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Spain tour, 12 days

 Take a scenic 12-day tour of Djoser in southern Spain and discover the special province of Andalusia, with the beautiful cities of Seville, Cordoba and Granada. These cities are rich in atmospheric courtyards and historic buildings.  The tour is interspersed with the beautiful scenery of the Sierra Nevada. Join our international group on this tour of Spain.

University Short Term, Study Abroad, Faculty-Led Programs   Faculty members - use this pretested itinerary as a template for your short-term program. This trip can be extended or shortened.  We can work with you to build an  outstanding program for your private group. We can add in activities which bring your area of study to life. Our quote for customized study tours will include: International flight, land program with breakfasts, selected dinners, private coach transport, local, English-speaking guide, city tours, activities and selected entry fees, tips, comfortable lodgings similar to accommodations displayed in this website, faculty members free of charge, staying in single rooms. Contact us regarding your program needs and preferences for January Term, May Term and  Summer programs. Luke Neal luke@djoserusa.com 877-356-7376. Also in combination with Portugal or Morocco!

Itinerary

  1. Málaga - Ronda
  2. Ronda
  3. Ronda, travel to El Torcal National Park and Laguna de la Fuente Piedra of Antequera
  4. Ronda - Grazalema National Park- Arcos de la Frontera
  5. Arcos de la Frontera - Jerez de la Frontera - Sevilla
  6. Sevilla
  7. Sevilla
  8. Sevilla - Carmona - Córdoba
  9. Córdoba
  10. Córdoba - Granada
  11. Granada
  12. Granada - Málaga -

Day by day

Djoser does not adhere to a rigid day to day schedule.  The travel days are, of course, set and the tour leader will offer suggestions for the daily outings. You are free to join the group or to venture out on your own, according to your preferences.  The tour leader can also make suggestions for independent activities.

* NOTE TO FACULTY MEMBERS PLANNING A CUSTOM UNIVERSITY STUDY TOUR:  If you are planning a study tour for a private group, use this description as your daily guideline.  We can build in scheduled activities that highlight  you area of study.

Ronda

Day 1 - Málaga - Ronda
Day 2 Ronda
Day 3 Ronda, visit El Torcal National Park and Laguna de la Fuente Piedra or Antequera
Day 4 Ronda - Grazalema national park - Arcos de la Frontera arrival in Malaga

We begin the program in Ronda located in a mountainous area in the middle of Andalusia. Ronda consists of a maze of steep alleys and streets. Due to its exceptional location on the Tajo Gorge, Ronda was reputed to be impregnable. Now the Puente Nuevo bridge spans the spectacular gorge "Garganta del Chorro" that connects the old Arab town and the new part. From Ronda you can, go to the National Park El Torcal just outside Antequera. Water, wind and weather have carved an impressive landscape of jagged rocks here over millions of years.With a little luck in the spring in the nature reserve Laguna de la Fuente Piedra, you can admire the flamingos who come here in large numbers to breed. The number of flamingos that nest here each year varies from year to year depending on the water level. 

Outside the breeding season, we visit Antequera , where the imposing Moorish castle  towers above the city. On the way to Arcos we drive past the Parque Nacional de Grazalema. This is one of the rainiest places in Spain, which has created a lush green area. The park and its surroundings enjoy particular fame because of pinsapo, a special fir that grows here. Grazalema itself is a beautifully situated white mountain village with a cozy square full of terraces.


Andalusia is known for its white villages, called pueblos blancos. Arcos de la Frontera is situated high on a mountain with a village, whose houses are whitewashed. The name Arcos is an indication of the typical architecture of the village, with its many arched doorways and cloisters. The name Frontera dates back to the period of the Reconquista, when the Spaniards conquered the Mooris in a challenging region named Frontera, border, indicating the prolonged frontline. Arcos is known to many as one of the most beautiful towns in Spain. It is therefore not surprising that it has been declared as an historic monument.  You will have a night to stroll through the picturesque streets.

Seville

Day 5 Arcos de la Frontera - Jerez - Seville

Day 6 Seville

Day 7 Seville

When we descend towards the coast you will find cork oaks line the road both sides of the road cork oaks. The bark of which is used among other things for the manufacture of wine bottle corks. A visit to the famous sherry-place Jerez gives the opportunity to taste sherry in one of the many old bodegas of the city. If you like you can taste a glass of sherry in the largest winery in the world, where 30,000 barrels of sherry are maturing.

