Day 1 ARRIVE IN COSTA DEL SOL, SPAIN.
Check into your hotel. The rest of the day is free to enjoy the beach or to explore the resort towns of the Costa del Sol. Tonight, meet your Tour Director and fellow travelers.
Day 2 COSTA DEL SOL–MÁLAGA–LOJA–GRANADA.
Begin the day with an orientation drive around the beautiful port city of Málaga, the southernmost large city in Europe and birthplace of Pablo Picasso. Founded by the Phoenicians around 770 BC, it’s one of the oldest cities in the world and home to two massive hilltop citadels, remnants of Moorish rule. Later, head inland through grandiose scenery for a stop in Loja. Captured and held by the Moors, it was formerly known as Medina Lawsa until it was recaptured by the Christians in 1486 during the Reconquista. Explore this “flower among thorns” before continuing to Granada, located at the foot of the great Sierra Nevada mountain range and at the confluence of four rivers.
Day 3 GRANADA.
Join your Local Guide for a visit to the famous and fascinating ALHAMBRA COMPLEX, which Moorish poets described as a “pearl set in emeralds.” Dating back to 889 AD, this magnificent hilltop palace-fortress with its lavish gardens was built by Moorish kings, and is the epitome of architectural beauty.
Day 4 GRANADA–MONTILLA–CORDOBA.
Leave Granada and drive through the verdant vineyards of Andalusia for a visit to a typical WINE BODEGA in Montilla. Next stop: Cordoba, perhaps Spain’s most Moorish city. Join the optional excursion to visit the fascinating Cathedral of Cordoba, one of the most important examples of Moorish architecture outside the Arab world. The evening is at leisure, with time to wander through Europe’s second-largest Old Town—an incredible UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Day 5 CORDOBA–ECIJA–SEVILLE.
Journey farther into the heart of the Andalusian countryside and stop in picturesque Ecija, the dazzling “City of Towers.” Then, drive to Seville, which legend says was founded 3,000 years ago by the mythological hero Hercules. Included sightseeing with a Local Guide features many of the city’s highlights. This evening, Seville’s colorful dance culture awaits during our entertaining optional Flamenco excursion.
Day 6 SEVILLE.
The day is yours to explore this beautiful Andalusian capital. You could choose to pop into one of the many tapas bars to sample some of the city’s most palate-pleasing specialties; do some shopping on Calle Sierpes, Seville’s most famous shopping district; or visit the Alcazar, one of the country’s most beautiful palaces.
Day 7 SEVILLE–RONDA–COSTA DEL SOL.
Today, drive along the scenic ruta de Los pueblos blancos (route of the whitewashed villages) to incomparable Ronda, a town boasting one of the most dramatic cityscapes in the world. Spanning the deep El Tajo gorge, it is known for its fascinating history, charm, and three remarkable bridges that cross the canyon. Drive along the Costa del Sol to reach your hotel for a final overnight.
Day 8 COSTA DEL SOL.
Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning (the nearest airport is Málaga).