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Lisbon, Seville & Madrid

11 days
Relive the Age of Discovery, when explorers brought treasures from around the world—now on display in Portuguese palaces and Spanish cathedrals. Uncover Roman ruins throughout the region and the Moorish influences in exotic Andalusia. And when your hands-on history lesson is complete, fast-forward to the present day to feast on tapas, drink sangria and join the street life in Madrid.

Let us handle the details

Expert Tour Director

      Local       cuisine

Handpicked hotels

Sightseeing with local guides

Private transportation

Personalized flight options

Maximum tour group size: 35 travelers

Tour pace: You will walk for about 2 hours daily across mostly flat terrain, including paved roads and cobblestone streets, with few hills or stairs.

Let us handle the details

Expert Tour Director

      Local       cuisine

Handpicked hotels

Sightseeing with local guides

Private transportation

Personalized flight options

Your tour includes

  • 9 nights in handpicked hotels

  • Breakfast daily, 3 three-course dinners with beer or wine

  • Multilingual Tour Director

  • Private deluxe motor coach

  • Guided sightseeing and select entrance fees

Map of tour of Spain and Portugal

Overnight Flight 1 night

Day 1: Travel day

Board your overnight flight to Portugal today.

Lisbon 3 nights Hotel info

Day 2: Arrival in Lisbon

  Included meals: Dinner

Welcome to Portugal! Meet your Tour Director and fellow travelers at tonight’s welcome dinner.

Day 3: Sightseeing tour of Lisbon

  Included meals: Breakfast

Get to know the Portuguese capital on a tour with a local guide.

• Discover the city’s maritime heritage at the Monument to the Discoveries and Belém Tower

• Pass by the Jerónimos Monastery, built to honor voyagers and enter Ajuda Palace, the former residence of Portuguese royals

• Drive by the Moorish Alfama district in view of the Castle of São Jorge

Enjoy a free evening in Lisbon or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Fado Dinner & Show $85pp* Details

Spend your evening at Lisbon tavern listening to fado. Derived from the Latin word fatum—meaning “prophecy” or “fate”—fado is Portugal’s national musical treasure. Fado’s traditional theme is saudade, a word that doesn’t quite translate to English but conveys a sense of both nostalgia and longing. Dinner is included during this memorable musical evening.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $95)

Day 4: Free day in Lisbon

  Included meals: Breakfast

Enjoy a full free day in Lisbon or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Sintra & the Portuguese Riviera $59pp* Details

Journey to the UNESCO World Heritage-listed town of Sintra and learn why the poet Lord Byron once called it a “glorious Eden.” Get a glimpse into royal life during a guided tour of the 19th-century, Romanticist Pena Palace. This story-book, mountaintop site boasts picturesque gardens and sweeping views of the Portuguese countryside. After your tour, you’ll have free time to stroll through Sintra, viewing its colorful villas, small shops and impeccably manicured gardens. On your way back to Lisbon, take in the coastal scenery of the Portuguese Riviera. Stop en route in the old fishing village of Cascais to eat lunch and discover the town’s winding, narrow streets, pastel-colored buildings and bustling fish market before continuing back to Lisbon.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $69)

Seville 3 nights Hotel info

Day 5: Seville via Évora

  Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Travel through the unspoiled countryside of Portugal en route to Spain. Before crossing the border, stop in Évora to follow a local guide during a visit to the Church of St. Francis, known as the “Chapel of Bones.” Arrive later in Seville, a city brimming with traditional Spanish charm.

Day 6: Sightseeing tour of Seville

  Included meals: Breakfast

Take in the highlights of Seville on a guided tour.

