21285
Spain
Exploring the Hidden White Villages of Spain’s Andalusia
Step off the beaten path to explore Andalusia’s White Villages, where you’ll discover mosques, and monuments, nature parks and olive mills, and revel in the true essence of Spain.
Rating (5)
Program No. 21285RJ
Length
11 days
Starts at
3,580
Flights start at
875
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11 days
10 nights
24 meals
9 B 9 L 6 D
Getting There
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DAY
1
In Transit to Program
In Flight
DAY
2
Arrival Day, Orientation in Carmona, Welcome Reception
Carmona
L,D
Hotel Alcázar De La Reina

Morning: Arrival at Seville Airport. Please see the “Travel Details/Transportation” section for information about transfers. Check-in and rest before lunch.

Lunch: Lunch at the hotel restaurant.

Afternoon: Orientation. The Group Leader will greet everyone and lead introductions. We will review the program theme, the up-to-date Daily Schedule and any changes, discuss safety guidelines, emergency procedures, roles and responsibilities, and answer any questions you may have. After, the GL leads a walking tour around the hotel, located in the heart of Carmona. We'll follow the Roman walled enclosure of the city on our stroll.

Dinner: Welcome reception and dinner at hotel restaurant.

Evening: At leisure

DAY
3
Carmona guided tour, Geography and Bullfighting classes
Carmona
B,L
Hotel Alcázar De La Reina

Activity note: Extensive walking (2-3 miles on some days, approx. 1-3 hours, at a steady pace). In many of our visits we will encounter winding or hilly roads as well as cobblestone streets and sidewalks. Comfortable and sturdy footwear is a necessity.

Breakfast: Breakfast at hotel.

Morning: After breakfast, a expert will give the group a lecture on the Geography and History of Andalusia at the hotel. Afterwards guided tour of Carmona where we will visit the Gothic Santa María la Mayor church, which boasts a liturgical calendar from the Visigothic age engraved in a column in its Patio de las Naranjos.

Lunch: Lunch at restaurant

Afternoon: Afternoon lecture on Bullfighting and evening to relax or explore Carmona.

Dinner: On-site Staff will give you suggestions for tapas bars in Carmona where you can eat like a local on your own.

Evening: At leisure

DAY
4
Cordoba Mosque, Synagogue and Jewish Quarter, Grazalema
Grazalema
B,L,D
HOTEL PUERTA DE LA VILLA

Activity note: Extensive walking (2-3 miles on some days, approx. 1-3 hours, at a steady pace). In many of our visits we will encounter winding or hilly roads as well as cobblestone streets and sidewalks. Comfortable and sturdy footwear is a necessity.

Breakfast: Breakfast at hotel.

Morning: After breakfast check-out of the hotel and depart via private bus (1 hour) for Cordoba, where led by a local expert we will visit the Great Mosque-Cathedral with its famous horseshoe arches, and explore the Jewish Quarter with one of Spain's last remaining synagogues and a monument to the famous philosopher, Maimonides.

Lunch: Lunch at a typical restaurant in Cordoba

Afternoon: After lunch departure to our first stop in the White Villages of Andalusia: Grazalema. Known for their uniformly whitewashed constructions, the White Villages still seem part of medieval Spain and appear to be inserted like bird nests into the mountains, sitting on dramatic gorges, often crowned by castles. Upon arrival at the hotel, check-in, afternoon orientation walk around the village and we will visit a typical butchers to see how they make cold meats.

Dinner: Dinner at a local restaurant.

DAY
5
The Ronda of Hemingway & Welles in El Tajo Gorge
Grazalema
B,L
HOTEL PUERTA DE LA VILLA

Activity note: Extensive walking (2-3 miles on some days, approx. 1-3 hours, at a steady pace). In many of our visits we will encounter winding or hilly roads as well as cobblestone streets and sidewalks. Comfortable and sturdy footwear is a necessity.

Breakfast: Breakfast at hotel.

Morning: Morning departure via private coach bus for the city of Ronda where we will experience this magnificent city nestled into the Malaga side of the Sierras with the guidance of a local expert. Visits to the oldest bullring in Spain, the Arab baths, the three main bridges crossing the gorge. We will also learn about Ronda's unique role played during Spain's Civil War.

Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant

Afternoon: Afternoon arrival in Grazalema for a lecture on "The People of the Sierra" in which we will examine rural architecture, economy, and sociological character of the mountain people who subsisted by cultivating the land, shepherding, and even smuggling in times of economic difficulty.

Dinner: On-site staff will make suggestions for you to enjoy dinner on your own

Evening: At leisure

DAY
6
Grazalema Nature Park, Olive Mill, Social Time with Locals
Grazalema
B,L,D
HOTEL PUERTA DE LA VILLA

Activity note: Extensive walking (2-3 miles on some days, approx. 1-3 hours, at a steady pace). In many of our visits we will encounter winding or hilly roads as well as cobblestone streets and sidewalks. Comfortable and sturdy footwear is a necessity.

Breakfast: Breakfast at hotel.

