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The region of Andalucia harbours a quintessential Spanish spirit of fiesta loving locals, sun-kissed monuments of lost kingdoms, unblemished terrains surrounding the mighty skiers paradise of Sierra Nevada and reckless inflections of flamenco guitars resonating within world-renowned tapas bars.
Fly to Malaga from your chosen UK departure airport. You will be met on arrival and taken to your hotel in Granada for an afternoon at leisure. This romantic city presents ornately detailed landmarks alluding to the Moorish empire's past grandeur, intertwined with picturesque plazas and quaint tea houses nestled within charming backstreets.
This morning visit a tour highlight, UNSECO Heritage Site and one of Europe's most sensational monuments - The Alhambra. Part palace, part fort, this enchanted medieval complex displays a harmonious balance between distinct Moorish architecture and a breath-taking location beneath the Sierra Nevada's snow dusted peaks. Wander through this monument to admire delicate columns, lyrical calligraphy, sculpted masterpieces and the famous Generalife - an architect's garden of landscaped flora and gargling pools. This afternoon is at leisure to discover Granada's magnificent relics including the city's cathedral; conceived by artistic polymath Alonso Cano, it displays an intriguing blend of architectural styles including a Gothic roof, Spanish interior and baroque exterior. You may also want to sample a wealth of perfumed teas from one of the many Moorish-style tea houses nestled within winding lanes studded with stately walled gardens.
Depart this morning and head west to the city of Cordoba. Stop en route at Montilla, to experience a tempting smorgasbord of tapas dishes and a sampling of the town's distinctly sweet wine - often compared with sherry. Later arrive in Cordoba, a metropolis boasting remnants of a lost Islamic empire alongside an astonishing collection of churches and exquisite wine bars.
Today enjoy a half day city tour of Cordoba, including a visit to the UNESCO recognised Mezquita. As one of the world's greatest works of Islamic architecture, its complex designs spellbind all who explore the labyrinth of spacious interiors. Admire elaborate arches within the royal maksura, an expansive courtyard garnished with countless orange trees and a surprising Gothic chapel implanted within the mosque. During your afternoon at leisure, take a stroll across the distinctive Roman bridge over Guadalquivir River and admire the famed blossom studded patios dotted throughout the city.
Following breakfast, visit the town of Carmona to uncover ancient artefacts including the imposing Puerta de Sevilla fortified gates and the fascinating Necropolis Romana, a Roman city of the dead comprised of timeworn yet elaborate tombs. Continue to Seville for an afternoon exploring the city's theatrical architecture scorched by summer-sunshine, charming plazas filled with aromatic open-air cafes and luscious tropical gardens at your own pace. This evening, witness the fierce Spanish spirit played out during a traditional flamenco performance.
Today, enjoy a leisurely panoramic tour of this sun-kissed Andalucian metropolis. At an additional fee, enter the UNESCO recognised Seville Cathedral to marvel at Gothic embellishments of the world's third largest cathedral, before exploring its many treasures including Seville's greatest paintings within the Sacristia Mayor, the elaborate catafalque of Christopher Columbus' tomb and El Giraldillo's towering minaret. Your tour will also take you to the Royal Palace of Alcazar, to ramble through a layer cake of eras within the palace gardens, peer up at Salons de Carlos' mosaic ceiling and marvel at a wooden dome encrusted with golden segments in Salon de Embajadores.
Depart Seville this morning for a half-day tour of Ronda. Teetering beside the yawning gorge of El Tajo, the town enjoys a dramatic location surrounded by the Serrania de Ronda. Enjoy a guided visit to the town's spectacular Alameda del Tajo gardens, stroll across the gorge upon the architectural marvel of Puente Nuevo Bridge and take in the old town's historic charm. Following your tour continue to the stylish city of Malaga for an evening at leisure, concluding your Andalucian adventure with a farewell meal.
After breakfast at your hotel, transfer to the airport for your return flight to the UK.
A visa is not required for your trip to Spain. Further advice should be sought from the applicable tourist authority for other nationalities and for general queries. We strongly advise you check your destinations' Tourist Board or Embassy for the most up-to-date guidelines regarding passport validity.
You must obtain suitable travel insurance prior to departure. Mercury Holidays is partnered with Holiday Extras which offer insurance at the following prices:
|Age in Years||Up to 64||65 - 74||75 - 85|
|Up to 10 days cover||£21||£42||£62|
If booking more than 10 weeks before departure a deposit of £250pp will need to be paid at the time of booking with the full amount payable at 10 weeks prior to departure. The deposit applies to adults and children. If you are within 10 weeks of travel then the full balance of the holiday will be payable.
Your flight to Malaga Airport is with British Airways (BA), departing from London Gatwick North Terminal. Please note that all flight times and numbers listed are provided for guidance only and are subject to change. Final flight details will be confirmed on your e-ticket and final documentation which will be sent to you approximately 10 days before departure. Each passenger is entitled to 23kg of hold luggage plus 1 item of hand luggage and 1 personal item such as a handbag, briefcase or laptop case, however size and weight restrictions will be finalised on your e-ticket receipt. Should you wish to take additional luggage you will need to pay extra at check-in. Check-in should be at least 3 hours before departure. Checked baggage allowance may vary. Please refer to the bottom right of your E-ticket receipt for the correct baggage allowance.
It is your responsibility to check any health and vaccination requirements applicable to your booked arrangements. We can only provide general information about this. Health and hygiene facilities and disease risks vary from country to country. You should take health advice about your own needs as early as possible and in good time before your departure. Sources of information include; www.fco.gov.uk, http://travelhealthpro.org.uk/, www.hpa.org.uk, your General Practitioner or a specialist clinic.
This tour is accessible to most people with an average level of fitness and normal mobility. It involves moderate days of walking on uneven paths and small hills, and getting on and off coaches. This tour is not suitable for anyone with walking difficulties.
This is a fully escorted tour, meaning you will have the services of an English speaking guide throughout ensuring that you have first-hand knowledge at all times.
The currency in Spain is the Euro (EUR). We recommend that you exchange your currency before you leave the UK, however cash machines are available in all the major cities to withdraw money in the local currency.
You will need to take some extra money with you to cover any lunches/dinners where these are not mentioned on your itinerary and personal purchases, such as souvenirs, extra drinks and snacks. Approximately £200-£300 per person should be sufficient for the duration of your tour. Please also bear in mind that there will be several shopping opportunities throughout your tour.
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