• Enter the Alcázar, once home to King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella

• Get a glimpse into Seville’s rich history, including the tiled pavilion of the Plaza de España and the Gothic Seville Cathedral where Columbus is buried 

• Pass the whitewashed homes of Barrio de Santa Cruz

Day 7: Free day in Seville

  Included meals: Breakfast

Enjoy a full free day in Seville or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Jerez Region: Yeguada Farm Visit & Sherry Tasting $99pp* Details

Travel south to the Jerez region to visit a traditional Yeguada stud farm, where Andalusian horses are bred. Learn about Yeguada horse culture and the different aspects of the farm as you tour the coach room, saddlery and grounds, which are home to stallions, mares and colts. Then, see these magnificent studs in action during a horse show. After, visit a beautiful sherry house known as a bodega to learn about one of the most famous fortified wines in the world. Tour the bodega’s lush gardens and see where the sherry is processed and stored before enjoying lunch and a tasting of the well-known wine

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $109)

Optional Excursion - Flamenco Show & Carriage Ride $75pp* Details

Savor a taste of old Seville tonight with a horse-drawn carriage ride and a flamenco show. Flamenco is a unique and colorful Andalusian art form, combining guitar playing, singing, clapping and dancing, and this excursion is sure to be one of the highlights of your Spanish journey. Please note: The carriage ride will run as weather permits.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $85)

Madrid 3 nights Hotel info

Day 8: Madrid via Córdoba

  Included meals: Breakfast

Leave Seville and make your way to Madrid, stopping en route to discover some of the flavors and history of Andalusia.

• Visit an olive farm to tour the grove, mill and cellar with a guide before tasting the flavorful olive oil

• Stop in the town of Córdoba to explore its rich history—at one time, the city was home to 700 mosques, 900 public baths and 70 libraries

• Enter the Mezquita, a UNESCO World Heritage site built in the eighth century as a mosque and then converted into a cathedral during the Christian Reconquista

• Board a high-speed train and arrive in Madrid this afternoon

Day 9: Sightseeing tour of Madrid

  Included meals: Breakfast

Explore the Spanish capital’s beautiful architecture, lively squares and grand boulevards on today’s guided sightseeing tour. 

• Make a photo stop at the Royal Palace, Spain’s largest royal residence 

• Pass by the Temple of Debod, a reassembled temple from ancient Egypt 

• View the city’s many squares, including Plaza de España, Plaza Mayor and the bustling Puerta del Sol

• Explore the Prado, a world-class art museum that began as the private collection of the Spanish monarchy and is home to the works of Goya, Velásquez and more

Enjoy a free evening in Madrid or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Traditional Spanish Evening $99pp* Details

On your way to dinner, walk through the illuminated streets of Madrid, taking in the local neighborhood ambiance in the evening light. After your walk, enjoy conversation, camaraderie and live music at one of the oldest restaurants in the city. Between traditional Castilian courses, you’ll be entertained by tuna music, an artistic tradition with its roots in Spain’s universities.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $109)

Day 10: Free day in Madrid

  Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Enjoy a free day in Madrid or add an excursion.

Later, say goodbye to your group at a farewell dinner.

Optional Excursion - Toledo $79pp* Details

Discover Toledo, the cliff-top city often referred to as La Ciudad Imperial (Imperial City). Upon arrival, you’ll have some free time to explore. Later in the afternoon, your guided tour begins at Toledo Cathedral, a massive, Gothic structure that houses 750 medieval stained glass windows and a treasure trove of golden artifacts. Gaze upon the cathedral’s sacristy, containing masterpieces by the likes of van Dyck, El Greco, Rubens and Titian. After exploring the labyrinth of medieval alleyways at the heart of the city, you’ll visit the Church of Santo Tomé and one of Europe’s oldest synagogues, Santa María la Blanca. Please note: This tour involves some moderate walking over uneven terrain. Depending on the day of the week, the sites visited are subject to change. If the Synagogue of Santa María la Blanca is closed, you’ll visit the Synagogue of El Tránsito instead.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $89)

Day 11: Departure

  Included meals: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home or continue your exploration of Spain in Barcelona.

Add Barcelona $499 pp

Please note: Extension is not available on all departure dates.

From the twisting Gothic quarter to the whimsical creations of Antoni Gaudí and the visionary beauty of the Eixample district, Barcelona's architectural eye candy has no equal. Its music, theater, art, gastronomy, fashion, and architecture set the pace for European chic, and its nightlife will have you dancing until dawn.

