Barcelona, Basque Country, Rioja & Madrid in 11 days | Spain Tour
Madrid
San Sebastian
Barcelona
Barcelona

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Trip Overview

Circle the heart of Spain in 11 days! Start with the top attractions of Barcelona, its old town, and Gaudi masterpieces. Continue North and immerse yourself in San Sebastian treasures. Then move on to the Rioja region to sample the finest wines and visit the medieval village of Laguardia before making your way to Bilbao. As a grand finale, arrive in the sunny capital of Spain, Madrid.
Tour type:
Private tour
Tour rating:
4.86 / 5, Based on
  • BEST HOTELS
  • 4 & 5-star best location hotels
    10 nights
  • BEST CONNECTIONS
  • Private transfers
    2 train rides
  • BEST SIGHTSEEING
  • 7 sightseeing tours
    Rioja wine tasting
  • MEALS
  • 10 breakfasts

Day-by-Day

Day 1
Arrival in Barcelona

Welcome to the lively capital of Catalonia - Barcelona! Your driver meets you at the exit gate of the airport holding a sign with your name on it and transfers you to your centrally located hotel.

The rest of the day is free so you can either explore the fantastic center of Barcelona on your own, dine at one of the local restaurants or take a good rest before the rich sightseeing program planned for the following day.

Day 2
Tour of Barcelona's Gothic Quarter

After breakfast, your guide meets you in the hotel lobby and takes you on a wonderful half-day walking tour around the most outstanding attractions of Barcelona.

Barcelona contains one of the biggest and architecturally diverse Medieval districts in Europe. During the city tour, you get to see Barcelona's Old Town called "Casc Antic" and its medieval landmarks.

You walk through the maze of old narrow streets of the Gothic Quarter that was formed around the Roman forum. Then you see the Barcelona Cathedral both from the outside and the inside, pass the former Jewish District "Call", the Sant Jaume Square, see the Generalitat Palace and City Hall from the outside, pass the Square of the King and the former Royal Palace.

You then proceed to the Ribera shore district where you see the Santa Maria del Mar church - the former residence of sailors, traders, and craftsmen who lived and worked there in the Middle Ages. The tour finishes on the most vivid street in Barcelona La Rambla, where you can take a rest at one of the open-air terraces.

After the tour, you return to your hotel and have the rest of the day free.

Day 3
Gaudi Tour & Train to San Sebastian

Following breakfast, you meet your private guide and private driver and enjoy a fantastic sightseeing tour dedicated to the world-renowned architectural works of Antonio Gaudi.

You start with a visit to the colorful Park Guell, where you spend some time strolling through its mosaic paths and enjoying the great city views.

The day is crowned with a visit to the astonishing Sagrada Familia Basilica - the most brilliant masterpiece of Gaudi that is rightfully considered the most recognizable symbol of Barcelona.

After the tour, you have a transfer directly to the railway station for a high-speed train ride to San Sebastian (first class tickets are included).

Upon arrival, you are transferred to your downtown hotel.

Day 4
San Sebastian City Tour

After breakfast, you have a sightseeing tour of the city. During the tour, you see the Kursaal Palace area, the historic Cathedral area and one of the most-visited tourist sites - Santa Maria del Coro's Basilica, an 18-century baroque church built on the site of an ancient Roman temple. You then proceed to the local market and shopping area, see the Old Town, the port and the bay of La Concha.

After the tour, you return to the hotel and have the rest of the day free.

Day 5
Free Day in San Sebastian or Optional Day Trip to Pamplona

This day is free for you to enjoy and explore San Sebastian on your own. Alternatively, you can join our carefully planned optional day trip to Pamplona.

  • Optional tour: Day Trip to Pamplona
    Set off on an exploration of Pamplona, famous worldwide for its bull-running San Fermin Festival, described by many authors including Ernest Hemingway. Your private driver takes you to Pamplona set on an elevated terrace that stands in the midst of the Arga valley crowned by mountains. During your private walking tour with a local guide see the well-preserved Old Town and enjoy Pamplona's Plaza del Castillo, the Plaza de Toros bullring, the oldest part of Pamplona to its Roman foundations that date back to 75 B.C., the Camino de Santiago, and the 1756 Town Hall.
Day 6
Rioja Wine Tour & Visit to Laguardia

After breakfast, you check-out from the hotel and have a day trip to Rioja region to visit a couple of traditional wineries, producing the world famous Rioja wine under the local wine appellation in La Rioja Alta and La Rioja Alavesa. You have a guided tour of each winery with tastings.

Later you proceed through the vineyards to the medieval village of Laguardia for a guided tour. You get to enjoy the magnificent modern architecture of the most famous wineries in the area.

After the tour, you are transferred to your Bilbao hotel for check-in. Overnight at the hotel.

Day 7
Bilbao City Tour

Following breakfast, you meet your experienced guide who takes you on a fantastic sightseeing tour around the city's most interesting landmarks.

During the tour you see the Guggenheim-Bilbao Museum (from the outside), explore the Casco Viejo - Old Town made up of the city's 7 calles - streets that are the origins of Bilbao, pass the beautiful Cathedral of Santiago, and enjoy the views of the Yohn's Palace or the Arriaga theater - named in honor of the "Spanish Mozart".

After the tour, you return to your hotel and have the rest of the day free.

Day 8
Train to Madrid

After breakfast, you check-out from the hotel and a private driver takes you to the train station for your train ride to Madrid.

In 5 hours you arrive in one of the most beautiful cities in the world - Madrid! Upon arrival, your driver meets you at the train station and transfers you to your downtown hotel for check-in.