Morning: Light morning hike in the Sierra de Grazalema Natural Park (2,500 feet altitude) which was declared a biosphere reserve in 1977. We will observe the many colonies of endangered vultures and explore limestone caves. Afterwards, stop at a an 18th century functioning olive mill where we will learn about the production of Spain's golden liquid.

Lunch: Lunch at the Olive Mill Hacienda

Afternoon: In our way back to Grazalema we will stop for a cheese making workshop. Afternoon arrival in Grazalema, enjoy meeting with locals to learn firsthand what life is really like in the village.

Dinner: Enjoy an organized tapas outing with your new village friends.

Evening: At leisure

DAY
7
Baelo Claudia Ruins, Lunch at coast, Vejer
Vejer de la Frontera
B,L,D
La Casa del Califa

Activity note: Extensive walking (2-3 miles on some days, approx. 1-3 hours, at a steady pace). In many of our visits we will encounter winding or hilly roads as well as cobblestone streets and sidewalks. Comfortable and sturdy footwear is a necessity.

Breakfast: Breakfast at hotel.

Morning: Morning check-out of the hotel in Grazalema and departure via private bus for Vejer de la Frontera. On route we stop at the coast for a guided visit of the Roman ruins of Baelo Claudia in Bolonia, near Tarifa, abandoned in the 6th century and today preserving the most representative elements of a typical Roman city

Lunch: Lunch of typical coastal fare at a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Afternoon arrival in Vejer and check-in at the hotel. Take a stroll through the village, towering over the surrounding countryside, at 600 feet above sea level, and only a couple of miles from the coast. The city is dominated by its Moorish castle and Gothic church. Clean, narrow cobblestoned streets and whitewashed homes are the characteristic trait of the Andalusian towns. Vejer is steeped in history; the famous battle of Trafalgar took place just off the coast near the town in 1805.

Dinner: Dinner at the hotel's restaurant, once a convent.

DAY
8
Bull Ranch
Vejer de la Frontera
B,L
La Casa del Califa

Activity note: Extensive walking (2-3 miles on some days, approx. 1-3 hours, at a steady pace). In many of our visits we will encounter winding or hilly roads as well as cobblestone streets and sidewalks. Comfortable and sturdy footwear is a necessity.

Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Depart to Arcos de la Frontera for a visit to a functioning bull ranch where we will learn first hand about raising toros and we will see an equestrian show.

Lunch: At a restaurant close to the finca

Afternoon: Afternoon return to Vejer, free time to explore on your own or relax.

Dinner: On your own

DAY
9
Sherry Winery, Seville's Gothic Cathedral, Flamenco show
Seville
B,L,D
Hotel Inglaterra

Activity note: Extensive walking (2-3 miles on some days, approx. 1-3 hours, at a steady pace). In many of our visits we will encounter winding or hilly roads as well as cobblestone streets and sidewalks. Comfortable and sturdy footwear is a necessity.

Breakfast: Breakfast at hotel.

Morning: Morning check-out of the hotel and departure via private coach bus for Seville. En route, we visit a bodega, or winery, in Jerez, the capital of sherry. Taste the regional flavors and learn about this special blends. Late morning arrival in Seville.

Lunch: Lunch at restaurant in Seville

Afternoon: Afternoon guided visit to the Gothic Cathedral and a walking tour in Seville's Barrio Santa Cruz, famous for its orange trees and the former Jewish neighborhood of the city, a true labyrinth of narrow streets and alleys. Afterwards, we will walk to the local “tablao” and see flamenco come alive at an intimate show.

Dinner: Late dinner at restaurant close to flamenco show

DAY
10
Alcázar, Cooking class, Tapas with locals
Seville
B,L,D
Hotel Inglaterra

Activity note: Extensive walking (2-3 miles on some days, approx. 1-3 hours, at a steady pace). In many of our visits we will encounter winding or hilly roads as well as cobblestone streets and sidewalks. Comfortable and sturdy footwear is a necessity.

Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Morning guided visit to Alcazar. After the visit we will walk to Triana Market to have a hands-on cooking class.

Lunch: For lunch we will eat what we have done in cooking class

Afternoon: Free time to pack, purchase souvenirs and enjoy at your leasure.

Dinner: Walk to CC-CS headquarters, housed in an 18th Century mansion we will meet with local Sevillanos, who participate in a language exchange program, for a tapas, conversation and laughter.

DAY
11
Program Concludes
In Flight
B

Activity note: Extensive walking (2-3 miles on some days, approx. 1-3 hours, at a steady pace). In many of our visits we will encounter winding or hilly roads as well as cobblestone streets and sidewalks. Comfortable and sturdy footwear is a necessity.

Breakfast: Breakfast at hotel. This concludes our program. If you are returning home, safe travels. If you are staying on independently, have a wonderful time. If you are transferring to another Road Scholar program, detailed instructions are included in your Information Packet for that program. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Please join our Facebook page and share photos of your program. Visit us at www.facebook.com/rsadventures. Best wishes for all your journeys!






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