After lunch we drive to Seville, capital of Andalusia, we have two full days to explore this beautiful city. Our newly built hotel in Seville is located on the edge of the car-free center. Seville is a city with a rich past. Dating back to Moorish times, is the ancient minaret La Giralda, which is now part of the cathedral. From this symbol of Seville, you have a beautiful view over the old town. Close to the cathedral is the government palace Alcazar is that has beautiful tiles.


The picturesque district of Santa Cruz is made up of many small alleys, cozy tapas bars and countless different patios. Almost all year round you can enjoy the well-groomed floral still-lifes, terracotta pots in all colors and sizes, and a wide variety of artistic cast-iron balconies. In the hot summers you will learn to appreciate the presence of the shady parks and you can enjoy romantic evenings in this city.Take a walk along the banks of the river Guadalquivir. The name is derived from the Arabic Wadi-el-Kebir, which means Great River. Wander also by the famous gypsy quarter of Triana, which gives you a good impression of the still lively gypsy culture in Seville.  Towards Cordoba we may stop in the charming medieval town Carmona, where you can stroll through the alleys and streets.

Córdoba

Day 8 Sevilla - Carmona - Córdoba

Day 9 Córdoba

A trip to the olive-growing hills takes us to Córdoba. At the time of Moorish domination, Córdoba was a major metropolis and center of art and science. Now it is a quiet provincial town with an interesting old town with its center and, the Mezquita, an ancient mosque. We spend the night in a small hotel, built in Andalusian style, with a flowery patio, where you can quietly relax from all impressions. Near our hotel is the Mezquita, famous for its many banded limestone columns and arches. Christians later built a cathedral in the middle of the mosque. The beautiful gardens of the Alcazar are a little further away and should not be missed. In the evenings, you have ample opportunity to visit the ancient Jewish quarter and to enjoy the tapas. 

Granada

Day 10 Cordoba - Granada

Day 11 Granada

Day 12 Granada - Malaga

We drive to Granada where we spend two nights in a centrally located hotel. A visit to the world-famous Moorish palace city of Alhambra and the magnificent Generalife gardens is of course the highlight of the stay. The enchanting patios and halls of the Alhambra are the latest manifestation of the Moorish architecture of the Reconquista.


In the cathedral of Granada are the beautifully carved tombs of the famous monarchs Fernando and Isabel, who in the 15th century, accomplished the unification of Spain and the expansion into America. A walk through the Moorish quarter Albaicín with its labyrinthine streets and authentic Moorish houses and buildings is also highly recommended. From this area you have beautiful views of the Alhambra with the snow-capped Sierra Nevada and the Alpujarras in the background.  

 We drive to Malaga where our trip comes to an end. 

On the road with Djoser

Djoser trips do not have a tightly scheduled itinerary. The travel days are obviously fixed, but locally the program is agreed on  between the group and the tour guide. On most days the tour guide provides a program and a number of excursions are included, but you are  not required to participate. Freedom and flexibility are important elements of a Djoser trip. 

Dates and prices

Departure dates 2017

Land Begins Land Ends Price Availability  
Apr-30-17
Guaranteed leave
May-11-17$2,0006 seatsbook now >
May-14-17
Guaranteed leave
May-25-17$2,0002 seatsbook now >
May-28-17
Guaranteed leave
Jun-08-17$1,94021 seatsbook now >
Jun-11-17
Guaranteed leave
Jun-22-17$1,94018 seatsbook now >
Jul-16-17
Guaranteed leave
Jul-27-17$2,00021 seatsbook now >
Sep-03-17
Guaranteed leave
Sep-14-17$1,94022 seatsbook now >
Sep-17-17
Guaranteed leave
Sep-28-17$1,94018 seatsbook now >
Oct-01-17
Guaranteed leave
Oct-12-17$1,94019 seatsbook now >

Departure dates 2018

Land Begins Land Ends Price Availability  
Apr-29-18May-10-18$2,00022 seatsbook now >
May-13-18
Guaranteed leave
May-24-18$1,94022 seatsbook now >
May-27-18
Guaranteed leave
Jun-07-18$1,94022 seatsbook now >
Jun-10-18Jun-21-18$1,94022 seatsbook now >

Conditions "Guaranteed leave"

Price includes


Dutch tour leader as logistics coordinator  (speaks Dutch and English), Assistance of local, English-speaking guide, Transportation by air-conditioned bus, Hotel Accommodation with breakfast, Tour El Torcal National Park, Visit Grazalea national park

Price excludes

International flights, Meals, other than breakfasts, Entry fees, Tips, Travel insurance, Personal expenses 

Cost Overview

 Single Room - $315

Estimated out of pocket expenses weekly - $290 

Practical information

Accommodations & Meals

We stay in comfortable middle class hotels, where the rooms are equipped with private shower and toilet. They are within walking distance of the city centers.  In the large cities you can take a local bus, tram or taxi. Breakfast is included in the fare.