The rest of the day is free so you can start exploring the magnificent old town on your own, dine at one of the authentic local restaurants or take a good rest in your comfortable room.

Day 9
Madrid Old Town Tour

Following breakfast, you meet your guide and enjoy a fascinating walking sightseeing tour around the most brilliant attractions of Madrid de los Austrias - the amazing old town of the Spanish capital that treasures historical monuments dating back to the 16th and 17th centuries when Spain was ruled by the House of the Hapsburgh.

During the tour, you take a walk around Plaza de Oriente, enter the gorgeous Royal Palace called Palacio Real, see the beautiful exteriors of the Catedral Nuestra Senora de la Almudena and stroll through Major Street.

Next, you proceed to Plaza de la Villa, stop by St. Michel's Market and walk down the picturesque Cava de San Miguel. Your tour finishes at the iconic Plaza Mayor and breathtaking Puerta del Sol.

After the touring is over, you return to your hotel and have the rest of the day free.

 

Day 10
Madrid of the Bourbons & Prado Museum

After breakfast, your guide meets you and takes you on a walking tour of Madrid of the Bourbons - the historical area around the Prado Museum.

During the tour, you pass the Puerta de Alcala, Plaza Cibeles, and three monumental fountains: Cibeles, Apolo, and Neptuno. Next, you proceed to the Spanish Parliament building, see the Atocha train station, and explore the area of the Golden Triangle of Art made up of three most important art museums of Madrid - the Prado, the Thyssen-Bornemitza, and the Reina Sofia.

The highlight of the tour is the visit to one of the world's greatest art galleries and Madrid's top cultural sight - the Prado Museum. This venue houses a unique collection of fine art displayed in the halls and rooms of this 18th-century Neo-Classical building. You see the most significant gems of the museum's collection, including the famous masterpieces of El Greco, Velazquez, Goya, Raphael and Rubens.

After the tour, you return to your hotel and have the rest of the day free.

Day 11
Departure from Madrid

This is the last day of your amazing tour of Spain! After breakfast, your driver transfers you to the airport for your flight back home. We wish you a safe flight and hope to work on your future trips!


Included

8 nights at centrally-located 4 or 5-star hotels

  • Hand picked hotels
  • Best value rooms
  • Restaurant

Always included:

  • Best location for sightseeing
  • Breakfasts
  • All taxes and fees

What's Included
  • Accommodation at remarkable hotels in Barcelona, San Sebastian, Bilbao & Madrid; 
  • Breakfasts at the hotels;
  • Airport / railway station transfers and all transportation according to the itinerary with private drivers;
  • Professional English-speaking guides;
  • Rich sightseeing tours according to the itinerary;
  • 1st class train tickets Barcelona - San Sebastian, Bilbao - Madrid;
  • Private transfer San Sebastian - Laguardia - Bilbao;
  • Emergency line support during the trip.

Not included: international flights, other meals not mentioned in the program, optional tours and services, all personal expenses, gratuities.

Tour Highlights
  • Tour of Gaudi masterpieces
  • Exploration of Rioja wineries
  • Visit to the Royal Palace in Madrid
  • Guided tour of Prado Museum
What to Know
  • Credit cards are not accepted at many places, so make sure to withdraw some cash from the ATM beforehand
  • Be prepared for currency conversion fees when paying with a card issued in USD
  • Tips to guides, drivers and restaurant staff in Europe are accepted but are fully at your discretion

Dates & Rates

Package type Price
Friends trip: 4+ travelers
$3,681
Deposit $737
Two travelers: double occupancy
based on double occupancy
$4,581
Deposit $917
Package type Price
Friends trip: 4+ travelers
$3,681
Deposit $737
Two travelers: double occupancy
based on double occupancy
$4,581
Deposit $917

Map


Reviews

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Our trip to Spain was everything we have been dreaming of and more!

Our trip to Spain was everything we have been dreaming of and more! The thing that shocked me most was that every point of the tour was soo well-organized! Everything went like clockwork. All drivers were on time and even early, and transfers went smoothly without even one little hitch - now that's what I call impressive...

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Best vacation EVER! Viva España!

My sister and I are back from our recent Jewels of Spain trip. What can I say, best vacation EVER! Viva España! It was our first time overseas and we were a bit scared but at the same time so excited to go to Spain, and to our surprise everything was ...

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Overall I think this was an excellent package and would recommend it to ANYONE - Iberian Capitals, June 2017

The greatest thing about this trip was the choice of guides. There are all very friendly and extremely knowledgeable. My husband actually referred to it as "renting a good friend for the day". The guides in Barcelona and Madrid actually gave us their personal numbers in case we had any issues during our stay. Can't say ...

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Reviews

Cheryl and Daniel Wenzel

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October 16, 2016

Our trip to Spain was everything we have been dreaming of and more!

Our trip to Spain was everything we have been dreaming of and more! The thing that shocked me most was that every point of...

Read more

Karoline Myrtle

  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull
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  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull

October 16, 2016

Best vacation EVER! Viva España!

My sister and I are back from our recent Jewels of Spain trip. What can I say, best vacation EVER! Viva España! It was ...

Read more

Jill Wilkie

  • ratingFull
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  • ratingFull

October 16, 2016

Overall I think this was an excellent package and would recommend it to ANYONE - Iberian Capitals, June 2017

The greatest thing about this trip was the choice of guides. There are all very friendly and extremely knowledgeable. My ...

Read more

More Firebird Tours reviews


E.g., Dec 11 2018