Barcelona 2 nights Hotel info

Day 11: Train transfer to Barcelona

  Included meals: Breakfast

Board a high-speed train from Madrid to beautiful Barcelona, the cultural capital of Catalonia. Upon arrival, check into your hotel and start your explorations.

Day 12: Sightseeing tour of Barcelona

  Included meals: Breakfast

Discover why the Catalan capital is touted for its unparalleled architectural landmarks, many of which are UNESCO World Heritage sites. 

• Step inside La Sagrada Família, Gaudí’s famous masterwork-in-progress

• Drive along Passeig de Gràcia, past Gaudí’s “house of bones”

• Stop at Montjuïc, where the 1992 Olympic Games took place, and stroll Mirador de l’Alcalde Park

• Pass Plaça d’Espanya and the soaring monument to Christopher Columbus

Enjoy a free afternoon in Barcelona or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Park Güell & La Pedrera $85pp* Details

On today’s excursion, discover the magnificent works of Antoni Gaudí, the famed Spanish architect known for his bold, distinct designs. Casa Milà is the first stop. Take a guided tour of this building, popularly known as La Pedrera, built by Gaudí between 1905 and 1910. Everything about the building is visually unique, from the wave-like stone structure and grandly designed roof to the apartment that reflects the style of the 20th-century bourgeois. Next, you’ll head to Park Güell, also designed by Gaudí. Your guide will lead you through the park, which contains stunning buildings, intricate stonework and colorful mosaics. At the top of the park, marvel at the brilliant views of Barcelona.

Must be booked 20 days before departure

Day 13: Departure

  Included meals: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home.

How's the weather?

  • Lisbon, Portugal
  • Seville, Spain
  • Madrid, Spain
Temperature Precipitation
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Passport & Visa

In order to enter Portugal and Spain, U.S.  and Canadian citizens need a valid passport. The expiration date must extend at least six months beyond the date of your return home. No visa is required for U.S. or Canadian citizens. If you are not a U.S. or Canadian citizen, you must contact each country’s consulate for your specific entry requirements.

Health

There are no major health risks when traveling to Spain and Portugal. During the summer months, travelers should take extra care for sun exposure. It is always advisable to check with your doctor or healthcare provider for the latest updates and overseas travel requirements. 

Transportation / Walking on tour

Round-trip flights arrive in Lisbon and depart from Madrid (or Barcelona for the extension). Included transportation is by private motor coach (and high-speed train from Córdoba to Madrid). In your free time, you may wish to explore the major cities by public transportation. Lisbon is a very walkable city (although sometimes hilly), but you may want to break up your walking with rides on trams, metro and buses. All-inclusive travel passes are available. Seville’s city center is best explored on foot, while local buses service outlying areas. Madrid’s main center is compact and walkable, but you’ll want to take advantage of the fast and efficient metro system for most attractions. Buses and taxis (which are inexpensive compared to most European cities) are also readily available and well-regulated.

Clothing & Packing Tips

We recommend packing light, loose-fitting clothing that provides comfort when exploring the sights. A sun hat, sunglasses and a sturdy pair of walking shoes are also recommended. It’s always a good idea to be prepared for any event—a lightweight jacket and emergency rainwear are advised. If you plan to visit an especially elegant restaurant or attend the opera or theater, you’ll probably feel more comfortable in something more formal. Remember that it’s preferable not to visit churches or other religious sites with bare legs and shoulders (entrance may be denied on this basis).

Baggage Allowance

Airlines have varying weight restrictions on luggage. Some airlines may impose additional charges if you choose to check any baggage. Please contact your airline or refer to its website for detailed information regarding your airline’s checked baggage policies. Bear in mind that your luggage will probably weigh more on your return trip due to souvenir shopping. We allow only one suitcase per person. One carry-on bag is also permitted, provided that it does not exceed 45 inches (length + width + height). There may be times when you will have to handle your own bags, and you’ll find that lightweight luggage provides a distinct advantage. Make sure you label your baggage and carry valuables, medication and documents in your carry-on luggage.