Ronda                          Hotel El Tajo
Arcos de la Frontera    Hotel Pena de Arcos
Sevilla                          Hotel Exe Sevilla Palmera
Cordoba                       Maestre
Granada                      Guadalupe Hotel

Single room

Single travelers will be matched with a roommate of the same sex. You can request a single room on your booking form for an additional cost listed in our price overview.

Meals
Breakfast is included in the fare. It is usually fairly light and consists of a sandwich or croissant with tea or coffee. Other meals are not included on these trips.In this way  you can always choose where, when and with whom you eat. Your tour leader can make suggestions. 


The eating habits of Spaniards differs significantly from ours. The main meal takes place at about 2P:00. Almost all restaurants offer than an inexpensive daily menu. A menu "del día" usually consists of an appetizer (primero), a main course (segundo), dessert (postre) and wine or water. Between 3PM and 9 PM is the time for drinks and tapas, small snacks such as cold potato salad and all kinds of fish with garlic, olives, etc. served at the evening meal. The evening meal is usually lighter and starts quite late. Most restaurants open at 9:00. It is advisable not to drink tap water, however, bottled water is for sale everywhere. In southern Spain, you can enjoy a genuine paella or a delicious cup of fresh gazpacho (cold soup with garlic), an Andalusian specialty that tastes great on hot days. Spaniards see meals as a social event, so it is extra cozy at mealtimes in the restaurants, This trip is known as a culinary journey because of the variety of foods. 

Flights & Transportation


Booking your international flight - We provide the land package and transportation within the program as described. We do not arrange international flights from or to the United States or Canada. The land program will begin approximately two hours after the arrival of the Netherlands (NL) participants who will be arrive from Amsterdam. The land program will end about 4 hours prior to their scheduled departure time, which allows for time to get to the airport. The proposed flights for the Dutch participants and the land beginning and end times are listed in this section. They are subject to change based on flight delays or changes. We will keep you posted of any flight changes that we are aware of prior to the trip. When scheduling your flights, keep the following times in mind.

Dutch participants' proposed flights: (subject to change) (2016) - TRANSAVIA
Arrival        -  Malaga  09:25 
Departure -   Malaga - 20:35 

Before you book your flight - To avoid flight change or cancellation costs get email confirmation from our office that the trip has enough participants to be a “GO”.

Verify the spelling of your name-within 24 hours - When you book your flights, double check your flight records to confirm that your name is spelled on your ticket exactly as it appears on your passport. Some companies (for example, ORBITZ) will only allow a 24 hour window to correct any errors without penalty. You may incur heavy fees for changes, forfeiture of your flight ticket, or even worse, you could be denied entry to a border upon arrival.


Send us a copy of your flight itinerary - We will forward to the tour leader so they will know when to expect you at the hotel and when you will be departing.


Keep in mind hotel extensions - If the Dutch travelers arrive early in the morning, we recommend that you arrange to fly in the day or night before so you will be meet the group. Some trips involve an immediate transfer from airport to the next town so make sure you will arrive before the others so you don’t miss the first meeting or transfer to the next location. We can arrange an extension hotel night for you. Prices for hotel extensions can be found in the "Dates & Prices" section
If the Dutch participants arrive in the late evening - Should they arrive very late in the evening, the group will have their first meeting in the morning in the hotel lobby. You can check in earlier and relax or explore on your own.


Airport transfer to/from hotel (not Included) - If you will be arriving and or departing on the same flight as the Dutch travelers let us know. Then you can join them on the bus for the group transfer at no additional charge. Notify us in advance so we can alert the tour leader. If you schedule your flight at the same time as theirs, or later, you can join them on the group transfer to the airport at no additional charge. Otherwise, you can take an authorized taxi to the first hotel on the list we have provided for you. Private airport transfers can be very costly . If your flight is delayed, they are difficult to reschedule or cancel. With a taxi, you are not charged for waiting time or cancellations.


Useful Links for booking your flights
Orbitz.com
Expedia.com
Kaykak.com


Local transportation - Throughout the trip we make use of a spacious comfortable air-conditioned bus. The distances are not great and the longest travel time is about five hours. Southern Italy has a good road system so we can cover many miles quickly. Please note that we will wind slowly through mountainous landscape.

