highlights of Spain's vibrant capital on a tour of the city
- Marrakech - wander through the UNESCO-listed medina, mosque, palaces and souks
- Casablanca - enjoy the spectacle of Morocco's largest city, also home to its largest mosque (the Hassan II Mosque)
- Rabat - take in the sights of the lively capital city such as the Chellah necropolis and whitewashed kasbah
- Meknes - roam the streets of a great Imperial city, once dubbed the "Versailles of Morocco"
- Fes - immerse yourself in the oldest medieval city in the world, its medina packed with dye pits and tanneries
- Sahara Desert - camel trek across the dunes and camp under a blanket of stars
- Todra Gorge - the towering red canyon with spectacular limestone walls on the road to the High Atlas will leave you speechless
- Ait Benhaddou - gaze upon this UNESCO-listed ancient kasbah, immortalised by Hollywood in film and television
- Volubilis - admire the UNESCO-listed ruins of this ancient Roman provincial town

Tour includes:
- 15 breakfasts, 2 lunches and 7 dinners (including a traditional Berber meal at our Sahara camp)
- Spain - 7 Nights 3 & 4 star hotels.
Morocco - 7 nights 3 - 4 star hotels & riad, 1 night camping - Berber desert camp in the Sahara Desert (Hotel Upgrade available)
- Escorted by English speaking Spanish tour leaders and an English speaking Moroccan tour guide (or a driver guide in Spain for groups of 2 - 6)
- Specialist local guides for scheduled sightseeing
- All private transportation in air conditioned vehicles in Spain and Morocco
- Arrival transfer from Barcelona airport on day 1 and Marrakech airport on day 8
- Transfer to Madrid airport on day 8
- Guided sightseeing: Barcelona, Zaragoza, San Sebastian, Bilbao, Burgo, Salamanca, Avila, Pamplona, Madrid, Casablanca, Rabat, Volubilis, Fes, Merzouga, Todra Gorge, Ait Benhaddou and Marrakech
- Cider House visit & tasting San Sebastian
- Vineyard visit and wine tasting in Zaragoza and Rioja
- Guggenheim Museum entry
- Camel trek into the Sahara

Tour excludes:
- International flights and visas
- Tip for your tour leader and guides - an entirely personal gesture
- Please note the flight between Madrid and Marrakech is not included and needs to be booked separately - see Trip notes for more information
- Entrance Fees: Euro 40 - 50 (for Spain, paid locally)

Itinerary


 Day 1 Arrival into Barcelona

Saturday. Arrival in Barcelona - welcome to Spain! Transfer from Barcelona airport to hotel is included. This afternoon at 2pm , our guide will take us on a scenic tour of Barcelona. We'll visit sites including the Hill of Montjuic and the famous Sagrada Familia before ending the night with a tapas welcome dinner in a local restaurant.
Dinner


 Day 2 Zaragoza & Vineyard

Barcelona - Zaragoza. We depart Barcelona early this morning, stopping at a vineyard for a wine tasting and lunch. After arriving in Zaragoza and checking in to our hotel, we'll go on a guided walking tour, seeing the spectacular Basilica de Nuestra Senora del Pilar and 11th-century Palace of Aljaferia. The rest of the day is at leisure; we recommend trying the local tapas.
Breakfast


 Day 3 Pamplona & San Sebastian

Zaragoza - San Sebastian. This morning we travel to Pamplona, a beautiful Basque city made famous by the Ernest Hemingway novel 'The Sun Also Rises'. After a walking tour with our local guide and a break for lunch, we continue on to San Sebastian. This stunning bayside city is a food lover's paradise, and our hotel on Monte Igueldo boasts spectacular views. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure - relax at the hotel resort, or venture down to the city's many bars & restaurants.
Breakfast


 Day 4-5 Bilbao & Rioja Wine Tasting

San Sebastian - Bilbao. Heading towards the port city of Bilbao, we stop at a traditional family run Sideria (Cider House) for tasting. Once in Bilbao, we visit the world famous Guggenheim Museum and explore the many delicious delights of the city during our free time.
The following day we venture into the world famous Rioja region and visit the renowned Marques de Riscal bodega (vineyard), to taste some fine wine. After a local lunch in Logrono (which is part of the Camino de Santiago trail), we return to Bilbao, where you have free time.
Breakfast Dinner


 Day 6 Burgos & Salamanca

Bilbao - Salamanca. Bidding farewell to the Basque Region, we head to Burgos to see its World Heritage Listed Gothic cathedral on a walking tour. In the afternoon we arrive in Salamanca, where Spain's oldest university is located. A guided tour takes us through the beautiful and varied architecture of the city, with free time in the evening.
Breakfast