Cuisine

One of the pleasures of traveling is experiencing the delightful variety of local cuisine. Portuguese cooking relies heavily on seafood: dishes made with shrimp, octopus, lobster and cod are especially delicious. Portugal is also well-known for its breads and other baked goods as well as savory sausages. You might wish to sample local vintages of port wine, one of the nation’s most popular exports. Spain boasts a wide array of local specialties, such as paella, the traditional dish of chicken, seafood and saffron rice. Dinner is less hearty than lunch and is served quite late—from 9pm until midnight. 

Currency

The euro is the currency you will be using on your tour. Better rates of exchange are usually available in Spain and Portugal, although it is worth ordering some currency from your local bank to use when you first arrive. We strongly advise that you take debit/bank cards and credit cards, which can be exchanged for cash at local banks as needed. You can use most debit/credit cards at ATMs on the international networks Cirrus and Plus, but make sure to check with your home bank about withdrawal fees. We suggest that you inform your bank and credit card company of your travel plans, so that they won’t confuse your international purchases for fraudulent charges. 

Tipping

At the conclusion of your tour, it is customary to offer your Tour Director and driver a gratuity. We recommend tipping in your tour country’s currency, the equivalent of $3USD/CAD per person per day for your driver and $6USD/CAD to $9USD/ CAD per person per day for your Tour Director. If applicable, we also recommend the equivalent of $2USD/CAD per local guide. Tips can only be paid in cash. Please keep current local currency exchange rates in mind when tipping.

See what our travelers say about this tour—all reviews are authentic and unedited.

Have you been on tour with us? Visit My Account to submit a review.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 3/12/2016

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: MN

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Wonderful Tour

I've been praising this tour to everyone I talk with, especially to people who like to travel independently and who are leery of organized tours. We had a perfect combination of tours led by very well-informed local guides in each of the cities, followed by free time to explore on our own. Our tour director, Tamara Hauptmen, was outstanding--knowledgeable, thoughtful, caring, and charming. (I discovered, when praising Tamara, that a friend had had Tamara as tour director on a trip to Italy. It was because my friend and I were so enthusiastic that we discovered we'd had the same tour director!) Our group was congenial and small enough to allow us to get to become acquainted and feel connected to each other. It was very nice not to have to worry about transportation to and from airports and train stations, and our bus driver was great! Of course, Portugal and Spain were wonderful, and I'd like to go back and spend more time in both countries. The hotel accommodations were very nice, and we had only a few quibbles (e.g., no soap dishes or wash cloths in the bathrooms, the hotel in Seville which wanted to charge for use of the safes--until Tamara intervened).

 

Hi Solfrid! We’re so glad you enjoyed your time on tour, and we’re very appreciative of you singing its praises to others! It sounds like both your group and your Tour Director made a very positive impact on your experience. We’re happy to hear it. That’s also very cool that your friend had had Tamara as a Tour Director previously! We’re pleased to learn you were able to relax and enjoy your time on tour without worrying about all the little details. Thank you for sharing your experience, and we hope to welcome you on tour again soon!

Posted by Daniela, Director of Quality Control | April 22, 2016

4 / 5

4 / 5

Traveled On: 7/11/2015

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: NY

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 4 / 5

Excellent Tour

This 10-day tour was very well organized and very well structured. The places visited were part of the "must-see" locations and the two recommendations I would make are: 1) Extend the time in transfer cities, such as Cordoba and Evora. It would be worthwhile spending at least 2-3 more ours in these cities 2) Definitely use European airlines for the flights. Most (if not all) European airlines (Lufthansa; KLM; etc) surpass by a great length the quality of service and space as compared to AA and Delta.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 6/20/2015

Number of Past Tours: 5

From: OH

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Great trip!