The use of a private bus with driver enables us to determine where and how long we stop. We stop frequently along the way at attractions, to make a detour to visit a nice village or beautiful nature.We cross over to Sicily by boat. We explore large towns on foot but also make use of public transport for example, in Taormina.

 

Money Matters


In Spain, the euro is the currency.
ATMS: found everywhere.
Credit cards are widely accepted.

You will need to budget for expenditures not included in the fare, such as meals, entrance fees, optional excursions and personal expenses. See PRICE OVERVIEW for estimated costs. 


It is customary to tip for services rendered. To prevent you having to pay out gratuities the tour leaderestablishes a tip jar at the beginning of the trip, from which the (joint) tips to the drivers, local guides, hotel staff, etc. are paid. Estimated amount is $30 per person. 

Excursions

At Djoser you decide which sights you will find worth visiting. One may choose to roam about the market looking for bargains, while someone else explores a museum or relaxes on the terrace, while enjoying a drink, to enjoy the people and surroundings.  In most cases, you can explore on your own or with peers, with or without the help of our tour guide, on foot or by local transport . Entrance fees are not included in the price so you have the freedom partake or forego any group activity. Some sights should not be missed or they are not easily accessible or may be en route to our next overnight. Such transport to excursions are included in the program by entry fees are extra.  

During this 12-day journey, the following excursions are included: 

El Torcal national park in 1929 declared a protected area. Unusual formations in the limestone rocks formed  over millions of years.
Parque Nacional de Grazalema, an area that receives most rainfall in Spain, great for the flora with over 1,300 floral species.
Visit to the Real Alcazar, the most visited monument in Seville.
Visit to the impressive Mezquita de Cordoba, a unique cathedral inside and outside a mosque!
Visit of the Medina Azahara, remnants of an ancient Muslim city in the 10th century.
Visiting the Alhambra: the red fort of the former Moorish rulers.

Along the way our bus stops at a number of places where you still only have to pay any entrance fees:
Visit Domecq bodega in Jerez or a visit to the famous Spanish Riding School in Seville.
En route to Jaén we bring made a visit to an olive oil factory

Other activities may be arranged on the spot. . A visit to the Alhambra can be made with a local guide, for a flamenco lesson or a flamenco show. From Granada it is also possible to make a day trip to the Sierra Nevada to climb the Pico de Veleta.

Travel Documents


Valid passport is needed for travel in Spain. 

Health Issues & Insurance


Spain No vaccinations are recommended. It is advisable somewhat to watch what you eat. We also encourage you to bring a small medical kit include aspirin and a remedy against intestinal disorders.
Back upstairs

Health Center for Disease Control – Travelers information– Travelers information for recommendations. Keep in mind that they may recommend an inoculation or medication such as malaria pills, which may be necessary for one specific part of a country but not another, or for a particular season. Shots are expensive. Make sure to get only what is needed. We recommend asking your doctor for a prescription to combat a more serious intestinal disorder.

When you book a trip we will provide you with information regarding the usual recommendations for the region we will visit. You will be responsible to check with your travel clinic or physician to review your plans and to find out the most up-to-date recommendations and needs for your particular situation. Plan to get your inoculations four to six weeks in advance of your trip. Some offices may need to preorder the medicines so call in advance. It is wise to pay careful attention to what you eat. Also, we recommend you bring medicines such as pain-killer and for remedy for intestinal disorders (such as IMMODIUM) Bring a small first aid kit. Tweezers, band-aids, antiseptic cream, insect repellant, salt rehydration tablets. The tour leader will have a first aid kit.

Climate or altitude changes can sometimes cause illness. Be sure to drink plenty of water. Bottled water is readily available. Excessive alcohol intake contributes to dehydration and makes you more vulnerable to illness. Make sure that you get plenty of rest and enough food and drink during the trip.

Insurance - For peace of mind, we recommend that you procure travel insurance. For example, in the event of an illness or injury, an emergency evacuation can be incredibly expensive and you would want access to the best possible facility. Also, lost baggage or missed flights can mean added expenses. Even events at home may prevent you from taking a trip, such as a lost job or ailing family member. Check your providers policies regarding coverage for expenses incurred due to political turmoil or natural disasters. Djoser is not responsible for costs incurred for changes or missed portions of a program or missed flights due to such events, so make sure you check your policy. It is important to get travel insurance immediately after booking. Most companies have a brief window (within 10 days of booking) for coverage for a preexisting condition. You will be asked to provide us with travel insurance contact information before your departure.