 Day 7 Avila Medieval City

Salamanca - Madrid. This morning we travel to the UNESCO World Heritage city of Avila and enjoy a walking tour of its sights, including the spectacular Medieval city walls, which are over 2.5km long. After a leisurely lunch, we continue our journey to the capital. In Madrid we're joined by a local guide for a coach tour of this cosmopolitan city, taking in sights such as the Royal Palace. Spend your final night in Spain, sampling Madrid's wonderful nightlife.
Breakfast Dinner


 Day 8 Marrakech

Saturday. Madrid - Marrakech. Your tour of Spain and Portugal ends today. Complimentary transfer to the airport for your flight to Marrakech.
Upon arrival at Marrakech airport, you'll be met and transferred to our hotel in the town centre. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure - perhaps discover the delights of Djemaa el-Fna, the city's main square and marketplace.
Please note: The flight from Madrid to Marrakech is not included in the cost of this tour. Ryan Air and Iberia both fly direct. Please provide us with your flight details so we can arrange your airport transfers.
Breakfast


 Day 9 Marrakech City Tour

Today we discover the city of Marrakech. After breakfast we visit the Majorelle Gardens, designed in the 1920s-30s and the current resting place of Yves Saint Laurent. The garden contains numerous bird and plant species, and a museum of Berber culture.
This afternoon you will meet up with the rest of the group who are coming in from Casablanca before embarking on a guided walking tour. We'll see sights including the Djemaa el-Fna and Koutoubia Mosque.
Breakfast Dinner


 Day 10 Ait Benhaddou

Marrakech - Ait Benhaddou - Ouarzazate. We leave Marrakech this morning, crossing the Haouz plains and High Atlas mountains. Our first stop is Ait Benhaddou, an ancient fortress and medieval city featured in movies such as Gladiator and Lawrence of Arabia. Then we continue to the nearby town of Ouarzazate, known as the "Hollywood of North Africa" for its studios which have filmed blockbusters including The Living Daylights, The Mummy and more recently Game of Thrones.
Breakfast Lunch Dinner


 Day 11 Camel trek into the Sahara

Ouarzazate - Todra Gorge - Merzouga (Sahara). Our journey into the Sahara begins today as we travel from Ouarzazate to Todra Gorge, Morocco's own Grand Canyon, surrounded by spectacular sharp stone cliffs. After time to wander through Todra we drive to Merzouga, our base for the evening. Depending on the time of year, we may spend the afternoon relaxing and swimming before beginning our camel trek into the desert. Aboard our camels, we'll watch the sunset and travel to a remote Berber camp in the Erg Chebbi sand dunes, where we spend the night camping under the stars.
If you would prefer the comfort of a hotel with en-suite facilities this evening, opt for our Sahara Hotel Upgrade.
Breakfast Lunch Dinner


 Day 12 Journey to Fes

Merzouga (Sahara) - Fes. Experience a wonderful sunrise early this morning as we return to Merzouga on our camels. After breakfast we begin the long but scenic drive to Fes - keep an eye out for Barbary monkeys in the lush forests, and Berber nomads setting up camp as we pass through the Middle Atlas mountains. We stop at Ifrane, a clean red-roofed town reminiscent of a Swiss Alpine resort, before arriving into Fes in the early evening.
Breakfast Dinner


 Day 13 Fes Sightseeing

As Morocco's oldest city and its former capital, Fes is an unmissable destination. In the morning we tour the old walled district of Fes el-Bali - try not to get lost in the thousands of alleys which comprise its vibrant, crowded medina! We enjoy lunch and a visit to the dye-pits and tanneries before spending the rest of the day at leisure. Perhaps try a tagine-making class, or some Moroccan entertainments and dinner at a local restaurant.
Breakfast


 Day 14 Volubilis & Meknes

Fes - Volubilis - Meknes - Rabat. Leaving Fes we visit the UNESCO-listed ancient ruins at Volubilis, a prominent Roman provincial town dating back to AD 40. The grandeur continues with our next stop at Meknes, an imperial city once dubbed the "Versailles of Morocco". After lunch and free time, we continue to Morocco's capital Rabat for the night.
Breakfast


 Day 15 Rabat & Casablanca

Rabat - Casablanca - Marrakech. This morning we experience the main highlights of Morocco's capital city, including the sprawling Chellah necropolis, the Royal Palace, and Mausoleum of Mohammed V. We continue to Casablanca after lunch, and visit the Hassan II Mosque, the world's third-largest mosque. Afterwards, we say goodbye to our fellow passengers leaving us in Casablanca and return to Marrakech for our final night.
Breakfast


 Day 16 Marrakech

Sunday. Our incredible journey ends today after hotel checkout.
Breakfast


Tour Map