We had an exciting 13 day trip to Portugal and Spain. I loved our tour director, Luis! When we arrived at each new city, he provided a walking tour to get us acclimated to where things were in the city. He showed us how to get the subways also. He was very helpful in showing us how to get wherever we wanted to go. Go Ahead Tours are great because after giving a pretty thorough bus tour of each city, we were given tips on what to see and we could do what we wanted on our own or in small groups. That was MUCH better than trying to follow a big tour group everywhere! We have taken six trips with Go Ahead and I highly recommend them.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 6/20/2015

Number of Past Tours: 2

From: TN

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Best Tour Director

Luis is the most outstanding tour director we have ever had. He went out of his way to make sure the tour was completely organized and that it ran smoothly. He is personable and funny, and very knowledgeable of Spain and Portugal. He went out of his way to make sure we had a wonderful experience. I will recommend him and Go Ahead to all of our friends.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 4/18/2015

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: FL

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Love Spain

I greatly enjoyed the trip. The walking tours were a little bit to fast especially when you're older and can't keep up. The cities that we visited were fantastic. Not enough time to really shop.

4 / 5

4 / 5

Traveled On: 4/18/2015

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: FL

Tour Director: 4 / 5

Tour Value: 4 / 5

Not enough time!

Would have liked to have same tour spread out over more time. There was so much to do, particularly in Madrid and Barcelona, and I felt like we barely skimmed the surface. Omitting some of the excursions would have helped but those were good too. The guides were all great and the food was wonderful! I would like to spend the rest of my life at the Sana Malhoa Hotel in Lisbon. Everything there was so extraordinary, the other hotels paled by comparison. Whoever managed to book us in Seville during the week of their festival really scored a coup. All in all it was a very good trip. I didn't want to come home.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 10/19/2014

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: MO

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

fantastic tour director

Our tour diector was outstanding. His name is Fabrizio and I could not have been more pleased. He exhibited professionalism and was very caring. I would consider another tour if he is the director. The tour itself was much more than I had expected. Thank you.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 9/27/2014

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: FL

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Best Tour Director

In our opinion,Walter's and me, Rafael was excellent,we loved him and the bus drivers too. He handled our group,42 people, very well, everything worked ontime,we did not have any problems or incidents.We had a great time and got great memories to share with our loved ones. Thank you!

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 9/27/2014

Number of Past Tours: 3

From: RI

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Great Value! Got a lot for the money!

I just returned 2 days ago from this tour, and the experience was exceptional. From Lisbon, then Seville, Madrid and finally, Barcelona, everything was a fulfilling experience. Our tour guide, Rafael, was knowledgeable about where to eat, shop and explore locally. Cabs were inexpensive and easy to get, thereby making getting around fairly simple. The Castillian dinner was exceptional, as were the Flamenco Show and Carriage Ride. I was thrilled to go to the Prado Museum, and the tour guide who worked with our group there was exceptionally knowledgeable about art. The day we went to the Prado in Madrid, the Reina Sophia was open free to the public on Sundays, so after lunch we went there and saw Picasso's "Guernica". Two museums for the price of one! The weather was perfect (not a drop of rain) and the temps were summer like. Tapas and Sangria were inexpensive and delicious, as were the wines we drank. Great, great time and the group was wonderful!

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1 / 4

3 / 5

3 / 5

Traveled On: 9/27/2014

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: NY

Tour Director: 3 / 5

Tour Value: 3 / 5

Disappointment

The "Real Parque" hotel in Lisbon was a grave disappointment. The accommodations were very uncomfortable, the hotel is outdated and located in a dismal part of the city. The front desk staff were not pleasant. The hotel Zenit in Seville was somewhat better, however, still outdated. Side tours were good, with tour guides being adequate. All dinner meals included in tour package were terrible, breakfast in all hotels were very good. All in all, I can't imagine using or recommending your tour company.

 

Antoinette, Thank you for taking the time to review your tour to Lisbon, Seville & Madrid. We are very sorry to hear that your experience was so unsatisfactory. Please be assured that our travelers’ feedback is taken very seriously and that our attention to quality is of the utmost importance. As such, we will be following up with our suppliers regarding the issues you have raised. We recognize that every traveler has a unique perspective and it is very unfortunate that your travel experience was not what you were looking for.

Posted by Daniela, Director of Quality Control | October 28, 2014

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