You are free to choose your own provider. Over the years, we have recommended TRAVELEX. They offer a variety of plans and most importantly, they are responsive. Should you choose to go with TRAVELEX, you will contact them directly and the cost of your coverage will depend on the plan you choose. The cost will be based over the total cost of your trip and flights, and the amount is also subject to your age. Ask about the TRAVEL PLUS plan and the more economical TRAVEL LITE plan. * Arrange for insurance immediately after booking your trip so that you are covered for any pre-existing situation. TRAVELEX 1-800-228-9792

Group Composition

Djoser travelers are active, enthusiastic travelers of all ages. Join an international group with travelers from the Netherlands, Belgium and North America, who will be the minority group on these trips. Most of our trips range from a minimum of eight participants to a maximum of 20 or 22. You will find couple and singles on our trips. Feel free to call us if you wish to know the demographic make-up of a particular trips (number of singles and age range).

Minimum group size: 8 
Maximum group size: 22

What to expect when traveling with an international group

We offer this group trip to Spain in cooperation with Djoser, B.V. (in the Netherlands)., You will  join an international group of travelers with most participants coming from Holland and Belgium. This journey is guided by an experienced Dutch guide, who speaks Dutch and English. Careful and comprehensive training lays the foundation for their preparations. Our tour guides are responsible for the organizational and logistical elements of this trip. They are not lecturers. They will relay all needed information to you regarding activities, dining, and travel schedule. In addition, a local English-speaking guide tells extensively about the country  ; local customs, religious influences to cultural backgrounds.

While you are sure to hear fellow travelers speaking Dutch , you will find that almost all of your fellow travelers have an excellent command of English.  It is  always easier to break the ice in a one-on-one setting; early in the trip,invite travel mates for a coffee or drink to break the ice. This is also a more comfortable setting for your travel mates to brush up on their English skills.  Group members tend to warm up to one another in a day or two. As with every tour group, compatibility has most to do with individual personalities.

The Dutch are experienced and hearty travelers. We attract travelers of all ages and we enjoy the mix! You will find our participants welcome opportunities for independent explorations in addition to group activities. No matter their age, Djoser travelers expect, and are up to lots of walking, hiking, biking, or whatever comes our way. The Dutch and Belgian travelers will fly as a group from Amsterdam. You will meet the group and tour leader at the hotel where you will begin the land program with the group.

The international make-up of our groups is the attraction for many regular Djoser travelers and adds another cultural element to the trip. But an international group is not for every traveler, and may be more challenging for a solo traveler who does not have experience in this situation.. If you have trepidations about being in this situation, please discuss them with us as we want you to be comfortable. 

Tour Leaders & Support Staff

An enthusiastic Dutch tour guide accompanies the tour. Our tour guides are very experienced and passionate travelers. They are not lecturers but handle the logistics of the trip.  They ensure that the trip goes smoothly and will  be the contact point for questions and concerns. The private passion, combined with extensive training and forms the basis of their expertise and professionalism. 


A local English-speaking guide tells extensively about the country; local customs, religious influences to cultural backgrounds.
 

Climate & Geography

Spain has various climate zones, depending on latitude, altitude, distance from the sea etc. In general you can say that the Spanish climate from north to south forming a transition from the mild and rainy climate of Western Europe to the hot, dry Africa. Summers in southern Spain are generally warm.

Photos & video

Book Trip/Trip Inquiry

Are you ready to book a trip?


* Submit this form to begin your reservation process.  Confirm that names exactly as they appear on a current passports.  If names on your international, domestic flights or visas (if applicable) do not match your name as it appears on your passport, some countries will deny you entry.

TIP:  Also verify your name on your flight records, within 24 hours after reserving to avoid change or cancellation penalties.   

* Pay by personal check or credit card:  Visa, Mastercard, American Express

* Call us with your charge card information.  Your place will be reserved upon receipt of funds for required deposit.

* Refer to the Prices & Dates page for an overview of your total costs & deposit 


* Download the Booking Form with Terms and Conditions

* Fax for with signatures for all participants 18 and over to  484-595-9140 . Or scan to us at luke@djoserusa.com

* Or mail Djoser, Inc., 154 Woodgate Lane, Paoli, PA 19301 - Attn: Luke Neal


Download Booking Form 

* = required

Highlights

  •  Travel through beautiful nature and cities
  • Visit to the impressive Alhambra optional
  • Stay in Cordoba known for the unique Mezquita
  • Assistance of tour guide
  • Comfortable hotels with private shower and toilet
  • Breakfast included 
  • Visit all the highlights of Andalusia